Warm Audio WA-251 tube condenser microphone
Posted on: Thursday 3rd of January 2019
The WA-251 is an all vacuum tube, large diaphragm, transformer balanced, multi-pattern, large condenser microphone, based on the classic ‘251 that has been used on countless hit records for the last 50+ years. In true Warm Audio style, the mic is introduced at a price-point $799 or €899 – considerably less than other manufacturers’ homages to the vintage Elam.
The mic uses a WA-12-B-60V , an all-brass, edge-terminated capsule that “captures all the smoothness, rich top end, and warm vintage sonics of the original CK12 capsule”. The WA-12-B-60V uses a variant CEK-12 back plate as a basis, which WA say overcomes manufacturing limitations of the original CK12 capsule. The o-ring and housing of the WA-12-B-60V are all made from brass (no teflon parts), and the diaphragm is 24k gold sputtered 6 micron, PET film (mylar).
A Slovak Republic JJ 12AY7 vacuum tube is used in the WA-251. Warm Audio say they auditioned 3 tube brands and fell in love with the JJ 12AY7. The frequency response of the JJ tube, and the way it contributes to the circuit is tonally smooth and vintage in nature.
• Custom WA-12-B-60V edge terminated, dual-backplate, all-brass vintage CK12-style capsule
• CineMag USA output transformer
• JJ Slovak 12AY7 vacuum tube
• Gotham 5 meter GAC-7, 7-pin tube microphone cable
• Wima, Solen French, and Polystyrene capacitors
• Polar Patterns: 3 patterns – Cardioid, Omni, figure-of-eight
• Dynamic range: 125dBA
• Maximum SPL: 132dB (<0.5% THD)
• Frequency Range: 20 Hz~20 kHz
• Output Impedance: 200 ohms
• Rated Load Impedance: ≥2kOhms
• S/N Ratio: 80dBA
• Equivalent Noise: 12dBA (IEC651)
• External IEC grounded PSU
• Total Weight (Mic, PSU, shockmount, cables) – 12 lbs
• Mic Dimensions: 247mm x 46mm