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New Sennheiser MKH8000 Series Mics Condenser Microphones
Old 24th February 2010
  #421
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Originally Posted by panatrope View Post
No, somewhat the reverse. What I am suggesting is that 'symmetrical'/balanced design will tend to lower even order (2nd, 4th, etc.) distortions, both harmonic and IMD. Because odd order (3rd, 5th 7th, etc.) are generally not reduced by 'symmetrical'/balanced designs, the proportions of odd order distortion to even order distortion is increased. And because odd order harmonic distortions are at 'non-musical' intervals, especially at higher orders, this may be a cause of increased perception of 'dissonance'.

I agree that IMD will almost always produce products that are non harmonically related, and the above may not apply. But the nature of the non-linearity that produces it may also be of a dynamic rather than static nature.
The symmetrical capsule means that the acoustic impedance of the capsule does not change as the diaphragm moves because its relation to one plate is equal and opposite to the other plate.

Certainly after about 25 years of using these microphones I am always delighted at how they don't muddy the detail and always sound natural.


Quote:
Originally Posted by panatrope View Post
I understand the difference between the capsules .. what I was remarking is they already have the design precedent of the MKH30, and one would expect porting it to the MKH8000 environment should follow the same process as the 20/40/50. If however, they are aiming in the process to implement the pattern via a new improved process, then yes they may take more time.
Both the MKH 20/30/40 series and the MKH 8000 series use a 16mm diameter diaphragm. But with the MKH 8000 there is very little mounting room in a 19mm diameter body. As the fig-8 is side-fire the diaphragm mounting will have to be quite different from a front-fire mic. and this takes time. And, yes, I am as impatient for this capsule as the rest of you.


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Originally Posted by panatrope View Post
The User Guide for the MZD 8000 indicates that it is a 2-channel device - but says nothing about how to implement it. In the accessories list in the manual they mention a stereo bar (MZGE 8002) but it does not appear in their on-line catalogue. Can you give more info? OK on ORTF (a bit like the Schoeps ORTF head?), but what we need next is the M-S head (sounds like you would be in agreement on that).
You need a special Y-cable - ideally with two capsule-end ends from a remote cable going to one XLR-end end from a remote cable. This is what I use. This is a special-order item at the moment and your Sennheiser Agent should have the details (if he doesn't, tell him to contact the product manager in Germany who has all the details).

With this, my own set-up is to use a Neumann connection kit


this converts the AES42 to AES3 so it will go into the recorder and the kit also sends the required phantom power to the MZD 8000. There is an optional battery box available for use on the move instead of the mains unit.

Personally I have the "video" version of the connection kit (again a special order item) - this has a hirose connector instead of the mains unit and takes power directly from my Nagra VI recorder.

But I do also have the Neumann DMI-2 unit which is best where mains is available as it enables you to control any AES42 digital mic from a computer.

If you send me a PM and an e-mail address I can send you a photo (pdf version) of how it looks.

For MS you don't need a special head, just a fig-8 head and the same Y-cable as above - and a clip to clip the fig-8 to an 8040 head (or 8020, 8050, etc. head of course).


Quote:
Originally Posted by audio ergo sum View Post
AFAIK the process of fixing the membrane to the backplate is fundamentally different between the old and new MKH series. Old is with screws. New is with glue. But I don't know for sure.
Yes, this is correct.
Old 24th February 2010
  #422
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Originally Posted by panatrope View Post
An interesting insight - and a caveat emptor. Always be wary of process changes! (Ask RME!)

As explained to me by Jurg Wuttke, the pure pressure difference capsule is a greater challenge because you are trying to sense a pressure difference over an essentially fixed small distance. Now of course for the same amplitude pressure wave, the pressure difference across a particular distance is inversely proportional to wavelength. Hence at low frequencies you are looking at pressure difference and therefore implicit voltage output that is diminishing at the rate of 6dB/octave. The design compromises needed to maintain a reasonable voltage output at low frequencies was offered as the explanation why the MK8 showed a self-noise several dB higher than the omni. (19dBA compared with 12 dBA)

The MKH30/20 comparison is interesting. The difference in self noise is smaller (13dBA vs 10dBA). The other is that, compared to the equivalent Schoeps capsules, published responses for the pressure difference capsule (30) does not show the increased rate of low frequency roll-off expected compared the the omni - all capsules are shown ruler-flat to 40Hz. (Not to mention the 40 and 50). I find this hard to believe. I do not think this can be explained solely by the use of the RF principle compared to the electrostatic.

Perhaps, as someone else (almost) said: "There are three types of falsehoods - lies, damned lies, and microphone specifications."
I have spoken to Joerg Wuttke many times, and also to Manfred Hibbing (Sennheiser), Raimund Staat (Sennheiser), Stephan Peus (Neumann), Martin Schneider (Neumann), Norbert Sobel (AKG), etc.........

Yes, you are basically correct in what you say, but the Sennheiser symmetrical RF capsules are very different beasties from the AF Schoeps capsules.

The flat frequency response of the MKH 30 *is* correct and this is not only due to the RF principle.

Most microphone manufacturers heavily damp the capsule to get a flat frequency response. Sennheiser only very lightly damp the capsule. This gives a smooth rounded response and the light damping means that you can concentrate on getting an excellent polar-pattern, which is compromised when you heavily damp.

As the MKH symmetrical capsule is only lightly damped the converse of this curve is in the electronics of the mic.. This gives a wide, flat, frequency response with an output level about 6-10dB higher (giving a better s/n ratio).

I hope this helps.
Old 24th February 2010
  #423
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Willett View Post
Most microphone manufacturers heavily damp the capsule to get a flat frequency response. Sennheiser only very lightly damp the capsule. This gives a smooth rounded response and the light damping means that you can concentrate on getting an excellent polar-pattern, which is compromised when you heavily damp.

As the MKH symmetrical capsule is only lightly damped the converse of this curve is in the electronics of the mic.. This gives a wide, flat, frequency response with an output level about 6-10dB higher (giving a better s/n ratio).

I hope this helps.
Not really, in fact it sounds like sales mumbo-jumbo to me. Fig 3 in this booklet:
http://www.neumann.com/download.php?...d=docu0002.PDF
shows that the even roll-off in the LF in a fig 8 is from physics, the longer the wavelength the less pressure difference due to the fixed spacing between the front and rear of the single capsule.

If the Sennheiser fig 8 RF condensers have a "flat" FR down low then how can it be anything else but artificial LF boosting EQ added in the electronics.
Old 24th February 2010
  #424
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Originally Posted by David Spearritt View Post
If the Sennheiser fig 8 RF condensers have a "flat" FR down low then how can it be anything else but artificial LF boosting EQ added in the electronics.
That's how I said it was - but it's not just "artificial boosting of the LF" as you say, but the converse of the lightly damped capsule.

So - the lightly damped capsule response, as I said, is rounded - a bit like the top half of a circle. The inverse of this is like the bottom half of the circle.

So the result is flat.

You boost the lows and highs in exactly the same way as they roll-off in the capsule.

I do have a copy of the diagram showing how this is done for the MKH 40, but I can't find it on the internet to link to.

If you send me a PM with e-mail address I can send you the pdf of the diagram if you want.
Old 24th February 2010
  #425
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Willett View Post
...

You boost the lows and highs in exactly the same way as they roll-off in the capsule.

I do have a copy of the diagram showing how this is done for the MKH 40, but I can't find it on the internet to link to.
...
The second graph in this paper shows the compensating EQ for the MKH40. The first is the capsule without EQ IIRC.

http://www.sengpielaudio.com/DasProblemDenKlang.pdf
Old 24th February 2010
  #426
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Originally Posted by audio ergo sum View Post
The second graph in this paper shows the compensating EQ for the MKH40. The first is the capsule without EQ IIRC.

http://www.sengpielaudio.com/DasProblemDenKlang.pdf
Yes - that's the one.

Top is the capsule response
Middle is the electronics response
Bottom is the resulting flat frequency response

The diagram I have is those three superimposed on to of each other.

Thanks for sharing this.
Old 25th February 2010
  #427
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Willett View Post
I have spoken to Joerg Wuttke many times, and also to Manfred Hibbing (Sennheiser), Raimund Staat (Sennheiser), Stephan Peus (Neumann), Martin Schneider (Neumann), Norbert Sobel (AKG), etc..
How about Thomas Cobley, Snr?
Old 25th February 2010
  #428
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Originally Posted by panatrope View Post
How about Thomas Cobley, Snr?
LOL hehheh
Old 26th February 2010
  #429
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Originally Posted by John Willett View Post
No it's not, I have had several conversations with the designer as I desperately want the MKH 8030 myself. It's a lot more difficult - and remember that the fig-8 is a single diaphragm side-fire and all the rest are end-fire.
Apparently Sennheiser is telling people that "no 8030 is planned for the short or far term at this point in time". Abandoned or just bad information? Honestly I never would have bought my 8040s and 8050 if I knew this was the case. They sound great, but I'd like to have a complete matched solution.
Old 26th February 2010
  #430
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Sounds like this belongs in the same pigeonhole as the announced and then quietly abandoned remote control facility for the AKG C414B- X.. series.

But never believe anything until it's been officially denied ....
Old 26th February 2010
  #431
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Originally Posted by tsvisser View Post
Honestly I never would have bought my 8040s and 8050 if I knew this was the case. They sound great, but I'd like to have a complete matched solution.
Well, there is always the MKH 800..... a little expensive (especially if you only want it for the fig. 8) but an excellent mic. And works nicely with the 8040 for M/S.
Old 26th February 2010
  #432
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A propos the notion set out in an earlier post about Sennheiser damping and correcting capsule response electrically rather than mechanically, checkout the second footnote at the end of this article:

The Blattnerphone

Alan Dower Blumlein strikes again!

Then check out the rest of that website - a GS essential. (And in my own shameless piece of name-dropping, I have actually demonstrated a working Blattnerphone - actually a Marconi/Stille machine - at our AES Conventions in the '90s. Now THAT was a tape recorder - and you should have seen the tape edits!)

Last edited by panatrope; 28th February 2010 at 01:04 AM.. Reason: clarity
Old 26th February 2010
  #433
Quote:
Originally Posted by Denis Goekdag View Post
Well, there is always the MKH 800..... a little expensive (especially if you only want it for the fig. 8) but an excellent mic. And works nicely with the 8040 for M/S.
I recently sold a pair of MKH 800 Twins since I needed cash. They were fabulous mics, but a bit overkill for M-S. If I'm interpreting John correctly, he is saying that a purpose built symmetric capsule figure-8 should have superior performance over a set of "dual cardioids", is that correct? Also, as fabulous as the 800 Twins are and the 8000 series, they are not voiced exactly the same. Close enough, granted, but I'm a little OC, so that type of stuff bothers me, even though it shouldn't.
Old 26th February 2010
  #434
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Originally Posted by tsvisser View Post
I recently sold a pair of MKH 800 Twins since I needed cash. They were fabulous mics, but a bit overkill for M-S. If I'm interpreting John correctly, he is saying that a purpose built symmetric capsule figure-8 should have superior performance over a set of "dual cardioids", is that correct? Also, as fabulous as the 800 Twins are and the 8000 series, they are not voiced exactly the same. Close enough, granted, but I'm a little OC, so that type of stuff bothers me, even though it shouldn't.
A single diaphragm fig-8 would normally be better than a double-diaphragm one made from back-to back cardioids.

I know of only 4 at the moment:-

Sennheiser MKH 30
Neumann AK 120
Neumann KK 120
Schoeps CCM 8 (and varients).

I *have* forwarded the fig-8 comments about the MKH 8030 to the product manager in Germany.
Old 26th February 2010
  #435
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I just sold our pair of Senn. MKH 800s. The mics were too modern for me.
I ended up believing that it was hard to predict how the mic's reach and extra detail would behave.

A famous engineer said about them--" (they have a) waft of disinfectant, surgical spirit and evoke people in white coats."

That said, on the right source they can sound elegant.
Old 26th February 2010
  #436
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Denis Goekdag View Post
Well, there is always the MKH 800..... a little expensive (especially if you only want it for the fig. 8) but an excellent mic. And works nicely with the 8040 for M/S.
It may be an excellent mic, and surely offers a lot of flexibility. But it's neither a "real" - ie. pressure - omni, nor a true dipole (ie. single diaphragm fig-8).

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Willett View Post
A single diaphragm fig-8 would normally be better than a double-diaphragm one made from back-to back cardioids.

I know of only 4 at the moment:-

Sennheiser MKH 30
Neumann AK 120
Neumann KK 120
Schoeps CCM 8 (and varients).
There's also an MBHO capsule AFAIK.
Old 26th February 2010
  #437
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Plush View Post
I just sold our pair of Senn. MKH 800s.
At least you didn't throw them out a car window... I would have booked a flight ticket to get to that place...
Quote:
The mics were too modern for me. I ended up believing that it was hard to predict how the mic's reach and extra detail would behave.
Sometimes the impression one has of a mic seems to matter as much as its real sound quality, methinks...
Old 27th February 2010
  #438
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I certainly agree with about the feeling and impression one has about a microphone. There has to be a fit with your "sound world" and you have to really like the mic to embrace it fully. The 800's were too icy and
stand-offish for me.
Old 27th February 2010
  #439
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Thumbs up

I love spot mic'ing with the MKH800s, especially (jazz) upright bass.
The MKH800TWIN is surprisingly awesome for upright bass.
I've also have had great success with a pair of them on acoustic jazz piano.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Plush View Post
I just sold our pair of Senn. MKH 800s. The mics were too modern for me.
I ended up believing that it was hard to predict how the mic's reach and extra detail would behave.

A famous engineer said about them--" (they have a) waft of disinfectant, surgical spirit and evoke people in white coats."

That said, on the right source they can sound elegant.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Plush View Post
I certainly agree with about the feeling and impression one has about a microphone. There has to be a fit with your "sound world" and you have to really like the mic to embrace it fully. The 800's were too icy and
stand-offish for me.
Old 27th February 2010
  #440
I for one was impressed with the 800 Twins. I never used the regular 800's so have no point of reference to compare them. The only reason I sold mine was financial. Some day I'd like to own a pair again.
Old 27th February 2010
  #441
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It's a crying shame that we have to sell things that we love for reasons that have nothing to do with the quality of the item.

May your MKH800 ownership be sooner than later!
Old 27th February 2010
  #442
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A comment on the Sennheiser practice of equalising the pressure difference component electrically rather than mechanically, particularly in relation to figure-8 capsules and M-S. The equivalent Schoeps capsule (MK8) shows a quicker LF roll-off than say the MK4 cardioid. However, for M-S I find this is not an issue because stereo directionality almost disappears below about 100Hz (approx) and the 'Side' component is increasingly less relevant. If the MKH30 has a flat response down to 40Hz, I would be inclined to apply a HP filter anyway for this reason.

I find the slight bass rolloff of the Schoeps figure 8 an advantage. One of my uses for the MK8 is for speech - one person either side (a good old mono radio interview or drama technique). The rolloff helps to counter proximity effect (which is of course double that of a cardioid). Again, while I have no direct experience of solo application of an MKH30, I expect I would just have to again put in additonal HP filtering to compensate.

The only instance I could think off where the flat LF response would be useful is when using a pair in a Faulkner array (something I have yet to try).
Old 1st March 2010
  #443
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Originally Posted by tsvisser View Post
Apparently Sennheiser is telling people that "no 8030 is planned for the short or far term at this point in time". Abandoned or just bad information? Honestly I never would have bought my 8040s and 8050 if I knew this was the case. They sound great, but I'd like to have a complete matched solution.
I sent all these comments about the MKH 8030 to the Product Manager in Germany.

The official response from him is:- "fig-8 is not available in the near future but it still is planned!"

It's what I have been saying all along - it's in the plan but there is no delivery date yet - it has definitely *not* been abandoned!.
Old 1st March 2010
  #444
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Willett View Post
I know of only 4 at the moment:-

Sennheiser MKH 30
Neumann AK 120
Neumann KK 120
Schoeps CCM 8 (and varients).
Let's not forget the Royer SF1, which works very well with the MKH800 as an MS couple ...
Old 1st March 2010
  #445
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Originally Posted by Yannick View Post
Let's not forget the Royer SF1, which works very well with the MKH800 as an MS couple ...
The Royer is a ribbon mic. and the list was of single diaphragm condenser mics.
Old 5th March 2010
  #446
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Since this thread is no longer exclusively about the 8000s, might as well post this here...

I independently bought two older MKH 406 on ebay, € 200 for one, 250 the other.... It's the P48 XLR variety. They make a pretty decent stereo pair, no more than 1.5 dB apart. Might not use them for mains (have better pairs), but e.g. as stereo spots for choir, or for first and second violins,they will do fine...

Attached Thumbnails
New Sennheiser MKH8000 Series Mics-21bizcpo-21b2k-7e-28kgrhqyokiwesnp6wgbbblqzcv4elq-7e-7e_12.jpg  
Old 11th March 2010
  #447
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Originally Posted by John Willett View Post

I was in ABbey Road No.1 yesterday where the LSO was miked up with about 30 Sennheiser and Neumann digital mics (MKH 8020/40/50 with MZD 8000 and Neumann KM-D series and TLM 103-D) - all digital and all going to disk via the RME AES42 unit, MADI and Sequoia. The big Neve mixer was just the monitor mix - all digital from the mic.

It sounded wonderful.
John, I think I read about that session somewhere. AB main pair I believe but what mic's?


/Peter
Old 12th March 2010
  #448
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Originally Posted by Audiop View Post
John, I think I read about that session somewhere. AB main pair I believe but what mic's?
The Abbey Road session was written up in LineUp magazine - the pdf of the article is HERE.

The main mics were Sennheiser MKH 8020 with MZD 8000. the spot mics were Sennheiser MKH 8000 series with MZD 8000, Neumann KM-D series and TLM 103-D.

The MZD 8000 is actually stereo and I have been using one with a Y-cable and a pair of MKH 8040 in ORTF onto a Nagra VI with excellent results.
Old 12th March 2010
  #449
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Originally Posted by John Willett View Post
The Abbey Road session was written up in LineUp magazine - the pdf of the article is HERE.
Fantastic article, thanks!
Old 12th March 2010
  #450
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Originally Posted by BrianHanke View Post
Fantastic article, thanks!
Grant Bridgeman (who wrote the article) is a good guy and an excellent sound recordist. And that was a quick reply - its 02:25 in the morning here in the UK.

(PS - if my posts seem a bit odd tonight, I am on my second bottle of vino, and I have just heard that my uncle has died)
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