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A virtual press conference from Sound & Video Contractor


cras_laptop.JPGTEMPE, ARIZONA – MARCH 2008: With two cutting-edge studio/classroom complexes near Tempe, Arizona, a graduating class of over 800 students a year, a mandatory 280-hour internship, and the most knowledgeable faculty in the industry, the Conservatory of Recording Arts and Sciences (CRAS) is the premier school for audio recording, engineering, and production education in the country. Not content to rest on its laurels, the school implemented an innovative “laptop package” program as of mid-December 2007 in which students receive an Apple MacBook, Logic Studio, Pro Tools M-Powered Academic, an M-Audio Fast Track Pro interface, Sennheiser eH 150 headphones, and a Sennheiser evolution series e 815S-X microphone.

CRAS’s laptop package has been years in the making. Students receive the package as part of the curriculum, which is used throughout the program and remains a solid foundation for the students after they graduate. Noted Kirk Hamm, administrator of the Conservatory of Arts and Sciences, “Because we’re serving 480 students at any one time at ten levels in the program, it’s not easy to make changes. We had to get this package right from day one. Quality was of the essence, not only from an audio standpoint, but also from a reliability and durability standpoint. We had to have gear that would stand up to daily use across a wide range of applications.”

The Sennheiser component of the laptop package acts as each student’s portal to the physical world. At the front-end, the evolution e 815S-X dynamic instrument and vocal mic delivers consistently high-quality capture even under less than optimal conditions. At the back-end, the eH 150 headphones convey an appropriately realistic image of the student’s work. These laptop package components join CRAS’s large stock of Sennheiser products that all students have access to, including shotgun mics for post classes; wireless beltpacks and antennas for the live sound program; and MD 421-II, e 604, MD 441-U and e 602-ll for recording.

As of this writing, 200 students have the laptop package with no returns, failed gear, or complaints. “Every three weeks, 48 new students are getting these packages, which include a Sennheiser e 815S-X mic and eH 150 headphones,” said Aaron Berg Sennheiser sales representative, based out of Arizona. “Approximately 800 packages in 32 weeks are expected to be provided to new students attending the Conservatory.” Berg will be on hand to provide great product support and education throughout the project. “We have a joke here that nothing is truly ‘student-proof,’ only ‘student-resistant’,” laughed Hamm. “We are open 24/7, 349 days a year, so our gear is used to extremes, far beyond any commercial facility. The Sennheiser gear has been excellent and stood the test through the first fifteen weeks we’ve had it here on campus. Another plus is the ten-year warranty on evolution mics, which will carry us through any problems and keep us on track. Because our program runs like a clock, we can’t have any downtime. Our local dealer, Jim Weingard of BKW Inc. in Tempe, is proactive about contact and ready to keep us rolling should the need arise.”

“We’re proud to have Sennheiser products play such a huge role at the Conservatory,” added Hamm. “It’s important to us that our students are taught on industry-standard gear that they will use in the field. We have built our program on quality, starting with our industry-recognized instructors and staff who teach our world-class curriculum on gear that the pros use. Now, as part of our Laptop Package, Sennheiser carries our message of quality out with the students when they leave to start their careers in audio.”

Sennheiser is a world-leading manufacturer of microphones, headphones and wireless transmission systems. Established in 1945 in Wedemark, Germany, Sennheiser is now a global brand represented in sixty countries around the world through long-term distribution partners and subsidiaries in France, UK, Belgium, the Netherlands, Denmark, Russia, Hong Kong, India, Singapore, Japan, China, Canada, Mexico and the USA. Sennheiser’s technology is produced in manufacturing plants in Germany, Ireland and the United States of America. Their pioneering excellence in technology has rewarded the company with numerous awards and accolades including an Emmy, a Grammy and the technical Oscar.

The Sennheiser Group is proud to be affiliated with Georg Neumann (world leading studio microphones), Klein and Hummel (studio monitors) and the joint venture Sennheiser Communications that brings their award-winning technology to headsets for PCs, offices and call centers.

For more information, please visit www.sennheiserusa.com

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