X1 S

The new gold standard in affordable condensers

When sE introduced the X1 in 2010, it redefined the potential of an affordable hand-crafted condenser microphone. Featuring the highest dynamic range and SPL handling capabilities in its class, along with dramatically increased flexibility, the X1 S has been improved in every way - yet is even more affordable than the original.

X1 S

THE NEW GOLD STANDARD IN AFFORDABLE CONDENSERS

When sE introduced the X1 in 2010, it redefined the potential of an affordable hand-crafted condenser microphone. Featuring the highest dynamic range and SPL handling capabilities in its class, along with dramatically increased flexibility, the X1 S has been improved in every way - yet is even more affordable than the original.

Recommended Use

Vocals, drum kit, OH, room, acoustic guitar, electric guitar cab, orchestral + strings, piano, woodwinds, brass

Highlights
Custom-designed hand-crafted true condenser capsule individually tuned in our own factory
A refined version of sE's best-selling X1
Improved sensitivity, dramatically increased SPL handling (up to 160dB!), and a huge reduction in self-noise.
Hand-made metal housing and gold-sputtered diaphragms
80 /160 Hz bass-cut filters and -10 / -20 dB pads















Inside the X1 S

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    CUSTOM-DESIGNED, HAND-CRAFTED CAPSULE

    Just like its predecessor, the X1 S utilizes a hand-made condenser capsule, meticulously constructed and tuned in sE’s capsule room by technicians with decades of experience. This results in a capsule built like the world’s finest musical instruments – and a capsule truly up to the challenge of recording them.

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    HIGH-PERFORMANCE ELECTRONICS

    Where the original X1 was powerful, the redesigned electronics of the X1 S take its performance to a whole new level, giving it the highest dynamic range in its class. Its internal redesign also allows for improved sensitivity, dramatically increased SPL handling (up to 160dB!), and a huge reduction in self-noise.

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    TWO SWITCHABLE ATTENUATION LEVELS & LOW-CUT FILTERS

    The -10 dB and -20 dB pad switches provide extended dynamic range, enabling a wide variety of applications and close-mic techniques. Selectable at either 80Hz or 160Hz, the two low-cut filters help eliminate low-frequency rumble or footfall noise and help compensate for excessive bass (proximity effect) with close-mic techniques.

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    ALL-METAL HOUSING & GOLD-PLATED XLR CONNECTOR

    Unlike the cheaply constructed bodies of some other “entry-level” microphones, the X1 S’s all-metal chassis provides efficient rejection of any electrical interference and noise. The X1 A’s gold-plated XLR connector and high-quality finish ensures a great look and sound for years to come.

The X1 S Studio Bundle & Vocal Pack

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    The X1 S Studio Bundle

    The X1 S Studio Bundle comes equipped with the X1 S microphone, the sE Isolation Pack (shockmount + pop shield), 3-meter mic cable & best-selling RF-X Reflexion Filter® so you can record anywhere you want.

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    THE X1 S VOCAL PACK

    All the essentials for the start of a great recording chain, including sE’s simple but highly effective metal pop shield, shockmount & X1 S condenser microphone.

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    THE RF-X REFLEXION FILTER

    If you’re recording in a non-acoustically-treated space (bedrooms, closets, etc.), a Reflexion Filter® helps keep your signal clean without the sound of your room around it.

Specs

Components
Capsule Hand-crafted 1" True Condenser
Power
Electrical impedance 125 Ohms
Recommended load impedance >1k Ohms
Connectivity 3-pin male XLR connector
Powering 48V Phantom Power (P48 according to IEC 61938)
Sound
Polar patterns Cardioid
Frequency range 20 Hz - 20 kHz
Sensitivity 30 mV / Pa (-31 dBV)
Max SPL 140 / 150 / 160 dB (0 / 10 / 20 dB pad) (0.5% THD @ 1kHz)
Equivalent noise level 9 dB
Dynamic range 131 / 141 / 151 dB (0 / 10 / 20 dB attenuation pad)
Signal to noise ratio 85 dB
Low-cut filter 80 / 160 Hz, 6 dB / Oct, switchable
Attenuation pad 10 / 20 dB, switchable
Current consumption 6.0 mA
Dimensions
Mic Diameter 58 mm (2.28 in.)
Mic length 169 mm (6.65 in.)
Mic weight 445 g (15.70 oz.)
What's in the box
X1 S microphone
microphone stand clip
thread adapter

Downloads

User Manual
  • “I got the new X1 S and within 24 hours I was using it on a production for a major artist.”

    — Ronan Chris Murphy, Producer / Engineer (King Crimson, Terry Bozzio, Ulver) - sE Artist
  • "We’d even say the mic outdoes other vocal mics costing far more."

    — MusicTech Magazine, July 2017
  • "...it’s no-brainer of a buy, especially if you’re just starting out."

    — MusicTech Magazine, July 2017
  • "The sE X1 has a more open quality, seems less colored and has a top end that you would normally associate with microphones about 5 times the price."

    — Russ Hughes, Pro Tools Expert
  • "It is no small secret that I am generally not a fan of low cost condenser mics, but the X1 has been an exception to that rule. It is the only low cost condenser that is a regular part of my production work."

    — Ronan Chris Murphy, Producer / Engineer (King Crimson, Terry Bozzio, Ulver) - sE Artist
  • "I like sE's X1 mic for its lively, in‑your‑face character, which still manages to avoid sounding strident. This is also a good all‑rounder for the kind of acoustic instruments that you find in a typical home studio."

    — Paul White, Sound On Sound
sE artists

From mainstage headliners to the biggest names in engineering, our artists rely on sE  to bring their sound to life

Q&A

How should I store my microphone?

We generally recommend keeping your microphone in its case or original packaging when it is not in use for more than a few hours. If your studio is very clean and safe, it could be OK to leave out on its mic stand when not in use, but if a mic is out of its case, it could potentially be exposed to dust, smoke, moisture, or humidity – which can damage the sensitive parts of the mic – so we recommend avoiding those things at all cost.

What are the differences between your microphones’ polar patterns? How do I choose the most suitable type of polar pattern for my recording environment?

There are no real “right” or “wrong” answers to this question, as different patterns will just provide different types of sounds, and whatever best suits your particular song is usually the right answer! With that said:

  • Cardioid – Generally best for recording vocals or other single sources, when you don’t want to hear much of the room sound around the source.
  • Omni – This is good when you want a less focused, more “roomy” sound. Think distant drum mics in a great-sounding room.
  • Figure-8 – Since this pattern lets the mic “hear” on both sides – front and back – and reject the sounds on either side, it’s handy if you want to record two sources at once from a point in between them, without hearing what’s off to the sides.
  • Hypercardioid / Supercardioid – More directional than Cardioid, this is good for spot mics, when you want the sound to be very focused.
My guitar amplifier / drum / horn is VERY loud, and I am concerned about the risk of damage due to loud noise.

For the most part, sE mics can tolerate extremely high SPLs (typically over 135dB) and will be fine in front of even the loudest sources – yes, even our ribbon mics. If in doubt, you can check the specifications on the individual product page.

Which sE mic is best for recording vocals / drums / guitars / etc.?

Check out our Find Your Mic page to find the perfect mic for your application.

How do I clean the microphone from spillage and dirt?

If your microphone has come in contact with dirt or another removable substance, we recommend cleaning it with a very soft, slightly damp cotton cloth. Do not open the microphone up to clean the inside, and make sure you NEVER touch the capsule itself. Cleaning a capsule should only be done by highly trained professionals in a “clean room” environment. If you suspect your capsule needs to be cleaned, please contact [email protected] so we can recommend an authorized local technician.