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MKH 50 noise during photoshoot

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Hey all,


So I was working an interview that took during a Vogue cover shoot some months ago (video below), and when I busted out my original silver connector MKH 50 in this environment it was spitting out some truly insane noises that I've yet to hear or hear again.


My question is, is there something unique to this photo gear and lighting that was giving me this trouble with my older mic? There were no strobes/flashes and the camera (medium format Hassleblad) seemed to be hardwired to the assistants monitor for data transfer. The G&E setup here was absolutely no joke as it was a Vogue cover shoot and there seemed to be some unfamiliar lights/things floating around as this was a photo shoot rather than the usual video G&E etc that we encounter.


Had to bust out the 416 and yeah, it was not pretty sounding in that environment!




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30 minutes ago, Johnny Karlsson said:

Could this be the clue?
I could be wrong, but didn’t Sennheiser make the 50 more RFI proof when they switched to gold connectors?

My limited understanding is that there are gold pins and silver pins, and there is a regular chassis and a more RF-robust chassis. I definitely pick up some low buzz on my silver-pin 50 near certain lights.

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Possibly RF, maybe if they where using LED lights for the interview part. Sometimes those modules aren't shielded at all and spit a wide band interference. Do some testing near LEDs and see if that was the noise you were hearing.

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I went through the whole Silver versus Gold pin MKH issue many years ago.  I have 15 MKH series mics.  There was a RFI problem with the

original run of MKH 60's and 50's, silver pin.  Sennheiser added more shielding and perhaps a couple of circuitry upgrades as well after users

were complaining.  There could also be an unexplained  (14 kHz ?) whine in the signal randomly.  There are threads on this topic here, and on the 

internet.   There are also theories on soldering part of the braided shield of the mic cable to the shell of the XLR, and using ferrite beads on the 

cables.  Neutrik makes an RFI blocking XLR connector but I have not heard much about this from in the field users.   Amazing mics though,

once you get used to the incredibly low noise floor they can become your first choice for sit down interviews and quiet speaking actors.

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I have had this problem with a Neumann km150. I spoke to my sennheiser rep and he said there was a solution if I sent it in. I think some older mics are prone to interference. The culprit was a large light. I have never had it since with that mic but I also retired it for location use. I have used it multiple times on stage and for recording since. Reach out to a rep they normally have an idea if the model and year is prone to interference. 

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