How to Order


The 12

The 12+ Premium Edition

The 251

The 47

The 47 "GOLD"

The FET 47 *Updated*

The 87

The 67 *New*

Tech Talk

Tech Talk & Reviews

460 DIY Mods

"Just Change the tube"

Behind the Scenes

Microphone Tests

The Biography

Audio Files & Examples

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The 12

Now available in "Basic" or "Standard" versions


The FAR 12 is based on the famous AKG C12 Microphone shown above.

The c12 was reknowned for what became an AKG signature sound. A delicate mid-range dip in response around two kiloherz and a carefully crafted rising response in the high end. This combination creates a smooth sounding but detail enhancing microphone with a wide range of applications. In the classical world it is exceptional for live string instruments or orchestras, vocalists, choral groups and choirs.

( Top of the line in the 12 series is The 12+ Custom Edition )

Finished FAR 12

FAR c12+ RK version

Uses for your FAR 12

The FAR 12 is excellent for drum overheads, acoustic guitars and generally for any source that wants detail enhancement. The high end lift of this family of microphones adds sparkle to the sound source.

The 9 polar patterns also provides amazing versatility in live "off the floor" recording. By selecting hyper-cardiod or figure eight patterns it is possible reject sound from other instrumentsin the room by positioning them in the "null' spot of the polar pattern. The amount of rejection you get using two of mics of this style is really amazing.

Option 1: The BASIC Model

For the BASIC model c12 we clean up the preamp components to reduce distortion by as much as 10 times! Really. Then we install an RK12 Gold sputtered 34x14 mm, 3 micron, dual diaphragm capsule.

RK12 capsule mounted on short pedestal in a 460 chassos

It is edge terminated like the original but is built with price in mind. Nevertheless some people prefer this capsule to the more expensive options because of its "smoother" sound.

To save on costs to you we keep the APEX 11.5:1 transformer. In tests we perform, it is actually a very good transformer!

Here is the typical cardiod response of the FAR 12 BASIC

Graph showing RK12 typical capsule response.  rising response from 2K up to 11K to max of +5dB


Option 2: The Standard Model

For the STANDARD edition of this mic, we replace your stock capsule with an edge terminated capsule similar to the one used in the C12.

We use the Peluso CEK12, Gold sputtered 34x14 mm, 6 micron, dual diaphragm capsule shown below. The published spec on this capsule is that is within + or - 2dB of the original c12 Capsule.

Pelsuso CEK12 capsule
Peluso CEK12 capsule

After a considerable amount of research and listening tests, we have made some changes in how we use the CEK12 capsule. Although the CEK-12 capsule sounds good un-corrected, we find that the microphone becomes far more like the original c12 when very delicate frequency response adjustments are used to correct the huge lift that is built into the capsule. Our approach is to continue to use our low distortion CCDA amplifier design, with the addition of a high frequency correction component.

The result is nothing short of exceptional! The mid-range "hollow out" complaint of this capsule is actually created by the high end lift changing the balance with the mid-range artificially. By correcting the high end the mic balances up perfectly.

Below is the CARDIOD response of the FAR 12 Standard from 60 Hz to 15,000 Hz. You can see that it is very smooth with a little lift to provide that high frequency boost we expect from the c12.

C12 V II response


And here is a Podcast recorded with the FAR c12 V II so you hear what it sounds like.

Short Podcast using the FAR c12 Standard


New Capacitors create Transparency

In all the 12 series microphones we replace critical capacitors in the audio path. We use a polystyrene input cap and a polypropylene output cap. These materials are recognized as the superior dielectrics to use in audio amplfiers. This gives you a transparent, low distortion sound path.

We also replace the electrolytic power de-coupling caps with Nichicon.

Fixed Grid Bias Voltage like the Original

One of the secrets of the c12 sound was the fact that it used a fixed grid bias voltage. This removes the low frequency response limits and phase distortions that occurr when you use the resistor/capacitor network in the more commonly used "cathode bias" configuration. And because the cathode is connected directly to ground, fixed bias also maximizes the gain of the tube.

For the c12 we remove the the cathode bias resistor network and replace them with a single **Gallium Arsenide diode. This provides a -1.1V fixed grid bias to the tube to better reproduce the sound of the original C12 circuit.

Please note that we have not created the same power supply trick circuit that the c12 used to create a fixed bias voltage. That would require an extra pin in your microphone connector to bring the voltage to the microphone. We have opted to use solid state diodes, which is a modern technique used by tube pre-amp designers today. This innovation in tube microphones gives you the a fixed bias voltage, independant of the audio, without the circuit complications of a separate -1.1 volt power supply.

**This is an infra-red LED :-)


New Transformer for the Standard Model

The Peluso BV11P gives you low distortion and excellent high end response and due to its transformer ratio (5:1) increases the sensitivity of the microphone to -32 dBu output for 0 dBPa (94 dB SPL sound pressure level)



Peluso BV11P is installed in the FAR 12 Standard Model


And one more thing...

In this version of the c12 we use the two stage amplifier used in the APEX 460. This configuration is called a Constant Current Draw Amplifier (CCDA). This is a composite amplifier circuit that has very good characteristics for a mic preamp. The first stage tube is the normal "plate follower" circuit used in the c12 microphone. The second stage is a direct coupled (no capacitor) "Cathode Follower" stage. The low output impedance of the cathode follower second stage drives the low primary impedance of the Peluso transformer MUCH better than a single stage 6072 circuit.

This allows our mic. circuit to preserve the sound quality of the first stage amplifier and lets the 2nd stage do the dirty work of the driving the transformer. We get improved high frequency and low frequency response, as you can see in the graph below.

Response Graph showing CCDA 6072 vs parallel 6072 triodes driving the Peluso BV11P transformer.  CCDA is flat.  Parallel triodes have poor low end and high end.
This is the un-equalized response of our "12 Standard" internal preamp with the BV11P xfmr compared to the same circuit using both triodes wired in parallel. You can clearly see the CCDA gives the better response.


New Tube... 6072 tube

We top it off with a selected 6072 vacuum tube to replace the Guitar amplifier 12AX7 that came with your microphone when you bought it.

We have found that to achieve the quality we demand we had to develop a noise test for tubes and we perform this test on every tube. This means we throw some tubes away, but that's what it takes.

We always have a small supply of Old Stock 6072 tubes, which are for sale if you want the cache of the old tubes. They are very good, but cost much more than a Russian made EH6072 and chances are you won't hear a very big difference.

We finish off by adusting your power supply to output 120 volts. This is closer to the voltage used in the C12.

After we are done we re-measure the electronics in your microphone and print the results before and after our work you can see how the changes improved the specifications.

All of this tech talk may not turn your crank but your ears will tell you the real difference the moment you lay down your first track with this mic. This mic. rocks!


Ask for a quote for The 12 Microphone, BASIC or STANDARD

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