Neumann TLM 103 Large-Diaphragm Condenser Microphone - Matte Black

Large-diaphragm Condenser Mic with Wooden Box - Matte Black
Neumann TLM 103 Large-Diaphragm Condenser Microphone - Matte Black image 1
Neumann TLM 103 Large-Diaphragm Condenser Microphone - Matte Black image 1

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Neumann TLM 103 Large-Diaphragm Condenser Microphone - Matte Black
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Make pristine recording with this low-noise mic!

The Neumann TLM 103 large-diaphragm cardioid condenser mic boasts a capsule drawn from the U 87 and transformerless circuitry - not to mention classic Neumann sound! The TLM 103 is a great mic for any pro or project studio use and, due to its minimal self-noise, it's been used for classical recordings with a wide dynamic range, sampling (especially for very low amplitude sources), and Foley work. This mic is also robust enough for the live stage, as Jack White has employed the TLM 103 to mic amps in live situations.

Neumann TLM 103 at a Glance:
  • Cardioid pattern to limit bleed
  • Classic design for transparent sound
  • Neumann's "TLM" technology
Cardioid pattern to limit bleed

The cardioid TLM 103 utilizes a tried-and-true transformerless circuit found in high-end Neumann microphones to achieve its otherwise unattainable low self-noise and the highest sound pressure level transmission possible. By focusing on this pattern - used in most recording situations - the attenuation of unwanted rear sound has been optimized. Off-axis sounds are rendered naturally while isolation is increased. This also leads to a high feedback suppression when the microphone is used in live situations or where loudspeaker playback is a factor. And at this price there's no reason not to have a pair!

Classic design for transparent sound

The TLM 103 is addressed from the front, marked with the red Neumann logo on the microphone body. The K 103 large diaphragm capsule is based on the K 87, well known from the U 67 / U 87 microphones.The capsule has a flat frequency response up to about 5kHz, and above that, a wide flat 4dB presence boost. The large wire mesh headgrille protects the capsule from plosive sounds and effectively prevents pop noises. These characteristics are achieved without resorting to corrective resonance effects. Therefore, the TLM 103 maintains an excellent impulse response and reproduces the details of music and speech without coloration. With the incredibly low self-noise level of the TLM 103 even the smallest signals are reproduced basically noise-free. As it is capable of handling sound pressure levels up to 138dB without distortion, the TLM 103 provides a dynamic range of 131dB (A-weighted).

Neumann's "TLM" technology

The letters TLM stand for "transformerless microphone". With TLM technology the usual output transformer is replaced by an electronic circuit. As with traditional transformers, it ensures good common mode rejection, and prevents RF interference that may influence the balanced audio signal.

Neumann TLM 103 Features:
  • Matte black finish
  • Large-diaphragm cardioid condenser microphone
  • Pressure gradient transducer with with one-diaphragm capsule
  • Transformerless circuitry
  • Extremely low noise
  • Includes swivel mount
  • Minimal self-noise
  • Frequency range: 20Hz-20kHz
  • Rated impedance: 50 ohms
  • Rated load impedance: 1 kohms
  • Maximum SPL for THD 0.5%2: 138dB
  • Wooden box and stand mount included
  • Requires +48V phantom power
Get classic Neumann sound onstage or in the studio with the TLM 103!

Additional Media

Studio Microphone Buying Guide

Tech Specs

Microphone Type Condenser
Polar Pattern Cardioid
Frequency Response 20Hz-20kHz
Max SPL 138dB
Output Impedance 50 ohms
Signal to Noise Ratio 87dB (A weighted)
Self Noise 7dB (A weighted)
Color Matte Black
Connector XLR
Weight 1 lb.
Included Accessories Stand Mount, Wood Box
Manufacturer Part Number 008431

Customer Reviews

Based on 4 reviews
Write your review


Great microphone. I had the AkG314 and upgraded to this. Huge difference.

Exceptional microphone for the price!

I've had the TLM 103 for about two years now and I am very satisfied with it. It has extremely low self-noise and is a very clean and clear sounding mic. This mic excels at many applications due to its ability to recreate exactly what it captures without coloring. I definitely would recommend this mic.
Music background: Audio Engineer, Worship Leader, Musician

The Day I Tried to Sing the Sun to Sleep with my TLM 103mt

Realizing the suns rays were so harmful for the world and it being an especially hot day I knew I had to sing the sun a lullaby. The moon would have a few extra hours of being awake, a symptom some call insomnia. My song of choice, Treaturous Waters from the band A Bizarre Liberty. As i set up my main mic of choice the neumann tlm 103, whom I've named Mike, I had no idea if this was the pursuit of spending less on sun lotion or just chasing some kind of dogma. But I had come this far, so I turned the phantom power switch on, armed the record track, and the music began. I then yes thats right folks punched in. I began my soft Baritone intro what a beautiful sound whose warmth replaced the suns. I saw the eyes of Apollo himself get heavy and the fire ball of the sky began to sink into the atlantic ocean. Boiling the water as it sunk. I kept my eyes of this miracle and starred at the beautiful black finish of the Neaumman, The darkness of the Neaumman now shifting to the sky. My melody had sunk the sun and the moon in full bloomed glory came out, my voice taking a sound shape like that of the trumpet to announce to the world the arrival of the king of all that is night. Surrounded by a beautiful darkness, crickets became my orchestra. The owl taking over for where the cowbell left off . All of nature was surrounding this microphone, its capsule a beackon to all that is pure and ageless. Mother natures tears of the years of the human cure "industrialization" dried. She looked from a distant and proud stance. Me and Mike were now in control of all the elements. Clouds left the sky this was a time for clarity not the fog and haze they brought. As I punched out, I looked around and realized this wonderful gadget had a power beyond any we have seen since... thats correct folks sliced bread. The tlm will never leaves my side now, we are a team in the battle of sound and noise and the brain splitting noise is losing the battle. By August 2013, we will have conquered all these inconveniences including nails on the chalkboard. Thats the tale of MIke the tlm 103 if you want to achieve this kind of Sonic Glory look no where beyond this Condenser. As Mike and I say, "with decent vocal and condenser like MIke the tlm 103 you can do anything". Although we must thank our sales engineer and sound guru- The Man, The Myth- Matt Masek for walking us through perfecting this art. He gave us the knowledge for the beaten path we walk, putting the sun to rest to save money on sun lotion so we can get a new guitar amp. (We left out our companion on our journeys Sourtower, a Stratocaster impervious to buzz and hum) but thats a tale for a different cyber campfire gathering.
Music background: A roaming vocalist much like a musical Johnny Appleseed

Big Mic, Small Budjet?

I was sceptical of the 103 at first, that is, untill I got it home and plugged it in. Neuman has done it again! Incredible output, no noise floor, great price. This mic really gets the vocals sitting right up front. The artist will really sit up and take notice. One drawback is the absence of a pad or low cut switch but anyone who makes this purchase should have a cecent mic pre with these features already present.
Music background: Recording Engineer
See also: Condenser Mics, Neumann, Neumann Condenser Microphones, Neumann Condenser Microphones