Archive for April 9th, 2014

DSLR Video Guru Barry Andersson Relies on Sennheiser MKE 600 Shotgun Microphone for Authenticity of Sound, Ease of Set up and Reliability

Author of The DSLR Filmmaker’s Handbook: Real World Production Techniques and Instructor of DSLR Dynamics Two-Day Masterclass Says Audio is ‘Mission Critical’

Old Lyme, CT – April 9, 2014 — As the video industry continues to experience unprecedented growth following the advent of DSLRs and the explosion of mobile devices, there has been a massive increase not just in the amount of video consumers, but also video content creators. Barry Andersson, author of The DSLR Filmmaker’s Handbook: Real World Production Techniques and instructor of DSLR Dynamics’ two-day masterclass on video production, is helping thousands of aspiring filmmakers become intimately familiar with the tools they need to create professional looking — and sounding — DSLR-based videos. Andersson depends on his Sennheiser MKE 600 shotgun microphone to deliver consistently reliable and authentic sounding results.

Sennheiser spoke to Andersson, who just completed his nationwide filmmaking masterclass and who is currently in the midst of scheduling another multi-city instruction tour for later this year, about DSLR video technique and the importance of capturing authentic sounding audio.

What kind of audience is drawn to your classes?

They come from all over the spectrum. I would say that 50 percent of them consider themselves professionals. Even among professionals, there are many people that need to catch up their knowledge base. If you are coming from photography, DSLR video is new. If you’re coming from traditional video cameras, DSLR video is new. If you haven’t done video before, of course it’s new. My classes comprise a mix of beginners and advanced skill levels, but there are always gaps that I can help people address. I want to help them get good quality images and sound with the least amount of pain so they can actually work on the creative side instead of constantly worrying about the tech.

What is the most important takeaway in your classes?

I want people to enjoy it. Sometimes people look at making video as very complex. Video and filmmaking used to be a specialized field, but this is no longer the case. Very often, one person does everything — the video, the audio, the lighting, the interviewing. I think people get overwhelmed and it can take joy out of doing it. I like to make them comfortable with their tools, so when they go out, they actually want to be shooting again. There will always be the lens, the sensor, the lighting and the sound. If you master these elements, you have the skill set to be creative no matter where you are or what platform you are on.

What role does sound play in capturing DSLR video?

I think capturing good sound is mission critical, and this is probably the most requested topic among my students. In my experience, people will watch something that looks horrible and sounds good much longer than if they watch something that looks beautiful and sounds terrible. I want my students to understand that capturing great audio doesn’t have to be complicated. I want them to listen to it and say, “Ah, that’s what it should sound like.” It is at that point where we can begin talking about the art of sound.

What do you think of the Sennheiser MKE 600 as a production tool?

The first thing that struck me about the MKE 600 is just how small it is. I am telling my students more and more to carry the least amount of stuff possible, to stay small, light and nimble. The MKE 600 is very small but the audio quality is exceptional. Also, the build quality is very solid – you don’t have to worry about pieces snapping off. All of my equipment has to be able to withstand being dragged up and down stairs, packed and repacked. And in this regard, the MKE 600 is unsurpassed.

Can you describe the audio quality of the MKE 600?

Sure. In videos, 90 percent of the time, people are capturing the human voice on their videos and then pushing them out to the web. With a microphone like an MKE 600, you are golden. I just finished 22 interviews over the course of a week and my MKE 600 was on the camera the whole time. It renders the human voice in an authentic and natural tone, and sounds good in little rooms or big rooms. There is no extra noise or anything that feels like it shouldn’t be there. It just sounds natural and clear. With the MKE 600, Sennheiser is bringing high-end audio out to the masses — this is really exciting.

Are there any other features on the MKE 600 that you find useful?

Yes, the low-cut filter. We were shooting in a large room where we had some low rumble noise — there was a closet that had this loud piece of gear inside and we couldn’t get in there to shut it off. Then we switched the low cut filter on the MKE 600, and it was gone — just like magic. This is incredibly helpful because I know if I record the audio right, I don’t have to mess with it later. I tell my students that there are many tools you can work with in post production, but if you can get it sounding right at the source you can save so much time. And we all know time is money.

What about the durability of the MKE 600?

As soon as I picked up the MKE 600, I sensed that Sennheiser had put a lot of time and effort into the build. This is so important because many of us in this industry are ‘one man band’ operations. We are all moving so fast from place to place, and there is so much wear and tear. If the build quality isn’t there in a product, or if there are these little plastic parts that can break, you are just opening yourself up to problems on already really tight production schedules.

About Sennheiser:

Sennheiser is a world-leading manufacturer of microphones, headsets and wireless transmission systems. Established in 1945 in Wedemark, Germany, Sennheiser is now a global brand represented in 60 countries around the world with U.S. headquarters in Old Lyme, Conn. Sennheiser’s pioneering excellence in technology has rewarded the company with numerous awards and accolades including an Emmy, a Grammy, and the Scientific and Engineering Award of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

You can find all the latest information on Sennheiser by visiting our website at http://www.sennheiserusa.com.

Photo captions:
1) Barry Andersson on a shoot with his Sennheiser MKE 600 shotgun microphone.
2) The Sennheiser MKE 600 shotgun microphone.
3) Barry Andersson at work in his studio.

Sennheiser Mentorship Program Catapults Former Audio Student Zachary Templin into the Big Time With HBO Pay-Per-View

Templin Serves as A2 in HBO Pay-Per-View’s First Boxing Event Outside the U.S.

Las Vegas, April 9, 2014 – Dr. Fritz Sennheiser, the founder of audio specialist Sennheiser [NAB booth C3217] would often say, “Luck is chance plus preparation.” Since 2009, the company’s Student Mentorship Program has been providing audio students real-world preparation to become audio professionals in the sports broadcasting industry, working in collaboration with top broadcast networks such as HBO and Fox Sports.

Zachary Templin, who participated in Sennheiser’s Student Mentorship Program in 2012, recently got a chance to apply the knowledge he acquired as a participant in the program, having been hired by HBO to be lead RF coordinator on its first Pay-Per-View boxing match broadcast from outside the U.S. Templin, who already had three major national broadcast events under his belt under, one of them in the Mentorship Program, was recruited as an understudy to lead RF A2 Lloyd Jacobsen, who was not able to attend due to an emergency just six days before the crew was set to broadcast the Pacquiao vs. Rios boxing match from Macau, China.

“Zach’s situation represents the perfect scenario of the Sennheiser mentorship program,” commented Jason Cohen, director, sports production at HBO. “This is a young man who started with us in September of last year and quickly immersed himself into the audio team. Almost instantaneously, he became a person we wanted to use in a freelance capacity in an A2 role.”

Templin’s chance to lead as RF coordinator for the Pay-Per-View bout in China came about partly through being at the right place at the right time, but mostly by his being prepared. While shadowing lead RF A2 Jacobsen during the Ward-Rodruiguez bout at the Citizens Business Bank Arena in Ontario, Calif. on November 16th, Zach was asked to be an emergency fill-in for the event in China. “Not only did Zach finish the entire show by himself, but two days later, my lead engineer was supposed to fly to an island off of Hong Kong, Macau, to handle HBO’s first ever international PPV telecast.”

“When my lead RF A2 couldn’t do it, my options were either to cold call freelancers who may or may not know our show, or asking Zach, who just spent the past month working with Lloyd on the RF system, “When I asked Zach how well he knew the system, he said ‘I know it, I can do it.’ He had absolutely no hesitation or pause, and his response was so convincing that I knew he was ready.” Cohen then asked him to fly home to pick up his passport and his bag, and he was in Hong Kong six days later.

For the Macau production, HBO’s mission was to recreate a ‘Las Vegas’ style Pay-Per-View event, maintaining a similar standard of quality the company has firmly established in its domestic broadcasts. This required shipping a flypack setup with over 200 cases of equipment and overcoming other logistical hurdles such as working on off-hours in a foreign country alongside a mostly non-English speaking production crew.

“To achieve a smooth and seamless production, we turned to our friends at Bexel and they sent a Hercules Fly Pack, an elite production system that provided all the flexibility we needed,” said Cohen. “It was the most beautiful, pristine flypack I’ve ever seen and our team was blown away by its firepower and overall monster size.”

Randy Flick, senior audio mixer, HBO Boxing, worked closely with Zach throughout his participation in the Sennheiser Student Mentorship Program, which included many HBO productions including the Pacquiao-Rios bout in Macau. “He just performed wonderfully,” says Flick. “It is a really big deal moving this production outside of the U.S. and the engineering team knocked it out of the park.” As lead A2 RF coordinator, some of Templin’s responsibilities included coordinating frequencies on the RF software program, ensuring RF beltpacks and wireless microphones are operational and assembling RF antennas.

Lloyd Jacobsen has nothing but accolades for Templin: “I had done all the prep work for China, but I couldn’t go due to a last minute emergency,” he said. “Zach just went in my place and just tore it up. What he was able to pull off was very impressive. Having a few shows under his belt leading up to that was key.”

The Sennheiser Student Mentorship Program has proven to be a win-win for not only for students and top broadcast networks, but also for the larger broadcast industry as a whole. “We want to make sure that the new people coming into our shows have the required knowledge, and the only way they can learn is by doing. Our partnership with Sennheiser has been a great and they have provided many capable mentoring students,” observes Randy Flick. Jason Cohen agrees: “The program gives my guys a chance to reach out to this community of younger talent and offer them opportunities that many others didn’t have when coming into this industry. At the same time we are able to build a pool of talent that we can rely on with young men who are eager to learn.”

For Zach Templin, the program has offered a depth of experience that he would not have otherwise been able to acquire: “It’s not experience you can get locally, because these are major national, and sometimes worldwide broadcasts that only happen a few times a year. There is no other mentorship program that I know of that gets you into the thick of things on such a large scale.”

Sennheiser:

Sennheiser is a world-leading manufacturer of microphones, headphones and wireless transmission systems. Established in 1945 in Wedemark, Germany, Sennheiser is now a global brand represented in 60 countries around the world with U.S. headquarters in Old Lyme, Conn. Sennheiser’s pioneering excellence in technology has rewarded the company with numerous awards and accolades including an Emmy, a Grammy, and the scientific and engineering award of the academy of motion picture arts and sciences. For more information, please visit www.sennheiserusa.com.

Photo captions:
1) The Pacquiao vs. Rios boxing match was broadcast on HBO Pay-Per-View from Macau, China in November, 2013.
2) Former Sennheiser Student Mentorship Program participant Zach Templin served as Lead RF A2 during HBO’s first Pay-Per-View boxing event broadcast outside the U.S.
3) Randy Flick, senior audio mixer, HBO Boxing.
4) The audio team shares a moment at the Pacquiao vs. Rios boxing match, broadcast from Macau, China in November, 2013.

Genelec NAB 2014 Press Kit

Please click here or image below to view Genelec NAB 2014 Press Kit

Audio-Technica NAB 2014 Press Kit

Please click here or image below to view Audio-Technica NAB 2014 Press Kit

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