Hello there!

I am about to assemble a MS microphone set for field recordings; after some testing and researching I have decided to go the Sennheiser route with a MKH 30 for the side, and either a MKH 8040 or 8050 as the mid channel.

At the moment I am bit stuck though in my decision between the cardioid and the hyper-cardioid: I am both into recording spot effects as well as ambiances - from what I have learned so far a cardioid in MS setup should give a more natural and consistent stereo image, hence it is recommended if the focus is more on stereo/ambience recordings. A hypercardioid though would offer a more focused mid channel apparently for anything that does not require a shotgun (and I would like to avoid a shotgun in a MS setup), which would be nice when recording spot sounds of course.

So, what to do? I can't afford all three mics yet, nor would I want to carry around a second mic for the mid channel with me in the field & having to open the Rycote everytime I need to replace the mid mic.

Best would be to do a shootout, but there's no real rental service around here where I live; maybe somebody can share his experience with hyper vs. cardioid in a MS setup?



  • just remember. the 8050 will flip the stereo image with anything that moves behind the microphone. it's called stereo swapping. this might not be ideal in certain situations.
    – user5936
    Apr 13, 2013 at 22:39

1 Answer 1


I'd go with the cardioid, it's more versatile. for example if you'd buy a second 8040 in the future you'd have lots of options for useful setups: Double MS, MS + spot-mic, XY, ORTF, AB and so forth. Many ambiences sound a lot better/wider/real recorded in setups that consist of spaced mics, like ORTF or AB. Just an opinion of course...


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