The Verona Opera Festival is not only renowned for its sublime operatic performances, but for its historic venue--the 2,000-year-old Roman amphitheatre, built in 30 AD. Since the inception of the Verona Opera in 1913, performances at the Festival at the Arena di Verona have been without live sound reinforcement. K-array, along with the production company, Musical Box Rent, was asked to provide the first sound system to ever be utilized in the legendary arena. The change was prompted by a need for better overall sound quality throughout the venue, including its back rows and terraces. This year marks a milestone in the history of open-air opera, where technology has finally met up with the artistic needs of the genre. To increase intelligibility and perception of detail without detracting from the raw nature of operatic performance, a completely transparent sound reinforcement system was required; K-array’s KK50 Kobra loudspeakers were selected to preserve the traditional atmosphere and acoustics of the theatre. Alessandro Tatini, CEO of K-array, recalls meeting with Musical Box Rent owner Giambattista Zerpelloni while working on the sound for a concert given by Elisa, the award-winning Italian-born singer-songwriter. “In short, the singers, musicians, and directors were afraid of losing the naturalness of the sound, due to the sound reinforcement system,” he says. “It was a difficult concept to convey that in reality, our system wouldn’t amplify at all, but would merely enrich the sound to a minimum degree.”
SOUND DEVICES CL-9 CONTROLLER EARNS NOMINATION FOR CINEMA AUDIO SOCIETY’S TECHNICAL ACHIEVEMENT AWARD
Sound Devices’ CL-9 Controller, the latest accessory for Sound Devices best-selling 788T Digital Recorder, has been nominated for a Cinema Audio Society (CAS) Technical Achievement Award in the production category. With the addition of the CL-9, the already powerful 788T becomes a complete mixing/recording system.
“We are honored to once again be nominated for a CAS Award.” says Sound Devices Managing Director Jon Tatooles. “Through innovative accessories and our constant firmware updates, Sound Devices is able to offer new and existing 7-Series recorder customers great features and functionality. The CL-9 is the perfect complement to the 788T as it enables the recorder to become a complete mixer/recorder product for critical sound-for-picture and music productions.”
At the NAMM Show in Anaheim, audio specialist Sennheiser is presenting the new MK 4, a large-diaphragm true condenser microphone. This cardioid microphone, which is manufactured in Germany, is Sennheiser’s first large-diaphragm side-address microphone and focuses on giving the best possible sound quality rather than technical extravagance. It provides a powerful yet warm sound that is both direct and tight with fine treble resolution.
The MK 4 with its nickel-coloured finish was developed for professional users in project studios, but is equally well suited for other recording environments and is tough enough for use on stage. It is also a microphone that is affordable for home recordists and musicians. “In the development of the MK 4, we invested every euro in getting the best possible sound,” explained Product Manager Sebastian Schmitz, “and we focused on the key elements of a good studio microphone to ensure that we can offer the MK 4 to our customers at an attractive price.” The finest sound structures are well resolved, and sound coming from the sides is picked up without colouration and so does not change the overall sound quality. The microphone has a very harmonious presence; it has vivid mids and is also very detailed in the bass range. At the same time, typical cardioid cancellation is relatively frequency-independent.
Sturdy large-diaphragm model
The MK 4 has a large 1-inch diaphragm precisely spattered with 24-carat gold. The sturdy metal housing and the elastically mounted capsule make the microphone tough enough for even the most energetic recording situations. The excellent suppression of handling noise offered by the internal capsule mount can be even further improved by the use of an elastic suspension, which is available as an accessory. The open front of the suspension mount enables the MK 4 to be positioned close to the sound source. The microphone has a maximum sound pressure level of 140 dB, and its self-noise of 10 dB(A) is extremely low. “The MK 4 is highly versatile for vocals, acoustic guitars and grand pianos as well as for strings and wind instruments,” Sebastian Schmitz explained. “What is more, in numerous field trials it has proven to be an excellent microphone with guitar amplifiers, drums and percussion. To sum up: it is an unpretentious microphone with outstanding sound.”
The MK 4 will be available after NAMM and comes complete with a microphone clip and a protective pouch. Optional accessories include an elastic suspension, a foam windshield and a popshield.