The Electro-Voice Models RE20 and PL20
dynamic cardioid microphones
Description and Applications
The Electro-Voice Model RE20 is a Dynamic professional quality dynamic cardioid microphone created specially for recording, broadcast, and sound reinforcement applications requiring essentially flat response over a very wide frequency range. The wide frequency response, coupled with excellent transient response, makes the RE20 easily comparable to the finest condenser cardioid microphones. However, the RE20 is virtually free of bass-boosting “proximity effect” when used close, because in design it is a Continuously Variable-D microphone. An easily operated “bass tilt down” switch corrects spectrum balance for use in long-reach situations or other applications where bass attenuation is needed.
A true cardioid microphone, the RE20 offers greatest rejection at 180° off axis—directly to the rear of the microphone. Directional control is so effective that the frequency response is nearly independent of angular location of sound source, creating virtually no off-axis coloration yet providing greatest possible rejection of unwanted sounds.
An integral blast and wind filter covers each acoustic opening on the RE20. At recording sessions and on stage, singers can “close talk” the microphone, singing with their lips almost touching the grille screen with no worry of “p-pops” or excessive sibilance. Part of the filter also shock mounts the internal microphone element, reducing the transfer of vibrations from external sources. Using the mechanical nesting concept of design—the internal transducer parts are nested one within another—the RE20 is able to withstand all rigors of professional use.
This is the Electro-Voice Model PL20.
Please read the PL vs. RE explanation that follows.
Hello, Stan! Good to hear from you. I hope that retirement is treating you well.
Ah, the PLs vs. the REs. It’s a tale of great mics and marketing. At the time the PL Series was conceived, the RE Series was well established as a broadcast and ENG standard. However, people discovered how great these mics sounded on all sorts of other sources in the studio and on stage. So, a decision was made to sort of relaunch some of the RE series in a new line—the PL Series. Most notable of these were the RE20 and RE11, but the 635A was also pulled in and remarketed. There were also some mics that were unique to the PL line (the PL76, for example), but the main pillars of the line were the PL20 and the PL11, which, aside from the prefix and color of the mic itself, were exactly the same as their RE counterparts. For various reasons, the PL line has gone away, but the RE line lives on.
So, at the end of the day, the PL20 is the same as the RE20, the PL11 is the same as the RE11 and the PL5 is the same as the 635A. The only real difference is color and marketing. Some people will claim that they can hear a difference, but that is due to factors other than design and components (age, condition, etc.)
Hope that clears things up. If you need anything else, as always, just let me know.
EV Technical Services
Another PL20—This beauty was seen on eBay
during November and December, 2003.
Photo provided by Paulie DeCesare
The Model 309 shock mount.
The Model 309A shock mount supporting an RE20.
WDBO, Florida, 1986.
Southern Baptist Richard Land with an RE20 equipped with a pop filter and 309A shock mount.
Hi, Stan. I was an Audio Operator at ABC-TV, Hollywood and had a cordial relationship with Lou Burroughs, co-founder of Electro-Voice. I used EV RE15s throughout the TV orchestras I mixed. During one of his visits, Lou told me about the upcoming RE20 cardioid dynamic with Variable-D. He said, “We could have made it the size of the RE15, but Marketing thought it should be the size of a Neumann U-67.” Judging by its success, it seems Marketing was correct!
Roy W. Rising
Like him or not, Rush Limbaugh
has good taste in mics.
Download the original PL20 data sheet.
Includes impedance adjustment procedure.