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The AEA R84A produces the signature character of the massive RCA 44BX with less proximity effect and a hotter output. The AEA R84A is a popular solution for engineers, producers, and musicians in need of a smooth, detailed, and full-sounding ribbon mic that can perform consistently with any preamp and handle an array of voices and instruments in close-range and distant applications. Utilizing a 2.35" long ribbon and a bidirectional figure-8 polar pattern, the R84A delivers a blend of vintage ribbon character and top-end extension along with up to 90 dB of rejection at the sides.

Equipped with JFET electronics and a custom transformer, the R84A provides a 12 dB level increase over the passive R84. The 10' attached cable is terminated with a standard XLR 3-pin male connector for hookup to virtually any microphone preamp, 48V phantom power required. Due to the active circuitry and stable impedance of the R84A, it does not require a high-gain, high-impedance preamp for optimal performance. The integrated yoke-style cushion mount reduces bulkiness while ensuring ease of positioning in the studio.


Inspiration Courtesy of the RCA 44BX

In 2000, AEA sought to design a more compact, lightweight, and economic version of the hefty, eight-pound RCA 44BX. The result was the R84, which retains the best traits of the 44 series in a lower cost, three-pound package. R84 series ribbon microphones deliver the classic tonality of the legendary R44, with extended top-end and reduced proximity effect for mid- and close-range recording.

The R84 and original RCA 44 (now the AEA R44C) share the same Big Ribbon element, transformer, and other mechanical elements by design. By using updated design techniques and stronger, more compact magnets, the R84 retains the classic RCA ribbon sound. The active R84A (formerly known as the A840) is a premium version of the R84 complete with JFET electronics and the same custom transformer used in AEA's active R44. It's basically an R84 with a built-in preamp.


Advancing the 44

The R84A boasts improvements on the 44 design—more manageable proximity effect, more extended top-end, vibration isolation, and greater maneuverability on small stages and in small studios. The microphone's U-shaped yoke acts as a shockmount and enables the user to position the R84A at various angles, even on a straight mic stand.


Flexible Applications

The R84A quickly endears itself to engineers and musicians due to its remarkably expansive frequency range, complete with sweeping highs and booming lows. The smooth, high-frequency roll-off and reduced sibilance of the R84A make it a top choice for engineers when tracking vocals or other instruments that often sound harsh when recorded with condenser mics.

The R84A's balanced and manageable proximity effect bolsters the low-end of vocals, drums, and brass, from just feet away. A ribbon mic as multi-purpose, lightweight, and maneuverable as the R84A is well suited for both close-range and ambient mic applications. The R84A's accentuated midrange captures the unique qualities of many instruments with detailed elegance. R84 series mics perform well on practically any voice or musical instrument, making them highly useful in recording and broadcast studios.


High-Output Active Electronics

The active R84A mic retains the same sonic character of the R84, but with an additional 12 dB of output and a stable impedance. This gives a consistent frequency response and greater flexibility with different preamps, including those found in audio interfaces for personal computers. This is great for on-the-road musicians who might have to use a different preamp each night.

The extra 12 dB of output is vital when recording quiet sources like vocals or soft acoustic guitars. The active circuitry also prevents noise interference on long cable runs or when operating near large lighting rigs. The R84A's active circuitry requires standard 48V phantom power to operate. The premium R84A also flaunts an 18kt gold-plated grille.


The Features

Warm, smooth, and detailed classic ribbon sound

Full and rich tonality with generous highs and lows

Sonically similar to the legendary R44 Series, with less proximity effect

12 dB level increase over passive R84

Handles SPLs up to 141 dB

Optimized for all preamps

Versatile in close-range or ambient applications

Made in the USA

AEA R84A Active Ribbon Microphone

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