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Presonus Revelator

Test & Review

Do you want to equip your home studio with a versatile microphone, which is capable of offering you perfect recording quality? Why not opt ​​for the Presonus Revelator microphone? It is a USB microphone that comes in two forms (condenser microphone and dynamic microphone). It can operate on three types of directivity (cardioid, omnidirectional and figure 8). Discover through this guide our test and opinion on this microphone from Presonus.

Presonus Revelator test and review

🎤 by Kevin Jung

Summary of the Test 👇

USB microphones are gaining a lot of ground in the recording equipment market today. Most of the models offered in this category, however, seem to be intended for occasional users given their technical limitations.

Presonus intends to correct the situation by offering a USB microphone whose technology can match the best dynamic microphones . The model in question is the Presonus Revelator, which is as versatile as it is efficient in its use, as you will see with this test.

Introducing the Presonus Revelator Microphone

It should be noted from the outset that the Presonus Revelator microphone comes in two forms. The first is that of a condenser microphone while the second is that of a dynamic microphone . Both models work based on USB connectivity .

The Presonus Revelator condenser is presented as the original model of this microphone . It comes with a sturdy , removable stand for desktop installation. Presonus has also equipped this microphone with a headphone amplifier .

The condenser version of the Presonus Revelator can operate in three polar patterns, namely cardioid , omnidirectional and figure-8 . This makes it a fairly versatile microphone, although it reveals its full effectiveness with vocals and acoustic instruments.

Presonus Revelator
Picture from Audioxpress.com

dynamic transducer model presents itself as a revisited version of the original Presonus Revelator. It also comes with a desktop stand and benefits from a built-in headphone amplifier .

The dynamic capsule of this second version of the Presonus Revelator, however, makes it more effective for near-field recording . It also ensures that unwanted noise from ambient sound is rejected for cleaner mixes.

The idea behind the design of the Presonus Revelator dynamic transducer is that the user hears only what is necessary for voice transparency . This second version of the Presonus Revelator also has a much higher entry level than the classic model.

It thus delivers great performance for picking up the vocals of rappers and rock singers. This is the best version of the Presonus Revelator, and this is also why it was chosen for this test.

Presonus Revelator Microphone Overview

The Presonus Revelator is 18.1 cm long, 5.9 cm in diameter and weighs 420 g . It is built in a metal body with a matte black finish. Even though it is a dynamic mic , its appearance suggests that it is a classic condenser microphone model .

Dynamic microphones have a copper voice coil placed in a magnetic field created by magnets. The coil moves in this magnetic field following the sound wave to produce an electric current.

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Presonus Revelator

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The concept of dynamic microphones is therefore very similar to that of bicycle dynamos . The difference is that the bicycle wheel is replaced by a membrane or diaphragm . The latter moves according to the acoustic pressure generated by the sound wave.

Dynamic technology has more tolerance for high volumes compared to condenser mics like lavalier mics or a shotgun mic like the Rode NTG3. They are therefore very efficient for recording drums or guitar amps.

However, dynamic mics are not as faithful to a sound source as condenser mics. They therefore tend to be less effective with acoustic instruments such as acoustic guitars or violins.

Connecting the Presonus Revelator is done using a USB-C to USB-A cable . The latter is already supplied with the microphone and measures two meters long. The Revelator studio microphone is therefore ready to use right out of the box. Using an adapter can nevertheless prove useful if the microphone will be connected to a sound card with a Thunderbolt port or XLR port.

The Revelator comes with a foldable metal tripod with rubber feet and a metal extension rod for support. Reducing threads and a stop ring are also provided for microphone attachment . However, it would have been helpful if it also came with a pop filter to block plosive or boom sounds.

Half of the device is covered with a foam windscreen. The structure of the Presonus Revelator is very similar to that of the Shure SM7B once it is deprived of its wind protection. The Revelator capsule is not protected by a metal grid. It is directly covered with a metal plate with several perforations.

Presonus Revelator USB Microphone
Picture from Presonusmusic.com

The Revelator's grille also resembles that of the SM7B in several aspects. This includes the shape of the grille, its color and the dimensions of the holes in the metal plate. The similarities between the Revelator and the SM7B, however, stop at these few points. The Revelator suspension is designed on one side only and can therefore only be operated with one locking screw.

The Revelator has a USB-C connection and a headphone output on its underside. A rotary knob on the front panel adjusts the listening volume in addition to activating or deactivating the microphone mute function. Two buttons above also give access to preselections and monitoring .

Presonus Revelator Microphone Build Quality

The Presonus Revelator dynamic microphone can be installed either on the tripod or the extension pole . Fixing will then be done with the reduction threads and the stop ring. The tripod is unlikely to slip after installation thanks to its rubber feet.

The table base becomes very compact when folded and can easily fit into a backpack. It can also extend up to 20 cm when unfolded. The microphone can also be tilted to a specific position using the suspension locking screw which is detached on one side.

The mounting height can be extended if necessary with extension rod supplied with the mic. The extension rod can be used without the tripod as a handle for the microphone . The tripod can also be used as a handle if greater reach is required.

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However, the location chosen for the microphone sockets is not the most practical. It is not possible to freely tilt the microphone once a USB cable and headphones are connected. The concept is not a priori problematic knowing that the microphone picks up the sound upwards . The microphone and its tripod can also be moved to capture other sound waves.

However, a problem arises if the user needs to access the control elements in use. The control buttons are in fact on the lower section and cannot be oriented upwards. It is then not possible for the user to see the inscriptions on the keys or the active colors of the button lighting.

This suggests the idea that the microphone must be manipulated blindly after being plugged in. Another option is to tilt the mic so that the buttons are on top. The inscriptions associated with these commands will, however, be found upside down if necessary.

This concept, however, is not as problematic as it seems. It is still possible to speak into the microphone from above, leaning back slightly to see all the information. The microphone will however be located directly under the user, which can be quite annoying.

The only detail that would have really made a difference in the construction of this microphone is the acoustic decoupling . This characteristic is indeed of great interest for the prevention of handling noise.

Acoustic decoupling also makes sense when using the tripod on a desk. The rubber feet can only provide a slight attenuation of the transmission of structural vibrations .

Presonus Revelator USB Microphone
Picture from Presonusmusic.com

Installing software for the Presonus Revelator microphone

The Revelator has a large sticker on which Presonus indicates ways to get it registered. This sticker also provides download links for drivers and software useful for using the microphone. This includes Universal Control and Presonus Studio One Artist for the Studio Magic plugin .

The library of plug-ins provided by Studio Magic is large enough to rival that of top MAO software like Logic Pro X. It includes six virtual instruments and nine effects created by companies like Arturia, Brainworx, iZotope, Lexicon, SPL and Native Instruments.

Universal Control software is essential for using the Presonus Revelator due to its virtual control environment. StudioLive's Fat Channel function , which is very useful for a live mixer.

Universal One also provides several useful functions to the Presonus Revelator for use in a recording studio. This includes compressors , equalizers , high-pass filters and limiters .

You can further get more vocal effects from this recording equipment using StudioLive. This includes reverb , dubbing , delay , vocoder and more. The software also includes predefined settings for quickly configuring the micro-USB according to your preferences.

The Presonus Revelator directly obtains the power voltage needed for its audio interface from the USB-C data cable to a USB-A port. It can thus operate a priori without the electrical current supplied by the phantom power of an external sound card.

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Presonus Revelator

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Universal Control software works on 64-bit version of Windows 10 . It is also compatible with macOS provided you use Sierra 10.13 or later versions. A minimum space of 200 MB and 4 GB RAM are required in both cases for software installation. A storage margin is also required for automatic firmware updates.

iPad users with iPadOS version 11.4 or higher can control the microphone remotely with the UC Surface Software-Mixer . This remote control option is also available for tablets running Android 6 and higher versions.

The Universal Control software and Revelator drivers must be installed before use. The user is asked to update the firmware by launching Universal Control. Update data can be downloaded in one click and is automatically integrated into the microphone.

All of the Presonus Revelator's main settings are easily accessible from the main Universal Control interface. However, access to the interfaces associated with the mixing environment is not as intuitive. You have to click on the microphone symbol in the lower section of the main interface, which is not obvious at first use.

The Presonus Revelator also finds one of its strong points in its mixing environment, and especially in the Channel and FX section . The audio output of programs running in parallel can be directed to the virtual channels of the mixer. Such a feature is very accommodating for a gaming setup or a podcaster's activities.

In particular, the internal and virtual playback channels can be transmitted to three mixes in addition to being individually adjustable. The settings available in this virtual environment also apply to the microphone's headphone jack.

Presonus Revelator review
Picture from Audiomediainternational.com

In the same spirit, the Presonus Revelator microphone has a multifunction button for adjusting the preamplifier gain . The latter is also used to adjust the volume of the headphone output when you press it for a long time. Added to this is the rotary button which can mute the microphone sound with a simple press.

The user can choose between 8 presets for the microphone. He can also create 8 others according to his preferences using the rotary knob of the control software. Colored buttons can also be assigned to four of these presets for easier access.

It is not difficult to adjust the microphone signal thanks to the level display in the software. No unpleasant noise component is certainly perceptible at close use . The microphone's own noise, however, becomes quite audible at an average distance of 25 cm .

The Presonus Revelator's basic channel settings are active once the software is installed. The richest proximity effect is delivered when the microphone is used up close with these settings. The bass then has a more controlled resonance , without any whirring.

Zoom on the sound quality of the Presonus Revelator microphone

The sound of the Presonus Revelator is immediately very consistent in the midrange . The established presence in the higher spectrum also allows voices to assert themselves. The Revelator also sounds quite open in the treble, which is surprising for a dynamic microphone.

It also delivers more detail than condenser microphones. The reproduction of transients seems particularly precise compared to a condenser or static microphone.

The angle of incidence of the directivity curve can become quite narrow when the microphone is used by a seated speaker . The Revelator is then less sensitive to sounds that do not come from the main sound source. However, this microphone retains its sound reinforcement properties even when used at an angle of 45° . The loss of level is not very significant either.

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Presonus Revelator

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The Presonus Revelator therefore presents itself as a good choice of microphone for those starting out in home studio . The latter will not have to look for the perfect position to speak without experiencing parasitic noise or other electrostatic interference.

The preselections make it easier to get started with the microphone initially, although they can be open to criticism on certain points. The preset called “ Broadcast Basic very rich voice out of nowhere . The richness of the channel is even more significant with the preset called “ Broadcast Radio ” .

These presets are, however, so crude in their settings that it is necessary to readjust the microphone gain setting . Presonus was also somewhat careless in adapting the preset volumes.

The preamp setting is not enough when switching from one setting to another. You also need to adjust the volume of the microphone channel. These presets may be repeated in certain cases or ultimately prove inconvenient for practice.

The characteristics of the Presonus Revelator microphone

It is interesting to compare the Presonus Revelator with the Shure SM7B in evaluating its technical characteristics. Both models are dynamic microphones that operate with a cardioid polar pattern . The sensitivity of the Presonus Revelator microphone, however, is 1.6 mV/Pa , which is significantly higher than the 1.12 mV/Pa of the Shure SM7B.

Directivity defines how well a mic picks up sound coming from specific directions . A microphone can essentially have omnidirectional technology or a directional pattern in terms of its directivity. An omnidirectional microphone picks up sound with the same sensitivity across 360°.

Presonus Revelator USB Microphone
Picture from Mmorpg.com

A directional mic is more sensitive to sound in a specific direction . Other examples of directivity are variations of directional technology. These include the bidirectional pattern and the cardioid or figure 8 . The cardioid polar pattern, as used on the Presonus Revelator, means that sensitivity to sound sources is higher at the front of the mic .

The frequency response range of the Presonus Revelator extends between 20 Hz to 20 kHz . This gives it significant room for maneuver in the treble, but also in the bass compared to the Shure SM7B. The latter cannot in fact go below 50 Hz .

There is also a big difference in the maximum sound pressure that these two models of dynamic microphones can transpose without distortion. The SM7B is particularly recognized for its ability to capture the highest sounds, especially up to 180 dB/SPL .

The Revelator Dynamic seems to be in a good position with these 135 dB/SPL . The SM7B nevertheless retains a significant advantage in this context regarding sound recording.

The Presonus Revelator converts sound sources to a maximum sampling of 96 kHz and a dynamic description of 24 bits using its A/D converter. It can thus achieve the audio quality of studio equipment when making recordings . The mic is set to a latency of 0 ms , which implies a direct signal from a monitoring speaker direct from a sound source.

The microphone's headphone output has an output power of 22.6 mW at an impedance of 16 ohms . This seems quite subdued compared to other microphones like the Aston Origin . The harmonic distortion rate of the preamp is also 0.01%, which is comparable to that of a headphone amp. The dynamic range was nevertheless set to a reasonable value of 77.5 dB.

Presonus Revelator package
Image from Photosavings.com
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Our Overall Opinion

Overall Sound Quality

4,3 /5
4.3/5

Value for money

4,7 /5
4.7/5

Global mark

4,5 /5
4.5/5

Our opinion on the Presonus Revelator microphone

The Presonus Revelator is overall a versatile USB microphone in the vein of the Blue Yeti or the Rode nt USB. Its USB-C/USB-A connection makes it a very modern microphone, knowing that it can be used with a computer as well as a mobile device. The absence of a Bluetooth function also seems unnecessary given the quality of the signal with the wired connection.

The Revelator's sound quality is as impressive as its technical specifications. The transparency of the recorded sounds sometimes gives the impression of using a stereo microphone with a Fet transducer. It also manages to deliver a sound as warm as that of a microphone like the Neumann U47 through dynamic microphone technology.

Add to that additional accessories for mounting and you have good value for money for a USB microphone. At least that's the case if you can get this microphone at the best price, which is possible by checking out the special offers at Presonus.

Presonus Revelator Microphone Demo

Special offer at Presonus 🔥

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Presonus Revelator

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