Large-Diaphragm Microphone Matching Fee
If you need a matched stereo pair of large-diaphragm microphones or microphone kits, add this item to the same shopping cart, along with whichever two microphones or microphone kits you wish to purchase. This item is essentially an upgrade to matched capsules, which is the most critical ingredient in matching microphones.
Our large-diaphragm capsules can be matched to within 0.5dB sensitivity and 1.5dB in frequency response, 50Hz–15,000Hz. Our microphone circuits tend to be very close in terms of sensitivity (but see further detail below); therefore, if the capsules are matched, the microphones will be matched too.
What does "matched" mean?
It is important to understand that the word "matched" is not regulated. We have seen vendors claim mic pairs to be "matched" when sensitivity is within 1.5dB, with no mention of whether the frequency response is within 1dB, 3dB, or more. We have seen $2900 pairs of famous-brand mics that are only "matched" from 300Hz-8kHz, with no mention of the variance over the other four audible octaves.
We believe that matched microphones should be matched both for sensitivity and for frequency response. It is relatively easy to pick microphones whose sensitivity matches, but this is the less important of the two criteria, both because consumer-grade preamps are probably not well-matched for gain, and because sensitivity discrepancies are easily adjusted (by adjusting preamp gain).
Matching for frequency response is more difficult, especially at the extreme ends of the audible range, e.g. below 300 Hz and above 8kHz. Our matched pairs of capsules do match in those regions: within 1.5dB from 50 Hz to 15kHz. Sensitivity is within 0.5dB at 1kHz.
Notes on specific circuit types
All of our large diaphragm transformerless circuits, the MP-V57, TL3, and 990, provide an easy mechanism for fine adjustments to circuit sensitivity. This enables two such mics to be matched within a fraction of a decibel in sensitivity and frequency response. This also applies to the S-87, S-12, S-47, S3-12, S3-47, S3-87, and MP-47 microphones and kits.
The transformer coupled FET circuits (T-84, T84-55, 990XF) do not offer the same sensitivity adjustment feature; the sensitivity of two circuits could differ by as much as 1dB. But we have found that this potential variance in circuit sensitivity is not significant; using matched capsules, two such microphones would be within about 1.5dB in both sensitivity and frequency response, 50 Hz to 15kHz.
The tube mics, like the transformer FET mics, could vary slightly in sensitivity, due to tube gain. As noted above, variance in sensitivity is easily corrected via preamp gain adjustments. Using matched capsules addresses the more critical aspect of matching, namely the frequency response.