Monitor engineer Seth Kendall utilized a Neumann KMS 105 microphone for the vocals of three-time Grammy winner Lucinda Williams on her recent tour of Europe, and will be continuing the practice on Williams’ upcoming “30th Anniversary Tour”.
When paired with a Sennheiser ew 300 IEM G2 wireless personal monitor system, Kendall can deliver fatigue-free monitor mixes that, in his words, “absolutely sparkle.”
While serving as a systems engineer for Clair Brothers, Kendall had the opportunity to hear dozens of capsules against each other in preparation for a Beyoncé tour.
From that experience, he knew that the Neumann KMS 105 super-cardioid and Neumann KMS 104 cardioid live vocal condensers were something special.
“When I went on tour as monitor engineer for Carrie Underwood, we used a Neumann KK 104 capsule on her vocals,” said Kendall. “I loved it. It was much easier to deliver an excellent ear monitor mix with the Neumann than with what she was previously using.”
“With the ‘industry standard’ vocal mics,” he continued, “I find that I have to do a lot of creative EQing just to get the vocal to sit correctly in the mix. And that’s bad, because too much EQing tends to fatigue the listener, especially with ear monitors – and the last thing a performer, who is already under a ton of stress, needs to deal with! In contrast, the Neumann KMS capsules have a shimmer to them – a ‘color’ in the favorable sense that studio engineers use the word.
“The vocal sounds amazing, wide open and detailed, without having to work too hard to achieve it. That makes my job a lot easier.”