MXL Microphones

MXL Revelation II Mic First Look

MXL Revelation II tube mic
The MXL Revelation II Tube Microphone

MXL Revelation II is a large diaphragm, variable pattern tube condenser microphone. Released on spring 2020, it is the latest microphone from MXL and the sequel to their flagship tube microphone; the Revelation from 2010.

Revelation II is a fresh upgrade to the original Revelation microphone which was “killer” and gathered sort of a cult following and has been widely regarded as the best microphone MXL has ever made; and MXL is back to introduce the second iteration of it.

In this article, we’ll take a look at the all new MXL Revelation II mic and see how it is different from the original Revelation.

Why Revelation II?

I’ll let MXL explain for themselves as to why they’ve decided to come up with a ‘second’ Revelation.

We decided to make the best mic we could design and over the last year and a half we’ve been working to redesigning the original Revelation using modern parts that are sustainably produced and a lot more affordable, so we have now the Revelation II microphone.

MXL Microphones

Revelation and Revelation II: What Changed?

MXL has stated on different occasions that the new Revelation II microphone is very much the same as the original Revelation but using modern components and, at $499 list price, costs almost half the price.

The original Revelation has been around for nearly a decade, and there were some internal components that went end of life, so MXL had to update that. In addition to the updated parts, any changes to a circuit board can change the response and tone of a mic, so MXL says they’ve been doing some slight adjustments with this newer model that we have found to sound quite immaculate.

Utilizing the same EF86 tube found in the first model, you’ll certainly have a familiar response and feel using the Revelation II. With that being said, the Revelation II has it’s own tone that MXL says is unique from any microphone they’ve designed to date.

Why is the Revelation II Cheaper Than The Original?

Pricing for Tube Mics in the pro audio market have fluctuated over the last 10 years, so any change of price from what you purchased your Revelation for could be a combination of business decisions that were made, as well as where the market was at at the time and who you purchased it from. Since the first iteration was so widely praised, MXL wanted to make sure to not diverge too far off from what made the original Revelation so loved. So it’s a lot more accessible and easier to afford for a lot of working studios like many of other MXL microphones.

Revelation II Build, Look and Feel

MXL Revelation II microphone
The Revelation II from an angle

Although this is not my best looking MXL mic; the CR77, it’s still a beautiful mic. Featuring a sleek dark violet and black chrome finish and a robust metal construction, it looks elegant and feels solid in the hand. On the bottom you’ll find the threaded 7-pin XLR connector. The threading makes it easy to safely and securely attach the microphone to the shock mount.

On the back of the mic, you’ll find a 10dB pad switch to help tame louder sources.

10dB pad switch
10dB pad switch on the back of Revelation II

Package and Accessories

studio in a box package of Revelation II
The ‘studio in a box’ package of the MXL Revelation II

The MXL Revelation II comes in a glossy retail box. Inside, you will find what MXL calls “a studio in box”; a very nice heavy-duty aluminum flight case that houses the mic itself along with a heavy-duty high insulation, black shock mount which is a great upgrade from the original Revelation shock mount.

power supply for Revelation II
MXL Revelation II power supply

In the package, you also get a big dedicated power supply for the Revelation II which includes several important features:

  1. A variable control knob that allows you to continuously change the polar pattern of the Revelation II from cardioid to omni-directional to figure 8. By turning this knob on the power supply, you can also blend between those three pickup patterns with a seamless transition between them. For instance, if you want a cardioid pattern but you want to open it up to be a little bit more omni, you can fine tune it to your liking. It’s a continuous knob so it gives you a ton of control.
  2. The power supply also includes a 80dB bass roll off toggle switch which enables a 12dB per octave at 125Hz high-pass filter.
  3. A phase invert toggle.
  4. A ground left switch.
  5. a main ON/OFF switch
  6. a main’s voltage switch.

Connectivity wise, the power supply has a 7-pin XLR input (coming from the mic) and a standard 3-pin XLR output (going to the audio interface/preamp)

Also included with the Revelation II, are two 15-foot Mogami XLR cables. The first is a 7-pin XLR to connect the mic to the power supply and the second is a regular 3-pin XLR to connect the power supply to the audio interface or preamp.

Lastly in the box with MXL Revelation II is a Certificate of Excellence which certifies that the Revelation II has undergone extensive testing by MXL’s audio engineers in Torrance California before being sent to you.

Quick Specs

  • continuously variable polar pattern selector that allows you to change between three polar patterns.
  • EF86 pentode tube
  • dual gold sputtered 6micron diaphragm
  • 20Hz to 20kHz frequency response
  • 138dB max SPL
  • signal-to-noise ratio of 76dB
  • built-in 10dB pad switch

MXL Revelation II Sound

The original MXL Revelation was widely recognized as a phenomenal high-end yet affordable ($249-$800) tube mic and its successor, Revelation II has the potential to receive even more acceptance as it brings to the table a “vintage, lush, warm and beautiful sounding tube microphone, that’s true to the nature of a tube mic.”

The Revelation II features a large, “hand-selected” EF86 pentode tube inside of it and dual gold sputtered 6-micron diaphragm.

According to MXL, the Revelation II “delivers the warmth and intimacy of a classic tube microphone with a lush mid-range .. providing warmth and character giving the Revelation II an iconic sound.”

Although yet to be tested, MXL Revelation II seems to be a great mic for any lush sounding warm velvety vocals and a very good mic for instruments and many recording applications.

Type:Variable Pattern Tube Condenser Microphone
Diaphragm:Dual gold-sputtered, 6 micron diaphragm
Tube Type:EF86
Frequency Response:20 Hz – 20 kHz
Polar Pattern:Continuously variable
Sensitivity:-40 dB re 1 V/Pa
Output Impedance:140 ohms
Attenuation Switch:0 dB, -10 dB
High Pass Filter:12 dB/octave @ 125Hz
Equivalent Noise:-18 dB (A-weighted IEC 651)
S/N Ratio:76 dB
Max SPL for .5% THD:138 dB SPL
Power Requirements:Revelation® Power Supply Unit 110/220 VAC, 50/60Hz
Size:7 1/2″ X 2 1/2″/190mm x 63.5mm (mic only)
Weight:2 lbs / 907g (mic only)
Metal Finish:Dark Violet and Black Chrome
polar pattern chart
MXL Revelation II Polar Pattern

MXL Revelation II Price and Availability

The MXL Revelation II is priced at $499, however it seems to show up and sell out quickly on Amazon. Make sure to check regularly for its availability.

I’m very excited to get one and try it for you but, unfortunately, due to the current world health situation, I’m not able to get one delivered to my location. Check back soon as I’ll be doing a review for this mic as soon as I can get my hands on one.

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