The Sphere L22 microphone, unveiled by Townsend Labs as their debut product, launched this week with a phenomenally successful international crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo, raising over $100,000 (250% of its target) in 24 hours. Support is coming from across the globe including Australia, New Zealand, Sweden, Norway, Germany, Poland, the UK and the US.

The high-precision, side-address, large-diaphragm condenser microphone has right away proved its appeal to the market.

The future of microphone modeling

Accurate and flexible, Sphere sets new standards in microphone modeling technology, delivering the real three-dimensional characteristics of the most sought-after microphones on the market.

When combined with the included Sphere DSP plug-in, it emerges as the most comprehensive microphone modeling solution available to date, with a palette of eight classic mics (at time of introduction), and the ability to change polar pattern and proximity control even after tracking.

With the reception it’s had this week the Sphere L22 looks set to have major influence on the studio landscape.

Pioneering 3D techniques

The development of the new technology has been a labor of love for audio veterans Chris Townsend and Erik Papp, founders of Townsend Labs Inc:

“I first started thinking about the microphone modeling problem several years ago during my work in emulating guitar amplifiers with various vintage microphone combinations,” Townsend explains. “Traditional modeling techniques like those used in classic hardware emulation don’t fully address the characteristics that truly make microphones unique and desirable. To capture those key spatial details, we pioneered methods to study microphones in three dimensions.”

Early customers signing up to pre-order the Sphere L22 on Indiegogo will not only be among the first to own a breakthrough microphone product, but will benefit from introductory pricing. As a high-precision product well-outfitted with accessories, the Sphere L22 is expected to have a suggested retail price of $1,799 USD.

“We have come a long way,” Papp said. “The Sphere L22 is designed and tested, and we have invested in tooling for manufacturing. These funds are not for development, but instead linked directly with production cost. This takes a huge risk away for our backers. Indiegogo orders will help us gauge and fund production while giving us a unique introduction to our market. The goal is to add to the growing base of audio manufacturers that have successfully sought crowdfunding such as Dynamount and Keith McMillen Instruments.”

The included Sphere DSP plug-in is available for both Mac and PC in the VST, VST3, AAX (native) and Audio Units formats. It additionally supports Apollo Interfaces and UAD-2 hardware, making Sphere the first UAD-powered microphone.

The Sphere L22 is available for pre-order at the Indiegogo campaign for $1,199 USD + Shipping (retail price $1,799 USD).

More information: Townsend Labs