The world of audio and musical equipment can be a tricky one to navigate at the best of times. With so many different products, conflicting opinions and confusing reviews, it’s hard to know what’s actually the best product for your needs. Luckily, the team at Mixdown have put in the legwork for you, sifting through the spec-sheets and putting the products through their paces to bring you Mixdown’s Picks - a new series of expansive, category defining product guides across our digital channels. Anything that has made the cut has rated highly across the board with the Mixdown staff, garnering a unanimous tick of approval from our staunch critics.
For this installment, we're diving deep into the world of studio microphones, exploring the massive range of ribbon, condenser and dynamic options on the market for savvy producers, engineers and project studio enthusiasts.
Peluso 22 47 LE
Catergory: Tube Condenser | Pattern: Cardioid
Key Features: The original Neumann U47 tube condenser is the most coveted microphone in the world. Buying a secondhand one will set you back more than $15,000. Buying it new is impossible because the last one was produced in the 60s. It is considered by many to be the ultimate vocal microphone, and numerous companies have stepped up to the plate to try and emulate the original. Peluso’s 2247 series microphones emulate the U47 as faithfully as possible.
While the SE version uses a lower noise American Steel tube, the LE version uses the closest thing to the original VF14 tubes found in the U47, the German made ‘Stahlrohren Telefunken' tubes to achieve the most faithful emulation humanly possible. If this isn’t enough to make you salivate, Peluso have also added the ability to choose between 9 (!) different polar patterns from the power supply. Weighing in at a full keg, the 2247 LE feels like a throwback of the golden age of commercial studios, where tubes ruled and recording engineers wore white. It certainly feels like five grand worth of microphone on display here. The overall quality of the craftsmanship combined with the general weight of the unit and accompanying mount bear all the indicators of the top end of town, with the same elegance and regal aesthetic of the classic mics of yesteryear.
With a whopping nine selectable polar patterns allowing for easy navigation between omnidirectional, cardioid, bidirectional, and even some intermediary patterns in between, it leant itself to all kinds of interesting experimentation regarding placement and polarity.
Mixdown Says: Singing into this thing is nothing short of revelatory. Sonically, the 2247 LE has all the tube warmth and pleasant response you may be familiar with if you have ever encountered a U47 in the wild, but the newness of the microphone and it’s components give it a crispness that takes it above and beyond. You can’t help but feel like this is what U47’s would have sounded like out of the box, back before they were vintage.
It’s often said that the lead vocal is where the money is and in that regard, the Peluso 2247 LE has all the hallmarks of a classic Neumann sound, balanced and rich, yet at the same time open and natural. The 2247 LE produces some of the clearest, most honest sounding recordings you will find. It’s a sound that is strangely flattering despite it’s earnestness, almost like the veil has been lifted and you can finally hear yourself in true colour. The sound is universally flattering, and sounds good for all registers, standing front and centre, brimming with energy (probably courtesy of those awesome Stahlrohren tubes). The 2247 LE also serves as an awesome single room mic or overhead for the kit (especially in omni) and for mellow, vintage-y acoustic sources.
Overall: The 2247 LE is a masterclass in classic mic design for the modern era and a recording engineer’s dream to hold and use. I have already grown attached to it and will hate to see it go, but I’m just grateful for our time together.
Check out the Peluso 2247 LE at Musos Corner in Australia.