Sennheiser Esfera 5.1 Surround Microphone System


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  • Introducing Esfera, Sennheiser's innovative 5.1 surround microphone system which elegantly creates immersive surround audio from a single pair of X/Y microphones. Esfera simplifies workflows for broadcast professionals by efficiently capturing authentic ambience using just two audio channels, and converting this audio information to 5.1 at any point in the workflow - live or in post-production. The Esfera system features two components: the SPM 8000 two-channel microphone unit, and the SPB 8000 surround processor unit.


    • Perfect support of broadcast workflows
    • Decoding done in real time or in post production
    • Record two tracks and decode to surround at any point in the workflow
    • High-quality 5.1 microphone when connected with SPB 8000
    • Very natural sound
    • Weather-proof and rugged components

    SPM 8000
    Two-channel microphone unit utilizes Sennheiser's renowned RF condenser technology to deliver natural and detailed sound, transparency, ruggedness and high resistance to adverse climatic conditions. The system includes two compact, cardioid RF condenser microphones, suspended in an X/Y pistol grip with basket windshield and hairy cover. A Y-cable (XLR-5 to dual XLR-3) is also included.

    SPB 8000
    A 19" rack-mount processing unit, capable of generating a 5.1 surround signal from the SPM 8000 microphone unit, at sampling rates of up to 96 kHz. The SPM 8000 algorithm is precisely aligned with the SPM 8000 microphones, and offers a well-structured interface with user-definable presets. A web interface provides real-time access to all surround parameters like gain of the individual channels, front and surround focus, surround delay, filters and compressor, limiter and the treble boost.

  • SPM 8000 Specifications

    Dimensions length: approx. 237 mm
    Frequency response 35 Hz to 20 kHz
    Max. sound pressure level 142 dB SPL
    Weight approx. 595 g (670 g with “hairy” cover)
    Diameter approx. 106 mm
    Pick-up pattern cardioid
    Phantom powering 48 + 4 V (P48, IEC 61938)
    Operating temperature -10C to +60C
    Equivalent noise level DIN-IEC 651: 13 dB(A)
    CCIR 268-3: 22 dB
    Current consumption 3.3 mA
    Sensitivity - 34 dbV/Pa (20 mV/Pa)

    SPB 8000 Specifications

    Microphone input
    Impedance approx. 4 k , balanced
    Phantom powering 48 V, switchable
    Connection 2 XLR-3F sockets, transformerless balanced
    Dimensions depth with controls and sockets: approx. 44 x 482 x 275 mm (H x W x D)
    depth with sockets: approx. 44 x 482 x 260 mm (H x W x D)
    depth of housing: approx. 44 x 482 x 240 mm (H x W x D)
    Weight approx. 3.9 kg
    Power supply
    Connector (Mains) 3-pin, protection class I as per IEC/EN 60320-1
    Power consumption max. 15 W
    Fuse 115 V AC: T 160 mA L 250 V
    T 315 mA L 250 V
    Voltage range 115 V~ / 230 V~, 50/60 Hz
    Audio characteristics
    THD, total harmonic distortion 0.03% at 64 dBu: gain: 12 dBFS at 1 kHz
    0.004% at 30 dBu: gain: 12 dBFS at 1 kHz
    Signal-to-noise ratio CCIR 468: –82.6 dB, 64 dB gain at 48 kHz sampling rate
    CCIR 468: –106,1 dB, 30 dB gain at 48 kHz sampling rate
    A-weighted: –85.5 dB, 64 dB gain at 48 kHz sampling rate
    A-weighted: –109.3 dB, 30 dB gain at 48 kHz sampling rate
    Unweighted: –84 dB, 64 dB gain at 48 kHz sampling rate
    Unweighted: –104,3 dB, 30 dB gain at 48 kHz sampling rate
    Gain +64 dB (max.)
    Dynamic range 130.3 dB 30 dB gain (A-weighted)
    Crosstalk –70 dB at 10 kHz (–30 dBu input, 30 dB gain)
    Frequency response measured at AES3 Out ½ at 44.1 kHz sampling rate: 10 Hz-21 kHz
    at 48 kHz sampling rate: 10 Hz-22.5 kHz
    at 88.2 kHz sampling rate: 10 Hz-42 kHz
    at 96 kHz sampling rate: 10 Hz-45 kHz
    Digital input
    AES3 standard channels L/R
    Connection 1 XLR-3F socket
    Digital output
    AES3 standard channels L/R, C/LFE, SL, SR
    Sampling rates 44.1 / 48 / 88.2 / 96 kHz
    Bitrate 24 bits
    Format professional
    Connection 3 XLR-3M sockets
    Communication HTTP (POST request method), JSON-compliant
    Ports 80, 9050 with multicast
    Connection RJ 45 socket
    Firmware update via HTTP
    Word clock via Input socket B (BNC)
    AES3 input clock via In socket D (XLR-3F)
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