Los Angeles, CA… Be it instrumental or vocal tracking, the recording process starts with the microphone. As the first element in the engineer’s signal chain, finding the right tool to accurately capture the source is a huge consideration. For producer / engineer Ryan Hewitt, Mojave Audio microphones have become an important part of the recording process and, when it comes to using a microphone with the flexibility to adapt to the nature of the project, Mojave Audio’s MA-300 Multi-Pattern Vacuum Tube Condenser microphone is frequently Hewitt’s microphone of preference.
Grammy® Award winning Ryan Hewitt has worked with numerous high profile artists including the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Tom Petty, and the Avett Brothers. With credits like these, Hewitt obviously knows a thing or two about recording and the tools involved in the process.
Hewitt has used his two MA-300’s on a variety of projects. “I recently used the MA-300 with the Avett Brothers, a fantastic band out of North Carolina,” Hewitt said. “On this project, which was recorded at Echo Mountain Recording in Asheville, NC over a period of several months, I used the MA-300’s to capture guitars and banjo. I also used the MA-300’s to record acoustic guitar on some bonus tracks for the deluxe edition of Irish-American Celtic punk band Flogging Molly’s Speed of Darkness release. This CD is on their new Borstal Beat Records label, which is scheduled to become available May 31st. These tracks were recorded at my personal studio, Lock Stock Studios, in Venice Beach, CA.”
In addition to capturing stringed instruments, Hewitt reports that he’s also had considerable success using the MA-300’s as drum overheads. “I also used the mics for an album with keyboard extraordinaire Ed Roth on Warrior Records,” Hewitt said. “This project was recorded at East/West Studio 2 in Los Angeles in March. For this recording, I used the MA-300’s as overhead mics on the drum kit while recording drummers Chad Smith (of the Red Hot Chili Peppers) and Kenny Aronoff.”
When queried about those characteristics of the MA-300 that he finds most appealing, Hewitt offered the follow thought. “I loved the response of the MA-300 in figure 8 mode for recording acoustic guitar while the player was singing,” he explained. “The rejection of the mic was truly amazing! The MA-300’s figure 8 mode and its resulting ability to isolate unwanted sounds enabled great balance with a vocal mic and enabled me to capture a huge sound. The MA-300 is definitely my new ‘go-to’ acoustic guitar mic.”
“I’ve had a pair of Mojave MA-200s for years now and use them on all sorts of sound sources,” Hewitt continued, “but I’ve been begging the company for a variable pattern version for almost as long. The ability to tailor the response of the mic, along with the new high pass filter and pad has greatly increased its versatility. I’m now able to use the MA-300 even more creatively. Further, the MA-300 has a really nice, soft top end that compares favorably to some of the much more expensive vintage microphones. I was really amazed with the MA-300’s performance.”
As he turned his attention back to more immediate studio concerns, Hewitt offered this parting thought. “Every time I’ve used the MA-300, the client has been impressed with the sound and ease with which it was achieved. Several people have asked where they can get a pair!”
For additional information about Ryan Hewitt, visit him online at
About Mojave Audio
Located in Burbank, California, Mojave Audio is a manufacturer of quality microphones for the recording professional. Additional information on the MA-300 and all Mojave Audio products can be found at
Photo Info: Image of producer / engineer Ryan Hewitt.