MCA SP1 Mods
We have many modification/upgrade options for the MCA SP1 condenser microphone:
- Upgrade the capsule
- Replace the circuit (transformerless option)
- Replace the circuit (transformer option)
98% of the tone of this microphone comes from its capsule. The SP-1 is severely compromised in this respect; the MXL small-diaphragm capsules vary widely in tolerances and quality. Maybe yours sounds great, but chances are it doesn't stand up to professional gear. All of the SP1 capsules we've measured had a 3-5dB dip around 9kHz, and a 3-6dB boost around 15kHz -- not a recipe for great sound.
Our line of premium replacement capsules will re-voice your mic, giving you a much smoother and more musically useful sound. Replacing the stock capsule with one of our large-diaphragm capsules will lower the mic's self-noise too. And it can be replaced by soldering just two wires.
If you are keeping the stock circuit in your SP-1, we would recommend replacing the capsule with either the RK-47 or RK7. Both make wonderful all-purpose microphones, with great detail in the mids, and a neutral to dark top end — a welcome contrast to most over-bright condensers.
Our premier upgrade for all generations of MCA SP-1 is the MP-V57 PCB kit, which gives you a perfectly optimized, high sensitivity, low-noise circuit. Build it with either an internal Cardioid/Omni switch, or an internal -10dB pad.
Because the circuit provides the option for corrective high-frequency EQ, you can use any of our large-diaphragm capsules with the MP-V57 PCB kit, giving your SP1 a wide palette of possible sonic colors.
This circuit is no arbitrary bag of parts, but rather a handpicked collection of carefully selected parts that was developed over several years' worth of R&D.
The PCB set fits the MCA SP-1 and numerous similar FET condensers. Click for more info on the MP-V57 PCB kit.
To take your SP1 in a vintage direction, consider our new "T-84" circuit replacement kit. It is a design borrowed from Neumann's KM84. It will give your mic the tone of a vintage condenser, thanks to the ultra-simple signal path, carefully selected NOS JFET, and custom-wound output transformer.
Internal switches give your mic a second polar pattern (Omni) as well as a 10dB pad.
The photo at right shows the new circuit, which uses two high-quality two-layer PCBs manufactured in the US. This kit fits the MCA SP1 (all generations), MXL V63M, 440, V67G, and 2001, as well as the Apex 420 and 430.
Click for more info on the T-84 circuit kit.