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Mods for the 460

  • Microphone PartsMicrophone Parts
    The Apex 460 mod kit from Microphone-Parts delivers a comprehensive upgrade of the mic’s circuitry, resulting in a significant reduction in distortion, noise, and nonlinearities at a DIY-friendly price. The kit includes a full-color, step-by-step installation guide and suite of upgrade components including super low-noise parts from Wima, Nichicon, and Vishay Dale, plus a hand-selected Russian 6072 tube. Top it with a CK12 style capsule to get an affordable DIY ElaM 251.
  • Advanced Audio MicrophonesAdvanced Audio Microphones
    Dave’s suite of improvements to the HST-11A (and its rebadged equivalents) includes replacing electrolytic capacitors with Mylar, bypassing unnecessary capacitors, changing the capsule to a Peluso (model varies by application, e.g. a CEK-89 provides U67-like response, CEK-367 provides U47-like response, CEK-12 for C12-like response), swapping the 12AX7 tube for at 12AT7 or 12AY7/6072a (providing a 6-8dB gain in headroom), and changing the output transformer (e.g. to a Cinemag CM-2480), resulting in a microphone “which will go head to head with a C12 or Tele U47.”
  • OktavaModOktavaMod
    Michael Joly refits the Apex 460 with an MJE-K47 capsule within an elongated, single-layer headbasket, designed to reduce reflections and standing-wave coloration. The tube is replaced with a 6072a. Wiring and capacitors are upgraded.
  • Fox Audio ResearchFox Audio Research
    Brian Fox’ “C12” and “251” mods include a Peluso CEK12 capsule, upgraded capacitors, a Peluso BV11P transformer, and a selected 6072 tube. The C12 also incorporates a circuitry change to implement fixed grid bias voltage. The resulting mics’ frequency response shows a smooth +3dB lift at 10kHz, similar to the original AKG/Telefunken microphones.
    The “47” mod includes a Peluso PK47 capsule, a selected 6072 tube, and a choice of transformers (Peluso BV11P, Cinemag CM-2480 or CM-2461), upgraded electronic components, and circuitry changes to replicate some of the characteristics of the U-47.
  • Open Plan RecordingOpen Plan Recording
    Mark Chierego’s mod for the T-11A and clones (Apex 460) includes circuit and component upgrades such as transformer (Lundahl, Samar, Cinemag), tube and capsule (K-47 or CK-12 style). The mics are voiced with either the Neumann U47 or AKG C12 in mind.

9 polar patternsApex Electronics 460

Multi-Pattern Tube Condenser Microphone

The Apex 460 is a Chinese-made tube condenser microphone, usually considered by the audio community to be a rebadged Alctron HST-11A. Lookalike mics vary in capsule and component details; see, for example, the ShuaiYin SYT-1200.

The mic’s large-diaphragm capsule is a 32mm Chinese K67 copy, advertised as having 5-micron membranes although in reality this specification varies without notice.

The mic supports 9 polar patterns, switchable from the power supply.

MIX

At $229, the Apex 460 is a phenomenal buy.

This is one of many AKG C12 lookalikes, and is possibly one of the best-known and most widely available; as a result, much work has been done by hobbyists to mod this mic, such as replacing the capsule and transformer and some components on the circuit board.

The Apex 460’s early claim to fame was its appearance in a teardown analysis by StudioReviews.com, proving that the mic was identical to the original and short-lived 2005 edition of the R-F-T M16 — a mic costing (at the time) significantly more, and which was subsequently replaced by a significantly nicer product at the same price.

Apex 460 circuit diagramCommon T-11A/Apex 460 upgrades include:

460The spec for a complete T-11A/Apex 460 mod can be found in the Yahoo “Micbuilders” group; see the German C24 Solo Tube Condenser plan (you must first join the Micbuilders group).

See also the Lucas Engineering/AMI mods on the ACM-1200 page (link in sidebar).

Permalink: Apex Electronics 460

The mic was released in 2003.

Specifications

Frequency Response - OmnidirectionalClick Graph to Compare!
460 Omnidirectional Frequency Response Chart
Frequency Response - CardioidClick Graph to Compare!
460 Cardioid Frequency Response Chart
Frequency Response - BidirectionalClick Graph to Compare!
460 Bidirectional Frequency Response Chart
Pickup Patterns Pads & Filters
Omnidirectional (14 mV/Pa; 20 - 20,000 Hz)
Cardioid (14 mV/Pa; 20 - 20,000 Hz)
Bidirectional (14 mV/Pa; 20 - 20,000 Hz)
Capsule Dimensions Impedance SPL/Noise
Diaphragm diameter: 25mm
Capsule diameter: 32mm
Diaphragm gauge: 5 microns
200 Ohms (Low) Max SPL: 125 dB
Weight Length Max Diameter Interface(s)
824g (29.07oz) 240mm (9.45'') 46mm (1.81'')
  • 3-pin XLR male (1)
Power Specifications
  • Includes tube power supply

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