Sennheiser G2 personal monitors star at Super Bowl XLII

Super Bowl XLII set a performance record for Sennheiser. For
the first time ever, the musical entertainment during the pre-game and halftime
segments of the Super Bowl broadcast had every performer using a Sennheiser G2
wireless personal monitor system. Every artist, from Alicia Keys’ show opener,
to Jordin Sparks’ singing of the National Anthem, to classic rockers Tom Petty
& The Heartbreakers, relied on Sennheiser personal monitors. In addition,
Petty and his band sang through a half-dozen of their longstanding favorite
model of vocal microphone, the Neumann KMS 150.

Freelance RF specialist James Stoffo says that the Sennheiser G2 IEMs were
rock-solid despite having to transmit and receive between the side of the field
and the stage through a wireless frequency spectrum that included over 1,000
devices in the RF microphone band. “It was a pretty long throw,” he
says. “The band was basically out in the middle of the field on the stage
and we were around the 15-yard line, on the sideline. It speaks volumes for the
integrity of the Sennheiser personal monitors. If they had taken a hit I

would have heard about it. Everybody was happy and there was not one

This was Stoffo’s twelfth year coordinating wireless audio equipment at the
Super Bowl, yet it also marked a first for him: “I got to watch the
halftime show for the first time! I walked around with Tom Petty’s ear mix and
made sure it was fine. Pre-game, I did a little more work, but this was
probably the smoothest year I’ve ever done.”

Brian Hendry, the longtime monitor engineer not only for Tom Petty & The
Heartbreakers but also Aerosmith, Lenny Kravitz and Joss Stone, comments,
“I use the KMS 150 primarily because I can use the high-pass filter and
the pad on it, which I do on everyone. They’re very, very good sounding

“The Neumann mic has a frequency response and audio signature that make it
particularly suited to in-ear use,” he continues, “and works
especially well in Petty’s monitor mix. Personal monitors are very studio-like.
I find the top-end of that mic so open and breathy, and that’s primarily why I
use them. Neumann microphones are really good, high-end, breathy recording
mics. You can hear every nuance in the top-end. It really helps me a great

Understandably, Petty was a little anxious performing in front of the tens of
thousands of fans at the stadium and many millions watching on live television.
“He was so nervous before the show,” Hendry shares. “They wheel
the stage out in sections and it isn’t until the very end that they run over
with the multicores. When Tom and the band stepped onto the field and were
walking towards the stage, which was still going together, I spoke to them
all.” During the band’s walk to the stage, Hendry says, he reminded Petty
of the comment that he had made earlier: “It’s just like ‘Saturday Night
Live,’ only much bigger!”

After the show, says Hendry, “Tom said, that was so
great, that gave me so much confidence. I’ve worked for him for so long that
he’s accustomed to having me beside him, at stage left. He’s a lovely, lovely
man. As a musician and as a person, I can’t say enough about him.” Hendry
adds, “And along with Neumann microphones the Sennheiser G2 monitors were

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