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Rumberger K1X, Mark II Clarinet Barrel Pickup

Rumberger K1X, Mark II Clarinet Barrel Pickup

Rumberger is the undisputed leader in clarinet pickups. This German-made, second-generation K1X is a tremendous sounding pickup.

Of course, air (i.e., "regular") mics generally sound better. But for live playing with an amplified ensemble or band, an air mic just ain't gonna work. Why not? For the clarinet to be heard over, say, a guitar, keyboard, drums, brass instrument — even a sax — you'd need to turn the mic up to the point where it would feed back (SQUEEEEEEEE!!)

I know about this stuff; I've been playing amplified/electronic music for over 30 years, and have been on the perpetual hunt for a better microphone system that 1) won't pick up sounds from speakers — I want my recorded loops to be "clean" and not just a mush of every loop that came before it, 2) resists or eliminates feedback, and 3) won't sound like I'm playing in a cardboard box.

The K1X is that mic.

So, how does it work?

A 10mm hole is drilled in a barrel, and a 10mm metal sleeve is glued (with epoxy) into that hole. The (removable) microphone capsule then is inserted into the barrel, which is plugged into an amp, mixing board, computer sound interface or whatever. And...that's it. Want a listen? Scroll down for demo audio.

The pickup has both an XLR cable (which requires 48v phantom power, for use with a mixer), and a 1/4" cable (for stomp boxes and amps).

All that said, I bet you have questions. Here are some FAQs that hopefully will answer them.


Q: Do you have to install it?
A: Nope. I can just send you the system and your technician can install it for you. I do not recommend doing it yourself unless you have a very specific set tools. (Like Liam Neeson.)

Q: I want you to install it in a barrel of mine. Can I send you the barrel?
A: Yes, just contact me after the purchase and we’ll make arrangements for you to send me the barrel you’d like the microphone installed in.

Q: Can I install it in any barrel?
A: No. Some barrels (like the MoBa and Fatboy from Backun) have walls that are too thick for the sleeve. If you have any questions about your barrel, please contact me before you purchase the system and we’ll sort it out.

Q: I don’t have a barrel to install it in. Can you sell me one?
A: Yes. I can sell you a Backun Lumiere barrel (again, it won’t fit in the Fatboy or MoBa). Just pick your barrel and length from the menu and your mic will come pre-installed!

Q: Does the microphone have to stay in the barrel all the time?
A: Nope. It comes with a plug that you place inside the sleeve when you are not using the barrel

Q: Does having a hole in the barrel change the way it plays?
A: Surprisingly not! I’ve tested barrels before and after installing the sleeve, and I cannot tell the difference.

Q: Will the sleeve leak?
A: I test all installations for leaks with a Magnehelic differential pressure gauge to ensure everything is 100% air-tight.

Q: Can I switch barrels if I don’t like the barrel you send me?
A: Unfortunately, no. The barrel you pick is made for you. Now, if you want to install it in a second barrel, additional sleeves are available for a nominal cost.

Q: What if my question isn’t answered here?
A: Email me!

Regular price $380.00
Regular price Sale price $380.00
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Audio Samples

Customer Reviews

Based on 1 review
William Shepherd

I’m now routinely on stage with a quintet playing alto, tenor and clarinet, so I needed a clarinet mic comparable to the NUX B6 I use for my saxes. Everyone else in the group is mic’ed or runs through a DI box and audiences were complaining they couldn’t hear the clarinet very well. After much trial and error and online research, I decided to try this mic. I ordered the Rumberger K1XII already mounted on a Backun Lumiere barrel; you can order just the mic and mount it yourself if you’ve got the tools and are adventurous… I’m not.

Anyway, when it arrived, I hooked it up to my audio interface and got nice, balanced tone from the lowest to the highest notes with no feedback and almost no key noise (I probably just need to adjust the gain to eliminate that). Probably wouldn't use this in a professional recording studio but for on-stage work where you're trying to be heard over amplified guitar, bass, drums and keyboard without overblowing the horn, this fits the bill. It ain't cheap, but you do get what you pay for. If you want to sound great and have something easy to use, this is it.