Sennheiser today unveiled an update to its MKE 400 shotgun microphone. The MKE 400's shock-mounted capsule is designed to minimise handheld noise, while the newly designed microphone housing doubles as a standard windscreen.
A fur windscreen is also included for outdoor use: A LowCut filter can additionally help keep problematic low frequencies at bay.
In addition to the low-cut filter, there is a three-position sensitivity switch and a headphone monitoring output with an integrated eight-position digital volume control. This makes it possible to control the sound even if the camera or smartphone do not have a headphone output or the audio combi jack is already occupied by the microphone.
Both a standard jack cable for DSLR/DSLMs and a TRRS cable are included, which should work on the headphone jack of a smartphone. A USB-C or Lightning connection, on the other hand, remains the buyer's problem (but should be achievable via appropriate adapters).
The new MKE 400 has also "borrowed" the automatic on/off function from its obvious competitor, the Rode VideoMic Pro, which many users miss. When the MKE 400 is connected to DSLR/M cameras, it switches on and off automatically with the camera. So the microphone is ready to go the moment the camera is and helps save energy when not shooting. The power detection also works with many smartphone models: If you remove the MKE 400 from the smartphone, it switches off automatically. There is also a manual power button, which has a power-off delay to prevent accidental operation.
With two AAA batteries, the microphone can record continuously for up to 100 hours. A battery indicator is supposed to reliably warn three hours before the batteries run out. The old MKE 400, by the way, lasted 300 hours with one AAA battery.
The exact technical data for the microphone can be seen in the following picture:
The MKE 400 is also available as an "MKE 400 Mobile Kit", which includes a Sennheiser smartphone clamp and a Manfrotto PIXI mini tripod. The MKE 400 is available at a price of EUR 199 (RRP). The MKE 400 Mobile Kit is available at a price of EUR 229 (RRP).