Monthly Archives: February 2013

Grampian DPL. (1939-1960) Close, but no Cigar!!!

Grampian DPLOn Dec 14th 2005 an identical, robust, dark brown, British, Grampian DPL dynamic microphone was sold at auction, at Ludlow Racecourse in Shropshire, for a staggering £19,000. I bought mine (pictured above) on ebay for somewhat less! (£35.00)…… In fact, I reckon mine even looks a bit smarter! The only physical difference between these two mics is the serial number. The one in the Ludlow auction was also mounted on a nice wooden plinth, with a little plaque on it baring the following inscription:-

“The Price of Freedom is Eternal Vigilance. Winston S Churchill.”

It turns out that the £19,000 Grampian DPL was the trusty PA microphone which delivered a speech by British Prime Minister Winston Churchill on VE day 1945 marking the end of the War in Europe!

It seems somewhat  ironic that within a few years Grampian Microphones (along with Lustraphone, Reslo, and STC)  would be wiped out by the overwhelming superiority of the German competition!

Grampian DPL Test Recording.

P.S.

Grampian DPL 3pin plug

The 3 pin plugs for these mics are very hard to find.

 

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Rycote Mini Windjammer for the M-Audio Microtrack II

"Daddy where's the gerbil gone?"

“Daddy where’s my gerbil gone?”        “I don’t know darling….. testing 1…2….”

I bought this M-Audio Microtrack II a few years ago and it has proved to be a brilliant piece of gear. No bigger than a packet of cigarettes, extremely light and very easy to use. Records up to 96khz 24bit on balanced TRS jacks  (with 48v phantom) and SPDIF. It has phono and USB outputs and records to flash memory cards.

It also comes with a small detachable stereo mic which is surprisingly good! For impromptu live recording,  sound effects gathering, and wildlife recording, it punches a long way above it’s minimal weight!

Up til now I have countered outdoor wind noise using home made foam windshields, that have often been somewhat imperfect (ie crap!) So I was delighted to discover that Rycote  make a mini windjammer specifically for the Microtrack. Not only is it acoustically transparent but it will cope with considerable gusts of wind without any sign of ‘blasting’! Rycote kit is not noted for being cheap (the Mini is around £20) but if you want the job done properly it is worth every penny! Thoroughly recommended!

Dulci WE-23 4001 No1 Microphone (circa 1950)

Made by Dulci Radio Ltd, also known as "The Dulci Company Ltd.",                              97 Villiers Rd., London NW2, England.

Made by Dulci Radio Ltd, also known as “The Dulci Company Ltd.”,                                                                                                                97 Villiers Rd., London NW2, England.

Although this microphone is of antique design (carbon button), harking back to the early years of the 20th century, it was in fact manufactured around 1950. The Dulci Company also manufactured a crystal radio receiver! Both of these devices allowed the enthusiastic hobbyist to explore bygone technology, whilst making a great deal of crackling and whistling!! A cousin of mine had a crystal set, and every now and then, amidst great excitement,  we actually managed to find a radio station (usually foreign)!!

I was hoping to produce a short recording of the above microphone but the hum-to-signal ratio is overwhelmingly in favour of the hum! Sounds like I’m talking from Mars!!