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BidirectionalShotgunMid-Side StereoSennheiser Electronics Corporation MKH 418-S

Multi-Pattern Condenser Stereo Microphone

The Sennheiser MKH 418 S is a Mid-Side Stereo shotgun microphone. At 280mm, it can be considered a medium length shotgun.

Two condenser capsules are used in the 418 S. The Mid capsule is similar to the MKH 416, which has a supercardioid pickup at low frequencies and narrow lobar pickup above 4kHz.

The Side signal is a bidirectional capsule with the positive side directed to the left of the microphone.

Both capsules use Sennheiser’s RF Condenser technology, which uses a relatively loose diaphragm tension and low polarization voltage. Benefits include low self-noise and better performance in changing weather conditions.

“TOP” is labelled on the microphone to aid in correct positioning.

The microphone has a 5-pin XLR jack, which provides the separate Mid and Side output channels. The microphone does not decode the MS signal to XY; the user would have to construct a mid-side matrix in an analog console or DAW to produce a LR stereo signal. (Read more about mid-side, or watch a mid-side demo video.)

Oddly, the necessary Y cable to separate the mic’s two output channels does not appear to be an included accessory (although it is available separately; see p/n Y-Cable AC 20 XLR-5F / 2 x XLR-3M).

See also the Sennheiser MZAMS-1, an external power supply and mid-side decoder. It provides a 5-pin XLRF input, a line/mic output level switch, a high-pass filter, a phase-reverse switch for the “side” channel, and adjustable level/width controls (which affect the relative gain levels of M and S channels). Presumably this box has dual XLR3M output jacks.

The Sennheiser Electronics Corporation MKH 418-S is also known as: MKH418.


Pickup Patterns Pads & Filters
Bidirectional (10 mV/Pa; 40 - 20,000 Hz)
Shotgun (25 mV/Pa; 40 - 20,000 Hz)
Mid-Side Stereo (n/a mV/Pa; 40 - 20,000 Hz)
Capsule Dimensions Impedance SPL/Noise
Diameter n/a
25 Ohms (Low) Max SPL: 130 dB
Self-noise: 22.0 dB(A)
Weight Length Max Diameter Interface(s)
220g (7.76oz) 280mm (11.02'') 19mm (0.75'')
  • 5-pin XLR male (1)
Power Specifications
  • Requires phantom power
  • Phantom voltage: 48v

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