The R-122 is the world's first phantom powered, active ribbon™ microphone. Its unique electronics package gives the R-122 greater output than standard, non-powered ribbons, and places a perfect impedance load on the ribbon element, greatly expanding the number of preamps the mic operates well with.
Before the R-122, all ribbon microphones were passive devices. Tracking strings, acoustic guitars, vocals and other quieter sound sources required pre's with a lot of gain and a high input impedance. With the R-122, gain and impedance issues are a thing of the past, letting you use more pre's with great results.
Conventional ribbon microphones need high-quality, high-gain microphone preamplifiers to record softer sound sources. The R-122 is as sensitive as a condenser microphone, allowing you to use practically any mic preamplifier or board pre's to record even the quietest sounds. The R-122 contains a fully balanced, discrete head amplifier system utilizing a specially wound toroidal transformer and ultra-low noise FET's. This system is extremely quiet, can handle 135 dB SPL, and brings the R-122's sensitivity to 37 dB! Go ahead and plug an R-122 into any preamp with average gain - you'll get full Royer performance and enough level to drive any recording medium.
The R-122's higher sensitivity does not create additional self-noise. All of the R-122's increased sensitivity comes from its large, specially wound toroidal transformer - that wonderful thing called "free gain." The phantom powered circuitry provides impedance conversion only, adding no noise of its own.
The R-122's active electronics put a perfect load on the ribbon element at all times, allowing the R-122 to deliver 100% of its full sonic potential regardless of the input characteristics of the following mic pre. Due to its low-impedance output, R-122's can be used on extremely long cable runs with minimal signal loss. In addition, the ribbon element can't be damaged by phantom power, miswired cables or electrical glitches.
Patented Offset Ribbon Technology
The R-122's proprietary offset ribbon transducer (Patent # 6,434,252) is the first of its kind, positioning the ribbon element closer to the front (logo) side of the microphone. This arrangement gives the ribbon more room to move within the prime magnetic field while maintaining full frequency response during high SPL recordings. It's an integral piece of the magic of all Royer R-series microphones.