sE Electronics Z5600a II - User review - Gearspace.com
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sE Electronics Z5600a II
4.2 4.2 out of 5, based on 4 Reviews

Tube sound is just there, with a little resonance on low-mid, not colouring the voice but also have a smooth top-end giving air to any voice

22nd March 2012

sE Electronics Z5600a MkII by bbensoy

  • Sound Quality 4 out of 5
  • Ease of use 4 out of 5
  • Features 5 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 4 out of 5
  • Overall: 4.25
sE Electronics Z5600a II


SE Z5600a II is a tube mic offering 9 multipolar patterns. It has a -10dB pad and LF roll-off switches on the mic.


On vocals:
As a singer and a recording engineer, I care about the focus of the mid-range and of course the top-end of the sound that excites any vocalists . I can say that this unit can generate a full vocal sound because of the nice mid-range clarity without any harshness. While it has the tube character very well, there is no big fuzz on top. So this is not the best one for a bryan adams or Rod Stewart type voice but maybe good for a John Mayer kind of sound where wouldn't like to go to the extreme hairy sounds but also nice detail. Also there is a nice resonance at around 200-300 Hz that helps me to control on low-chest resonance and focus on diaphragm usage. So that might also a very nice choice for a thin tenor voice. The amount of boost around 10kHz is just as what it should be. It just gives the right amount of air and smooths the voice. It doesn't sound characteristic which I like on a general vocal tracking. I want to have the voice as it is while a pro singer also wants to hear this.

On Drum Overheads:
The open top-end shows itself on the cymbals. The focus on low mid range helps a lot on the fundamental of snare and tombs giving a nice crack on top. Omni pattern is working very well of the mic having a large diaphragm emphasizing the low-end of the early reflections. As there are mid-patterns between cardioid and omni it is worth trying the best for the room compromising the focus on the cymbals high-end.

On acoustic guitar:
I tried with a maple body and maple neck mini jumbo acoustic guitar. As I don't get much low-end from the acoustic sound, the mic helps a lot emphesizing the low mid-range, resulting a larger sound. The tubular warmness is just there but with a smooth top-end. I positioned the mic between 12th fret and the sound hole. The hole sound boomy as expected but using the semi-patterns going to omni from cardioid, helped me a lot on that again at that position.


The price is very similar to mid-priced tube mics out there like Rode K2. But what I expect, this wins with detail at top-end. Also this unit is a nice attempt of a Neumann 47 copy where it has the body shape as same as Telefunken 251 too. So, this is a nice price in my opinion.

2nd April 2012

sE Electronics Z5600a MkII by soundmark

  • Sound Quality 4 out of 5
  • Ease of use 4 out of 5
  • Features 5 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 5 out of 5
  • Overall: 4.5
sE Electronics Z5600a II

This is a lotta mic for the coin. Lots of patterns, tube, big sound. I bought 2 after I heard how well it did in a vocal mic shootout at my place. I found it awfully useful on male vocals and anything else that needs to sound bigger than it actually is.
Found the mic responded well to certain tube brands, the stock tube was easily beaten.
Sounds pretty smokin with a SH Gama pre/Steel and a smooth tube replacement.

5th April 2012

sE Electronics Z5600a MkII by MaartenT

  • Sound Quality 4 out of 5
  • Ease of use 4 out of 5
  • Features 4 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 4 out of 5
  • Overall: 4
sE Electronics Z5600a II

Firstly I'll start with the features. HPF, -10dB pad, remotely selectably patterns. Also the tube is easily switchable.

The xlr-connector on the power supply broke off pretty quickly, but SE gave gave me a new connector as that was the cheapest way of repairing it.

The sound. I liked it on overhead duties. But on some sources it can be a bit ess'ey and sharp. On vocals it's nicely detailed. It's not up there with the big names, but nontheless it's a big step up from mics such as an Nt1a or Se2200.

8th April 2012

sE Electronics Z5600a MkII by MasterCrab

  • Sound Quality 4 out of 5
  • Ease of use 4 out of 5
  • Features 4 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 4 out of 5
  • Overall: 4
sE Electronics Z5600a II

All the basic stuff is already covered, so i'll just write about my thoughts and uses.
The sound is quite "tuby" and as others have said it works well on male
vocals to give it that thick sound. Using a quite clean preamp it still cuts
through in the mix without needing a lot of EQ, but when used with for example
the LA610 Mk2 the sound gets a bit too dull IMO.

For me it gets most used on vocals. I also use it on acoustic guitar, but almost
everytime in combination with a SDC. When positioned in the right spot and having
selected the right pattern, it captures a good warm image of the whole guitar.
Without the SDC it isn't clear enough for me. I've also used it once as a room
mic for a drum set, which worked OK.

I've had no problems with the quality of the mic or PSU but one thing that
i'd like is for the XLR connector on the PSU to have a clip. Atleast mine doesn't
grab the cable and although you don't pull in the cable at all, it would be nice to
know that it won't come off.

A good mic for the prize IMO.


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