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Audio Test Kitchen Cooks with Grace Design

The mic preamp was used for testing 250 microphones.

Lyons, CO (October 24, 2019)—In the process of creating recordings of 250 microphones that can be compared in real time, Audio Test Kitchen co-founders Alex Oana and Ian Hlatky opted to use a Grace Design m108 microphone preamp, noting that the choice of pre amp had to be one that would impart “sonic and political neutrality.”

“Our goal is to reveal the true nature of every one of these diverse microphones,” says Oana. “In our audio engineering team’s experience, Grace preamps are transparent to the source. Just as importantly, Grace is such a widely accepted standard.”

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“The m108 came into the picture offering us not only trustworthy microphone amplification, but analog to digital conversion. While there are many fantastic separate converters and interfaces in our industry, the close integration of preamp and AtoD conversion can actually manifest more minimal, efficient design. Suddenly we had both our mic preamp and our converter,” recalls Oana.

Michael Grace installed an optional Dante card in the M108’s expansion port on a whim—a move that proved fortunate as using a Dante network allowed the ATK team to place the mic preamps in the live room within a single, short mic cable’s distance from the microphones, convert immediately to digital, then handoff to Focusrite RedNet via Ethernet for interfacing with Pro Tools and monitoring in the control rooms at EastWest, Chris Lord-Alge’s Can-Am, and Gold-Diggers LA.

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This month, Audio Test Kitchen launches its debut equipment comparison category, ‘Large Diaphragm Condenser Microphones,’ which totals more than 300 physical microphones, capsules, voicing settings, and virtual microphone models. Audio Test Kitchen will be expanding to include additional professional audio and musical instrument categories with the goal of, “establishing a new, critical information layer in the industry that empowers musicians and audio creators to make confident decisions about the gear they rely on,” says Oana.

Grace Design •

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