Compared to the recently reviewed AKG D12 VR - a mic as at home in the studio as the live arena - the diminutive D40 is a bulletproof workhorse built primarily for stage use.
The D40 is a compact and unpretentious dynamic mic that has been designed to withstand nightly abuse. Described by AKG itself as being suitable for 'rough stage use' it is equipped with a protective metal casing and grille and has a built-in windscreen/pop filter.
A frequency range of 50Hz to 20kHz and a maximum SPL of 156dB enables it to be placed in front of all manner of instruments.
We test the mic on drums in a studio setting, but the D40 has been built to capture an instrument faithfully in the sonic equivalent of a war zone.
Placed over a snare and then each of our toms it certainly provides a healthy signal with no loss in frequencies.
At the same time it does little to enhance the sound - not an issue in a live setting, but in the hallowed confines of the studio it's hard to get excited about it. This is a mic definitely more suited to its intended environment.