Tuesday, January 11, 2005
Apparently the MD-21 is not new...been around since the fifties.
The almost indestructible design of this microphone was impressively demonstrated at the Industrial Fair in Hannover in 1954. "We set up a round wooden board, about 5 feet in diameter, on which we had fitted ramps at regular intervals. An MD 21 suspended on a short cable was placed on the board, which was then rotated quite fast. The microphone was dragged up each ramp and could be seen crashing down onto the board again and again," said Fritz Sennheiser describing the unusual demonstration. "It was sensational - at that time, microphones were delicate objects and had to be handled carefully." And even today, the extremely low percentage of repairs for the MD 21 - 0.4% - speaks for itself.
But even Prof. Dr. Fritz Sennheiser never expected the MD 21 to be such a bestseller for so long. "We started with a completely normal "edition", with production at that time in batches of 500." In the course of its long life, the microphone has undergone only minor modifications, including a change from the gray hammer tone to a black finish. "We also improved the transducer system in accordance with the state of the art, basically involving improvements to the diaphragm. The main issue was - and still is - eliminating partial oscillation in the diaphragm."
To celebrate the birthday of this exceptional microphone, Sennheiser electronic issued a limited edition in a light-gray hammer tone design with the signature of Prof. Dr. Fritz Sennheiser. The birthday edition was limited to 100, and the first three of these, in a special presentation package, were auctioned off in May 2004 for a good cause. Personally, I prefere the black one!