Friday, November 16th, 2018

Violet Design ‘The Wedge’ Studio Microphone

By editorMarch 31, 2012


Violet Design The 'Wedge'

“The Wedge” is an attractively shaped electrostatic transducer condenser microphone. The Wedge’s capsule is made from 6-micron Mylar film, and housed within an innovative freestanding design which claims to provide a more open and detailed sound.  The large single-diaphragm is sputtered with Violet’s ‘exclusive’ gold alloy mixture and designed to give a faster impulse transient response without sound coloration or low-frequency reduction, as well as handling high sound pressure levels.

The internal pre-amp is a solid-state fully discrete Class-A transformer-less circuit and the Wedge operates from standard 48V phantom power.  Mounting is via a standard 5/8” stand mount and comes included with a 5/8” to 3/8” screw adapter.  A gold plated 3-pin XLR provides access to the balanced discrete Class A output.

The quoted frequency response is 20Hz to 20kHz and the published response graph shows a very small boost between 3kHz and 7kHz.  Polar response is cardiod and the quoted self noise is 6dB A-weighted so there should be no noise problems across a wide range of recording applications.  The optional shock mount supplied with the review model used a simple click belt around the body of the microphone and was simple to mount.

As I’ve found with all Violet microphones, the Wedge comes in a quality foam lined hardwood case with a well laid out user manual.

Testing was done into a Safe Sound 500 Series P501 Mic Amp and monitoring via my PMCs.

Initial impressions are positive.  The Wedge has a fairly warm sound which handles a wide variety of sources well.  On acoustic guitar I found it a little lacking in the mid to high presence zone which was easily correctable with EQ.  I also found myself wanting to dial in a little bottom end.  I don’t mean around 250Hz where, if anything it was a little too busy, but actually right down in the bass region around 100 to 150Hz where you would expect to be applying cut and not boost.  It led me to thinking that this microphone seems less affected by close proximity than many I’ve tested.

The fast transient response and decent level handling capability means this microphone can handle drums and percussion very well.  Again a small amount of EQ adjustment helps sit the sound in the mix better but this was not difficult or obtrusive.  It also gave a good solid and dependable performance on electric guitars.

Vocals were handled well, a little muddy sometimes in the mid lows, again correctable with EQ and a sufficient HF extension for most vocal types, but again very amenable to some presence boost when desired.

So in summary, it is indeed a good microphone for a wide variety of applications. As long as you don’t mind reaching for the EQ from time to time, the Wedge provides a quality result from a boutique manufacturer at a much less than boutique price.

Best features : Flexibility, low noise, capable of adding some warmth when needed

Weakest points : you need to work the EQ for best results

Rating : 7/10

Specifications

Transducer type                      electrostatic

Operating principle                  pressure gradient

Diaphragm’s active diameter  21 mm

Frequency range                     20 Hz to 20 kHz

Polar pattern                           unidirectional – cardioid

Electronics                              discrete solid state, class AOutput impedance                  50 ohms

Rated load impedance            1000 ohms

Suggested load impedance    >250 ohms

Sensitivity at 1000 Hz into 1000 ohms load    25 mV/Pa

S/N Ratio CCIR 468-3 weighted         78 dB

S/N Ratio DIN/IEC 651 A-weighted     89 dB-A

Equivalent noise level DIN/IEC A-weighted    6 dB-A

Maximum SPL for 0.5% THD at 1k ohm load 136 dB

Dynamic range of the internal preamplifier     130 dB

Phantom powering voltage     +40V to +52V

Current consumption              <1.75 mA

Output connector                    3-pin XLR male, gold plated contacts

Dimensions                             210 x 42 (shaft 24mm)

Weight                                     350g

http://www.violet-design.com/

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