Take this tour to see how the high-end, world renowned German Brauner condenser microphones are made. While some of the parts and part of the labeling are done with CNC machines, the assembly takes place purely by hand.
Brauner: the Art of Microphones
Dirk Brauner, who founded his company in 1993 thinks that tube microphones are still the top of the game, because they offer something special over most solid state microphones. Part of this special quality is an extremely wide dynamic range, while another aspect is a pleasant sounding harmonic distortion on loud sound sources. They also tend to have a simpler circuit topology, and Brauner seems to be a firm believer in the simpler is better idea.
Tube vs. transistor – it’s all good
Despite his love towards tube microphones, he does accept the importance of the more affordable transistor mics. As he says, “the microphone is the initial door into the world of music”. The sonic information that doesn’t get captured at that point during the recording will be missing for good, so even getting close and create something similar will be very hard to do, no matter how desperately one keeps post-processing the audio tracks through all kinds of effects.
Dirk also doesn’t believe that you can only use a certain microphone with a certain preamp. You better just experiment so you can find out what combination of different equipment works for you in certain situations, and stick with that setup.
Small diaphragm coming soon
While Brauner only made large diaphragm (LDC) microphones in the past, Dirk lets on that we don’t have to wait for too long before their small diaphragm (SDC) mics enter into production.
Their approach to making microphones is still the old school one, so admittedly they can’t and don’t want to compete with the cheap and mass produced Asian made mics. He stands behind their products and says if you compare a Brauner to another, lower priced microphone and you don’t hear a difference, than why buy a Brauner microphone? Fortunately for them, there’s a certain, stable market for their high-end products, that consists mostly of people involved in professional audio production. Thy only use the finest materials for their microphones and they build them to be reliable and to last. Brauner bundles all of their microphones with high quality Swiss made Vovox cables.
How a Brauner mic is made
In the last part of the film, Dirk goes through the process of making a Brauner mic step by step, including the windscreen and the suspension.