To anyone interested in capturing an instrument the way it really sounds, with all of the warmth and natural tone you hear at the instrument, ribbons will get you there.
Long before Royer Labs opened, David Royer was talking about ribbon mics
to anyone who would listen. David had found a recording made by Bob Speiden,
on a stereo ribbon mic designed by Bob, and it changed his life. David
studied every ribbon microphone he could get his hands on and every book
on ribbon theory he could find to learn how they did what they did, then
settled on his own approach to ribbons. In 1998, Royer Labs was opened
to bring David's revolutionary ribbon microphone designs to the world.
David is a classical music buff, so every Royer design is tested on classical
instruments and over full orchestras before getting a green light. A microphone
may sound great on a few instruments, but if there's a problem or a weakness,
a full orchestra will show it. Once a design is proven on complex classical
sound sources, we know it will be great on a wide variety of instruments.
One of our favorite tracks for showing what a ribbon microphone can do was recorded by the Canadian engineer Russell Dawkins. He used one SF-12 stereo ribbon mic to record the Ukrainian Radio Television Orchestra. It's a stunning example, one we play for most visitors to Royer Labs. Download the MP3 or Wav file and listen for yourself (through your stereo if possible), then spend some time going through the material on our Demo CD's. and checking out samples and photos in Session Photos and Recording Tips.