West End production of Hamilton (Pic: Matthew Murphy)Having been a pioneer of audio in theatre since 1973, Autograph Sound is not only an enduring Sennheiser user but has also played a role in product development. 

‘Our first purchase of Sennheiser radio systems was for Martin Levan’s design of Aspects Of Love in 1989, with 21 channels of SK 2012 transmitters with EM 1036 receivers – a groundbreaking set-up for the time and a forerunner of the large multichannel systems in common use today,’ recalls Autograph’s Duncan Bell.

West End production of Hamilton (Pic: Matthew Murphy)London-based Autograph has already added nearly 400 6000 series channels to its rental inventory in response to demand from sound designers working on a diverse range of projects, including the London productions of Hamilton and the recently opened Dear Evan Hansen (both designed by Nevin Steinberg), Wicked (with sound design by Tony Meola), School of Rock (Mick Potter) and the RSC’s The Boy in the Dress, designed by Paul Groothuis and Tom Marshall.

The latest Sennheiser 6000 series system combines higher channel density with maximum signal reliability by employing the latest in digital wireless technology. The EM 6000 dual-channel receiver features a 244MHz switching bandwidth providing essential frequency agility, an onboard antenna splitter, AES-256 encryption and a choice of analogue and digital outputs giving flexible connection options with audio mixing systems.

Of particular interest to users in theatre, the all-new SK 6212 digital bodypack transmitter is one of the smallest and lightest (63 x 47 x 20mm and weighing just 112g) available, making it easy to conceal within almost any costume. The metal housing is rugged, moisture-resistant and delivers a continuous battery life of 12 hours. The 6000 system as a whole delivers the multichannel audio performance, integration options, reliability, convenience and configurability demanded by users and designers at the highest professional level.

Sennheiser 6000 series products also feature in the new production of Les Misérables, again designed by Mick Potter and playing at the newly-renovated and re-named Sondheim Theatre. Outside London, Gypsy (designed by Carolyn Downing) at the Manchester Royal Exchange Theatre features 6000 series, as do the touring versions of The Lion King (designed by John Shivers), The Bodyguard (Richard Brooker) and The King And I (Scott Lehrer).

‘Our 30-year journey with Sennheiser has seen so many changes in wireless technology for theatre,’ Bell says. ‘What was once a black art has now been simplified through a process of steady development by several manufacturers – this has led to a point somewhere very close to plug-and-play at the professional level.

‘Despite this levelling of the playing field, Sennheiser still commands massive brand loyalty and market share in our industry because it continues to deliver world-class engineering integrity and RF quality. Additionally, the specific demands of our industry dictate the form factor of transmitters, while the changing spectrum landscape demands increased spectral efficiency – with another Ofcom spectrum re-shuffle underway, Sennheiser delivered the extremely compact SK 6212 bodypack in time for the industry to re-equip for the future. The SK 6212 is another product development in which we played a key part and the 6000 series maintains the core Sennheiser brand values on which we have relied for so long.’

See also:
(The development of DiGiCo's theatre mixing software)
(The development of the digital theatre mixing desk)
(The sound role in preparing for a major theatre production) 
(The history and development of theatre loudspeaker systems) 

More: www.sennheiser.com

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