There are plenty of options for home recording microphones these days. In fact, there are probably too many options. The budget price range has become awash with these sorts of microphones that offer all sorts of bells and whistles for a low cost, but never really deliver on performance. A number of years back, German microphone stalwarts Sennheiser decided to shake this up a little and deliver a microphone that doesn’t compromise on quality, yet offers those people looking for a cost effective home recording microphone a viable option, introducing the MK4.
Sweet and Simple
I believe that a great studio microphone shouldn’t have to hide poor performance behind excessive features. If the specifications read too well, there’s usually a compensation going on somewhere for a lacking somewhere else.
So, quite often the best studio microphones are the simple designs that deliver results. There’s no additional circuitry in the microphone than what’s needed. EQ adjustments, filters and phase shifting has been left to the preamp or mixing console, so all you get is the best capsule and electronics housed in the best casing for the price. And all made in Germany to exacting standards too.
What Sennheiser have delivered with the MK4 is a solid vocal microphone that will act as a bit of an all- rounder. In use, it’s easy to hear how it picks up the detail in both male and female vocals, being voiced for a sweet mid-range. That said, it doesn’t lack low frequency response and there is a clear and crisp high frequency roll-off. Because of this, it is equally suited to a range of uses in the studio and works very nicely with a variety of instruments. Set back from a guitar cabinet it captures all the bite of the speakers, but up close to an acoustic guitar you get a more delicate response with a clear, crisp transient attack. As a vocal microphone for the home or project studio, this is a very good instrument microphone for professional use too.
Hits and Misses
Solidly built, German construction
No bells or whistles, just great performance
Studio recording from Sennheiser at an unexpected price
Basic stand attachment, no shock mount supplied