Radial Engineering makes great, solidly built and sometimes unique gear. Their lineup consists of DIs, Splitters, Interfaces, Effects and even Re-amping. One of their latest offerings is the 4 channel Mic selector known as the Gold Digger. It allows you to instantly compare up to four different microphones
or D.I.s with the same Preamp. This can come in very handy when trying to find the right mic for a vocalist, instrument or drum kit.
"The Gold Digger is a 4-channel mic selector that enables the engineer to quickly compare the sound of four different microphones while sharing the same preamp. A 'straight wire' passive circuit design is void of any audio buffers or transformers. Instead, the Gold Digger employs military grade gold contact relays to manage the switching process, thus ensuring the pristine mic signal is maintained without introducing color, distortion or artefact of any kind.
Features include four rear-mounted XLR-F mic inputs plus an XLR-m output to feed the preamp. To eliminate bleed between microphones, each channel is equipped with a 'radio style' selector switch that ensures only one mic is on at a time. The external supply provides power for the LED indicators, charges the relays and enables the Gold Digger to generate 48 volt phantom which can be turned on or off for each mic as needed. To ensure an 'honest' comparison between microphones, individual 'set & forget' trim controls let you adjust each mic level so that they produce the same relative output. Once set up, the Gold Digger not only improves workflow, but also gives the artist more confidence with the sound of the vocal, resulting in a better overall performance."
- Four selectable inputs with trim adjusts
- Straight wire distortion-free signal path
- Will not introduce color or artifact
- Increases artist's confidence when recording (due to obtaining a better sound much faster)
"The Radial Cherry Picker is a unique tool designed to improve efficiency and workflow in the studio by simplifying the process of matching the best preamp with a microphone for a given track. This is most often done when recording vocals. This improves the sonic character of the track and provides the vocalist with a more comfortable sound, which in turn allows for a better performance.
Four front panel 'radio style' selector switches select the active preamp while automatically disconnecting the mic from the others. Completely passive and 100% discrete, the Cherry Picker features a 'straight wire' signal path. There is no active circuitry whatsoever in between the mic signal and the preamp. The audio signal switching is performed by a series of military-grade gold contact sealed relays for zero coloration and distortion to ensure a fair and honest comparison between preamps.
The rear panel is equipped with a balanced XLR input for the microphone and four balanced XLR outputs to feed the various preamps. When using a studio condenser, the Cherry Picker internally generates 48V phantom power so that switching between preamps will not disrupt the phantom power going to the microphone. This could otherwise cause severe popping in the audio system and headphones. Separate ground lift switches for each output help reduce noise by eliminating ground loops plus a handy mute switch turns all outputs off, enabling the engineer to leave the preamp settings untouched when testing out other mics."
- Select the best mic & preamp combination
- Passive 'straight wire' color-free signal path
- Built-in 48V phantom power for condenser mics
- Improve the workflow efficiency in your studio
James from Protools Expert did a quick video showing Radial's Gold Digger being used with a Cherry Picker to record a vocalist:
Cost $350 each at various dealers including Little Fish Audio