Cliff Mics Products and Services
1. RM1 Active Ribbon Microphone
A "classic large-format bidirectional ribbon mic" with advanced, high-intensity magnetics and integral phantom-powered preamplifier giving very low noise and spectrally-balanced output. The microphone includes a novel subsonic-tuned shockmount that reduces structure-borne noise and a two-stage explosives filter to dramatically reduce vocal p-pop. Output is beautiful-sounding, but also very dependable. The user just sets levels and can record with confidence in the results.
2. YM1 Yoke Mount
A hard-mount "yoke" for special applications. This was originally intended as the stock support until we found that the customers for the RM1 overwhelmingly preferred the shockmount. When used on a small, typical floor stand, it can be used for locating the RM1 on a desk or in front of an electric guitar amp. If structure-borne noise is not a problem, this is a "classic" microphone mount.
3. Re-ribbon Service
Any registered owner of Cliff Mics product can send their microphone back for re-ribbon fitting. This can be for the following reasons:
3.1 Warranty and warranty-repair / re-ribbon
The basic RM1 microphone warranty is for 5 years, although when used in typical studio applications it will probably outlast the life of the owner. (A good father-to-son inheritance item: "someday, son, this RM1 will be yours") The microphone warranty is void if the microphone is damaged because of a drop (like onto concrete) or because the ribbon is blown out of the gap (usually because it's used in a kick drum recording). We'll take this on a case-by-case basis. If the mic is dropped and damaged (it's possible you can drop it and not damage it), the magnet can pop loose and shatter on its surfaces of contact to the rest of the magnetic circuit. This results in a very ugly case of magnetic-shrapnel rash throughout. In this case, the mic can still be cleaned of all this and repaired using production fixtures. Also, the magnets may still possibly be used and re-positioned/re-bonded and sent back good as new. It will be a lot less expensive than a brand new mic. The magnetic circuit elements are very expensive to make and plate. Drop-damage is very unlikely to have any impact on the iron circuit parts. In a way, these represent a significant bit of your ownership-investment of an RM1.
A compromised ribbon or electronics components that is giving compromised signals and is the fault of Cliff Mics manufacture will be replaced directly. The customer will not be charged for the procedure or for UPS ground shipping in the United States. Such options as next-day shipping will be the customer's choice and expense. There will also be special cases where we will fit a new ribbon free of charge. Again, case-by-case. We will do everything we can to make sure your work with the RM1 (and any future Cliff Mics products) is minimally impacted.
3.2 Customer optional repair and re-ribbon
A customer may elect to have their microphone fitted with a new ribbon diaphragm at their expense. They will be charged for the procedure as well as for their choice of shipping. Here are several examples of such circumstances:
3.2.a. - Some microphone users just like the idea of having microphones with fresh ribbons, similar to changing oil on your precious antique car every 1000 miles; you probably don't need it but it makes you feel better.
3.2.b. - A customer may have a microphone with a seriously-compromised diaphragm (oxidized, broken, stretched) . Cliff Mics ribbon microphones, like the RM1, use an almost-weightless little sliver (albeit precision sliver) of pure aluminum for its diaphragm. This is the only non-everlasting element in the entire microphone. Normally, these microphones are used in temperature-controlled recording and broadcast studios where environmental effects are insignificant. They are either stored when not in use or covered with a drawstring bag when used as "workhorse" mics and left on a boom stand, ready for use. However, it's possible they might be used in unprotected, high-humidity environments (Amazon rainforest) or, against our recommendation, recording kick drums. Pure aluminum, in these cases, will oxidize and/or stretch out of the gap or even break in half. We're happy to replace these as fast as the customer wants.
3.2.c - If the microphone is used in a machine shop ( like for recording the sound of machining) where steel is cut and sanded, iron filings may well migrate into the ribbon gap. This, frankly, is a nightmarish scenario for us to think about. It's like falling asleep, naked, in a bed of poison ivy. Please, don't do this. These high-intensity magnetic designs attract iron and steel like bees to The Honey. If you see little specs of iron, they'll collect on the outside first, near the top and bottom of the microphone. You can use the adhesive on typical masking tape to get these off but if they get into the ribbon's magnetic gap, they will touch the ribbon, ground it and vibrate against it like we used to do with playing cards on the back wheels of our bicycles to make motor-noises. You don't want this. Typically, this will be a customer expense but we may just do it for you, depending on circumstances.
5. Loaner Units
If you want us to fit a fresh ribbon to your microphone but want to stay "in business" in your studio, we can and will send you a loaner unit; probably from our first pilot run; to use in the meantime. As part of a re-ribbon installation, you'll be charged shipping of your choice only. As part of a genuine warranty repair, there will be no charge for UPS ground shipping. Faster options will be the customer's expense.
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