Originally Posted by The Listener
Why is Sennheiser MKH416
so much more popular than Sennheiser MKH60 or 70 or at least mentioned more around here? That question lies in the back of my head for quite some time.
I have a privilege of working with MKH70 for the last 12 days and it sounds great to me. I am also wondering what to buy myself later as a "go to" boom mic for film dialogue and foley - MKH70 which is an old Sennheiser design that obviously works and is supposedly the next step over 416 - or does 416 have some special "charm" that makes it so popular? Or should I look at the newer Sennheiser desings (but why are then the "old" ones still in production and even cost more?? If they would be in any way outdated or improved upon in the new 80.. versions I guess that would not be so?) Or even look at Schoeps CMIT5U... but I really really like how MKH70 works and sounds, can CMIT5U really work "better" or just slightly different... I also have two MKH60 at my disposal, but since we only have one boom operator, we use mostly only MKH70 and MKH60 only when we hide another boom somewhere... MKH70 somehow sounds even "cleaner" and more focused on the source than the MKH60 and overall it captures a nice natural tone of the voice from the distance and just seems "right"... it sounds good even in the interieurs.
The 4i6 is an ancient design - it came out in about 1975 and was basically the same as the old 415
but with phantom power.
The MKH 40 was the first of the new line of symmetrical capsule mics and came out in 1985 - the 60 and 70 were the short and long gun versions and came out a couple of years later.
The 416 was kept on because people kept buying it, even though the 60 was better.
The 8060 is the latest and came out in 2010 - and is better.
It's just that people keep buying the old stuff, even though the newer is better.
The 416 is quite a bit noisier than the 60 and 8060, so maybe the noise is hiding things that are shown up by the better and newer mics ???
And, yes, I would say that the new symmetrical capsule mics are
more neutral and natural than the 416.
The CMIT5U is a totally different design - the 60 and 8060 are symmetrical capsule RF condensers with extremely low distortion and self-noise and the symmetrical capsule design means that the acoustic impedance does not change.
The CMIT has a normal capsule and is an AF condenser.
You may find reading "The MKH Story
" by Manfred Hibbing, the designer of the MKH microphones, interesting reading as it explains a lot (and is very readable).