Tools of the Trade

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Founded by four former AMS-Neve R&D engineers, Sonalksis enters the market with a 6-band stereo EQ plug-in. The SV-517 operates on both Mac and PC platforms at up to 192 kHz, and features six filter bands, two variable-slope filters and four parametric bands, two of which are switchable shelves. The plug is currently ported only for the VST format, with DirectX, Apple Audio Units and RTAS soon to follow. Sonalksis announced the upcoming release of the SV-315 Stereo Compressor plug-in, along with general support for DirectX and Apple Audio Unit plug-in formats. Price: $240. A 30-day, fully functional, free demo is available for download at

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Princeton Digital is now shipping the Reverb 2016 through an exclusive OEM agreement with Eventide ( The Reverb 2016 faithfully re-creates the original reverb algorithms of the vintage 1980s Eventide SP2016, including Stereo Room, Room Reverb and High-Density Plate, as well as enhanced versions of each algorithm. The new interface is simple, featuring one-knob-one-job controls and bright LEDs for each of the effect's parameters. Other updates include 24-bit analog audio I/O, digital I/O and a MIDI interface.


Back from the brink of extinction, Fairlight ( releases the StationPLUS, which doubles the capacity of the Station integrated mixer/editor that was first released in 2002. The new Station gives users an expanded workspace, taking the platform to a whopping 144 channels and 48 buses. This is accomplished by increasing the number of DSP cards (up to four) in the QDC chassis, along with some subtle changes to the user interface. To upgrade, customers can purchase a software license ($2,500) and additional DSP cards ($8,750/each). An upgraded GUI provides additional zoom windows and enhanced track-select modes on the edit display. The unit lets Nuendo and Pro Tools users store automation as part of a mix project. The StationPLUS starts at $55,000.


The multifeatured Eureka from PreSonus ( is a mic preamp, compressor and EQ in a single-rackspace unit. The Class-A, transformer-coupled mic preamp features variable impedance (50 ohms to 1,200 ohms), tube-saturation emulation, -20dB pad, 80Hz highpass filter, phantom power and a polarity-reverse switch. The compressor offers attack, release, ratio and makeup gain adjustment, sidechain input and a soft-knee mode. The compressor is also stage-switchable with the 3-band parametric EQ. Other extras include switchable gain/output metering, a balanced insert, dual TRS/XLR outputs, and instrument, line and mic inputs. An optional AES-S/PDIF back end is capable of up to 24-bit/96kHz operation.


The MaxPac 8020M is a transportable, full-performance desktop DAW that can be torn down and set up in fewer than two minutes. Commonly equipped with Digidesign Digi 001/Pro Tools or Steinberg Nuendo or Cubase, the Pentium 4/Windows XP-based system features dual high-performance drives, a DVD/CD-RW burner and a 17-inch display. Packaged in an aluminum briefcase, the system weighs only 27 pounds and occupies one cubic foot of space. A shock-isolation system minimizes the risk of damage during transport and still allows the MaxPac to meet all airline carry-on size and weight requirements; an optional Pelican hard case allows it to be checked as baggage. Prices start at $6,000. Visit


M-Audio ( enters the mic-manufacturing arena with the slick, new, affordably priced Luna microphone. The large-diaphragm cardioid condenser uses Class-A FET electronics, and all units are claimed to be within ±1 dB of the standard reference. Price: $249.

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The 16FXD from Alesis ( is a 16- channel, 4-bus analog mixer with built-in digital effects and S/PDIF output (44.1 kHz/16-bit). The unit features eight mic/line inputs and four stereo line inputs on balanced TRS connectors. The preamps offer switchable 75Hz highpass filters, phantom power and up to 50 dB of gain. Each I/O includes a 60mm fader, 3-band EQ and two aux sends: one fixed and one settable to pre- or post-fader. The master section features stereo LED meters, 2-track send and return, and a separate control room level control. The digital effects section offers 100 28-bit effects, including reverbs, delays, chorus, flanging, pitch and multi-effects. Price: $499.


Echo ( introduces two new affordable Indigo front-end products: the io and dj. Indigo io offers unbalanced ⅛-inch analog I/O, a headphone amp with volume knob, eight “virtual” software outputs, and a 6-foot breakout cable for RCA and ¼-inch connections. The highly portable dj works on either Windows or Macintosh notebook computers, and offers the same hardware and software as the original Indigo, plus a second independent stereo analog line output. Both units are priced at $229. Not to be left out, the original Echo has been spruced up with the inclusion of software support for Echo's multiclient drivers and eight “virtual” outputs at a new price of $159.


These new, clean power-distribution boxes from Furman ( consist of four models, each with extended-length cords and three, four or six outlets per device. A fifth Pro Plugs Power module is a three-outlet travel model with retractable phone cable specifically designed for the intrepid producer/engineer requiring stable power on the road. List prices range from $20 to $49 per device. Also available is a 25-foot 16AWG×3C heavy-duty power cord with a three-prong grounded male wall plug and three females outlets at $15 U.S. list.


To commemorate the 90th birthday of Sennheiser founder, Prof. Dr. Ing. Fritz Sennheiser, the company released the new MD 421 Special Edition. The mic utilizes the legendary large-diaphragm, dynamic element of the original microphone, and is limited to just 990 production units. Each limited-edition microphone features gold-plated hardware, comes with a velour-lined wood box, a desk stand and includes a numbered certificate of authentication personally signed by Prof. Dr. Jörg Sennheiser. Visit Happy Birthday, Dr. S!


A small speaker with big features, the battery- or DC-powered Speak Easy from Remote Audio Products ( offers separate balanced or unbalanced inputs (XLR/RCA), front-panel volume control, and frequency response of 140 to 20,000 Hz, all in a 3-pound package. The 4×4½×6½-inch cabinet is magnetically shielded and can operate up to 10 hours on a single 9-volt battery or accepts 6-15VDC via the BP-90-type connector. Price $179.


Trillium Lane Labs ( launched the TL MasterMeter for the Pro Tools platform. TL MasterMeter digitally models the same conversion process that occurs inside the D/A stage of a consumer CD player, allowing users to identify potential intersample peaks. The meter features 2x, 4x and 8x oversampling DSP models, and generates a peak list that can be saved for review. Price: $199.


Filter features four stereo, analog-modeled, multimode filters; four individual delay lines; and two programmable rhythm generators. In addition to the ability to harmonically slice and dice your tracks, Filter lets you animate them with a variety of tempo-synched “timbral variations,” with full MIDI control, powerful routing and modulation capabilities, and the ability to lock every time-based parameter to Filter's master tempo or an external MIDI clock. Antares Filter is available for RTAS, VST (Mac and PC), MAS and DirectX. Price: $199. Visit


Mackie ( has released a new control surface that combines the functionality and compatibility of Mackie Control, Emagic Logic Control and Mackie's HUI protocol into one universal controller. It features eight channel strips, each with a 100mm Penny + Giles optical touch fader, and a V-Pot to control effects and plug-ins, plus a backlit LCD and shortcut navigation and editing for all major software functions. The base unit's silkscreen will correspond to Logic Audio functions, while software-specific master-section overlays customize the unit to other supporting DAWs. Several upgrade paths allow existing Mackie Control or Logic Control owners to step up to the Control Universal. Price: $1,299.