sE Electronics X1 R by roughgear
SE Electronics recently lowered the price of their new X1R microphone and I thought it was a good occasion to get a ribbon microphone.
I've never worked with one before and so I thought for this price (and SE's warranty that is valid for 20 years) you can't go wrong.
Well, you can. Unpacking the mic was rather disappointing - just comes with a mic clip that is adjustable with a screwdriver and a "one kind fits all" microphone manual. No data sheet for this specific microphone, but you can get it from their website.
The X1R has 200 Ohm and should work properly with lots of preamps, it can handle a maximum SPL of 135 db and has a protection circuit in case you'd activate phantom power.
There is no switch on the mic, no shock mount or protection bag included and for an original street price of 340 € this is not really satisfying. As the price dropped to 179 € it's ok.
I compared the X1R to another budget microphone. A Sennheiser MK4 large diaphragm condenser that sounds rather bright but in a good way (and not in a chinese way).
Here are the samples and you can judge yourself:
SE Electronics X1R vs. Sennheiser MK4
For me, the results are disappointing. It sounds muddy and there is no "magic" at all. I placed the mic not too close, so the dark sound is not due to the proximity effect. I would never use it by itself as the only microphone, but probably it can be useful as a second mic on a sound source.
The output of the X1R is rather low which is normal for a ribbon. I had to add 20db of gain to get the same level as with the Sennheiser MK4.
I rate this mic a 3/10.