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    What Do Sputnik, Coldplay, Radiohead and Kalashnikov Have in Common? (PHOTOS)

    © AFP 2017/ TIMOTHY A. CLARY
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    It turns out that rock bands Coldplay and Radiohead, as well as world-famous arms manufacturer Kalashnikov and Sputnik have something in common – namely, a certain brand of devices made in the Russian city of Tula.

    Pavel Bazdyrev, resident of the Russian city of Tula, and David Brown, US native and founder of an indie pop band called Brazzaville, founded their microphone manufacturing company in 2013 in Russia.

    The making of Soyuz microphones
    The making of Soyuz microphones

    There, using the machines made by Kalashnikov Concern, they started making Soyuz microphones, which quickly became popular among singers and musicians in the US, Europe, China, Japan, Mexico and all over the world.

    Soyuz SU-017 mic
    © Photo: SOYUZ
    Soyuz SU-017 mic

    The Su-017 tube condenser microphone is the company’s bestseller and is used by many celebrities all over the world.

    "When I designed the SU-017, I tried to think of iconic images that most represent Russia to people in the West. Two of the strongest images that I could think of were the golden domes of the Orthodox churches and the metallic sphere of the Sputnik. Those were the images that most inspired the design of the SU-017. Also, the Sputnik was emblematic of Soviet technological prowess and I wanted to emphasize that Russia has great science and technology," Brown told Sputnik Mundo.

    A musician himself, Brown knows exactly what kind of microphone a music artist wants, and how to meet these expectations.

    "I have a blessed life. I do what I love for work. I sing and write songs. I play concerts. I design microphones and I travel around the world meeting interesting people. What could be better?" Brown happily remarked.

    The Su-019 large diaphragm FET condenser microphone and SU-013 small diaphragm condenser microphone are also quite popular among Brown’s and Bazdyrev’s customers.

    One other aspect that gives Soyuz Microphones a serious advantage on the market is the price: for example, Su-017 costs about $3,500 apiece as compared to vintage Neumann or Telefunken microphones worth up to $9,000.

    Soyuz SU-019 mic
    © Photo: SOYUZ
    Soyuz SU-019 mic

    The Rossiya Segodnya International Information Agency also became one Tula-based company’s clients, purchasing a limited edition of microphones sporting corporate insignia.

    Sputnik Levitan Studio
    © Sputnik/
    Sputnik Levitan Studio

    "Sputnik studious use three different models of our microphones: SU-011, SU-019 and a new model of our large-diaphragm microphone that hasn’t been assigned a number yet; but for Sputnik we used SU-021. It is our latest creation, and we intend to release in on the market during fall 2017. So you can say that Sputnik is the first radio station in the world that uses a brand new model of our microphones," Bazdyrev said.

    Soyuz Sputnik SU-021 mic
    © Sputnik/
    Soyuz Sputnik SU-021 mic

    However, at this time the company doesn’t have any ambitious plans for the near future, as Brown explained.

    • The making of Soyuz Microphones
      The making of Soyuz Microphones
      © Photo: SOYUZ
    • The making of Soyuz Microphones
      The making of Soyuz Microphones
      © Photo: SOYUZ
    • Soyuz SU-011 mic
      Soyuz SU-011 mic
      © Photo: SOYUZ
    • Sputnik Levitan Studio
      Sputnik Levitan Studio
      © Sputnik/
    • Sputnik Levitan Studio
      Sputnik Levitan Studio
      © Sputnik/
    • Sputnik Levitan Studio
      Sputnik Levitan Studio
      © Sputnik/
    • Soyuz SU-013 mic
      Soyuz SU-013 mic
      © Photo: SOYUZ
    1 / 7
    © Photo: SOYUZ
    The making of Soyuz Microphones

    "We have new products that are currently in development, as well as one that is ready to be launched in September. We plan to grow our company slowly and organically without ever sacrificing the principles which we founded the business on. The larger we grow, the more jobs we can provide and the more musicians and engineers can enjoy recording with our microphones," Brown revealed.

    Tags:
    microphones, music, radio, production, Kalashnikov, Sputnik, United States, Russia
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