Austrian Audio OC818 Alistair McGhee gets to grips with this multipattern dual output condenser mic with the ‘world’s first’ optional wireless control...
ade in Austria is proudly inscribed on my veteran AKG 414s, and for more than 70 years that geographic label has been a badge of honour in the microphone business. And if Austrian Audio has anything to do with it, there’s at least another 70 years ahead. The company has assembled a chunk of the great Vienna microphone engineering tradition that was in danger of being orphaned after AKG production had fled the city, and has hit the road running. Looking back, Konrad Wolf was responsible for much of the glory – his CK12 brass large diaphragm capsule patented in 1954 was to set audio standards and bring huge success to AKG’s microphone business over the next 30 years. Now, Austrian Audio have revisited the CK12 concept by applying the very latest engineering techniques to deliver the CKR-12, a capsule built on the CK12 heritage but featuring high tech, like a unique ceramic enclosure. The CKR-12 is the basis for Austrian Audio’s OC18 and OC818 microphones. The OC818 is a microphone for a new generation. A multipattern large diaphragm condenser with switchable pads (neg 10 and neg 20) and high pass filters at 40, 80 and 160 Hz. That is the traditional specification, but on top of that the OC818 offers access to the output of both the diaphragms in the dual diaphragm capsule. Import that audio into your DAW and the Polar Designer plugin from Austrian Audio will allow you to fine tune the polar diagram of the mic in post production – how cool is that? And if real time control is more your thing then plug in the Austrian Audio Bluetooth dongle, fire up the iOS app and once you have connected the app to the specific mic you want to control then you can adjust the polar diagram of the mic from the comfort of the mix position. In the hand, the OC818 is obviously a very, very well made
Multiple polar patterns Microprocessor control of polarisation voltages Two different analog high-pass filters with three settings Two different types of analog pads
product. Mine was delivered in a small flight case and came complete with not one but two clips, a simple solid affair and an elastic suspension mount. Also included are a windshield and the break out cable enabling the independent recording of the second capsule. I rushed the OC818 on to a stand and began to listen, and it very quickly becomes obvious that this is a microphone of the highest quality. It has an openness
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