If there is one thing we are not short on in this industry it is microphones and amplifiers. It is hard for one to truly understand how we need another new microphone or amp. Well, Sennheiser designers – being the relentless innovators that they are – have developed a series of gooseneck microphones aimed at meeting the demand for customized installations for both facility conferencing and sound reinforcement system.
Product PointsApplications: Contracting, sound reinforcement
Key Features: Interchangeable variable pickup pattern capsule; rugged metal housings
Price: start at $299
Contact: Sennheiser Electronic Corporation at 860-434-9190, Web Site.
The ME back-electret condenser microphone series, made for use with Sennheiser MZH goosenecks, provides various options of capsules, goosenecks and mounting hardware. The installer can put together a combination to meet the demand for a specific situation. Capsules presented in this line are the ME34, a cardioid and the ME35, a supercardioid. Both are based on Sennheiser’s KE10 capsule used in the MKE 40 lavalier microphone. The ME36, a mini shotgun capsule, is based on the ME 105 modular series.
These capsules screw rigidly onto three available goosenecks: the MZH3015, a 15cm gooseneck; the MZH3040, a 40cm and the MZH3042, a double-bend 40cm gooseneck. The double-bend option in the MZH3042 can come in handy for those challenging situations where the microphone needs to be directed a specific way. All contacts on the capsules are gold-plated to resist corrosion. The 6mm diameter gooseneck is thin but sturdy. All goosenecks connect with an integral standard XLR-3 pin connector. With a frequency response of 40 Hz to 20 kHz, the microphones have an impedance of 50 ohms and a sensitivity of 10 mV/Pa with a noise spec of 26 dB-A. All capsules power up with phantom voltage from 12V – 48V.
The small capsules weigh about 9.5 grams with the shotgun capsule weighing in at 17 grams. All are housed in a tough matte black metal housing. Mounting accessories available for the goosenecks are the MZS31 shockmount, the MZT30 table mount and the MZQ100 quick-release mount, all ruggedly designed. All microphones, goosenecks and accessories come with manuals in six different languages. Sennheiser is also offering a nice attaché demo case that houses two goosenecks, all capsules and mounts to prepare your installer/remote sound engineer for the gooseneck unknown.
Typically the biggest problem with gooseneck microphones is that they sag over time. All models of the goosenecks in this series stayed in place, even when shaken up and down with the shotgun capsule, the heaviest capsule of the lot. The handling noise is on par with most other quality gooseneck microphones and the mechanical connections were easy to make and seemed very rigid. The microphone capsules sound good with relatively low noise. I was impressed by the consistency of the shotgun capsules’ frequency response over an extended distance of about 13 inches from the capsule. I purposely used a preamp with a 12V phantom power supply to see if it created any noise or distortion artifacts like some other units exhibit. It did not. The rejection on all three capsules was consistent with the type: cardioid, supercardioid and shotgun. On and off-axis frequency response and sensitivity was consistent as well.
The ME series capsules and gooseneck hardware make for a solid, great sounding solution for podiums, sound reinforcement systems and conferencing systems. The sleek look of the microphone will not get objections from anyone and mounting the units is a breeze.