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Avis de Anonyme - Sennheiser e 602-II

The Sennheiser E 602 II is an affordable microphone designed by Sennheiser specifically to work with "bass instruments." This means that it will probably get utilized most often on kick drums. What I do find intensely interesting about the Sennheiser E 602 II, however, is its bizarre ability to make cheaper kick drums sound absolutely fantastic. More on this later.

The Sennheiser E 602 II is a dynamic microphone tailored specifically toward bass instruments (read: kick drum, although I suppose that mic'ing up other bass instruments like a bass cabinet is not out of the question, but it was not something any of us attempted when we had the microphone). It has a fairly typical pickup pattern of cardioid, and has a very nice extended frequency response from 20 Hz all the way to 16,000 Hz. I like this quite a bit, as Sennheiser did not opt to completely chop the top off like some companies do. This makes sure that the percussive element of the kick itself does not get buries underneath a mountain of bass frequencies, which some microphones seem intent on doing.

The Sennheiser E 602 II performs roughly on par with its magical AKG counterpart, the D 112, although this microphone possesses a rather uniquely magical quality. Sennheiser mentions it in passing: "ideal for direct use on the most problematic bass signal." Even then, Sennheiser does not exactly say what that means. Kick drums often suffer from a boxy sound, if they are not of particularly high stock. Maybe this microphone is tunes to fix that, but it makes cheap kits sound like little explosions, in a good way. Oddly enough, it makes higher end kick drums sound rather strange.

OVERALL OPINION

Whether you grab the Sennheiser E 602 II depends on what kick drum you have. If it is not of higher end, then you would do well to grab this if you do not plan on upgrading anytime soon. Otherwise, it would be wise to check out other solutions.