Aston Starlight is a truly unique pencil condenser microphone – a star in any studio.
Let’s look past the “laser” for now, and get straight to the guts of Starlight – all made in UK.
Starlight has 3 modes of operation. You can chose between Vintage, Modern and Hybrid settings to get the perfect tone response for your application. All the magic happens thanks to some front-end filtering between the capsule and PCB.
Talking of the capsule, Starlight was a long time in the making. It features a 20mm cardioid capsule that was hand-picked by a panel of more than 50 top producers in “double blind” listening tests conducted during 2016.
Sintered Metal Head
Never one to shy away from an innovative design, Aston has taken the sintered head of Starlight to ‘next level’. They say: “We tested many thicknesses of sintered head, as well as the average size of the sinter spheres, and combined that with nickel plate which is controlled to only a few nanometres thickness to achieve near perfect acoustic porosity. In addition, the head is virtually indestructible”
The addition of a Class 2 laser to Starlight (with on/off switch), allows the user to recall mic positions in the studio so set up can be easily replicated. It also means, for touring bands, that mic positions can be marked off on drums etc, and set-up becomes a breeze. It’s a world-first and a big leap in helping to get a consistent sound whatever the situation.
Discrete Mic Amp Circuit (PCB)
Starlight employs an extremely fine-tuned discrete mic amp circuit with high-spec components, to achieve an extremely sensitive, low noise design with loads of headroom. This allows the Starlight to handle quiet or very loud sources without compromising noise or tonal performance. Crucially, the higher output level of the Starlight’s output stage allows microphone preamps to operate with lower gain, where their distortion performance is at its best. The final result is a beautifully clean and detailed sound. The Starlight’s voicing control employs inductive active filters at the front-end of the microphone circuit to alter the response of the capsule without adding any noise to the circuit.
The benefit of this means that the voicing switch is effectively the equivalent of changing the capsule to achieve different tonal characteristics and frequency response.