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Tech: New Products, January 2012

Mix magazine January 2012 tools of the trade article features new pro audio products in January 2012 Mix magazine pro audio product section

Roland R-26 Handheld Recorder
Roland’s latest handheld recorder offers a bevy of groundbreaking features, including a 160×160-dot touchscreen, two pairs of built-in mics and 6-channel simultaneous recording. The R-26 ($599) records up to 96 kHz/24-bit (BWF) and MP3. The internal transducers feature a pair of omnidirectional and directional X/Y mics that record directly to an SD or SDHC format card. I/O includes Mini-B-type USB connector, stereo inputs (XLR/TRS combo type), XLR type (phantom-powered), ¼-inch TRS phone-type (balanced/unbalanced) and plug-in-powered mic input (stereo miniature phone–type). The recorder is powered by an AC adaptor Alkaline battery (AA, LR6) x4 or rechargeable Ni-MH battery (AA, HR6) x4, and ships with Cakewalk SONAR LE (Windows).

Vienna Ensemble 
The team at Vienna Symphonic Library has integrated two technologies and workflows to bring users Vienna Ensemble PRO 5 with one-click integration of Vienna MIR PRO. Vienna Ensemble PRO is a cross-platform mixing host with MIDI and audio LAN capability, hosting Vienna Instruments as well as third-party 64-bit and 32-bit VSTi/AU plug-ins. PRO 5 offers full surround support adhering to ITU standards (up to 7.1), touch parameter automation for total control of all plug-ins on slave computers, and a Transport function to start/stop the sequencer from within Vienna Ensemble PRO 5. The newest feature is the optional integration of Vienna MIR PRO, the first whole-space mixing and reverberation solution based on Multi-Impulse Response convolution that was released in the summer of 2009. Vienna Ensemble PRO 5 supports AU/VST/VST3/RTAS, and comes with three licenses for setting up a network of up to four computers. An additional license of Epic Orchestra, a free 9GB Grand Orchestra Sample Pack, is included.

Universal Audio UAD 
Version 6.1 Software
New to the quickly growing UAD platform of plug-ins are the MXR Flanger/Doubler Plug-In ($199) and the Little Labs Voice of God (VOG) Bass Resonance Tool ($149), as well as enhancements to Pro Tools workflow and the Ampex ATR-102 Mastering Tape Recorder plug-in. The MXR Flanger/Doubler replicates the sound of the classic processor with its signature flanging, doubling and delay effects. The Little Labs–authenticated Voice of God (VOG) plug-in for the UAD-2 platform accurately models the sonic characteristics of this unique 500 Series hardware audio processor in every detail. The VOG is used to target and accentuate low-frequency material, from vocals to bass guitar and drums—adding both heft and precision far beyond a simple EQ. Available for purchase via UA’s Online Store.

Slate Digital Virtual Tape Machine
Slate Digital has released the newest plug-in in their Virtual Analog series. The Virtual Tape Machine authentically re-creates the sound of two analog tape machines: a 2-inch 16-track from NRG Studios and a ½-inch 2-track from mastering engineer Howie Weinberg. Each tape machine allows the user to choose input drive, bias, tape type, tape speed, group settings and output. All of the algorithms were developed by master DSP designer Fabrice Gabriel, and were thoroughly tested against their hardware counterparts to ensure that even the most overdriven levels matched sonically. The VTM is Mac/PC, RTAS, VST, AU and AAX, and is available first quarter, 2012.

Real Sound Lab CONEQ Workshop 3.2
The latest update to the CONEQ Workshop software from Real Sound Lab includes equal feature sets across Mac and Windows software versions, filter export to third-party products, improved APEQ-8pro DIO support and multi-language support (English and Chinese in this version). New features of the CONEQ P2/P8/P2pro/P8pro plug-ins 1.2.0 include unlimited number of instances within a project (limitation only on the number of simultaneously filtered channels), renaming of the channel names and better support for non-standard VST hosts. Visit the Website for pricing info on all the available products.

Safe Sound Tracking Toolbox
This three-trick pony from Safe Sound is a mic pre/compressor/limiter meant to replace the company’s first product, the P1. The Tracking Toolbox ($999) features a Class-A discrete transistor mic preamp feeding a second servo IC stage to boost gain past 70 dB; peak-ride compression with fully adjustable threshold, ratio and attack; and “follow audio” controlled release time and automatic makeup gain. The fixed threshold limiter combines program-related elements of “look-ahead” dynamic threshold control with dynamic adjustment of attack time. Other features include a hi-Z instrument input, a stereo monitor section and high-quality headphone amp offering zero-latency monitoring and a 100-percent analog power supply with a toroidal transformer feeding three 100-percent linear power voltage regulators. It is distributed in the U.S. by ZenPro Audio.

TASCAM iM2 Stereo Microphone
Developed specifically for recording high-quality stereo audio into your iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch, the pocket-sized iM2 ($79) stereo mic from TASCAM sports a pair of condenser microphones—the same transducers in the company’s DR Series recorders. The microphones are adjustable over 180 degrees, and are powered by onboard preamps and digitized by TASCAM A/ D converters. The iM2 can handle up to 125dB SPL and comes with a stereo brickwall limiter to tame sudden spikes. The portable unit is powered through the dock connector so no battery is required, and a USB input is provided to charge your Apple iOS device for long recordings, either through a computer or TASCAM’s PS-P515U power adapter. A PCM Recorder app, a perfect companion to the iM2, will be available soon on the iTunes store at no charge.

TC Electronic LM6 Meter Plug-In
With TC Electronic’s new LM6 Radar Loudness Meter ($599, $399 crossgrade) plug-in, audio professionals on a Mac or PC can now meter all mono, stereo and 5.1 productions inside the box (AU, RTAS or VST). The user interface of the LM6 plug-in is similar to TC radar meters for other platforms, like the LM5D for Pro Tools|HD. LM6 shows loudness history in a single, easy-to-read radar-like view and employs a fully synchronous, high-headroom design to also show true-peak warnings and true-peak bar graphs correctly. The plug-in conforms with all of the major broadcast standards based on Leq(K)—e.g., ITU BS.1770-2, ATSC A/85 and EBU R128 (August 2011 update). No additional hardware is required other than an iLok 2 USB Key for licensing.

New Sound Reinforcement Products

Yamaha MY8-LAKE
This processing card from Yamaha adds Lake Technology to PM5D, PM5D-RH, M7CL, LS9, DM2000, DM1000, 02R96 and 01V96 digital consoles, as well as DSP5D Expander, DME24N/64N processors and TXn power amplifiers. Features include Mesa EQ, Ideal Graphic EQ, linear-phase crossover and other tuning elements. The card offers up to 8 inputs/8 outputs in Mesa mode (system EQ), 4 inputs/12 outputs in Contour mode (crossover) or a combination of the two. Flexible I/O configuration via the console’s insert points and the card’s AES/EBU connectors, along with the ability to run at 96, 88.2, 48 or 44.1 kHz, makes it easy to integrate Lake Processing into any live sound system. Multiple cards can be used in Yamaha products that support multiple card slots. Lake Controller software installed on a compatible Windows PC allows control of the MY8-LAKE and other Lake devices in the system, while close compatibility with Smaart contributes to efficient speaker system tuning. More than 1,000 speaker presets are accessible. The MY8-LAKE will be available spring 2012 with a target MSRP of $3,200.

Clair Global CF 1090 Fractal Antenna
In the summer of 2010, Clair Global acquired Wireless First. Both the company’s founder, Kevin Sanford, and his chief engineer, Josh Flower, have been working on a new wireless antenna in their shop for several years, along with Dr. Nathan Cohen, founder of Fractal Antenna Systems Inc. Using fractal technologies, whereby self-similar scaling of antenna elements reduces housing size and increases frequency range, the CF 1090 is circular-polarized and orientation insensitive. The CF 1090 is band-optimized for communications, wireless microphones and wireless monitoring systems. At 15x15x2.7 inches and four pounds, the CF 1090 is easy to mount in a multitude of ways. Bandwidth spans 470 to 928 MHz, and half-power beam width measures 90 degrees.

Community VLF Series
New additions to the Community VLF Series of subwoofers include the dual 8-inch VLF208LV, single 15-inch VLF115 and single 18-inch VLF118. The VLF208LV (portable and install) measures 10×21.75×21.75 inches, has a frequency response down to 40 Hz (-3 dB), an operating range to 30 Hz (-10 dB) and 1,000-watt program. The latter two offer powerful bass with a half-space sensitivity of 98 dB. The VLF115 handles 1,500W program (operating range of 25Hz-1kHz), while the VLF118 handles 2,000W program (operating range of 26Hz-1kHz). All three models can be used in portable or install situations.

Future Sonics mg6pro 
Ear Monitors
Future Sonic’s mg6pro 13mm Ear Monitors, celebrating 25 years, now feature the company’s new MG6pro ($900) 13mm proprietary miniature dynamic transducers. The custom-made models are multi-driver and crossover-free, delivering full-range audio for use onstage, in the studio and with personal media players. Features include 18-20k Hz TrueTimbre Response, 32-ohm impedance, 112dB sensitivity and +/-24dB ambient noise rejection. To upgrade to the mg6pro 13mm Dynamics, services are available for $199.