R/E/P > Klaus Heyne's Mic Lab

C414 "Comb" version

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It was explained to me by AKG's then technical director who also was in charge of the development of the model that "Comb" was chosen because it was the company's first mic whose patterns could be selected (combined) directly on the mic itself. (The ELA M251, which preceded the 414 as a mic with a pattern switch, was commissioned, named and marketed by Telefunken.)

As naming of mics is usually done by marketing, and not by R/D-lab coat types, I believe he, too, might have been speculating, as we are still today.

Speaking of speculation:

Since this was (I believe) AKG's first model to offer four patterns, I always wondered whether there might've been another word (perhaps even German?) that could stand in for "supercardioid," as the mic's patterns (in order) were:

Cardioid, Omni, (M?), Bidirectional

But I've never been able to come up with a suitable "M" word, so it seems likely that the order of the other three are just coincidence.

I have no explanation for the name, but found a nice history of the AKG C 414, including a sound comparison professionally done:

I think “comb” refers to the offering of the mic as a full kit including in this instance the same phantom PSU that could also work with 451 mics, and whatever else would come with the “full package”. Kind of analogous to a Neumann Set Z. Note the mics have “414” engraved, iirc, not “414 COMB”.

AKG offered other mics in “comb” packages and non-comb (like the 480, others as well), and in those cases the difference seems to be that you get a base selection of items that work together, not the mic ala carte.

note p12: https://www.manualslib.com/manual/362186/Akg-C-480-B.html?page=12#manual

or here, 451 E, EB comb:


In the manual above it is noted that all “451E comb” specs are with the CK1, all “451E” specs are without CK1. It used to be that you could buy 451E, 451EB bodies as well as CK1 as individual products, but if you bought a 451EB comb, it would be the 451EB body with a CK1 and measurement plot, and the case.

Can’t seem to find a manual or catalog for the relevant years of 414 though.

I think something like this having a “comb” listing precludes comb referring to multi-pattern. https://www.akg.com/support/C747+comb_.html

So, I think comb is akin to combo, combination, a predefined kit of sorts.

This manual made when the 414EB was current refers to “complete microphone combinations” and uses “combination” in the same way “comb” is used in other AKG materials. Later it invoked the comb abbreviation within its pages.


On page 27, it lists C414EB Remote Comb. Comb package comes with a S42-E1 psu, which can also do remote pattern control and power two units, a stand mount, a windscreen and case.

I think that the original 414, non EB, came with a simpler PSU when sold in its “414 comb”


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