Archive of the Microphones, Mic Processors Category

Sennheiser Rocks (and Rolls in the Deep) with Big Grammy Winners

Los Angeles, California, March 1, 2012: This year’s Grammy Awards event, hosted by LL Cool J, celebrating music’s biggest night, went down in history as the second highest rated telecast since the show’s inception in 1959. It was a phenomenal undertaking showcasing nearly thirty diverse musical performances on multiple indoor and outdoor stages, along with a very last minute tribute celebrating the late Whitney Houston. So when Sennheiser artists took the stage, their engineers knew they had to have Sennheiser microphones to assure their performances would go off without a hitch.

Adele, the big winner of the evening, tied the record, set two years ago by Beyoncé, for the most awards won by a female artist in one year. The 23-year-old pop-soul singer won the night’s most prestigious awards, including Album of the Year and Best Pop Vocal Album for 21, Record of the Year, Song of the Year and Best Short Form Music Video for the single “Rolling in the Deep,” and Best Pop Solo Performance for “Someone Like You.”

The most highly anticipated performance of the evening finally arrived when Adele took the stage to perform “Rolling in the Deep.” Her favorite nickel-finish Sennheiser SKM 2000-XP wireless handheld transmitter with MMK 965-1 capsule conveyed her beautiful voice to the adoring crowd. Dave McDonald, Adele’s front-of-house engineer, said, “It’s a great microphone. We started using it just after the Brit Awards in February of last year, and she’s loved it ever since.” He adds, “Ninety-nine-point-nine percent of the equipment we use is Sennheiser – and the point-one percent is Neumann.” Her performance brought the Grammy audience to its feet for the longest standing ovation of the evening.

Foo Fighters, nominated in a total of six categories, swept the entire rock category, winning awards for Rock Song and Rock Performance for “Walk,” Rock Album for Wasting Light, Hard Rock/Metal Performance for “White Limo,” and Best Long Form Music Video for “Foo Fighters: Back and Forth.”

The band rocked the stage twice during the Grammy broadcast, performing “Walk” from a tent on Nokia Plaza, adjacent to the Staples Center, then returning to play “Rope” during the electronic dance music segment with David Guetta, Chris Brown, Lil’ Wayne, and deadmau5. Frontman Dave Grohl made use of his usual Sennheiser MD 431 II vocal mic on both songs. Ian Beveridge, Foo Fighters’ longtime monitor engineer, spoke highly of Dave’s vocal mic: “I love that microphone to death. That microphone is so unbelievably flat in the high-end, and incredibly stable with moisture and temperature. During their shows, we used to have terrible instability problems with other microphones, and I was going through maybe four, five or six microphones a show with Dave, swapping them out. Now, I keep the 431 for the whole show. I can’t remember the last time there was any feedback during Foo Fighters’ show. And these Grammy performances were no exception.”

Bruno Mars, channeling James Brown with his energetic, throwback performance of “Runaway”, had the singer using an SKM 2000-XP with MMD 945-1 capsule. James Berry, monitor engineer for Mars shared, “Sennheiser products have great sound and reliability. We could not have done it without Sennheiser. I’m always grateful for their gear and support in making it happen under the stress of a live event like the Grammys.”

Other Sennheiser users got to shine during the show, too, including the evening’s host, LL Cool J, who made use of an SKM 5200. Alicia Keys sang a duet with Bonnie Raitt in memory of Etta James through her SKM 5200-II vocal mic with MD 5235 capsule. Katy Perry made a memorable entrance, descending in a glass box with her baby blue hair and her SKM 5200-II/MD 5235 combination to perform her new post-divorce song, “Part of Me.” During a medley honoring and featuring Glen Campbell, Blake Shelton performed the songwriter’s “Southern Nights” using his SKM 5200-II /MD 5235 vocal mic. Tony Bennett, in a duet with Carrie Underwood on “It Had to Be You,” also used an SKM 5200-II.

(Photo Credit: © 2012 FilmMagic)

Lady Antebellum Expands Tour and Sennheiser Endorsement

Old Lyme, Conn.– February 21, 2012: Few need an introduction to Lady Antebellum, who, in the four short years since its formation, has won six Grammys, scored six number one hits on country radio, has sold over six million albums across the globe and is currently on its 2012 Own The Nightworld tour. Sennheiser is supporting the tour with equipment, such as SKM 5200-II wireless vocal microphones and ew 300 IEM G3 wireless personal monitors, along with the expertise to ensure that no glitches ever distract from Lady Antebellum’s spellbinding performance. With an agreement brokered by Tim Moore, artist relations manager for Sennheiser USA, and Kristy Jo Winkler, Sennheiser global relations manager for the Americas and Canada, reigning Country Music Awards and Academy of Country Music Awards Vocal Group of the Year Lady Antebellum is now a Sennheiser Global Relations endorsed artist.

FOH engineer Brett “Scoop” Blanden was careful to select the perfect wireless vocal mic for the tour. “The stage setup includes a forty-foot runway that extends well in front of the house PA,” he said. “I needed a microphone and a capsule that would be well-suited to all six vocalists – who might all be on that runway at the same time! By using the same capsule, with the same frequency response and polar pattern, on all six mics, I am able to tune the PA without fear of the unpredictable interactions that can occur when different capsules are open on stage.” Blanden selected the Sennheiser MD 5235 dynamic capsule, which features a floating directivity that is super-cardioid at high frequencies and cardioid at low frequencies. The Sennheiser SKM 5200-II handheld RF transmitter completes the vocal setup, and two additional SKM 5200-II/MD 5235 combinations go to the opening acts.

Monitor engineer Peter Bowman organizes the RF channels for the show. “I have had zero RF issues since we made the switch to the Sennheiser 5000 series on vocals,” he said. “In addition, I’m also very happy with how useful the Command Function is for Lady Antebellum. Whether they need the guitar turned down or a cup of tea, they can communicate with ease from any point on the stage.”

Instrument mics include the Sennheiser e 901 on kick, the e 904 on rack toms, the e 902 on the floor tom, and a small diaphragm e 614 on the ride. “I’m particularly fond of the e 904 and e 902 on the toms,” said Blanden, who is himself a drummer. “I love the tonal picture of those dynamic mics – it’s familiar and comfortable to me. The frequency response and transient response are perfect. I can run those inputs flat on my channel strip because all the right color is captured by the mic. The convenient mounting hardware on the e 904 is also nice.” For all three guitar cabinets on stage, Blanden uses the classic Sennheiser MD 421-II. “What a standard! Even in my studio days,” he said, “I was always a fan of the MD 421 on guitars. It has the perfect combination of top-end bite and low-end growl to deliver the ideal rock ‘n roll guitar sound.”

In addition to the eight Sennheiser SKM 5200-IIs for vocals (and their associated command channels), Bowman manages eight Sennheiser EK 300 IEM G3 stereo wireless personal monitors, for a total of twenty-eight wireless frequencies. “I set them myself every day,” he said. “And with the scanning options available on both the G3 and 5000 series, that process is fairly simple. I love that when the monitor system is networked together, I have the ability to set all the transmitters to new frequencies using just one bodypack. I usually scan one bodypack during the day, even before I get power to monitor world, and then use it later to synch up all the transmitters.” For antennas, Bowman uses one Sennheiser paddle antenna and one Sennheiser A 5000?CP circularly polarized antenna. “Although I know there are several valid approaches, this system works well for me,” he said. “Our RF performance has been perfect.”

Even the band’s guitars and bass benefit from Sennheiser wireless technology. To navigate the tour’s large stage with the crowd-pleasing confidence that a wire won’t allow, every fretted instrument is equipped with a Sennheiser ew 572 G3 wireless transmitter, save for one acoustic guitar which uses an ew 572 G2 unit. There are eleven units in all. “Our RF performance has been absolutely flawless,” said guitar tech Steve Castro, who formerly worked with Sugarland. “We all work together to maintain clean channels. If someone gets stepped on, it’s a simple matter to use the scan feature to dial in a new clean channel.”

“The Sennheiser team has really gone above and beyond for us,” said Blanden. “Tim Moore has been there for us during the last four years. Throughout our trips to Australia, Europe and various television performances, Sennheiser is the gear we rely on for consistency wherever we are performing.”

Winkler added, “For decades, Sennheiser has supported emerging artists as well as mega-stars. All of us on the Global Relations team welcome Lady Antebellum to this special tier of artists and congratulate them on their creativity, musicianship, performance excellence, and industry dedication.”

(Photo Credit: © 2012 Adam Boatman)

Sennheiser and House of Blues Renew Marketing Alliance

Wedemark, Germany, February 6, 2012: Four years ago, audio specialist Sennheiser teamed up with the House of Blues – creator of a celebrated collection of intimate music venues. Sennheiser supplied a comprehensive set of its evolution series wired and wireless microphones and personal monitors, as well as Sennheiser headphones and Neumann microphones, to each of the House of Blues’ thirteen locations in the United States. The gear allowed House of Blues’ engineers to optimize sound reinforcement and provide robust RF solutions for the diverse performers that nightly take its stages. In addition, each company benefited from the cross-marketing exposure generated by the relationship. With such an obvious win for Sennheiser, the House of Blues, the musicians, and the concertgoers, both parties gladly renewed the marketing alliance.

Live music powerhouse Live Nation owns the House of Blues, which, in the two decades since opening its doors, has risen to become the USA’s preeminent live music venue for intimate shows. Each location is distinctively decorated with the world’s largest collection of folk art and serves top-drawer food and beverages. The fact that the House of Blues provides state-of-the-art sound reinforcement and lighting makes the venue a top choice of both local and national acts. Sennheiser’s Global Relations Manager for the Americas and Canada, Kristy Jo Winkler, worked with House of Blues to facilitate the renewal. “Our relationship with the House of Blues strengthens Sennheiser’s marketing at the MI and corporate levels,” she said. “Every night, musicians and engineers from around the globe experience the musicality and reliability of our microphones and RF equipment. We’re happy to continue such fantastic exposure.”

Matthew Scoggins, FOH Engineer at the House of Blues Los Angeles, commented, “No matter what the application, when clarity is of the utmost importance, I reach for a Sennheiser mic.” The House of Blues is set up with a full complement of gear, suitable for any of the diverse flavors of contemporary music that the House of Blues hosts. The kits include multiple models of evolution mics for backline and vocals, a couple of Neumann vocal mics and Sennheiser headphones. “The House of Blues prides itself on providing an ideal venue for both our artists and our guests,” said Dan Schartoff, VP Club and Theatre Productions for Live Nation. “Everyone loves the sound we’re getting with the Sennheiser gear, and we’re glad it will continue.”

Brian Fiegelman, A1 tech at House of Blues Dallas, agreed: “The Sennheiser e 900 Series mics are always my first choice. Their tailored frequency responses make it easy to mix everything from gospel to metal. In addition, the durability of their metal casings makes them almost indestructi¬ble… an essential asset that has allowed them to stand up to years of abuse on our Dallas stage!”

House of Blues Dallas production manager Thomas DeBeaudry said that Sennheiser’s robust performance often solves problems and makes Sennheiser devotees of touring engineers and bands. “We sit in a heavily saturated wireless environment,” he said. “On more than a few occasions, we have used our Sennheiser EM 2050 wireless package in place of a touring wireless package because of its ability to continuously scan and eliminate RF interference. We often find that the engineers and musicians prefer our rig due to its ease of use and its bulletproof performance. In addition, the smooth frequency response of the Sennheiser MMK 965-1 capsule generates a lot favorable comments.”

“Hulu Guy” Dave Fennoy Counts on Neumann TLM 103 as Workhorse Microphone for Stellar Voiceover Work

Old Lyme, Conn., – December 20, 2011- Dave Fennoy is the “Voice of Hulu,” heard each day by 35 million viewers over the Internet. His voice is full of rasp and character, deep and instantly recognizable. To accurately capture every nuance of his voice, Fennoy is uncompromising and relies on a Neumann TLM 103 as his ‘workhorse’ microphone.

Fennoy, who began his career as a musician and then moved into broadcasting, recognized the importance of choosing the right microphone early on. Once he broke into voice acting in the early ‘90s, he noticed Neumann U 87 microphones in all the studios he was working in: “I learned that this was in fact the industry standard and that it reproduced sound very accurately,” he recalls. The other microphone he noticed was the Sennheiser MKH 416 shotgun microphone. “This was one of the favorite microphones in Los Angeles — they were being used for on-air promos at all the networks.” more

Hal Leonard Publishes Microphones & Mixers

The Second Edition of Book 1 in the Hal Leonard Recording Method by Bill Gibson

Montclair, NJ (December 7, 2011) – Hal Leonard Books, the musician’s best source of books on the music business, audio technology, instrument history, and more, has published Microphones & Mixers ($39.99) by Bill Gibson. The book is an updated second edition of Book 1 in the 6-book Hal Leonard Recording Method series and includes a DVD ROM and online media.

As the first book in the series, Microphones & Mixers covers the critical first steps in a truly organized path through the entire recording process. Topics include how professional microphones work, which to choose and why (plus accepted techniques for using them), understanding the signal path from mics to mixers and how to operate these critical tools to capture excellent recordings, as well as explanations of the most up-to-date tools and techniques involved in using dynamics and effects processors. From initial considerations to mix-down, mastering, and replication, this method provides important considerations and techniques every recording musician needs to know. more

The Sing Off Takes to the Stage with a Live Finale and 100 Sennheiser Wireless Microphones as The Pentatonix Rise to the Top

Pentatonix, seen here singing into Sennheiser SKM 5200 wireless transmitters with MD 5235 capsules, took top honors in season 3’s The Sing Off.

Old Lyme, Conn. – November 30, 2011 – On Monday night, NBC presented the “Live Finale: Top 3 Finalists” of its hit show The Sing Off featuring not only the final three group contestants, but over 100 Sennheiser microphones on stage. The Pentatonix were elected champions of season 3, and music mixer Randy Faustino was on hand to ensure the audio quality was outstanding until the very end.

Faustino, a multiple Emmy award-winning music mixer and CEO/President of Creative Sound Solutions, has been responsible for mixing not only The Sing Off, but other top national prime time programs including The Voice, American Idol and others. Whether he is faced with a live broadcast or an in-studio production, Faustino depends on Sennheiser transmitters and capsules to achieve a great sound. For “Live Finale: Top 3 Finalists” he used over 100 Sennheiser SKM 5200-II transmitters, each coupled with Sennheiser MD 5235 capsules. more

Sennheiser Delivers Flawless RF Performance During CMA Awards

Blake Shelton performs with his Sennheiser SKM 2000 transmitter, coupled with an MMD 935-1 capsule

Old Lyme, Conn. – November 15, 2011 – During the 45th annual Country Music Association Awards, audio specialist Sennheiser delivered another evening of rock solid audio and flawless RF performance courtesy of its EM 3732-II receivers, SKM 2000 and SKM 5200 transmitters and its ew 300 G3 IEM series monitoring system. The following Sennheiser users also won awards and performed live onstage using Sennheiser transmitters and capsules:

Blake Shelton: Top Male Vocalist
(Sennheiser SKM 2000 coupled with an MMD 953-1 capsule)
Miranda Lambert: Top Female Vocalist
– (Sennheiser SKM 2000 couple with an MMD 935-1 capsule)
Sugarland: Vocal Duo of the Year
(Sennheiser SKM 5200-II coupled with an MD 5235 capsule)
Lady Antebellum: Vocal Group of the Year
(Sennheiser SKM 5200-II coupled with an MD 5235 capsule)

Among the notable performance highlights was a rendition of “Georgia On My Mind” by the Zac Brown Band and music legend Gregg Allman, during which Brown used a Sennheiser SKM 2000 coupled with a MMD 935-1 mic capsule. more

Sennheiser’s evolution Series Microphones are an Integral Part of Le Poisson Rouge’s “Perfect Sound System”

New York – October 24, 2011: Now celebrating its third year in business, New York City’s Le Poisson Rouge (LPR) has reinvigorated the musical landscape of Greenwich Village –- birthplace of the Beat movement and former home to musical legends such as Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, Simon & Garfunkel and so many others. Located on Bleecker Street on the site of the former Village Gate, LPR has made a name for itself in a musical community that now includes more contemporary names like Florence & the Machine, the JACK Quartet and Lykke Li.

Since opening in the summer of 2008, LPR –- which has been recognized by restaurant guide Zagat® as having a “perfect sound system” — has hosted a remarkably eclectic listing of musical performances. Any given show may feature a classical pianist, hardcore avant-garde ensemble, or anything in between. Perhaps the only common element among the performances is that each one is captured using Sennheiser ’s evolution series microphones. more

Sennheiser MKH 8060, MKH 8070 Digital Microphones Capture Sounds and Excitement of 2011 US Open of Surfing

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Huntington Beach, California, September 9, 2011 – At this year’s US Open of Surfing, a nine-day broadcast event in which the top surfers in the world compete for a $100,000 top prize, digital Sennheiser MKH microphones were on hand to capture every sonic detail of the excitement – which also included a BMX riding and skating competition.

The annual US Open of Surfing is attended by over 500,000 people and held on a beach that stretches over 300 yards. For this year’s broadcast, Hollywood-based Coffey Sound deployed Sennheiser’s latest MKH shotgun microphones: the MKH 8060 and MKH 8070, equipped with MZD 8000 digital output modules. The digital microphones not only provided improved clarity and detail of the audio, but also provided an important element of weather resistance required to take on a cruel outdoor environment fraught with wind, moisture and salty air. more

Sennheiser Supports Unsigned Artists with The Sessions

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Montreal – August 16, 2011 – Audio manufacturer Sennheiser is showcasing independent artists through The Sessions, a series of locally produced music shows featuring unsigned local bands and solo acts that will culminate in a grand finale in September where one act will be awarded a Sennheiser prize pack valued at $5,000.

The Sessions kicked off in February at The Guitar Boutique (aka The Ranch) in Bethany, Ontario with six bands getting the chance to play through a premium range of sound equipment, including K-array loudspeakers and Sennheiser microphones. A second Session in July saw the event move outdoors, while expanding to include 19 bands over a two-day ribfest event. An August Session will feature 22 bands before the grand finale takes place in September. more

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