The Electro-Voice RE320 is my favorite podcasting microphone. It produces a more natural sound than other studio dynamic microphones in the same price range.
At NAB Show 2016, I talked to Rick Belt, one of the men behind the RE320. Rick told the story behind the RE320, including its predecessors, the Electro-Voice RE20 and RE27N/D. Rick Belt, known as TheEVMicGuy on YouTube, was part of a strategic team to make a versatile dynamic cardioid microphone that works great for voice, as well as recording music, with a lower price point than the more expensive RE20 and RE27N/D.
Electro-Voice began developing the technology for the RE20 and the RE27N/D in the 1950s, which became known as Variable D. This technology means you don’t have to maintain an exact distance from the microphone to get a consistent tone. (Most dynamic microphones get more bassy the closer you get.) Variable D was patented in 1964 and Electro-Voice used this technology in 1968 in the RE20.
In the 1980s, Electro-Voice began using neodymium magnets, which are more sensitive than the ceramic magnets in the RE20. Around 1984, they introduced the RE27N/D with this technology. The RE27N/D sounds more like a condenser microphone, which most people find makes their voice sound richer and more “radio-like,” even though it is a dynamic mic, which means it won’t pick up as much background noise.
Electro-Voice wanted to approach the music market with a less expensive version of the RE20, using its body and the engine out of the RE27N/D. Electro-Voice came up with a low-mass, high-velocity plastic that responds quickly to voice.
And thus, inspired from Rick’s tests in his basement, the RE320 Variable-D dynamic vocal and instrument microphone was born.
The Electro-Voice RE320 is my top recommend podcasting microphone and it retails for $299.
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