Electro-Voice RE-20 Cardioid Microphone Review

The Electro-Voice RE-20 Cardioid Microphone is suited for recording a variety of instruments including various electric instruments, such as bass, guitar, and so forth. It can even be used for voice recordings without having to purchase extra gear for each purpose.

Usually when a microphone is used with an instrument, but the musician wants to use it to record their vocals, they’ll have to add a pop filter. This isn’t the case with the RE-20. In fact, this is the microphone that’s been used by Radiohead’s Thom Yorke on stage.

electro-voice re-20 cardioid microphone

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What’s Included in the Box?

  • Electro-Voice RE-20
  • Black plastic stand clip
  • Internal pop filter
  • Internal shockmount

Technical Specs

  • Frequency response is 45Hz to 18kHz
  • Steel case material
  • Three-pin XLR connector type
  • Diameter is 54 mm
  • Bass roll-off switch
  • Large diaphragm

Electro-Voice as a Company

There are few companies that manufacture all of their components in-house, but Electro-Voice is one of those companies. They believe this ensures a strict quality control that applies to every part that makes it through the process to the consumer.

The company has been around for over 90 years, so they must be doing something right when it comes to creating audio gear. Over their 90 years, they’ve hit incredible milestones like being awarded a special citation from the U.S. War Department for the T-45 lip microphone in WWII. They created a tower of loudspeakers in Yankee Stadium in 1976, too.

First Impressions

This RE-20 dynamic microphone looks like a simple microphone with a vintage style and sleek color story of fawn beige. The magic is inside this mic, though. It comes with hidden surprises that make this microphone a great solution for your electric bass needs.

From the cardioid pattern to the internal shockmount to the large diaphragm, the RE-20 will record the low bass sounds coming from your electric bass guitar as well as from other instruments with a “low” sound. It can also be used for vocals because it has internal filters and shockmount to lower unwanted sound intrusion.

Polar Pattern

The cardioid pattern means that the microphone is more sensitive from the front, minimally from the sides and less sensitive behind the microphone. This should be kept in mind when doing your recording. When placing the microphone in front of the amp for electric bass guitar, you’re capturing the sound directly from that side. You can use this knowledge to record off-axis sounds, too.

For example, if you wanted to capture off-axis sounds, you’d place the microphone to the side of the amp’s cone. This will deliver a different sound than if you were to place the microphone on-axis to the speaker.

Internal Filter and Shockmount

Instead of purchasing a separate pop filter for the microphone, there’s one included inside the microphone itself. Each acoustic opening front the top down the sides of the mic are covered with a wind and blast filter to reduce unwanted vibrations.

Speaking of vibrations, you don’t want the band’s feet across the stage or movements to have an impact on the sound of the bass being recorded. For this reason, there’s an internal shockmount that reduces the noise picked up by the mic.

Materials for the Electro-Voice RE-20 Cardioid Microphone

The microphone’s body is made of steel as well as steel mesh covering the acoustic openings. This will keep it safe from many situations where the microphone might break otherwise. While we would never recommend tossing it around and jamming it inside the case with other equipment, it can handle natural instances of use.

Sound engineers often have one of these microphones in their arsenal because they can stand up to much abuse and still function properly. They’re also great for a variety of recording applications.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does this need phantom power to operate?
This microphone is a dynamic, which doesn’t need phantom power. It uses passive power to operate.

Can I use this microphone with my computer?
You’ll need an adapter to interface with your computer since it’s not equipped to handle the USB.

Is there a case included with this microphone?
The microphone comes with a fabric-covered case that’s made of quality materials to keep the mic safe from damage.

What kind of warranty does this come with from the manufacturer?
It comes with a 3-year warranty from Electro-Voice. You can contact their customer service center if you have any problems.

Conclusion

The Electro-Voice RE-20 Cardioid Microphone is a dynamic microphone that can be used by professionals and amateurs alike. In fact, it’s a microphone used most often by professionals in studio environments to capture quality sound from electronic bass guitars, kick drums, and other “low” instruments. The cardioid pattern and large diaphragm allow you to capture off-axis sound to bring in a variety of sounds given off by the amped instrument. There’s a built-in pop filter that reduces unwanted sounds, too. This mic has everything you could possible need for your recordings.

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