SENNHEISER 900 SERIES LIVES UP TO ITS EXPECTATIONS
|Trinidad Sanchez III uses Sennheiser Evolution 900 Series microphones
and a TRUE Precision 8 on The Rippingtons' recent tour.
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA: Having already had a couple of years experience with Neumann microphones and TRUE Systems mic preamps under his belt, front-of-house engineer Trinidad Sanchez III was excited to hear about Sennheiser's Evolution 900 Series of live sound mics. A nine-week run with smooth jazz veterans The Rippingtons, gave Trinidad an opportunity to try out the new microphones, where they lived up to his expectations.
According to Trinidad, the high point of The Rippingtons' tour was their show at the Hollywood Bowl, which upgraded its sound system during the last year. "It's good when you know you're going to have a great sound system and you're really going to hear the microphones. The sound there was phenomenal. I'd never been to the Bowl, so I was really looking forward to it."
At a minimum, he says, he wanted to tour with the new Sennheiser microphones on the drums, but as it turned out he was able to mic-up the entire six-piece band with the 900 Series. "I was using the e902 on the kick drum. For the rack toms and on the floor toms I used the e904s, with the e905 on the snare drum. And for the hi-hat and overheads I used the e914."
An alternative to the e904 tom mic is the e908D, a condenser mic outfitted with an easy-to-use clip and flexible gooseneck. "I used those for the congas and the bongos in the percussionist's rig," he reports. "I rounded out the percussion setup with a pair of e914s for the hand percussion table, and the e905 for the timbales."
Not only was Trinidad impressed with the sound, but so was drummer Dave Karasony. "It's great when you're at front-of-house and hear something and like the way it sounds," observes Trinidad. "But when you have a drum veteran playing, who has heard every mic and is also very happy with the drum sound, not only from the board mix but coming from the monitors, that's really something. He was very, very happy."
Although essentially an instrumental band, a supercardioid e945 was available for bandleader and guitarist Russ Freeman, who first put The Rippingtons together in 1987. "On his guitar amp I used a pair of the e906 guitar mics," says Trinidad. "Those are great, because they have a clarity that responds very nicely to any equalizer adjustments and they just lay flat right on the speaker cabinet."
Trinidad travels extensively as tour manager and front-of-house engineer for jazz pianist David Benoit, and began using a combination of the Neumann TLM 103 and the TRUE Systems P2 Analog mic pre on the musician's piano a couple of years ago. "I love that combination," he says. "With contact mic solutions, you're still not hearing the piano with any depth. You're hearing something directly in contact with the soundboard that comes off sounding very linear. I've mixed a contact mic with the microphones, but the Neumann and the P2 Analog is the perfect combination to make the piano sound like it should."
Established in 1945 in Wedemark, Germany, Sennheiser is the acknowledged world leader in microphone technology, RF-wireless and infrared sound transmission, headphone transducer technology, and most recently, in the development of active noise-cancellation. Sennheiser Electronic Corporation is the U.S. wholly-owned subsidiary, with headquarters in Old Lyme, Connecticut.
The Precision 8 is designed and built by Sunrise Engineering, a design and build manufacturer located in Tucson, Arizona. Neumann distributes TRUE Systems in the U.S.