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New Sennheiser MKH8000 Series Mics Condenser Microphones
Old 25th August 2007
  #1
Gear Nut
Talking New Sennheiser MKH8000 Series Mics

I saw an ad for an MKH8000 series mic and Sennheiser has three new mics listed on their website MKH 8020 (omni), 8040 (cardioid), and 8050 (super-cardioid). I emailed sennheiser and the reply said they would be launching them at AES so as of now they didn't have prices. I'm in the market for a pair of omnis so I thought I might wait and see what these turn out to be. Has anybody heard anything about these mics?
Old 25th August 2007
  #2
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pkautzsch's Avatar
 

In a German forum I've read about some prototypes shown at Vienna AES. The gist of that thread is: 8000 series is sound-wise about the same leage as Schoeps/Neumann (just with Sennheiser MKH signature sound instead of Schoeps signature sound), price-wise about the same leage as Schoeps/Neumann, accessory-wise not yet as flexible as Schoeps/Neumann.

I guess as Schoeps and Neumann modular systems are already established especially in lots of TV and radio networks, Sennheiser will have to work hard to get them to buy MKH8000 series.
Old 25th August 2007
  #3
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d_fu's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkautzsch View Post
In a German forum I've read about some prototypes shown at Vienna AES.
Which forum would that be?
Old 26th August 2007
  #5
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Discover the heart and soul of sound - with Sennheiser's new MKH microphones

Vienna/Wedemark, May 5, 2007 - Take a unique microphone principle, an extremely small, modular design and a sound reproduction that particularly emphasizes the warm content of a voice or an instrument. The result is a series of microphones that can capture the true heart and soul of sound without losing any of its transparency or power: the MKH 8000 series of RF condenser microphones from audio specialist Sennheiser sets new standards for top-quality speech, vocals and instrumental recordings with an extremely wide frequency response.


"With our new MKH microphones we have consistently advanced the high-end technology of the RF condenser microphone and the wider frequency response of the MKH 800," explains Sebastian Schmitz, Product Manager for microphones. "The technical development was supported at a very early stage by sound and listening tests, and the sound engineers involved in the tests confirmed that the new microphones have an incredibly impressive sound quality that even goes beyond that of the innovative MKH 800. In response to many requests from long-term users, we are now also offering a wide range of accessories for the new MKH microphones, allowing them to be optimally adapted to the highest-quality classical music, stage, broadcasting and film recordings."

Two parts - a clever solution
The new series of high-end microphones includes three models: the MKH 8020 has an omni-directional pick-up pattern, the MKH 8040 is a cardioid version while the MKH 8050 has a super-cardioid pick-up pattern. All three microphones consist of two modules: the microphone head that contains all the acoustically important components, and a separate XLR module. If you need to make the already compact microphone (only 1.9 cm in diameter and 7.4 cm long) even smaller, you can detach the XLR module, connect the microphone head (4.1 cm) directly to one of Sennheiser's special remote capsule accessories, and then simply attach the XLR module to its end, out of shot of the camera. A further optimized feature for TV recordings is the black Nextel(r) coating. This ensures that neither the microphones nor the accessories can cause troublesome reflections that might otherwise distract musicians, vocalists or speakers.

Compact design - huge frequency response
The frequency response of the new MKH microphones ranges from 10 to 60,000 Hz (MKH 8020) or 30 to 50,000 Hz (MKH 8040 and MKH 8050) - allowing them to record even the finest details for high sampling rate digital audio formats. The RF condenser principle means that inherent self-noise is extremely low, while the high sensitivity of the microphones guarantees that voices and instruments are captured in all of their nuances. In spite of this, the maximum sound pressure level is still impressively high, at 138 dB for the MKH 8020 and 142 dB for the MKH 8040 and the MKH 8050. Great attention was paid to achieving an accurate pick-up pattern over the entire frequency response, for example to allow instrument groups to be clearly separated.

In a class of their own: the accessories
The complete range of accessories includes floor stands, extension tubes, shock mounts, remote cables, table stands, ceiling mounts, clamps and various fixtures. In all accessories, the signal-transmitting components are systematically designed with two channels to allow stereo signals or dual mono signals to be processed.

In addition, a digital module that transmits audio signals according to the AES 42 standard (24 bit, 192 kHz sampling rate) is expected to be available at the end of 2007. The pre-attenuation, rumble filter, compressor and limiter settings can be adjusted via a DSP module. The end of the year will also see the launch of a digital interface that will allow signal conversion to AES EBU and remote control of the microphone settings.

Experience the new MKH microphones ...
... at the AES during the Surround Mixing Workshop with master sound engineer Gregor Zielinsky. Using a Surround Sound recording of Shostakovich's Fifth Symphony (24 multitrack recording, Pro Tools), participants will be able to listen to two Surround Sound arrangements and a stereo recording with the new microphones. In addition, they will be able to monitor the individual microphone positions separately. Gregor Zielinsky: "The heart and soul of music is in the mid-range frequencies - and this is precisely where the new MKH microphones reproduce the sound particularly well and warmly. They have an impressive transparency in complex musical arrangements, especially when it comes to providing good differentiation between wind instruments and strings. Their fast transient response, also in the bass range, ensures a very powerful and dynamic sound reproduction. The participants at the workshop can look forward to a very dynamic recording that is both musically and artistically outstanding."

The dates: Surround Mixing Workshop (Room 441)
Sunday, May 6: 11 a.m.
Monday, May 7: 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.
Tuesday, May 8: 11 a.m.

The new MKH microphones will be available from summer 2007.

The Operating Principle of the Radio Frequency Condenser Microphone
RF condenser microphones constitute a unique, sophisticated class of condenser microphones. Unlike standard condenser microphones, which require a high polarization voltage for the capsule, RF condenser microphones use a comparatively low RF voltage generated by a low-noise oscillator. This voltage is modulated by the changes in capacitance produced by the sound waves that move the capsule diaphragm. Following the demodulation, a low-noise audio frequency signal with very low source impedance is available, and this can be used to directly drive bipolar transistors that produce less random noise than the field-effect transistors usually needed. As a result, RF condenser microphones have a wide dynamic range and an excellent low frequency response even with small capsules, which would normally only be possible using larger capsules. In addition, small capsules achieve a considerably better high frequency response than large capsules. A further benefit of RF condenser microphones is that, although the capsule is grounded, they possess a genuine fully floating, balanced output without the need to use a transformer.

Sennheiser's Revolutionary Symmetrical Microphone Capsule
Sennheiser's RF condenser microphones have a unique symmetrical push-pull transducer. Besides the normal back plate, this capsule is fitted with an additional front plate, with the diaphragm positioned between these acoustically transparent plates. The result of this balanced design is an unchanging acoustic impedance, extremely low distortion figures, a higher capsule output with much lower noise and thus a very clear signal.

Visit Sennheiser at the AES, Hall X, Stand 1611.

As one of the world's leading manufacturers of microphones, headphones and wireless transmission systems, the Sennheiser Group with its headquarters in Wedemark near Hanover, Germany, had total sales of about _300 million in 2005. The export share is 82.5%. Sennheiser has a total workforce of more than 1,650 employees, of whom about 60% are employed in Germany. Sennheiser is active worldwide and, in addition to other partnerships, has its own sales subsidiaries in France, the UK, Belgium, the Netherlands, Denmark, India, Singapore, Canada, Mexico and the USA.

For further information about Sennheiser please visit us on the Internet at www.sennheiser.com or contact:

Sennheiser electronic GmbH & Co. KG fischerAppelt Kommunikation
Press and PR _ Edelgard Marquardt Sandra Hartwig
Am Labor 1 _ 30900 Wedemark _ Germany Waterloohain 5 _ 22769 Hamburg
Phone: +49 (5130) 600-329 Phone: +49 (40) 899 699-976
Fax: +49 (5130) 600-295 Fax: +49 (40) 899 699-30
E-mail: [email protected] E-mail: [email protected]
Old 26th August 2007
  #6
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hughesmr's Avatar
Thank God! I can't tell you how long I've been waiting for an omni that reaches 60kHz!
Old 26th August 2007
  #7
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Yeah, there is way too much marketing in this announcement for me to get excited about these mics, still I would like to hear them when I get a chance.

But I have just purchased a brand new pair of 4006TL's and they produce sound of stunning beauty, so motivation for others is at an all time low. My next mics after this will probably be digital mics in 10 years or so when the technology is sorted.
Old 26th August 2007
  #8
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liuto's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by d_fu View Post
Which forum would that be?
Hi, this was in
Tonthemen.de :: Thema anzeigen - Sennheiser MKH80xx-Serie
Regards
Hermann
Old 26th August 2007
  #9
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MBishopSFX's Avatar
 

While I've been a longtime fan and user of the mkh-800 mics, I've also been having a great time with the Sanken CU-100k omnis for my orchestral work. Transparency and low noise combined with incredibly fast transient response has made these new Sanken mics so easy to work with! Putting a single Sanken CU-100k side-by-side with an mkh-800 in a test with orchestra, the Sanken sounds like it's reaching another 30' into the orchestra, but in a very natural, balanced and musical manner. In actual use I've positioned the Sankens in a slightly different spot relative to source than the Sennheisers, but it's proven to be very worthwhile effort. The first all-DSD SACD project recorded with the Sankens is about to hit the streets (Telarc SACD 60677, Runnicles/Atlanta Symphony Orchestra: Britannia) so I'm anxious to see who picks up on the differences the Sankens have made there.

I've also used the CU-100k mics in some small ensemble sessions with similar results. I'm anxious to try these on piano direct-to-DSD. They should be terrific there!

RTG Akustik AG, SANKEN C0-100k super wide range condenser microphone
Old 29th August 2007
  #10
Gear Nut
Quote:
In actual use I've positioned the Sankens in a slightly different spot relative to source than the Sennheisers, but it's proven to be very worthwhile effort.
Could you elaborate on the placement differences you make between the Sennheisers and the Sanken mics!
Old 29th August 2007
  #11
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dynamo's Avatar
 

Hi Michael,

Please would like to know if you also compared the Sankens to the DPA 4003s. Thanks a lot for your feedback.
Old 30th August 2007
  #12
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MBishopSFX's Avatar
 

No, I have not compared the Sankens to DPA 4003s. I've been using the MKH-800s for several years now on orchestra and haven't had the DPAs on-hand for that purpose for quite awhile. My prior experience with the old B&K 4004, 6 and 7s caused me to prefer other mics in front of an orchestra. One of these days I have to try the 03s and 06TLs.

Re: different placement of the Sankens -

I've always found that different types of mics will have their own "sweet spot" in front of an orchestra. I had a placement for Schoeps MK-2 versus Sennheiser MKH-20 for instance. The capsule/preamp design of each isn't the same so it stands to reason that one will have to find the optimum placement for a given design of mic. When using the MKH-800s, I've had them somewhat higher above the stage floor and further out from the orchestra than a small diaphragm true omni mic. The MKH-800 is a dual-capsule mic so it's more sensitive to relative angle to orchestra than a true omni capsule mic. The Sanken CU-100k has a rising very high-end response to compensate for distance high-frequency attenuation, but that response curve is different on-axis as opposed to off-axis, of course. One can adjust the angle to suit the desired very high-frequency response, yet retain the main part of the omni pickup of the orchestra which remains quite flat in response. Additionally, being a true omni mic, one can work the CU-100k into the front of the orchestra somewhat closer than the MKH-800s if desired without the strings getting too strident. DPA 4003s and 4006s and the like would be very much the same.
Old 30th August 2007
  #13
Gear Nut
Michael - thanks for the response regarding mic placement. Just to further pick your brain are there circumstances when you would use a wide cardioid capsule versus an omni?
My curiosity stems from an experience I had recording brass in a very live church using TLM 170's in Blumlein stereo. The result was, for my taste, the stereo image was almost too directional but it also captured too much of the room making it too reverberant. Someone suggested trying wide cardioids in an A/B set up too get less room. I have since acquired a pair of Schoeps with 2S capsules and was contemplating getting a pair of the MK21 capsules but unfortunately I haven't been back in that space to give it a try. Just wondering if you'd care to comment.
Old 30th August 2007
  #14
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hughesmr's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by MBishopSFX View Post
No, I have not compared the Sankens to DPA 4003s. I've been using the MKH-800s for several years now on orchestra and haven't had the DPAs on-hand for that purpose for quite awhile.
Hello Michael,

I live in Cincinnati and am a regular at CSO concerts and am collecting all of Jarvi's Telarc CDs. I must say you do a wonderful job in there. Are you planning to switch to Sanken mains in Music Hall as well?

Cheers,
Mike
Old 26th November 2007
  #15
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mixerguy's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken K View Post
I saw an add for an MKH8000 series mic and Sennheiser has three new mics listed on their website MKH 8020 (omni), 8040 (cardioid), and 8050 (super-cardioid). I emailed sennheiser and the reply said they would be launching them at AES so as of now they didn't have prices. I'm in the market for a pair of omnis so I thought I might wait and see what these turn out to be. Has anybody heard anything about these mics?
I'm interested as well

has anyone used them yet?

Old 26th November 2007
  #16
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MBishopSFX's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by hughesmr View Post
Hello Michael,

I live in Cincinnati and am a regular at CSO concerts and am collecting all of Jarvi's Telarc CDs. I must say you do a wonderful job in there. Are you planning to switch to Sanken mains in Music Hall as well?

Cheers,
Mike
Sorry about the delay getting back to this...

Yes, I'll try the Sankens as the mains on the next Cinci Symphony session in January. The CO-100K mics have been working out really well on my recent Atlanta Symphony sessions. Recent use on a recent jazz piano session went really well too. Extremely good depth and clarity when compared to what we usually would have used.
Old 27th November 2007
  #17
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Plush's Avatar
I have used the new omnis, the Senn. 8020. I was impressed and bought two.

Give us a while to use them in situ on the orchestras we record. I'll send in a full report.
I liked how they helped to tame the "less than Vienna Philharmonic" string sound.
We use them with Gordon mic amps and with EAR mic amps.
Old 27th November 2007
  #18
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
I'm happy you said that Plushy.

I'm planning to order a few of these puppies tomorrow or Wednesday.
I may go nuts and get every option...

Well, almost every option.

In any event, I'll kieep you folks posted when applicable.
Old 27th November 2007
  #19
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Plush-

On first comparison, how would you compare your 8020's to the MKH20?

I wanna make one more purchase before the end of the year. Thinking a pair of 8040's may just fit the bill.

--Ben
Old 27th November 2007
  #20
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Plush's Avatar
Hello Ben,

I'm not an MKH 20 owner, only an occasional user. Here we have MKH800 sometimes used in omni for piano.

Please stand by for comment since these 8020's are new to me and I don't have enough time with them to comment accurately for you.
Old 27th November 2007
  #21
Lives for gear
 

Look forward to hearing your comments. I use the MKH80 quite a bit as well so I know them.

I understand that they won't be exactly the same and I also know the direction of Neumann's new mics. My biggest concern with these mics is that they aren't too bright. I like the Sennheiser sound quite a bit and would be interested in using these if they are in the same ballpark.

-Ben
Old 3rd December 2007
  #22
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Plush's Avatar
Getting back to you folks with a report.
Not an exhaustive report but I did spend the last four days using the MKH 8020 on orchestra. They were the side omni outriggers.

The good news is that the mics are not bright a la the Neumann 183 184 family. They are solidly in the family of the MKH. They have a distinct ability to impart a golden halo
of sound.

Surprisingly, the Schoeps sound dessicated next to these omnis.

Output is very high, indeed higher than the MKH 20's.
Dynamic range capability is tremendous.

The mics are very small, perhaps half the size of a CMC5.

Reach to the back of the orchestra is pronounced, I would say, compared to other omnis I've used.

The rest of this week will see them on solo piano, and recorders and lutes so I'll have more news soon.
Old 3rd December 2007
  #23
Gear Head
 

I had a chance to try a pair of the 8040's on harp last week. I AB'd them next to a pair of mkh 40's and was really impressed. They had the same charectar as the mkh40's (ie surprisingly meaty for such a small mic, lots of signal) but I definitely preferred the 8040's.

They had more "air" on top -- but without being brighter. Also, the harp was fairly boomy and the 8040's seemed to handle it better...a bit tighter in the low end.

I got bored with AB'ing fairly quickly and just went with the 8040's! I definitely agree with Plush's "golden halo" comment!

Josh
Old 3rd December 2007
  #24
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mljung's Avatar
Thanks for the reports - I've been looking forward to hear if these microphones performs as good as advertised. Looking forward to more... it seems promising so far heh

Thanks,
Mads
Old 3rd December 2007
  #25
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d_fu's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plush View Post
Not an exhaustive report but I did spend the last four days using the MKH 8020 on orchestra.
Have they got that free/diffuse field switch of the MKH 20s?

Daniel
Old 3rd December 2007
  #26
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sonare's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Plush View Post
Getting back to you folks with a report.
Not an exhaustive report but I did spend the last four days using the MKH 8020 on orchestra. They were the side omni outriggers.

The good news is that the mics are not bright a la the Neumann 183 184 family. They are solidly in the family of the MKH. They have a distinct ability to impart a golden halo
of sound.

Surprisingly, the Schoeps sound dessicated next to these omnis.

Output is very high, indeed higher than the MKH 20's.
Dynamic range capability is tremendous.

The mics are very small, perhaps half the size of a CMC5.

Reach to the back of the orchestra is pronounced, I would say, compared to other omnis I've used.

The rest of this week will see them on solo piano, and recorders and lutes so I'll have more news soon.
Husonek:

You mentioned the 8020 were outriggers-- what were the mains? And you said the Schoeps sounded "dessicated." Since the definition of "dessicate" (actually it is not a verb-- it is a noun and is spelled "desiccant") has to do with absorbing moisture-- could you please describe it differently?

Rich
Old 3rd December 2007
  #27
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
Rich, I assume when he used the word "desiccate" he meant they were dry sounding.
I'm sure Plush will chime in on this one.
Old 4th December 2007
  #28
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MichaelPatrick's Avatar
 

Not to hijack the thread... But I can't help but wonder how the new Sennheiser omni, or Sanken's mic for that matter, compares with Josephson's c617set?
Old 4th December 2007
  #29
Gear Nut
 
Sound Sorcerer's Avatar
 

Wow, this mic is small...
Attached Thumbnails
New Sennheiser MKH8000 Series Mics-img_0195.jpg  
Old 4th December 2007
  #30
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
I love the minature size and the all the available accessories.
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