AKG Acoustics used the 117th AES convention to introduce the C 542 BL boundary-layer recording microphone. The new C 542 BL is designed to perform a multitude of recording tasks, and is especially useful in recording acoustic pianos, drum kits or ensembles.
The C 542 BL is a small, round metal plate only 3.2 inches in diameter, only 0.2 inches high that weighs only 2 ounces, so it is very inconspicuous. The microphone is designed to be placed on any large acoustically-reflective surface---floor, walls, ceiling, or attached to the lid of a grand piano--either permanently with screws or temporarily using the non-marring adhesive compound supplied with the microphone. No stand is required and the microphone is rugged enough to handle being stepped on or dropped.
The C 542 BL uses a pressure transducer that is inherently insensitive to vibrational noise and far less susceptible to wind noise than a conventional microphone, so it is very easy to place and use. The microphone also has a switchable bass cut filter (150 Hz, 12 dB-per-octave) located on its output connector to minimize any undesirable low-frequency noise, plus it has rubber feet to help isolate it from surface noise. The microphone has a hemispherical pickup pattern.
The C 542 BL can be powered either by phantom power or with the AKG B 18 battery power supply. The microphone comes complete with an integral 10 ft (3 m) cable. The C 542 BL uses the same transducer as the well-known AKG C 562 BL that it replaces in a smaller, lighter package at a much lower price. With its high sensitivity, impressive headroom, ease of use and low price, the C 542 BL is destined to be one of the best values for the studio engineer.
Made in Vienna, Austria, the C 542 BL comes with a two-year parts and labor warranty. The C 542 BL will be available in December at a list price of $320.00.