Billy Gibbons Uses Royer R-10 Mics for ZZ Top 50th Anniversary Tour

ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons is using the Royer R-10 microphone on his backline of Magnatone amplifiers for the band’s 50th annivesary tour.

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ZZ Top's iconic catalog includes "Gimme All Your Lovin" from the Eliminator album.

Taking its show beyond that shack just outside La Grange, ZZ Top has hit the road for its 50th anniversary tour. Providing the band’s legendary guitar player Billy Gibbons that sound he wants for the tour is the Royer R-10 microphone.

Handling front-of-house (FOH) duties for the Texas trio, Jamie (J-Mo) Rephann, a veteran engineer chose to use the R-10 because of how tonally accurate the microphone represents the band’s sound.

“On this tour, I’m using two Royer R-10 ribbons [ribbon microphones],” explains Rephann.

“I have one mic on Billy’s Marshall cab and the other is used to mic his Magnatone setup. I have them both in isolation boxes off stage left in guitar world. Both mics are positioned slightly off center, left of the cone. The R-10 translates exactly what’s coming off the cab, to the point of it being stunning … Billy and ZZ Top’s sound is based off the guitar totally, so the ability to accurately capture this musical energy is critical.”

Royer R-10 Built for the Road and High SPLs

A few of the reasons that persuaded Rephann to use the Royer Labs R-10 ribbon microphone beyond its tonal accuracy include its robust build quality and its ability to withstand high sound pressure levels (SPLs).

Rephann says the R-10 works well in a live environment and it stands up to the rigors of touring without sacrificing functionality.

Related: Death Wish Soundtrack Recording Relies on Royer Labs Ribbon Mics

“The midrange cuts so well, without the added top end of some other mics, and it’s just a matter of pushing the faders to get exactly what I am looking for,” notes Rephann.

“The Royer R-10 is a superb microphone for being in the ‘entry range.’ I picked it over much more expensive mics because of the sound. It is unmatched for high SPL close-miking of cabinets.”

Here’s a closer look at the Royer Labs R-10 Ribbon Microphone: 

  • Features a figure-8 polar pattern
  • Internally the R-10 employs a 2.5-micron aluminum ribbon and Neodymium magnets
  • Royer states the microphone’s output impedance is 100 ohms
  • The rated SPL capabilities of the R-10 is 135dB at 50Hz and 160dB at 1kHz
  • Royer incorporates a male XLR 3-pin connector (pin 2 hot)
  • The R-10 ribbon microphone ships with a microphone holder, mic sock, and carrying case


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