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Sanken Essential to Michael Bishop’s Recording of “Transmigration”

AES Keynote Speaker Extols the Virtues of 100k Microphones

Pictured at AES 2013 is keynote speaker Michael Bishop holding the Sanken CO-100K microphone. Photo by David Goggin.

AES 2013 lunchtime keynote speaker Michael Bishop discussed his recording of John Adams’ “On the Transmigration of Souls.” Its premiere recording received the 2005 Grammy Award for Best Classical Album, Best Orchestral Performance, and Best Classical Contemporary Composition and the 2009 Grammy Award for Best Surround Sound Album. Surround recording engineer Michael Bishop explained his production process and played the work in its entirety.

“This is an incredibly dynamic and varied composition,” remarked Bishop, “Full of fine detail, great impact, and ever-changing color of sound within the orchestra and chorus. When setting the mics for a big composition such as this, I go for the ‘big picture’ on-stage and leave the control of inner balances of the orchestra to the conductor and musicians.”

“On the Transmigration of Souls,” is an award-winning work for orchestra, chorus, children’s choir, and pre-recorded tape. It was commissioned by the New York Philharmonic and Lincoln Center’s Great Performers, and Mr. Adams received the 2003 Pulitzer Prize in music for the piece.

Bishop continued, “The Sanken CO-100K mics were my choice as the main orchestra pickup because I needed a microphone that would have great reach into the orchestra while also capturing the proper top-to-bottom tonal balance. I needed a mic that could reveal very fine inner detail and color of the orchestra, yet hold up to the huge crescendos presented.”

With a 20Hz ~ 100kHz range, the Sanken CO-100K omni-directional condenser microphone is the world’s first 100kHz microphone designed specifically for professional recording.

“I expect every nuance to remain intact even when the orchestra is roaring full-throttle,” added Bishop. “The CO-100K is the obvious choice for such a task, with its huge dynamic range and frequency response. It’s the most versatile omnidirectional mic I know of and I never go into session without the CO-100Ks.”

Sanken’s CO-100K features very fast transients with an extremely smooth response curve, resulting in great clarity and unprecedented transparency. With the ability to capture sounds in the ultra-high frequency range, the microphone also produces very rich results in the low and mid-range of the audible frequency range.

To learn more about the CO-100K and other microphones in the Chromatic Series from Sanken, visit: