Vanguard Audio Labs has introduced a new large-diaphragm, multi-pattern FET condenser microphone – the Vanguard V4. This is an interesting mic, with an ultra-thin, custom-voiced capsule and cryogenically-treated components. Vanguard even designed a custom shockmount that looks sturdy, to say the least!
Vanguard says it has designed the V4 to provide “the characteristics of classic FET mics”, achieved via modern design methods. Built in Southern California, the mic is based on a 34mm edge-terminated, gold-sputtered 3-micrometer dual-capsule assembly which is tuned by hand and mounted in an open-weave headbasket. This makes for a natural sound with low internal reflections, claims the manufacturer. Vanguard has included a -10 dB pad and an optional roll-off at 100 Hz.
The circuit is transformerless and designed to match the capsule’s performance, built with components sourced from German, Japanese, and US manufacturers. Critical signal and power path components are cryogenically treated, while the brass body is precision-machined, with polished nickel trim accents and a laser-engraved serial number. Definitely a class act!
As for the proprietary shockmount, it’s a re-imagining of the traditional spider-style mount with an open front, aerospace-grade suspension rings, and a fit for every M22x1-threaded mic.
V4 Pricing and availability
The V4 ships in a padded pine box and costs only USD 399, which is a lot less than we expected given its level of design and manufacture. It’s not a mic for everyone, but purists loving that warm, vintage sound might want to add this to their mic lockers. While there are some decent microphones in this price range, such as Warm Audio’s WA-47jr, the Aston Microphones Spirit, the Rode-NT2000 and more, none of them seem to be in the class of build quality promised by Vanguard Audio. We’ll have to wait and see whether the V4 lives up to the hype, then!
More information is available on Vanguard’s page.