Bob SpeidenBurbank, CA (May 27, 2009)– Bob Speiden, creator of the mic that became Royer Labs’ SF-12 stereo ribbon microphone, passed away May 15; he was 87 years old.
Praised by David Royer as a true friend, Speiden passed away peacefully after a long illness. He was David Royer’s main inspiration for taking up ribbon microphones, leading to Royer Labs’ introduction of modern ribbon microphone designs.
Speiden was the developer of the original SF-12 stereo ribbon microphone. He decided to stop making the handcrafted microphone after his wife became seriously ill and, in 1998, licensed the design to Royer Labs. Speiden had a special relationship with David Royer and believed that Royer Labs was the only company capable of producing his unique microphone design properly.
Rick Perrotta, president of Royer Labs, commented on Speiden’s passing. “All of us at Royer Labs were saddened by the news of Bob’s passing,” said Perrotta. “Bob was a brilliant audio engineer whose design of the SF-12 was highly acclaimed throughout the professional audio community. He had a tremendous influence on all of us here at Royer Labs. Not only did we consider him a guiding influence, he was also a dear friend.”
David Royer, Chief Engineer at Royer Labs, reflected on Speiden’s passing. “Bob was very special to me,” said Royer. “His ribbon microphone designs received critical acclaim by all who encountered them. He was a real inspiration to me and all who listened to recordings made with the SF-12 microphone. I learned much from Bob and, as I worked to improve ribbon microphone technology, I never lost sight of all that he taught me. He was an absolutely wonderful person.”