help me fix this RCA Ribbon Mic

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Trem2
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help me fix this RCA Ribbon Mic

Post by Trem2 » Sun Nov 09, 2008 5:43 pm

This is an old RCA/Victor ribbon mic. Model PB46C1.
The Cable is hard wired into the mic. Kind of hard to see from the pictures:
There is about a foot of it coming out of the back at which point its been chopped off leaving 2 wires , a black one and a white one, inside of metal mesh shielding.
Is this something I could wire to an XLR connector without having to go into the mic itself ?

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digitaldrummer
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Post by digitaldrummer » Sun Nov 09, 2008 5:53 pm

you could try - probably white to pin 2, black to pin 3, shield to pin 1 (if phase reversed, then swap pin 2 & 3). but looking at the shape of the thing I'll be surprised if the ribbon is still intact....
Mike
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themagicmanmdt
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Post by themagicmanmdt » Mon Nov 10, 2008 10:05 am

ewww!

man, that mic is nasty!
we are the village green
preservation society
god bless +6 tape
valves and serviceability

*chief tech and R&D shaman at shadow hills industries*

newfuturevintage
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Post by newfuturevintage » Mon Nov 10, 2008 1:08 pm

digitaldrummer wrote:you could try - probably white to pin 2, black to pin 3, shield to pin 1 (if phase reversed, then swap pin 2 & 3). but looking at the shape of the thing I'll be surprised if the ribbon is still intact....
This is the way to do it.

Before spending the time though, shine a light through the back of the mic to see if the ribbon's there or not. If it's not, open the mic to see what else might be missing: transformer / mounts / silks / motor. If everything's there, and the ribbon's not, consider sending it to Sank or Enak to have the ribbon replaced.

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Post by littlesongs » Mon Nov 10, 2008 3:45 pm

From what little I could unearth, you have a very rare RCA prototype from the 30s. Coutant.org has a page dedicated to the RCA PB-46 and an in-depth look at the RCA PB-31 and other early ribbon models that led to the development of the RCA 44-A. All of these microphones are in the same family and probably similar in their wiring schemes. It would be well worth restoring to original condition. The aforementioned Clarence Kane at ENAK is the very best in the business.
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Trem2
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Post by Trem2 » Mon Nov 10, 2008 4:31 pm

Yeah, I took the windscreen off and the ribbon is in there and looks to be in pretty good shape as far as I can tell. The true test is going to be listening to it of course. Crossing my fingers and hoping all it needs is an xlr plug.
Thanks for the info everyone.

mattallen
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Post by mattallen » Mon Nov 10, 2008 9:00 pm

I would just send it off to Clarence anyway.
Good prices and the go to old ribbon guy.
Just do yourself a favor, and send it off to a professional.

heroalligator
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Post by heroalligator » Thu Nov 13, 2008 7:59 pm

Yeah, that's definitely an old pre-44 mic. I seriously doubt that the ribbon is functional, from the looks of it.
Steve Sank can most likely tell you what's up with it, and can definitely get it into perfect working condition, if not outright restored. I'm biased cuz I actually work with the guy, but you should know that he has Harry Olson's actual ribbon corrugation tool from the RCA factory. He inherited it from his dad, who designed mics for RCA. No joke.
Call 520-829-3108, we'll hook it up.

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casey campbell
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Post by casey campbell » Fri Nov 14, 2008 3:42 pm

i know you know this already, but no phantom power on it. ribbons arent partial to phantom. they're not very good friends at all.

:)

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Trem2
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Post by Trem2 » Fri Nov 14, 2008 3:48 pm

So...
I had an XLR plug soldered onto this and I am pleased to announce that it now WORKS PERFECTLY and sounds freaking amazing. Hayull Yayuss !

???????
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Post by ??????? » Fri Nov 14, 2008 6:15 pm

Trem2 wrote:So...
I had an XLR plug soldered onto this and I am pleased to announce that it now WORKS PERFECTLY and sounds freaking amazing. Hayull Yayuss !
Good work!

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