Sennheiser e602 II Instrument Mic Review

The Sennheiser e602 II is a cardioid dynamic microphone tailor-made to work with low-frequency sound sources. While kick drums and larger toms are the most common uses for this type of mic, other bass-heavy sound sources (such as tubas, electric bass amps and stand up basses) can also be used. An updated version of the original e602, this MK II version is actually available at a more affordable price point and even comes packing a few extras. If you're in the market for a new low-frequency mic to add to your collection, keep reading to find out if the e602 II is the piece of gear that you've been looking for.

 

The Features of the Sennheiser e602 II

At its core, the e602 II is a cardioid microphone built with low-frequency sound sources in mind, featuring a frequency response range of 20Hz - 16kHz and an outputĀ impedance of 350 ohms. Other key features include a fast transient response, frequency-independent directivity for isolation from other on-stage signals, a built-in stand mount, and a proprietary Sennheiser humbucking coil. Overall, this isn't the most feature-packed microphone out there but compared to other mics at this price point, it definitely stands up as one of the better choices on specs alone.

 

The Build

Like all of the other Sennheiser gear I've come across, the e602 II feels like it is built to last. Featuring a tough as nails, lightweight aluminum body, this MK II version of the e602 is actually considerably lighter than the original, making it much easier to use and manipulate on a standard mic stand. Overall, the high-quality construction means this mic should easily be able to handle the normal wear and tear of typical use or even the occasional drop. Still, it might be a good idea to store it somewhere safe and not just in the included soft pouch.

 

Sennheiser e602 II Kick Drum Microphone @ $159.95

Specifications:

* Pick Up Pattern: Cardioid
* Frequency Response: 20 - 16,000 Hz
* Sensitivity: 0,25 mV/Pa; @ 50 Hz 0,9 mV/Pa
* Nominal Impedance: 350 Ohm
* Dimensions: 60 x 153 mm
* Weight: 320 g

The e602 II is a cardioid instrument microphone especially suitable for use with bass drums, bass guitar cabs, tubas and other low-frequency instruments.

 

The Sound

While it's possible to get a clean, high-quality recording on bass-heavy instruments using a typical instrument mic, they will miss a huge chunk of the lower spectrum that mics like the e602 II are specifically designed to capture. Just to give you an idea, an industry standard mic like the Shure SM57 can capture sources as low as 40Hz, meaning it will be unable to convey the natural oomph of kick drum that resides in the lower frequency spectrum. With a range of 20Hz - 16kHz, the e602 II should easily be able to soak up plenty of bassĀ and give you a more robust overall recording. And after putting the mic through a few different tests, it definitely delivers as promised.

The best way to describe the sound of the e602 II is deep and vibrant with an overall warm feel. The low end really shines through clearly without the need of any further EQing -- a sign of a great quality microphone. There's also a decent amount of low-end punch, giving it a modern sound that would work perfectly on rock and metal recordings. While this added depth means that it is not the most natural sounding low-frequency mic on the market, it definitely does a great job of conveying the sense of space and realism from the instrument. For kick drums and larger toms, in particular, the added depth and punch really allows their true in-person character to shine through.

Overall, the e602 II is a solid choice. For less than $200, you open up a whole new area of frequencies that will truly add depth and realism to your recordings. And once you've experienced this added depth of sound, you'll never want to go back.

 

Final Thoughts ...

All in all, I would highly recommend this mic for anyone out there that is looking to expand their current collection with an outstanding low-frequency mic. While it might not boast as many bells and whistles as some of the pricier mics out there, it certainly checks all the boxes on what matters most -- excellent tone, a high-quality build that should last years, and a price point that even sound engineers on a budget can feel comfortable with. If you've been recording bass instruments with a typical instrument mic, do yourself a favor and grab the e602 II. It's a small investment that will give you years of solid service.