New Gear from Musikmesse Prolight + Sound 2014 - Mixonline

New Gear from Musikmesse Prolight + Sound 2014

Musikmesse and Prolight + Sound 2014 once again offered a spectacular look at the technology and tools designed for today’s music, sound and media producers. This year the annual trade event was held March 12-15 in Frankfurt, Germany, and spanned nine massive exhibit halls covering everything to do with music and sound, all housed in one extraordinarily large complex known at the Frankfurt Messe Hall. More than 110,000 reported registrants were in attendance.
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Neumann microphones on exhibit at Musikmesse Prolight + Sound 2014

Photo: Mike Lawson

Musikmesse and Prolight + Sound 2014 once again offered a spectacular look at the technology and tools designed for today’s music, sound and media producers. This year the annual trade event was held March 12-15 in Frankfurt, Germany, and spanned nine massive exhibit halls covering everything to do with music and sound, all housed in one extraordinarily large complex known at the Frankfurt Messe Hall. More than 110,000 reported registrants were in attendance.

Here, in no particular order, are a few of the more impressive products shown for the first time at MusikMesse/Prolight + Sound.

Neumann’s recently announced TLM 107 multipattern microphone is shipping in April 2014 for around $1,500. The TLM 107 is a high-resolution sound transducer said to capture sound without adding coloration. It is offered in black or silver, with a sleek look as good as it sounds, and comes in a newly designed casing.

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Montarbo's Virtual Mixing Technologies VMT real-time mixing and monitoring environment

Photo: Mike Lawson

Montarbo demonstrated the Virtual Mixing Technologies VMT, a real-time mixing and monitoring environment combined with 120-channel recording and editing based on the SAW DAW with currently up to 96x96 I/O channels. Targeting the live concert production and recording markets, Montarbo is producing a touchscreen-based mixing system, using Direct X VST plug-ins that will not allow the use of any latent plug-ins in the system, with sample accuracy on any route used.

Audient introduced its new ASP880 8-channel microphone preamplifier and ADC that includes variable impedance and variable highpass filters.

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PreSonus Monitor Station V2

PreSonus ships the redesigned Monitor Station V2 ($299 street) desktop studio-monitor control center allowing desktop management of analog and a S/PDIF audio source inputs and outputs to up to three sets of monitors, along with four headphone outputs and a talkback mic.

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Harman's Soundcraft Vi3000

Harman is shipping its new Soundcraft Vi3000 “all-in-one” digital live sound console, offering a host of state-of-the-art features including the internal DSP Soundcraft SpiderCore, a new industrial design, 96 channels to mix, onboard Dante compatibility in a compact footprint.

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SSL Live console

SSL announced a new V2 software update for its SSL Live console, along with new Duende native recording plug-ins. The Version 2 software, which releases April 2014, adds more than 25 new features to the SSL Live console, enhancing the Output Matrix, Effects Rack, User Interface, Routing, Solo System and Focus Channel. V. 2 also introduces a comprehensive Offline Setup application. It will be standard on all new consoles and available for free to existing owners. The SSL Duende Native plug-ins release includes X-Saturator and X-ValveComp, which are designed to bring analog saturation and distortion emulation to a DAW. The X-Phase plug-in delivers high precision frequency-specific phase correction. The plug-ins are set to release on May 1, 2014. SSL also announced migration of the Duende Native plug-in collection to the iLok copy protection system and a summer release for AAX versions of the entire suite.

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PMI Audio's Trident 88 8-bus console

Photo: Mike Lawson

Manley showed its exciting new CORE Reference Channel Strip ($2,000) with Class-A tube mic/line preamp, Direct Instrument input, 3:1 ELOP Compressor, Baxandall EQ, FET Brickwall Limiter and Analog VU Meter.

PMI Audio unveiled the impressive Trident 88 8-bus console featuring a fully discrete Class-A design mic pre with the option to add Lundhal transformers to any number of channels. Its Fully Modular Design means that all channels, faders and connections are individually removable for servicing.

Universal Audio announced a new developer relationship with TC Electronic for UAD Powered Plug-ins. No specific new plug-ins were announced but UA anticipated some of TC’s classic products to be included.

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Audionamix ADX TRAX

Audionamix gave me a private demo of ADX TRAX, its one of a kind source separation solution, and it was pure magic. It provides an intuitive workflow, powerful separation algorithms and a unique, melodic “pitchogram” that focuses on displaying the fundamental frequencies of the main melody within a given mix. “Using ADX TRAX saves countless hours when trying to achieve a superior vocal isolation,” says Audionamix’s VP of Production and Product Manger Rick Silva. “We also use our own spectral enhancement process when perfecting vocal isolations for our clients, but using ADX TRAX is our first step.”

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Bitwig Studio

Photo: Mike Lawson

Bitwig Studio is a new DAW/music creation software app brought to you by some of the same programmers who worked on the popular Ableton Live app. It is now shipping and is available for Mac, Windows and Linux.

The Zaor Klavidesk 88-key weighted controller studio desk was among the more innovative showings of anything related to studio furniture. Zoar has ideally placed a full size, high-end controller keyboard (made by Fatar) at the right height for piano players, complete with three pedals that look, feel and act like a real piano’s pedal.

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Zaor Klavidesk

Photo: Mike Lawson

The show is far too big to feature everything in one story, but these are my condensed highlights for 2014. For a complete list of products and exhibitors, visit musik.messefrankfurt.com.