The e935 is a cardioid vocal microphone specially designed for the rigors of touring and performing under pressure. At $169.95, Sennheiser's mic is targeting the working musician demographic, the same crowded field ruled by the well-known Shure SM58 microphone. And while there are many similarities between this and a lot of other standard vocal stage microphones, the e935 is a mic all its own, especially when it comes to the important subtleties of its sound reproduction. Read on to find out just how well the Sennheiser e935 stacks up against the competition.
Released as part of Sennheiser's Evolution 900 series of microphones, the e935 is built for musicians that require a tough mic for life on the road or constant gigging, one that can take a good beating without dying on them. On that front, the e935 delivers, featuring a rugged metal body and an advanced shock mount design. And while it’s not particularly heavy, coming in at about a pound, the mic feels solid and very well constructed. From our experience, it was able to survive several five-foot drops without as much as a scratch. In fact, you could probably throw this mic against a concrete wall and it will still keep on going (although that is not recommended).
If you take a quick look at e935, it looks like your average vocal stage mic. With a nominal impedance of 350 ohms, the mic is on par with a good majority other stage microphones in this field. Its cardioid pickup pattern helps with feedback reduction, even near speakers and monitors. While all this is standard fare for these type of mics, what sets the e935 apart is its excellent extended frequency response (40 – 18,000 Hz), giving it increased sensitivity and realistic sound reproduction that goes great with vocals. More on that in a bit. Other features include standard XLR-3 connectors and a hum-compensating coil. It also comes with a storage bag and clip.
Loud, clean and clear – this is what you get with an e935. If you’re coming from an SM58, you’ll find the e935 to be a very different mic, much brighter and warmer overall, with better clarity. If you're not a fan of the subdued feel of the SM58, the e935 will be a much better fit. Aside from a difference in tone, notes that would seem to blend into the background with an SM58 will come out sharp and distinct on this mic, meaning flaws in your delivery will not be hidden. While this might be a bit jarring at first, you can retrain yourself and get accustomed to the higher sensitivity of the e935 after a few hours, and it’s well worth the effort. Being a sensitive mic, you'll also need to watch out for noise from excessive handling. Not a huge problem though as this can be corrected with a little self-restraint. Feedback rejection was also very impressive, able to give consistently clean vocals even under particularly loud settings.
Despite being in a very crowded field with plenty of established competition, the Sennheiser e935 manages to differentiate itself thanks to its quality construction and distinct frequency response. While its high output and sensitivity mean the e935 will require more disciplined vocals and handling, it’s a small price for powerful, clean and bright vocals that can cut through a mix without a hint of muddiness. If you’ve grown tired of the "industry standard" but want something just as tough at a similar price point, this is the mic for you. All in all, the Sennheiser e935 succeeds in delivering excellent value, robust construction and exceptional performance in one highly recommended package.
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