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Which is more versatile, Sennheiser MKH50 or MKH8060?


Nachosgrande
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I'm going to be buying one mic at a time as I build up a collection for short films and documentaries (50% indoor, 50% outdoor). I have spent time with both, but only in their proper settings, 8060 outdoors and 50 indoors. Absolutely love them both and find them easy to work with, although I haven't cut them together to hear if they match well. If you had to survive with only one for a couple months before you buy the next, which would it be?

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I suspect this will be along thread of people suggesting one or the other, based on their personal preference. Then you will likely also see others suggesting something else, like a 4017 or CMIT, because they tend work good for both interior and exterior, then others will argue against that .... etc. In the end you will of course need to make a decision yourself.
Based on your own experience with those two mics that you already like, which one would you pick if you had to choose only one  to bring for a job tomorrow morning?

 

Why not buy one and rent the other one as needed until you can afford to buy. Personally, I would feel “naked” going on any job with just one mic. 

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8060 is more versatile. But I would buy the 50 first for mostly scripted work... I think you can 'cheat' your shotgun mics a bit more often with a less expensive mic (in a pinch...it's not ideal) but there is no faking your clean indoor dialogue.  If i was doing more doc work, I'd buy the 8060 first. But as Karlsson said, going into any job with only 1 mic is a problem (and unprofessional IMHO). 

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It's really an impossible choice; you would want to be prepared with at least one of each type on any assignment.

 

But it's often possible to get excellent results with professional gear even using it outside its normal comfort zone. All The President's Men was recorded almost entirely with a Sennheiser 805/815 shotgun, even the interior scenes. Chris McLaughlin preferred the long shotgun and Jim Webb often deferred to his boom operator in microphone choice. 

 

David 

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2 hours ago, Constantin said:


Just out of curiosity: is among the microphones you heard with intereference tube a 4017?

Or the Sanken CS3e?  A brilliant reach on stage and so forth (not so great in a tile bathroom but what interference tube is)?

 

Yes, though.  Two different tools, both absolutely necessary.

 

D.

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I'll give you a bunch of answers/opinions that don't directly address your main question:

 

* They're two very different beasts, so which one is more 'versatile' doesn't really apply.

* That being said, if I'm faced with a mic/situation mismatch, I'd rather work with a interference-tube mic indoors than a super-cardiod outdoors.

* I adore the sound my 8060, but I find it has too much low-end for even moderate amounts of wind. I really need to get the cut attachment.

* Most of my work is either documentary or corporate, single subject or distance. Usually I have the luxury of aiming a shotgun just right when it's above a single interview subject, but it is indeed a luxury. I'd hate to have to try to split actors in-close for a cinema project with the 8060. However, for wide shots I find it has a lot of presence even at distance.

* So, to answer slightly more directly: I'm always operating on a shoe-string, with a minimal kit, and I only own one boom mic, and that's the 8060. It  gets me by for my low-budget close work where something like a 50 would sound marginally better. When I feel the project calls for it (a scripted commercial indoors, for example, or a doc with a decent budget) I'll rent the industry-standard Schoeps MK41.

* And just for yucks I'll throw in that I tried the MKH 8050 for scripted, hoping it would be a Schoeps killer, and I was quite disappointed.

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2 hours ago, tourtelot said:

Or the Sanken CS3e?  A brilliant reach on stage and so forth (not so great in a tile bathroom but what interference tube is)?


Well, that’s why I was curious about his experience with the 4017. I personally believe that the 4017 indeed is the most versatile mic as it‘ll still sound very good indoors where other tubes sound like crap already. But I also have next to no experience with any Sennheiser mic (mostly because I generally don’t like their sound as much)

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1 hour ago, Constantin said:


Well, that’s why I was curious about his experience with the 4017. I personally believe that the 4017 indeed is the most versatile mic as it‘ll still sound very good indoors where other tubes sound like crap already. But I also have next to no experience with any Sennheiser mic (mostly because I generally don’t like their sound as much)

This is how I feel about the 8060. It sounds so much better indoors than the previous generation of interference tube mics. Boomed for somebody starting out that ONLY used a 416 or 816. indoors and out. Grew to hate the sound of a 416 indoors (except for very nice sounding stages) and didn't feel the 60 faired much better. Granted the 8060 doesn't sound like a Schoeps indoors but much less boomy and muddy when faced with tough reflections. When I have boomed with the 4017 I felt it behaved similar.

 

Off topic: Constantine, I know you used to use a Super-CMIT pretty regularly. How did you find it indoors? Did the Mode 1 setting make it sound nicer indoors?

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