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sE 8 Omnis - new affordable omni
Old 27th January 2021
  #1
sE 8 Omnis - new affordable omni

Looks like they are producing omni caps for the sE 8 mics after all!

https://www.sweetwater.com/store/det...ne-stereo-pair

I emailed their support line awhile ago asking just about this possibility, and they said there were no plans to make these caps. Glad to be proven wrong! These look like they will be a nice and affordable omni, kind of going after the Rode NT5 market. Might pick up a pair just to have as a utility omni.
Old 27th January 2021
  #2
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
The specs are a little better perhaps than the NT5 also. You'd miss out on the claimed pair matching if you bought the omnis as a pair of standalone capsules, but given that most Omni pairs are used as AB spaced pairs, you'd be hard pressed to pick any imaging disparities anyway (unlike coincident or near-coincident cardioids)...unless the capsules were seriously 'off' in their baseline specs.
Old 28th January 2021 | Show parent
  #3
Gear Addict
 
norfolksoundman9's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by studer58 ➡️
The specs are a little better perhaps than the NT5 also.
Similar on paper, but, of course, there has been discussion about the reality of the SE 8 self-noise before on Gearslutz: nt55 vs se8 . No personal experience of the SE 8s. Perhaps there is already a good and reliable direct comparison of the two (cardioid) mics and, perhaps, soon the same for the new SE omni vs the NT45-O capsule on the NT55...

Cheers,

Roland
Old 28th January 2021
  #4
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
If one is starting out and searching for some budget quality mics, I would skip the Rode NT 55 (and probably also the sE 8) in favour of the Audio Technica AT 4022 for omni and the AT 4021 for cardioid. Those sound so much more refined and are really closing in on the 800 Euro league. Just my 2cts of course...
Old 28th January 2021 | Show parent
  #5
Gear Addict
 
norfolksoundman9's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas_G ➡️
If one is starting out and searching for some budget quality mics, I would skip the Rode NT 55 (and probably also the sE 8) in favour of the Audio Technica AT 4022 for omni and the AT 4021 for cardioid. Those sound so much more refined and are really closing in on the 800 Euro league. Just my 2cts of course...
Sure, but, of course, to get stereo pairs of cardioid and omni mics, going the AT 4021 + 4022 route costs - here in the UK at least - c.£1300 vs £530 for the NT55s with both caps or c.£450 for the SE 8 with both caps. Of course, you end up with 4 mics rather than a pair with a choice of caps, but at well over double the price the AT route is not really in the same ball park if you are happy with the latter.

If upping the budget from pairs of Rode NT55 or SE 8 w both capsules, then a Shure KSM141 pair would be an obvious next step (in the UK currently around £860).

Cheers,

Roland
Old 28th January 2021
  #6
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🎧 10 years
Hi Roland,

I think having one set of cardioids plus one set of omnis is extremely handy for someone starting out...
If one compares the price of two sets (4 preamps), then the price difference is less profound.
I do like the Shures and they have a character of their own, but I do not know of any sub 1000 euro mic that is as clean and transparent as those ATs. Particularly the omnis are in a class of their own, approaching the transparency of DPA. They can be easily mixed with the 4006s. For classical music they are a treat.
Old 28th January 2021
  #7
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🎧 10 years
The reason that I recommend them for classical music is that 95% of mics exhibit a certain character that may fit your taste or not. Nothing wrong with choosing such a mic, but if you want a neutral, detailed sound that captures the space in which an ensemble is playing, then there are only a handful of options. That these relative cheap ATs are among them is simply remarkable. Maybe we shouldn't advocate them too much, or their price might go up...
Old 28th January 2021
  #8
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🎧 10 years
Review www.proaudio.de
Old 29th January 2021 | Show parent
  #9
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by heva ➡️
Thanks for providing that detailed overview heva...it gave a good insight into the construction details, but failed to expand upon the practical test aspects with guitar and piano (no audio samples provided), and of course it didn't include any shootout comparisons with other brands.

Reading between the lines, the review is suggesting that the se8 would stand up to shootout comparison with the likes of MK2s, KM183, MKH8020...as well as lower priced/ranked contenders.

Hopefully we'll see some open-minded field tests when the uptake on this mic (and the opportunity to use it in sessions or public !) allows...it's always great to see new products enter the marketplace at the high performance end.
Old 29th January 2021 | Show parent
  #10
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by studer58 ➡️
Thanks for providing that detailed overview heva...it gave a good insight into the construction details, but failed to expand upon the practical test aspects with guitar and piano (no audio samples provided), and of course it didn't include any shootout comparisons with other brands.

Reading between the lines, the review is suggesting that the se8 would stand up to shootout comparison with the likes of MK2s, KM183, MKH8020...as well as lower priced/ranked contenders.

Hopefully we'll see some open-minded field tests when the uptake on this mic (and the opportunity to use it in sessions or public !) allows...it's always great to see new products enter the marketplace at the high performance end.
Hi Studer, the problem with all these "tests" is that the audio journalism is one of the worst of its kind. That goes for both consumer and professional audio, I am afraid.

I was painfully reminded to this fact when a friend of mine got a new "Avantone Planar Audiophile Mixing Headphones" for review. That product is so badly designed, that even a child with a box of meccano toys could have built something better. The whole construction is so terribly resonant that the landing of a fly on its housing causes a thunderstorm for the listener.

Then there is the sound coming from the drivers... It is an extremely muddy, dark, non-transparent, slow and distortion-loaded affair...

This product raises the question on how on earth someone could come up with such a design, ignoring 50 years of progress in headphone design...

When I saw some press reviews, I was even more shocked. SOS and other "respectable" reviewers treated it as a serious product. They wrote about the advantages of planar drivers, ignoring the slow and totally non-transparent sound of the actual drivers. All of these "reviews" seemed to be written by people that had studied the press-release, but had failed to unpack the product, touch it and listen to it.

There was one exception, and that was on the German website bonedo.de , but even there the message was somewhat veiled.

Apparently the audio journalism is either completely incompetent, or completely corrupted because of advertising income that keeps them afloat in these hard times.

For this reason, I have become very weary of reviews by reviewers who have to earn a living from it.

The only thing that is somewhat useful are comparison recordings when they are done in a somewhat consistent way, but even that is rare.

I am afraid that here remains no substitute for listening to the products by yourself...
Old 29th January 2021
  #11
Here for the gear
 
🎧 5 years
I was a beta tester for the SE8 omni and thought I would add a couple of thoughts to the discussion.

My understanding is that the design brief was to produce an affordable omni that could be used, for example, in a main system for orchestra recordings.

In this, I think they succeeded very well: to me, the mic sounds pleasant, clear and unusually neutral, with a well-balanced frequency response a couple of metres back from the source. I haven’t found self-noise to be an issue in practice.

My main reservation is that I would have preferred a couple of dB less of an HF bump - as an omni spot, it’s a question - for me - of testing on a case-by-case basis.

That said, compared with my KM 183s, for example, the HF bump is substantially more bearable in practice and tends to come across as increased clarity rather than excessive pinginess. In a David-vs-Goliath shootout last summer with Fred2Bern’s MKH 800 Twins (thanks again, Fred!), the presentation in terms of frequency response was broadly similar, at least on headphones at the session.

Apologies for not having any samples I can post but a quick Google search turns up a couple of reviews from German audio magazines. To my ear, the samples in both reviews do a good job of capturing the mic’s particular character:

https://www.bonedo.de/artikel/einzel...omni-test.html (shootout against the Oktava omni).

https://www.amazona.de/test-se-elect...satormikrofon/ (shootout against a KM 83 and a MK 2S).

Gidon
Old 29th January 2021 | Show parent
  #12
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas_G ➡️
Hi Studer, the problem with all these "tests" is that the audio journalism is one of the worst of its kind. That goes for both consumer and professional audio, I am afraid...........The only thing that is somewhat useful are comparison recordings when they are done in a somewhat consistent way, but even that is rare.

I am afraid that here remains no substitute for listening to the products by yourself...
Fortunately most of the gear that makes it through to discussion here is typically at least 'competently fit for purpose'...and often much better than that ! Budgetary factors intrude of course, but generally the live recording milieu places a high performance requirement on gear: reliability, robustness and linear performance plus low distortion is a given benchmark.

This forum abounds with users of high end mics, and there are frequent audio sample postings of these in action...so the level of comparison is probably higher here than many other GS forums (and light years beyond the typical YouTube 'unboxing' standard !)

Because of that tendency toward rigour and consistency of comparison factors, you'll generally find meaningful shootouts here which would be the envy of many audio journals and reviews.

I agree with you regarding the drop in reviewing standards (often little better than retweets of mfr advertising and press releases) in publications which should adhere to much higher standards.

However, the reflections and findings of folks like akkadia above are more typical of this forum's output...it's often simply a case of waiting long enough for the product to have gained a positive reputation, before it's examined here.
Old 29th January 2021 | Show parent
  #13
Gear Guru
 
1 Review written
🎧 5 years
i applaude any efforts to bring new tools to the market place - reliability/consistency/service remain to be seen.

however, i don't buy gear which needs to be shipped around the globe before i can use it/if there are locally manufactured alternatives available...

...so choose your gear wisely!
Old 29th January 2021 | Show parent
  #14
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by deedeeyeah ➡️
i applaude any efforts to bring new tools to the market place - reliability/consistency/service remain to be seen.

however, i don't buy gear which needs to be shipped around the globe before i can use it/if there are locally manufactured alternatives available...

...so choose your gear wisely!
That is a very good attitude... Here in the Netherlands there is still not enough awareness of the ecological foorprint. My Austrian wife (so also from the Alpine countries) has much more ecological awareness...
Old 29th January 2021 | Show parent
  #15
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by akkadia ➡️
I was a beta tester for the SE8 omni and thought I would add a couple of thoughts to the discussion.

My understanding is that the design brief was to produce an affordable omni that could be used, for example, in a main system for orchestra recordings.

In this, I think they succeeded very well: to me, the mic sounds pleasant, clear and unusually neutral, with a well-balanced frequency response a couple of metres back from the source. I haven’t found self-noise to be an issue in practice.

My main reservation is that I would have preferred a couple of dB less of an HF bump - as an omni spot, it’s a question - for me - of testing on a case-by-case basis.

That said, compared with my KM 183s, for example, the HF bump is substantially more bearable in practice and tends to come across as increased clarity rather than excessive pinginess. In a David-vs-Goliath shootout last summer with Fred2Bern’s MKH 800 Twins (thanks again, Fred!), the presentation in terms of frequency response was broadly similar, at least on headphones at the session.

Apologies for not having any samples I can post but a quick Google search turns up a couple of reviews from German audio magazines. To my ear, the samples in both reviews do a good job of capturing the mic’s particular character:

https://www.bonedo.de/artikel/einzel...omni-test.html (shootout against the Oktava omni).

https://www.amazona.de/test-se-elect...satormikrofon/ (shootout against a KM 83 and a MK 2S).

Gidon
Thanks for those two links. Such comparisons do give a slight hint at what to expect from a new product, although own testing will always remain a necessity.
Old 29th January 2021 | Show parent
  #16
Gear Guru
 
1 Review written
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas_G ➡️
(...) there is still not enough awareness of the ecological footprint. My Austrian wife (so also from the Alpine countries) has much more ecological awareness...
not shure its an 'alpine awareness' :-)

...and it's not only about ecological but also about economical aspects, social standards etc.!



p.s. watch out in the netherlands in the next few days: we're gonna send you lots of water down the river rhein!

p.p.s. here's a pic...
Attached Thumbnails
sE 8 Omnis - new affordable omni-20210129_155542.jpg  

Last edited by deedeeyeah; 29th January 2021 at 03:57 PM.. Reason: p.s and p.p.s. added
Old 29th January 2021 | Show parent
  #17
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by deedeeyeah ➡️
not shure its an 'alpine awareness' :-)

...and it's not only about ecological but also about economical aspects, social standards etc.!



p.s. watch out in the netherlands in the next few days: we're gonna send you lots of water down the river rhein!
Looking forward to lots of water, particularly since the Swiss tend to chemically clean it each day...
Old 29th January 2021 | Show parent
  #18
Gear Guru
 
1 Review written
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas_G ➡️
Looking forward to lots of water, particularly since the Swiss tend to chemically clean it each day...
no worries: we've long outsourced/moved critical production to the third world - maybe basf further down the river in germland can help you to get your daily chemical cocktail?

[the real reason the water is fine is 'cause upstream, lake people and daniel weiss dump tons of their old gear into the river... :-)]
Old 30th January 2021
  #19
Old 30th January 2021 | Show parent
  #20
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
That 8-10k bump is helpful, it lets you retain detail if you use them as a main pair and have to locate them further back than you might wish to. Alternatively it can reach further forward into the orchestra with presence...perhaps preventing the need for spot mics on woodwinds or percussion
Old 31st January 2021 | Show parent
  #21
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by studer58 ➡️
That 8-10k bump is helpful, it lets you retain detail if you use them as a main pair and have to locate them further back than you might wish to. Alternatively it can reach further forward into the orchestra with presence...perhaps preventing the need for spot mics on woodwinds or percussion
Yes, it can be helpful in certain conditions, but I wonder why none of the cheaper offerings have implemented the different grid solutions as featured on the DPA 4006. When mass-produced, I don't think it would be such a costly option, and it would make such budget omni's much more versatile. One would expect Rode (who drives innovation of budget mikes) to start such a development in the future...?

When I think of this, why didn't they implement it in the expensive TF omni's?
Old 31st January 2021 | Show parent
  #22
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didier.brest's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas_G ➡️
When I think of this, why didn't they implement it in the expensive TF omni's?
Is there any TF omni ? AFAIK there is no (not yet) omni capsule for the TF5 and the TFM 50 is not yet available and has a membrane mounted on a sphere.
Old 31st January 2021 | Show parent
  #23
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by didier.brest ➡️
Is there any TF omni ? AFAIK there is no (not yet) omni capsule for the TF5 and the TFM 50 is not yet available and has a membrane mounted on a sphere.
I think you're right... Haven't closely watched those new mics.
Whether you like their mics or not, the quality of manufacturing is very high, and I could very well see Rode being the first one to implement grids in lower cost mics. I find that solution preferable to in mic circuitry, and it makes mics a lot more versatile.
Old 31st January 2021 | Show parent
  #24
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas_G ➡️
Yes, it can be helpful in certain conditions, but I wonder why none of the cheaper offerings have implemented the different grid solutions as featured on the DPA 4006. When mass-produced, I don't think it would be such a costly option, and it would make such budget omni's much more versatile. One would expect Rode (who drives innovation of budget mikes) to start such a development in the future...?

When I think of this, why didn't they implement it in the expensive TF omni's?
The equivalent function of the grid would likely be served by various diameter APE spheres, in the larger 15-20mm diameter capsules of the Rode NT5-O and sE8....in similar fashion to the same items already available for Neumann, Schoeps and Josephson/Sonodore omnis. The typical range of these spheres is 30, 40 and 50mm diameter

The cost of these spheres would likely be 50-80% the price of the omni NT5 and sE8 capsules...so not insignificant.

It would be great to see them as optional extras however....currently your choice is to DIY from wooden balls, or buy the 3D printed versions from Shapeways/JM Acoustic:
https://www.shapeways.com/shops/jm-a...nd+Baffles&s=0
https://www.shapeways.com/product/AZ...-40mm-diameter

Last edited by studer58; 31st January 2021 at 05:04 PM..
Old 31st January 2021 | Show parent
  #25
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mljung's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas_G ➡️
I think you're right... Haven't closely watched those new mics.
Whether you like their mics or not, the quality of manufacturing is very high, and I could very well see Rode being the first one to implement grids in lower cost mics. I find that solution preferable to in mic circuitry, and it makes mics a lot more versatile.
Edit: Studer58 had some of the same thoughts, didn't read his before I posted mine, still I'll let it stay:

I would be surprised if they did. Røde so far are quite different from DPA, in the way they're designed, so not sure it's easy to implement. That said the DPA system is very clever.

What Røde may do (and should do in my opinion) is to make a sphere for the TF-5 omni, if they ever make the omni (since so few seem to be interested in TF-5 cardioid, at least here on GS, I have my doubts). But if they do make the TF-5 omni, I will be curious about their performance, compared to Neumann, Gefell, Schoeps etc. - well and sE for that matter to stay on topic...

::
Mads

Last edited by mljung; 31st January 2021 at 09:19 PM.. Reason: Explained after 'edit'
Old 1st February 2021 | Show parent
  #26
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DirkP's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas_G ➡️
Hi Studer, the problem with all these "tests" is that the audio journalism is one of the worst of its kind. That goes for both consumer and professional audio, I am afraid.

I was painfully reminded to this fact when a friend of mine got a new "Avantone Planar Audiophile Mixing Headphones" for review. That product is so badly designed, that even a child with a box of meccano toys could have built something better. The whole construction is so terribly resonant that the landing of a fly on its housing causes a thunderstorm for the listener.

Then there is the sound coming from the drivers... It is an extremely muddy, dark, non-transparent, slow and distortion-loaded affair...

This product raises the question on how on earth someone could come up with such a design, ignoring 50 years of progress in headphone design...

When I saw some press reviews, I was even more shocked. SOS and other "respectable" reviewers treated it as a serious product. They wrote about the advantages of planar drivers, ignoring the slow and totally non-transparent sound of the actual drivers. All of these "reviews" seemed to be written by people that had studied the press-release, but had failed to unpack the product, touch it and listen to it.

There was one exception, and that was on the German website bonedo.de , but even there the message was somewhat veiled.

Apparently the audio journalism is either completely incompetent, or completely corrupted because of advertising income that keeps them afloat in these hard times.

For this reason, I have become very weary of reviews by reviewers who have to earn a living from it.

The only thing that is somewhat useful are comparison recordings when they are done in a somewhat consistent way, but even that is rare.

I am afraid that here remains no substitute for listening to the products by yourself...
This kind of "journalism" is called "service-journalism" within the branche. "Service" means: these magazines offer a service to advertisers/manufacturers to sell their products. They are not made for the readers, who don't even finance the manufacturing costs of these magazines. They are made for those, who finance them: the manufacturers of the products.

Nothing wrong with this, but it kind of surprises me, that not every one, who ever did read just one exemplar of one of these magazines, doesn't figure this out immedieatly. Every 100,- mic sounds nearly exactly like the Neumann it copies. Every 3.000,- mic is well worth its price. The only budget gear that can't rival more expensive gear is from small manufacturers who can't afford to advertise there (and the review shows that these magazines indeed do write critical reviews). That's how ridiculous it is.
Old 1st February 2021 | Show parent
  #27
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by DirkP ➡️
This kind of "journalism" is called "service-journalism" within the branche. "Service" means: these magazines offer a service to advertisers/manufacturers to sell their products. They are not made for the readers, who don't even finance the manufacturing costs of these magazines. They are made for those, who finance them: the manufacturers of the products.

Nothing wrong with this, but it kind of surprises me, that not every one, who ever did read just one exemplar of one of these magazines, doesn't figure this out immedieatly. Every 100,- mic sounds nearly exactly like the Neumann it copies. Every 3.000,- mic is well worth its price. The only budget gear that can't rival more expensive gear is from small manufacturers who can't afford to advertise there (and the review shows that these magazines indeed do write critical reviews). That's how ridiculous it is.
Yes, Dirk, I am afraid you are quite right. With a magazine like Sound on Sound one would expect something different, because that magazine does charge a considerable price to its subscribers.
As it stands, the German magazines like Professional Audio and the website bonedo.de seem to be among the view that deliver at least a tiny amount of objectivity. Really sad that there is not a lot more to be found on the internet.
In consumer audio the situation isn't much better. The only exception I can think of are the technical tests done by Stereophile.
Old 2nd February 2021
  #28
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esldude's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php

This site is doing lots of measurements. Does not take advertising. Not testing all that much pro gear, but does some. The site owner has some of the best available test gear to use.

https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php
Old 2nd February 2021 | Show parent
  #29
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by esldude ➡️
https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php

This site is doing lots of measurements. Does not take advertising. Not testing all that much pro gear, but does some. The site owner has some of the best available test gear to use.

https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php
Yes, I know that site, and I appreciate their non commercial attitude, yet at the same time, although I see measurements as extremely helpful, they do not always describe what our ears tell us. But that's another subject...
Old 2nd February 2021
  #30
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
So far akkadia seems to be the only one around here to have used the se8 omni’s; his comments seem positive.
Sounds good to me.
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