Back in September 2021, Rycote teased a new high-end shotgun microphone later this month called the HC-22. At the time they didn’t provide that many details or a price. Well, that microphone and the HC-15 are available and have been for a few months.
According to Rycote, for the past 2 years, they have been working hard to make the best shotgun microphone you can buy for less than £700 / $900 / €800. That lead to the creation of the HC-15 Short Shotgun Microphone and the HC-22 Shotgun Microphone.
The HC-22 features a hyper-cardioid pick-up pattern and needs to be powered via a 24-48V phantom source. The HC-22 is 8.7″ / 22.1cm long and weighs 3.5 oz / 100 g. It features a 6.3″ interference tube. The microphone is said to have a claimed self-noise of 8.5 dB and a wide frequency response of 50 Hz to 20 kHz.
- For Film/TV, Location, and Broadcast
- Hypercardioid Polar Pattern
- Extremely Low Self Noise
- Compact & Lightweight
- 6.3″ Aluminum Interference Tube
- Sophisticated RF Shielding
- Weight Balanced to Improve Handling
- Gold-Plated Neutrik XLR Connector
- Requires 24 or 48V Phantom Power
- Rycote Windshields & Mounts Available
According to Rycote, the electret condenser capsule features sophisticated RF shielding to reduce noise and interference, while its hypercardioid polar pattern is claimed to reliably attenuate off-axis sound to provide crisp, precise speech and dialog that rivals substantially more expensive models.
The primary applications for the HC-22 are broadcast, ENG, audio for video, and location sound.
The HC-22 reatils for $799 USD.
You can also purchase it in the form of the Rycote HC-22 Shotgun Microphone Location Recording Kit for $972.24 USD.
There is also a Rycote HC-22 Shotgun Microphone with Nano Shield Windshield Kit NS4-DB which you can now pre-order for $1,229 USD but it won’t be shipping till June.
The HC-15 is a shorter version of the HC-22. It features a 3.7″ interference tube and it is 6.1″ / 15.5cm long and it weighs 3.2 oz / 90 g.
The HC-15 can handle sound sources at volumes up to 133 dB SPL when operating on full 48V phantom power. The mic can also run on 24V, but with lowered SPL handling capabilities. The mic offers an extremely low self noise of 8.5 dB and a wide frequency response of 50 Hz to 20 kHz. A travel case is included, while a wide variety of Rycote windshields and mounting accessories are available separately.
The HC-15 retails for $779 USD.
Like the HC-22 the HC-15 is also available in a few different kits:
- Rycote HC-15 Short Shotgun Microphone Location Recording Kit $937.94 USD
- Rycote HC-15 Short Shotgun Microphone with Nano Shield Windshield Kit NS2-CA $1,199 USD
- Rycote HC-22 Shotgun Microphone Pro Location Recording Kit $1,147.95 USD
Competition for these two microphones comes from shotgun microphones such as:
- Sennheiser MKH 416-P48U3 ($999 USD)
- Sanken CS-M1 ($895 USD)
- Sanken CS-1e ($850 USD)
- Rode NTG3B ($699 USD)
- Rode NTG8 ($999 USD)
- Audio-Technica BP4029 (AT835ST) ($749 USD)
- Sony ECM-680S ($799 USD)
- Shure VP89M ($899 USD)
Rycote has been around for more than forty years, and they have become the industry standard for shock & wind protection for field production sound. To my knowledge, this will be Rycote’s first time making actual microphones.
Given their close association with so many microphone companies, I wonder if a third-party company is actually making the shotgun microphones for Rycote.