From Moscow with love – the unusal all in one mic with a remarkable history

M 900 - an exotic-looking high-end microphone with an interesting history

PM 860, the predecessor of the M 900/M910

The huge increase in demand from the Soviet market in the 80s led to an increased interest in cooperation, especially in the development of new microphone capsules. This led to the development of a new condenser mic, the PM 860, the predecessor of the M 900/M910.
(PresseBox) ( Gefell, )
The cardioid condenser mic M 900 (and its hypercardioid cousin M 910) is not only striking in appearance, it also has remarkable historical roots.

Microphone technology from the limited partnership Georg Neumann & Co. was already in great demand in Eastern Europe in the 1950s and 1960s. This did not change after the expropriation in 1972. Renamed VEB Mikrofontechnik Gefell and under the new brand name "RFT", enormous quantities of Gefell products continued to be sold in Eastern Europe. Thousands of mics were were mostly exported to the Eastern European countries that belonged to the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (CMEA) and primarily to the former Soviet Union.

Gefell Mics, usually known in Russian as Neumann Gefell mics, were used in all areas of cultural life.

The huge increase in demand from the Soviet market in the 80s led to an increased interest in cooperation, especially in the development of new microphone capsules. This led to the development of a new condenser mic, the PM 860, the predecessor of the M 900/M910. 

The PM 860 was developed in cooperation between the russian NIKFI (Research Film and Photography Institute) and the RFZ (Rundfunk und fernsehtechnisches Zentralamt - institution for broadcast and television) in Berlin and has been produced in larger quantities in1986.

The NIKFI,  established in 1929, is an international wellknown R&D center including acoustics. In 1991, for example,  NIKFI was awarded prestigious "Technical Achievements Award" by US Motion Pictures Academy (Oscar’s).

The Institute`s  excellent acoustics laboratory became the cooperation partner in the 80s. The main activities, then and now, among others include the development and production of studio mics.

In partnership with specialists of the NIKFI-acoustics laboratory, a ceramic capsule 24 mm was developed and used in the PM 860,  in Russian also called the "German grenade" because of its special design, was a great success on the Soviet market.

M 900 / M910 - The next generation

The M 900 and M910 are  a great sounding condenser mics, super clean and clear,  soft and the low color backfield on them is startling. It`s ideal for both hand-held broadcasting, stage use, as well as recording instruments and soloists in the studio in the professional market.

Its well balanced frequency response in the free field as well as in the diffuse field and the appropriate distinct characteristics ensure clean and colourless recordings of any sound sources with good selectivity. It is advisable to use the M 910 by soloists because it shows especially optimised frequency response for this kind application.

A distance of less than 8 to 12 inches, which is recommended as minimum distance between lips and mic, causes acoloration with an emphasis of lower frequencies, the proximity effect. An acoustic filter integrated in the protective basket reduces the popsensitivity.

The direction of maximum sensitivity is axial, i.e. endwise to the mic. This fact and the ergonomic design make this mic the right choice for live performance of soloists.

Following the modern trend of technique the transducer is equipped with a gold plated polyester membrane.The newly developed transformerless impedance transducer having a balanced output stage guarantees a high output capability and low intrinsic noise.

Together with the high qualities of the ceramic mic capsule a high brillance of the live performance is reached. A 10 dB attenuator is installed to reduce the sensitivity of the mic when placed near extremely loud sound sources.

And a low frequency roll-off switch will reduce the proximity effect when close miking. The two switches are sunk placed in the middle of the amplifier.

Frequency response is as 20 Hz to 20 kHz. Sensitivity is 17mV/Pa. Due its tighter pattern, the hyper-cardioid M 910 version is slightly less sensitive, at 14mV/Pa. The active transformerless output removes the limitation on the output capability that would be imposed by a transformer.

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