Audio specialist Sennheiser is expanding its MKH studio microphone series with the addition of the MKH 8090, whose wide cardioid pick-up pattern makes it the ideal microphone for orchestral recordings. The RF condenser microphone is perfectly suited as both a main and a spot microphone. An optional screw-on module can be used to convert it into a digital AES42 microphone.
“The MKH 8090 combines omni-directional and cardioid pick-up patterns to produce an impressive orchestral microphone,” explained Kai Lange, Product Manager for Wired Microphones at Sennheiser. “Used as a main microphone, it picks up the entire sound body and a healthy proportion of room acoustics, while as a spot microphone it has sufficient directivity to screen out other sound sources without making the recording sound too ‘narrow’.”
Meticulous sound tuning
One of those responsible for fine-tuning the microphone was tonmeister Gregor Zielinsky, International Recording Applications Manager at Sennheiser: “During the development of the MKH 8090, we focused on ensuring that the sound perception of the microphone is precisely between that of the omni-directional MKH 8020 and the cardioid MKH 8040. Through further fine-tuning, we succeeded in creating a microphone with a sound that seems to ‘shine’, and which has great presence and musicality.”
Accessories for (almost) every application
The MKH 8090 benefits from the wide range of accessories available for the 8000 series, such as microphone stands with different heights, various microphone clips, a shock mount, remote cables with different lengths, windshields and accessories for ceiling mounting.
Also available as an accessory is the MZD 8000 digital module, which converts the audio signal of the MKH 8090 into a digital signal according to the AES42 standard (Mode 2) directly at the microphone head, thus ensuring a lifelike, natural sound entirely without cable losses or interference from other sources.
Sennheiser’s MKH series works according to the RF principle, which Sennheiser has been using for more than 50 years and has developed to absolute perfection, for example through the use of symmetrical transducers.
Technical Data MKH 8090
Pick-up pattern: wide cardioid
Frequency response: 30 Hz to 50 kHz
Sensitivity: -34 dBV/Pa (20 mV/Pa)
Max. sound pressure level: 142 dB SPL
Equivalent noise level: 13 dB(A) (DIN-IEC 651), 23 dB (CCIR 268-3)
Nominal impedance: 25 ohms
Min. terminating impedance: 1 kohm
Phantom powering: 48 V ± 4 V (P48, IEC 61938)
Current consumption: 3.3 mA
Diameter: 19 mm
Length: 41 mm (75 mm with XLR module)
Weight: 25 g (55 g with XLR module)
Operating temperature: -10 °C to +60 °C
The MKH 8000 series at a glance
MKH 8020 omni-directional
MKH 8040 cardioid
MKH 8050 super-cardioid
MKH 8060 short shotgun
MKH 8070 long shotgun
MKH 8090 wide cardioid
MKH 800 Twin dual-capsule microphone with two separate audio signal outputs to remotely adjust any pick-up pattern required
The principle of the RF condenser microphone
RF condenser microphones are a special type of condenser microphone. Instead of the high polarisation voltage that is usually required, a relatively low RF voltage generated by a low-noise oscillator is applied to the capsule. This voltage is modulated by capacitance changes produced by the sound waves moving the capsule diaphragm. After demodulation, a low-noise audio frequency signal with very low source impedance is available. This signal can be used to directly drive ‘ordinary’ bipolar transistors, which have lower random noise than the field-effect transistors that are commonly used. This extends the frequency response of the microphone and, even with small capsules, enables it to achieve excellent low-frequency response that is otherwise only possible with much larger capsules. Smaller capsules have the additional benefit of enhancing high-frequency response. A further advantage of the RF principle is the fully floating, balanced output, even though the capsule is grounded.
Symmetrical capsule design
RF condenser microphones from Sennheiser have a special symmetrical ‘push-pull’ capsule design that uses a front plate in addition to the back plate. The diaphragm is positioned between these two acoustically transparent plates, which ensure unchanging acoustic impedance. The result is extremely low distortion figures, a higher capsule output with lower noise and therefore a particularly clear signal.
Vorm geven aan de sound van morgen en voor zijn klanten unieke klankervaringen tot stand brengen… Dat is het doel waarrond wereldwijd alle medewerkers en partners van Sennheiser zich verenigen. De onderneming is opgericht in 1945 en uitgegroeid tot een van ’s werelds toonaangevende producenten van koptelefoons, microfoons en draadloze zendersystemen. Met zijn 21 verkoopfilialen en partnerrelaties van vele jaren is de groep actief in ruim 50 landen. Daarnaast telt hij nog eens eigen productiefaciliteiten in Duitsland, Ierland, Roemenië en de VS. Sinds 2013 staat met Daniel Sennheiser en Dr. Andreas Sennheiser de derde generatie van de familie aan het hoofd van de onderneming. In 2017 genereerde de Sennheiser-groep een omzet van in totaal € 667,7 miljoen.