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Reviews Categories | Microphones | Electro Voice RE-20 Help

Reviews Summary for Electro Voice RE-20
Electro Voice RE-20 Reviews: 23 Average rating: 4.8/5 MSRP: $650 to 790 (not wholesale or dis
Description: Professional quality dynamic cardiod mic made famous by broadcasters and engineers worldwide. 50, 150, and 250 ohm impedance selectable.
Product is in production.
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W3JK Rating: 5/5 Nov 6, 2007 08:04 Send this review to a friend
Truly a Leader  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I would definetly give the RE20 higher marks than whats allowed here. No knock on the Heil's or other microphones, but you have to truly listen to the difference in audio, especially the low ends to understand the true quality of this microphone. I was attracted to this microphone purely based on listening to a bunch of folks on the air. One day I was talking to Bob (HB9ASQ) and there was something very distinct about his audio and when I asked him, he went on to explain his setup. Ofcourse the RE20 was the microphone). Then I was talking to Victor (CT1AKD), once again that distinct audio was heard and when asked further, Victor mentioned that he was using an EV-RE20.
The audio that comes out of the RE20 has its own distinct audio signature which I have not heard other microphones produce. Mike WZ5Q has a nice comparison of the RE20 and the Heil. Listen to all the clips to hear the difference for yourself.
I have seen some of the other reviews where they suggest you need studio ambience to use this microphone properly, I can only say that a bad carpenter blames his tools. Fan noise etc is an issue for all good microphones, not just the RE20. My TL-922 sounds like an aircraft taking off all the time. So use a nice EQ box like W2IHY or the Behringers and cut down on those unwanted noises. Just dont try to plug in the microphone straight into your rig and say it sounds awful. If you are spending money to buy a RE20 then spend additional dollars to refine that audio and then give it to your transceiver.
You wouldnt go wrong with this microphone. I get compliments all the time on my audio and its given me a lot more encouragement to not just focus on power, antenna etc, but also on my audio.
DHJ Rating: 4/5 Apr 5, 2006 15:15 Send this review to a friend
Be careful how you use this type of microphone  Time owned: more than 12 months
Using a studio microphone on a ham rig seems like an attractive idea but in my experience there are many factors that you need to take into consideration to achieve the kind of performance from these mics that you would expect from the price tag.

Firstly, many studio dynamics like the RE-20, the MD-421 and SM7 are only loosely directional. These mics are designed to be used in a studio where the acoustics of the room are very good. Most ham rigs are likely to be in far from acoustically ideal settings. These mics are not very good at rejecting unwanted sounds and reflections in the room. Sounds like PA fans, computer fans and the like will easily be picked up by the microphone. If there are a lot of surfaces in your room for the sounds to reflect off of, you can also expect that these reflections will also be picked up by the microphone making your audio sound live and ‘echoey’.

The point that I am trying to make is that a studio mic used in the wrong environment will not give results that befit its pricetag. If you wish to spend a lot of money on an
RE-20 or similar large diaphragm dynamic, you will need to pay some attention to the acoustics of the environment you use it in to get good results. I have nothing against the RE-20, I just think that you need to use the right mic for the right environment.

If your ham rig is in a poor acoustic environment, a microphone with a much tighter directional pattern may give better results. The Shure SM-57 is an excellent mic to use in this environment. It has a tight directional pattern, a nice presence peak and it costs much less than an RE-20.

On the other hand if you want to go to the trouble of giving your room some acoustic treatment and getting rid of the noises in your shack, you can expect that the RE-20 will sound great.
KE6PID Rating: 3/5 Jul 5, 2005 15:24 Send this review to a friend
Boss Jock Sound  Time owned: more than 12 months
Using a studio mic at a ham station sometimes isn't a good idea, the RE-20 is a good example of this.

The RE-20 is a studio mic, quite popular on FM stations where bass enhancement of a male announcer is desired. (Hey, Rush Limbaugh uses one) It's generally not as good on AM broadcast stations, unless you equalize it to roll off the excessive bassiness it produces. I think it was originally developed for use as a kick drum mic or something. It works better on some voices than others. I would conceder it's mid voice articulation only mediocre. A low cut switch is thoughtfully provided; this helps, but not enough. If you want to hear one, just tune the FM dial, find the station that has a mushy sounding over bassy announcer, call the station engineer (not me, we are RE-20 free here!) see what the mic is! Program directors and Jocks love these things because, well, I don't know why. They also love Corvettes and jacked up pickups with loud exhausts too, you know the type, and if you know what I am getting at, you should be laughing about now. If you are the type, then This mic IS for YOU! It has a fairly high output level; its updated sibling the RE-27 N/D is higher yet.

In the shack it works, although I never received any unsolicited audio reports, when I did ask nobody sent flowers. The common conciseness among stations I worked was it was too bassy sounding for SSB work. After rolling all the bass off it sounded only so-so. For what you need to give for this thing it should be better than just so-so. During a QSO I switched back to my Heil HC-5 hand mic, and got a high five, that sounds great! What did you just do?

On the good side it's P-pop proof. It has almost no proximity effect (it doesn't get bassier when you get close to it) It has a fairly high output level, looks "real radio" and comes with a cool trunion or add and optional shock mount and it�s just about indestructible. (Except the shock mount, that's easy to mess up)

Yeah, it's a good mic for something (like getting the PD out of your office), just not for this. And as unpopular as I may sound that's what I think!
WA3VJB Rating: 5/5 Dec 30, 2003 02:42 Send this review to a friend
Excellent for AM !  Time owned: more than 12 months
I had the RE-20 until 1992 when I upgraded to the new RE-27, which for a while was thought to be a likely successor to the '20. However, Electro-Voice continues to market both microphones, with each model finding a niche. The '20 remains popular with musicians for certain instruments, while the '27 has gained a place as one of the best vocal mics for studio use (a close second-place rival is the less-expensive Sennheiser MD-421).

A broadcast supply house offered to take the RE-20 in trade, plus $100, in exchange for the newly introduced RE-27, and I went for it. I do not regret it. The '27 has a better output level, which means your mic pre-amp does not have to work as hard (keeping the noise figure down). Additionally, the '27 has a better frequency response, extending its sensitivity to bass and treble, while avoiding any lumps in the midrange suffered by cheap microphones.

Although I now run the '27, the RE-20 is also a very fine microphone, and would have continued to serve me quite well, I am certain.

The link below is the URL to a sound file using the EV on my homebrew AM transmitter.`92-h.brew%20rig.wav
KC4EOE Rating: 5/5 Dec 29, 2003 12:09 Send this review to a friend
Superb Audio  Time owned: more than 12 months
I use the RE-20 with the W2IHY EQ to achieve broadcast quality audio through my Kenwood. I have tested a variety of microphones and always end up with this beauty in line. It not only looks professional, it sounds like it. The cost is a little high, but makes up for it in performance. See my profile for a photo with it in use.
W8DFF Rating: 5/5 Jul 10, 2003 02:14 Send this review to a friend
The Big Dude  Time owned: more than 12 months
My version I have is actually the PL20 but the EV factory rep told me the PL's and RE's are functionally identical with the only difference being the color. I use the mic primarily to record kick drum and bass guitar on location, but have also used them on horns and in announce booth and dj situations. Nothing beats the 20 if you want to sound like a real 'jock'. 15+ years and the mics have held up very well to the abuse of location work. An alternative might be the Senn.421 but really ... nothing sounds quite like the RE20. It's dynamic - no messing with power supplies or phantom preamps.
J5XXR Rating: 5/5 Jun 11, 2002 04:54 Send this review to a friend
Classic  Time owned: more than 12 months
This microphone is particularly suited to the role of a live FM broadcast announcers' mic but can deliver outstanding performance on AM and HF as well. With an unusually wide frequency response for a dynamic, this mic will deliver a bright transparent sound (compared with say an MD421 or SM7) without compromising the bottom end in an announcers' voice. Additional pop filters are generally not required. With a cardioid pattern it won't make the announcers sound off mic every time they turn their head either. The mic is also built like an army tank. Expect one of these to easily deliver years of service.

The RE-20 has been a favourite of broadcasters for years and there is a reason: It is simply an outstanding announcers' mic of whose performance characteristics and robustnes have not yet been matched by any other mic suited to FM broadcast.

For me the RE-20 would be my first choice for an FM broadcast announcers mic (followed in second by a Shure-SM7) but for AM, HF or other lower bandwidth media I would probably opt for a Sennheiser MD-421 first. I think they tend to deliver a little more intelligible sound on voice when the top end is cut off.
WD4NGG Rating: 5/5 Nov 9, 2001 21:39 Send this review to a friend
Outstanding Quality  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I recently purchased an RE-20 on sale from Broadcast Supply Worldwide for $369. I plan to use the microphone with an AM transmitter on the ham bands. Auditioning the RE-20 through a mixer board and a set of headphones I can say the sound quality is outstanding. No trace of popping or thumping when close-talking the mic. Just a gorgeous, transparent clear sound. Well worth the price.
KY6R Rating: 5/5 Oct 15, 2001 23:35 Send this review to a friend
Excellent  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
This is an excellent microphone - I currently use it with a 756Pro and 910H and Behringer MX-602A EQ / Mixer.
K4PDM Rating: 3/5 Apr 28, 2001 05:53 Send this review to a friend
If bass is what you want...  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have used this mic at many broadcast stations, and took one home once to try on my ham rig. In my opnion, the mic has too much bottom end, both for FM broadcast and ham. It will emphasize the lows in a DJ's voice, but at the expense of some intelligibility. I know its reputation, but I'd go with a Sennheiser MD-421 in the studio, and a good ham mic or mic/W2IHY EQ combo at home. Just my opinion...
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