The second product of the sE / Rupert Neve collaboration, work on the RN17 began with a discussion between Rupert and Siwei Zou on the merits and problems of small-diaphragm condensers.
According to Siwei, "The SDC's problem is that they have a very clear sound - the SPL is high, but the sound is very cold, not like with a large diaphragm. The quality of the transformer can make the sound much, much better - but with a small transformer, nobody can do it."
"Rupert told me, 'I want THIS transformer.' I said, 'That transformer is too big. This is a small-capsule microphone. Impossible.' He said, 'I want the impossible to be possible.'"
With a 15mm diaphragm (the world's smallest production gold-sputtered diaphragm), the transient response of the RN17 is unparalleled.
However, a tiny diaphragm usually results in a lack of low-frequency response. How to counter this?
Made obvious by the unusual chassis shape, the RN17's transformer is substantially larger than the norm. This full-scale transformer was custom-designed by Rupert Neve specifically for this microphone - and nobody has been designing audio transformers longer (or better) than Rupert Neve.
The matte black finish minimizes the level of visual attention drawn to the microphone when used on stage or in the studio, allowing it to blend into the background.
The RN17 ships standard with a cardioid capsule, but an omnidirectional capsule is also available for purchase separately.
Every RN17 includes a custom-designed, sturdy, protective, and easy-to-use shock mount, which is essential to reducing the unwanted effects of vibration or knocks to the supporting microphone stand.
Capsule Type: Hand-Crafted True Condenser
Diaphragm: 17.2mm Gold/Mylar
Directional Pattern: Cardioid (omnidirectional capsule available separately)
Frequency range: 20 Hz - 20 kHz
Impedance: 200 Ohms
Sensitivity: 5.96 mV/Pa (-44.5dB)
Sensitivity (Figure-8): 2.51 mV/Pa (-52dB)
Max SPL: 131 dB (0.5% THD @ 1kHz)
Signal to Noise Ratio: 76 dB
Self Noise: 18 dB(A) (cardioid), 15 dB(A) (omni)
Matching Connectors: XLR3F
Power requirement: 48V phantom
Weight: 320g / 11.32oz
Diameter: 44 mm (transformer), 17mm (capsule)
Length: 200 mm