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I've put together a new M/S rig of a MKH8040 + MKH30 - still waiting for some of the pieces to arrive. I often hear about the strong low end pickup on the 8040 and know that's there's the MZF8000 filter which has a hard low cut at 16Hz (among other features).

I'm curious, to those who have spent some time with the 8000 series mics, especially in a M/S esteem, do you find the MZF8000 to actually be useful to the point it's very much worth dropping the $500 to get it, or more an "hmm, well, it may be useful but not worth the $500" situation. The MS rig has a stand but is also being prepared as a handheld (Rycote Windshield AE and Connbox 3). It seems these handheld situations are where mentions of the low frequency pickup are noted.

I am totally willing to drop the cash for the filter, yet wanted to see what the consensus was on how useful the MZF8000 actually is. Thanks!

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I have the exact same kit as yours. Honestly, while the MKH80xx series does have a big low end I've never had an issue with it. I even like it actually -- it's easy enough to filter it out if I have to, but for many effects that I record it actually adds a lot of oomph.

Now, if you're planning on mounting the 8040 on a boom or doing a lot of handheld work, that's a different story. Handling noise really can become an issue with that mic. But while I've never personally tried the MZF8000 I know that many production sound mixers and boom ops find it quite useless due to its rather high cut-off frequency and gentle slope -- deally you'd want the opposite to suppress handling noise. There are actually quite a few discussions over at jwsoundgroup if you want to read more about it.

EDIT: Personally, the Rycote that I have has been adequate for handheld work. But generally I do try to lock my rig down.

EDIT2: I've also heard good things about the Schoeps LC60 and LC120, respectively.

  • The noise I'm referring to is the 16Hz and below - the MZF has a hard-wired low cut at 16Hz, and then it has a selectable rolloff and pad. The question is asking about the 16Hz and below - without the MZF do people find using the 8000 series troublesome in handheld to the point that the filter is a useful investment, or that there's isn't much of a problem. – Stavrosound Aug 31 '13 at 6:39
  • I see. I don't think I ever had any real issues with <16Hz. But even if there were any issues, I don't think the MZF8000 would help that much -- I just don't see how 3dB/oct with a cut-off at 16Hz could be effective at all. But again, I've never tied it myself so I could be completely wrong. In any case, I'm curious to hear about your experiences. – Alex Sep 1 '13 at 3:20
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Hi Stavrosound.

Honestly i don't know if infrasound could be a problem with the 8040. I have heard of the handling noises, but that's mostly higher up right? (40>120 hz). I've only had the 8040/mkh30 rig on a stand to compare it with a mkh50/30 combo. I could sent you the resulting wave files (recorded with a sonosax sx-r4)if you're interested.

Regarding the mzf8000 filter option, you could always order that later on right? Or maybe hire a setup with it included?

Cheers!

  • Thanks! No worries about sending files. When the 8040 arrives I'll be able to test the entire set on my 702 and see where we're at. Since the 30/8040 is my main setup, if the MZF is deemed necessary it would make perfect sense to invest in it. Yes I can get it after the fact. I'll just have to test run everything and see what the status is. My guess is it'll be used more often in a handheld esteem than a stand, but I've got the Manfrotto Nano ready to go when needed. – Stavrosound Aug 31 '13 at 8:26
  • ok, let us know what your experiences are. i'm considering buying a 8040 myself and am curious how it works in your setup (rycote etc.). especially regarding handheld work. BTW I love the Nanos they're great! – Arnoud Traa Aug 31 '13 at 8:36
  • so far the setup has worked great. The Connbox is killer, pretty much decouples the entire M/S array from the suspension. There was some slight meter-visible low end based on the waveforms (definitely not enough to create any intermod distortion), but nothing audible at all - likely so low in freq it'll rolloff in PT anyway. So far, withe the Rycote + Connbox = 2 thumbs up (both handheld and stand-mounted). – Stavrosound Nov 27 '13 at 5:29
  • Good to hear that! Which rycot did you get? The stereo windshield? Do you have the numbers? There are so many options on the site :) – Arnoud Traa Nov 27 '13 at 10:40
  • Went with the Stereo Windshield AE. Honestly, I feel the girth on it is 12-15% excessive, but it does a great job. Wanted to go one length size smaller bit the MKH30 length was the deciding factor. – Stavrosound Nov 27 '13 at 15:26

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