Monday, April 21, 2008

Review: Custom Peavey H-5 Cherry Bomb harp mic

Make no mistake about it, this is NOT a stock Peavey H-5 mic. It is modified by mic ace Greg Heumann at In fact, the only stock Peavey parts in this mic are the shell and on/off switch.

Greg installed a better volume pot and a Shure Controlled Magnetic mic element. This is a 99A86B element. Hi-Z, made in USA. It's the same element used in the earliest Shure 520 mics.

I A-B'ed this mic against my regular gig mic, an Astatic JT-30 shell with a similar element, a Shure CM 99A86GB, also Hi-Z, made in the USA. In this comparison I played a short blues riff on a Bb harp. Both mics were played into my Masco amp at low volume, with identical settings for both. This was recorded using a Zoom H4 recorder about 4 feet in front of the cab.

The sound difference is pretty stark. Greg Heumann's Peavey H-5 mic is unusually dark and growly, warm. I like it very much. It sounds similar to another custom mic I have from Greg, and I don't know how he gets such fat tone. Must be his mojo or something...

It may not be right for every song or vibe, but it sure sounds great with raunchy blues, and it makes my Masco positively honk. I think I prefer the JT-30 with my Champ, but the Peavey mic complements the thump of the 2x10 closed back cab I use with the Masco.

This mic is a keeper. I recently sold off a bunch of mics, and with the Peavey I am now down to only three. I like the range of tones I can get even with this small collection of harp mics.


Bob said...

Nice playing Rick. That peavy mike and the masco sounds great.

ijones7 said...

Rick, Do you know what size/model/value volume pot that is? Do you think it is compatible with the stock element?