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Blue Ball Microphone

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To those readers who remain immature enough not to contain your titters upon reading phrases like penal colony (or the word titter, for that matter), I must remind you that you are reading a serious and classy magazine. There are to be no such infantile antics while reading this review of the Blue Ball microphone. JazzTimes wouldn’t devote space to the Ball’s coverage were it not a serious and classy piece of recording equipment.

The softball-sized Ball, the first dynamic microphone to come out of Blue’s Latvia-based lab, is also the first dynamic microphone ever to require phantom power. Blue has solved the dilemma of a dynamic mike’s frequency-dependent variable resistance. Unlike phantom power circuits in condenser mikes, which use the current for various aspects of operation, the Ball’s DC-voltage supply charges a specially designed circuit that supplies the output stage with a constant impedance load-the theory being that the steadiness will translate to a more open, more balanced and quieter output than we’ve heard from other dynamics. Far as I could tell, it works. From testing it on close-miked vocals to using it as a room mike recording a four-piece band, the Ball provided a deep and detailed sound with little noticeable unwanted noise.

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