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Senn Test Methodology - Please to give your Advices
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Jack Daniel
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2018 7:18 am    Post subject: Senn Test Methodology - Please to give your Advices Reply with quote

Mistaking me for one of my betters, Senn has very kindly loaned me a couple of mics to compare with the 416: the 8040 and the 8060.

I'd like to share my findings but have a technical question about the best way to proceed.

Would it make more sense to record each of the 3 mics flat and work from those samples? Or to have them expertly EQ'd in my recording space to show them off in their finest finery?

I'm inclined to do both, and maybe that's the easy answer, but I wonder if I'm not missing something more obvious and effective...

Any thoughts on the best way to compare the mics without too much complexity (I don't want to spend way too much of a weekend on this but have rat-hole tendencies) are appreciated.
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Eddie Eagle
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2018 7:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

True test them flat. Ideally this covers the most ground because producers will all have their own method to tweak or not based on their taste.
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Jack Daniel
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2018 8:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Eddie Eagle wrote:
True test them flat. Ideally this covers the most ground because producers will all have their own method to tweak or not based on their taste.


Good point--thank you. My biggest concern is that although I've worked hard to make my booth sound good, it has its limitations, and so the EQing I mentioned would have more to do with canceling those out than maximizing sweetness. That said, you're right that producers *should* be able to see through these limitations to what the mics can do; but my testing is primarily aimed at other VOs who might be considering a 416 to show them other Senn options exist that are newer and less brittle--at least in my preliminary testing.
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Bruce
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2018 10:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

One of the best tests to date of that stubby little 8040 is that our Anthony Mendez has used it as the narrator for dozens of episodes of Jane the Virgin so far. And they only charge an extra $80 in honor of removing 7 inches of length from the 416.



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todd ellis
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2018 10:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

story of my life. (sigh)
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dwpthe3rd
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2018 12:26 pm    Post subject: For the uninitiated like me... Reply with quote

Here's a link to a cool interview with AM.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nOUk0MI4zLQ
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Eddie Eagle
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2018 4:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jack Daniel wrote:
my testing is primarily aimed at other VOs who might be considering a 416 to show them other Senn options exist that are newer and less brittle--at least in my preliminary testing.


A flat test will give you all you need. If there's a difference in each mic you'll hear it. It's always fun to hear differences in mics.
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Jack Daniel
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 30, 2018 7:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bruce wrote:
One of the best tests to date of that stubby little 8040 is that our Anthony Mendez has used it as the narrator for dozens of episodes of Jane the Virgin so far. And they only charge an extra $80 in honor of removing 7 inches of length from the 416.


Yep, Anthony himself is the reason I went down this road in the first place. He was telling me about how much more he likes the 8040 and how well it plays with the network engineers, so I listened.
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JasonSound



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PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2018 2:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A little late to the thread, but I am a fan of the 8040. I find that it works well at a little further distance than the 416 without sacrificing warmth or clarity. The pickup pattern is a little more forgiving on the front which allows for more movement of the head.

That being said, it wouldn't be the first mic I'd pull out for every talent. If your project requires the voice to cut through in the mid-range, the 416 is probably a better option. The 8040 also has a higher noise floor. It is probably not a good match if the talent has a soft voice.

I'd love to hear your thoughts, Jack. Was it a winner for you?
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Jack Daniel
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2018 2:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JasonSound wrote:

I'd love to hear your thoughts, Jack. Was it a winner for you?


Great thoughts, Jason! Thanks for that. I'm still working on my review, but right now I'm really liking the 8060 more. It's a llttle more incisive--capturing that "cutting" quality of the 416 but with more "gentility," if that makes any sense. I do like the 8040, and to my ears it has more in common with the Neumann 87 sound than any other (strictly) Senn mic. A warmth and smoothness you don't get with the 416 or the 8060. But like I said I'm really digging the 8060 right now and will have a review soon...

Again thanks for the thoughtful comments. Please do share any more or, if you like, any samples as I would love to hear the 8040 on actual voices other than mine.
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JohnV
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2018 6:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's been a while since I looked at the overall Senn line and this is really interesting... seems they have gone in the classic purist direction of small-diaphragm mics, much like what Neumann and AKG did with the km and ck lines in the 80's, going for an honest and natural set of sonics over several pattern choices.
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Jack Daniel
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 6:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JohnV wrote:
It's been a while since I looked at the overall Senn line and this is really interesting... seems they have gone in the classic purist direction of small-diaphragm mics, much like what Neumann and AKG did with the km and ck lines in the 80's, going for an honest and natural set of sonics over several pattern choices.


Appreciate your thoughts, John. I've enjoyed playing with these newer mics, but I'm back with the 416. It's clearly the most cutting and present, even putting levels aside. That, and the fact that the engineers with whom I work have a clear preference for it that doesn't seem to be based entirely on familiarity.
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Dayo
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 08, 2018 6:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey Jack - always like to swap notes re the 416; how do you like to position yours?
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Jack Daniel
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 08, 2018 8:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dayo wrote:
Hey Jack - always like to swap notes re the 416; how do you like to position yours?


If viewed via time-lapse photography, my 416 positioning would appear, if I'm being kind, erratic in the last few years. I've tried straight-on, coming from the side, coming from below, and pointing down toward my neck; and with a variety of pop filters to keep things lively. I've also gone bare nekkid, talking past the mic to avoid pops. Here's where things stand currently:

I have the 416 tenderly clutched by an EA 600 mic mount on a Heil arm. The mic itself is at about a 45-degree angle pointing down toward my chin. It's also about 45 degrees off to my left side. I just got a Hook screen, which while a nice piece of gear, is really meant for front address, so I'm working on how to best use that, if at all. (I've had VAC screens, Stedman, etc.--I'm silly for shiny things).

The reason I've gone back to the "top-down" approach is to have the mic point more toward my chest and thus pick up that slight tonal advantage. This was at the urging of one of Big Promo Guys who was at my studio, and both he and the engineer I had here that day loved that change. I *think* I hear it but honestly I'm not sure sometimes. But I figure they know what they're talking about so I'm going with that.

I'm considering playing with having the mic come down at 45 deg. and straight on, as I can never leave well enough alone. I know guys who haven't changed their setup in years, have no interest in doing so, and are killing it. I just have the "what happens if I fiddle with THIS?" disease.

How 'bout you?
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JohnV
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 08, 2018 4:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

... and NONE of what you are fiddling around with is in any way out-of-line.
a short shotgun (for that I work an antique AKG451/ck8) by its very nature is a bit aggressive- sounding. The other thing is trusting the folks on the other end of the line. The chest-thing is interesting... makes sense if indeed they say they hear and care about the difference.
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