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Bumblebee Pro Active DI Kit Pre-Order Offer October 24, 2017 14:52

Longtime DIYRE followers will know that we go way back with Latvian designer Artur Fisher. We helped Artur launch his first product, the RM-5 ribbon mic, back in 2011, and our customers have been continually blown away by his designs since then.

So I'm proud to team up with Artur again to launch his new active DI kit, the Bb-D2. 

Bb-D2 Design and Sound

The Bb-D2 is a premium direct box that reflects Artur's no-compromise design attitude. The active circuitry is all discrete, featuring matched JFETs, and the output transformer is a custom designed to compliment the active stage.

All of this sweating the details has resulted in a world-class DI that captures instruments with natural clarity and just a tiny bit of analog finesse. The JFET input stage ensures a high input impedance, making the DI great for high-Z sources such as passive guitar/bass pickups, Rhodes, and piezos.

Beginner Friendly Kit

Part of what makes our partnership work so well is that, like DIYRE, Artur is as serious about the DIY aspect of his products as he is about the design. The Bb-D2 kit comes with every part needed to build the DI and is accompanied by a step-by-step instruction guide. Also, after having handled many support tickets for his ribbon mics over the years together, I can tell you that Artur is very responsive to questions.

Introductory Offer

Artur is currently funding his first production run of Bb-D2s, so now is the best time to get in on special pre-order pricing. Until Wednesday, Nov 8 the full kit will be only 119 EUR (down from 169 EUR street) with the code DISCOPAMPDI.

Check out the pre-order page on Bumblebee Pro's site for full offer details and to place an order.

Bb-D2 Pre-order Page


Pre-Order the New Active DI kit from Bumblebee Audio May 04, 2015 15:07

Build your own boutique DI box, designed by Artur Fisher.

I first met Latvian designer Artur Fisher in 2010, when I launched DIYRE as a project directory. Since then, I've followed along as Artur has painstakingly built a small line of world-class recording equipment: first the RE-254 ribbon transducer, then the RM-5 ribbon mic, then the Bp-P1 inline mic preamp. The common thread between Artur's designs is custom parts and circuitry in service of performance. Where most designers are content to choose from among pre-rolled solutions, Artur rolls his own. Everything in the RM-5 mic is customdown to the XLR jackand the Bp-P1 uses fully discrete circuitry. You can understand why he only releases a new product every couple years.

So I'm really excited to announce that Artur's newest kit, The Bb-D1 Spark DI, is now available for pre-order. The Spark is an active, phantom-powered, transformer-balanced, direct input box. And in keeping with Artur's tradition of no-compromise design, every component has been chosen or customized over several years of development. The circuitry is completely discrete, the transformer and chassis are custom, and he's even built in power supply conditioning to ensure optimal performance, no matter the quality of your phantom power source.

For a limited time, Artur is offering DIY kits for the Spark at a deeply discounted price. I think this is a phenomenal deal: a) you get a truly world-class, boutique DI box for €99 and b) you get to support a talented designer who's dedicated to the DIY community. Grab the pre-order here before May 15th:

Pre-order the Bb-D1 Spark DI

Here are the pre-order details:

  • €99 for full kit (~$110 USD)
  • Price after pre-order will be €129
  • The last day to pre-order is May 15, 2015
  • Use the code "LOVEFET" in the shopping cart (before checkout) to claim the discount
  • Kit includes everything needed to build the DI, including screws and wire
  • Complete, step-by-step assembly guide

If you have any questions about the Bb-D1 or the pre-order, please leave them in the comments below and Artur or I will do our best to answer them.

-Peterson Goodwyn, DIYRE


RM-5 Ribbon Mic Kit Limited Offer June 18, 2013 15:04 50 Comments

Last spring, microphone designer Artur Fisher and I collaborated to bring you a one-time kit offer for Artur's flagship RM-5 ribbon mic. Well, I'm glad to say that Artur is back for another run of his kits for the DIY community. Until July 7, 2013, Artur will be offering full and partial kits for the RM-5, including the new, custom-designed RTP-35 output transformer. RM-5 Assembly Manual

Update 7/2014: Artur's RM-5 Ribbon Microphone full kits are now available from the DIYRE store! RM-5 Ribbon Microphone Kit

About the Microphone

The RM-5's excellence has been well documented by Recording Hacks, Rhythm in Mind, HomeRecording.com, and right here on the DIYRE blog. In short, it's is a great mic with the character one would expect of a well-designed ribbon. To quote myself: "rounded, almost tape-esque transients, a full low-end, and detailed, but gentle reproduction of the high-end." You can hear an electric guitar track I recorded with the RM-5 below. The RE-154 ribbon motor and RTP-35 output transformer are custom components designed to complement each other. Both are housed in a matte-polished, stainless steel. The assembled microphone retails for $395 USD.

DIY Kit Offer

Both full and partial kits are available until July 7th, 2013. $10 worldwide, flat-rate shipping applies to all orders. All kits will be shipped by the end of August 2013; transformer-only orders will be shipped immediately. Kit Options:
  1. RTP-35 Ribbon Mic Transformer $59
  2. Basic Kit: Transformer and RE-154 Ribbon Motor $115
  3. Full Kit: Transformer, Ribbon Motor, and Microphone Body $199
  4. Full Kit with Dedicated Shock Mount $235
These kits are generally intended for home and personal use. No warranty is provided for commercial applications and/or public events. Please purchase an assembled RM-5 ribbon microphone if you would like to have a full lifetime warranty (excl. ribbon) for professional use. Kits and assembled units do not carry the same warranty

Oktava MD-80M NOS Exclusive Offer July 13, 2012 09:23 22 Comments

This offer is now closed.

 

Oktava microphone

A couple weeks ago, I received an intriguing email from my friend Artur Fisher (whos RM-5 ribbon mics many of you have now built). It went something like this: "Hey I've got an amazing deal on a small lot of vintage Oktava mics. Do you think the DIY crowd would be interested?" Needless to say, part of me wanted to shoot back "Yes" on the spot--"vintage," "Russian," "NOS," and "secret stock" are major trigger words for a recovering gear junkie--but I asked Artur to send me a pair to try out before I decided whether they were worth offering to you guys. I received my pair of Oktava HD-80M dynamic mics last week, just in time to try them out on a drum set and electric guitar session the next day. The guitarist and I were both impressed when I unpacked them. The aura of belonging to another place and time that these things put out is intense. The technical docs that come with each mic are completely in Russian, and though the pages are mint, they feel as though they might crumble in your hands. I felt a little India Jones-esque thrill as I pulled them gingerly out of their cases. It is a bit of a pain eluding the Russian cabalists who are now hot on my trail to recover these priceless artifacts that are at the heart of a worldwide, centuries-old conspiracy, but noone gets into audio engineering without expecting a little danger!

Oktava Frequency graph

Anyhow, after sufficiently appreciating the their visual appeal, we put the 80Ms to work on snare and guitar amp. The first thing to notice about the sound of the 80Ms is that there is practically no low end. As you can see in the datasheet to the right, there is a steep low-end roll-off from 500Hz down. So right away we are in very unique territory--this is no Swiss army knife mic. Since there are very few instrumentes that don't have important stuff going on below 500Hz (and I never use a hi-hat mic), I tried pairing the 80M with a more full-bodied mic on the same source, similar to how Steven Albini use his old Altec mic on snare. For snare drum, I taped the 80M to a transformerless SM57, which lives on my snare by virtue of how well it captures the low-end body of the drum. The 80M does the opposite, and it does so really well. My usual practice with the SM57 on snare is to create a mult of the snare track, hi-pass and compress it with a slow attack time to emphasize the transient, and mix it back in with the original. The 80M essentially does this for me, with a little upper-mids excitement thrown in. As you can see in the waveforms below, there is a much greater contrast between the transient and the sustain with the Oktava than the SM57. Mixing this in with the signal from the SM57 brought out the attack in a way I'm not used to from a close snare mic. I'm glad I used strong tape when I attached the 80M to the SM57 because it's going to be there for a while.

SM57 on snareOktava HD-80m on snare
For electric guitar, I simply moved our Shure/Oktava combo to the Sears Silvertone amp. As opposed to the snare, where I forsee using it on every session, the 80M is a more unique, oddball choice for guitar. Beyond just being brighter than the SM57, the 80M gave the guitar a heavy dose of "jangle"; mixing between the 57 and 80M signals was almost like mixing the neck and bridge pickups of the guitar. I know exactly what Tchad Blake meant when he said (I'm paraphrasing) "Sometimes you just can't mess up the guitar sound enough." Next time I feel that way, it's good to know I've got something special stowed away. I've only had the chance to use the 80Ms on one session, but I could imagine a few more uses for them:
  • A "telephone," band-passed vocal effect
  • Hi-hat mic
  • Beater-side bass drum mic
  • Trashy, mid-range room mic (compressed to hell and back)
  • Harmonica mic
Artur is asking only €44 per set + shipping, which includes the MD-80M microphone, windscreen, manual, case, and XLR plug. Each mic is in mint, NOS condition and ships within 2-5 days of your payment. This is a limited quantity offer. Artur has a small amount of stock, and once it's gone it won't come again. Disclosure: This is an affiliate offer; I receive a commission on any mics that are sold through the site. Offers like these allow me to develop DIY projects and write more content for the site.

Dane Optical De-esser PCB/Chassis Offer April 19, 2012 22:18 2 Comments

In the 90's Dane Tate sold his unique Optical De-esser #31 to a small number of raving fans in the pro audio world. The #31 has since been retired and reborn as the XQP 531 for the 500-series, but Dane has graciously offered his remaining inventory to the DIY community. There are an extremely limited number of products available: 12 PCBs and 5 chassis. I wish there were enough for everyone, but unfortunately this is it! You can order directly from Dane via the PayPal button below.
"Best de-esser I've ever heard! I have already used it on Mac McAnally, Ricky Skaggs, & Jimmy Buffet mixes." -Alan Schulman, Magic Tracks Recording Studio, Nashville

For more info on the #31, see the XQP Audio website.

PCB features:

  • All components are standard and currently available
  • Includes on-board power supply and power transformer
  • Fits in a 1RU, half-rack size chassis
Chassis features:
  • 1RU, half-rack size
  • Two different color schemes: Green on anodized silver and gold on green. Sorry, no choosing--you get what you get!
  • Serial number engraved on back panel (duplicates of commercially sold units)
  • PCB slide-in slot
  • May have minor paint-fill issues
  • Includes a blank panel and mounting bracket to fill the space next to the de-esser
Beginners be warned! While the #31 is not a very complicated circuit, there will be no assembly guide or support offered for this project. Dane will supply the PCB/front panel and a schematic/bill of materials only.

DIYAC Ribbon Mic Kit One Time Offer March 06, 2012 22:58 54 Comments

Update 7/2014: Artur's RM-5 Ribbon Microphone full kits are now available from the DIYRE store! RM-5 Ribbon Microphone Kit

This month, I'm glad to be able to offer an exclusive DIY kit from ribbon mic designer Artur Fisher of DIY Audio Components (DIYAC). The kit is for Artur's RM-5 microphone, which I reviewed here and Jordan Reynolds reviewed for RecordingHacks. The RM-5 is a great mic, and I'm thrilled that Artur is offering it as a kit to the DIY community. However, he's only doing one run of kits and closing the pre-order on April 5th. You can order directly from DIYAC through the PayPal button below.

Some words on the kit from Artur:

"A little disclosure pre-story, why it goes so affordable. Metalworks contractor who is working on microphone bodies have made a mistake during last run, which resulted in slightly displaced slots. The group is well-aligned within itself, but has a slight shift towards the top of the microphone. This issue by itself does not have any emphasize on the audial performance of the microphone, but such bodies can't be used for commercial products - they got to be perfect to be offered to buyers. It would be bad if this run would end up as waste either, as these bodies work 100% as good as regular ones and are perfectly usable for DIY purposes. So, the agreement was made and contractor provided a significant discount for this run, which is reflected in final price of the kit. Photographs are actual, You will receive bodies and motors as displayed."
While RM-5 Ribbon Mic usually sells for €265, Artur will be offering basic kits for €99, including the mic body and hand-assembled ribbon motor. This kit includes everything needed to build an RM-5 ribbon mic, except for the output transformer. The Edcor RMX-1 output transformer and a custom shock mount are also available as add-ons to the basic kit. Worldwide shipping is free! Again, this is a one time offer. The pre-order will end on April 5th or when Artur runs out of kits, whichever happens first! Kits will ship from Artur's lab in Latvia by mid-April. More details about the RM-5 can be found at diyaudiocomponents.com: Feel free to contact Artur directly if You have any questions: info (at) diyaudiocomponents.com.