Neumann KM-D Digital Microphones

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Re: Neumann KM-D Digital Microphones

Post by Hugh Robjohns »

Yes, very poor sales possibly due to a misunderstanding of the market.

With a digital mic all you can do is place it and plug it in. Where's the fun in that when there is no scope for golden-eared tweakery in choosing specific cables and /or preamps.

And that's inevitably going to make them unattractive for the kind of pros with the budget to invest significantly in digital mics.

I imagine Sennheiser and Neumann assumed the traditional broadcasters would buy into the idea, but the money's no longer in that market for this kind of radical operational reform and, surprisingly, few large digital consoles support the AES42 connection format directly either -- a supply and demand issue presumably.
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Re: Neumann KM-D Digital Microphones

Post by Folderol »

Well talk of late to the party. This is the first I've heard of these - just in time to see them disappear over the horizon :roll:
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Re: Neumann KM-D Digital Microphones

Post by forumuser840717 »

Hugh Robjohns wrote:With a digital mic all you can do is place it and plug it in. Where's the fun in that when there is no scope for golden-eared tweakery in choosing specific cables and /or preamps.

That's one of the things I like about them :tongue:

If they could automatically select which of them were the right mic for a given situation, and position themselves too, they'd be approaching my perfect mic!
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Re: Neumann KM-D Digital Microphones

Post by Hugh Robjohns »

forumuser840717 wrote:That's one of the things I like about them :tongue:

:lol: Yeah... but I don't think you an be considered 'normal' by the standards of most recording engineers! :mrgreen:

If they could automatically select which of them were the right mic for a given situation, and position themselves too, they'd be approaching my perfect mic!

Isn't Waves working on a plugin for that? :think::lolno:
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Re: Neumann KM-D Digital Microphones

Post by MOF »

I was very impressed with the miniaturisation of the A-D circuitry, all inside the microphone body.
I was interested in the technology but had no real use for it, especially since back then it would have required a digital mixer with remote control software incorporated and extra cost.
Later on I bought a Sound Devices mixer which accepts AES microphones but won’t control them. So for me they’ve come and gone, for now, maybe like the Ambisonic microphone they’ll make a come back.
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Re: Neumann KM-D Digital Microphones

Post by forumuser840717 »

Hugh Robjohns wrote::lol: Yeah... but I don't think you an be considered 'normal' by the standards of most recording engineers! :mrgreen:

Fair point :tongue:

Isn't Waves working on a plugin for that? :think::lolno:

Oh I do hope so! Preferably with presets and an 'Auto' function.
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Re: Neumann KM-D Digital Microphones

Post by John Willett »

I still have my pair of KM-D with two pairs of omni capsules (nearfield and diffuse field) and still like them.

A friend had some and loved the fact that you could run 200m of cable with zero RF interference and noise on the run.

But, as Hugh said, probably not enough sales - sadly.

But the series is still current in the fact that there is the analogue KM-A (analogue) module and all the capsules and accessories as a continuing series - in fact Neumann discontinued the excellent KM100 series and replaced it with the KM-A series - much to the sadness of many KM100 series users who wished they still had it. In many ways I wish they had just updated the electronics in the KM100 module and kept the old series going.

And, as far as I know, Schoeps still do the Super CMiT gun mic. which is an AES42 microphone.
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Re: Neumann KM-D Digital Microphones

Post by Nites »

They were going after the wrong market. Should have come out with USB or TB mics for the voice over artist, streamer and podcaster markets. In the current market all the USB mics on offer are plasticky low end offerings. Nothing studio quality.
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Re: Neumann KM-D Digital Microphones

Post by Forum Admin »

Nites wrote: Thu Jul 01, 2021 3:25 pm In the current market all the USB mics on offer are plasticky low end offerings. Nothing studio quality.

Not sure that's true... some of those in this round-up are non-plastic:

https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/ch ... microphone

And Marantz offer their MPM-4000U which is a USB microphone, based around a 14mm aluminium-plated cardioid capacitor capsule.

More info: https://www.soundonsound.com/news/maran ... microphone
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Re: Neumann KM-D Digital Microphones

Post by Arpangel »

Hugh Robjohns wrote: Sat Sep 15, 2007 6:22 pm The Box is quite useful once you've learned how to interpret it (which doesn't take that long)

hugh

Oh yes it does, I’ve got one, and can never remember how it works, I use it as a crude level meter, and to see if my M&S is working correctly.
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Re: Neumann KM-D Digital Microphones

Post by Hugh Robjohns »

Arpangel wrote: Fri Jul 02, 2021 10:00 pm I’ve got one, and can never remember how it works...

I am not even slightly surprised... :lol::silent:
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Re: Neumann KM-D Digital Microphones

Post by forumuser840717 »

Arpangel wrote: Fri Jul 02, 2021 10:00 pm I’ve got one, and can never remember how it works,

Depends whether you have the original wooden box or the newer plastic box version.

On the original, you squirt electricity into various holes in the back and it shocks the pixies inside, making them jump about on the switches that turn the little lights on and off. Louder signals make for more electricity and more jumping pixies in the crowd.

There's a little see-saw just inside the input holes that bounces from side to side in time with the incoming electricity and turns the power on to different pixies at different times so they turn the lights on and off in time with the electricity from the two inputs.

When you send exactly the same thing to both inputs, the seesaw gets stuck in the middle and only the pixies working the red lights up the middle get any shocks. When the electricity is very different between the inputs, then pixies at the edges of the crowd get more shocks.

Simple, but effective.

The newer one uses fairies because the box is smaller and the pixies wouldn't fit.
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Re: Neumann KM-D Digital Microphones

Post by Arpangel »

I’ve got the newer black "Box"
It’s built into my mic amp, it’s also very temperamental, works intermittently, but it is very useful, once you use one it’s difficult to do without.
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Re: Neumann KM-D Digital Microphones

Post by forumuser840717 »

I agree. I've got one of the older wooden box ones that I've had for about 35 years and once you get the hang of them they're very useful. When they're lined up properly one can get away without using any other meters for general mixing. And they were a lot easier to carry around on location jobs than an oscilloscope! (Though mine pre-dates the perspex fronted boxes and has a glass front that needs a bit more care in transit than the perspex version.) Sounds like you have one of Mike Skeet's preamps or mixers.

Mike wrote a good article in a 1984 edition of Home Studio Recording magazine about how "The Box" works and how to read it..
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Re: Neumann KM-D Digital Microphones

Post by Hugh Robjohns »

It was an ingenious design in its day, but with a current price of £450 completely impractical when the infinitely more informative TC Clarity meter provides a better stereo vectorscope display, and so much more besides, for half the cost!
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