FOCAL SHAPE SERIES MONITORS
Thenew FocalShapeSeriescomesinthreesizes: Shape40($549)usesa4-inchwoofer,Shape50 ($749)a5-inch,andtheShape65($899)a 6.5-inch. Allspeakersintheseries feature flax-sandwichconessuspendedviathenewTMD surround,an M-shapedaluminum-magnesium inverteddometweeter,andadouble-passive radiator.OtherfeaturesincludeClass ABamplification,ashelvingfilter forhighandlowfrequencies (HF:±3dBfrom4.5kHz;LF±6dBabove250 Hz)andanadjustablehighpassfilter.
RADIAL ENGINEERING BACKTRACK AND SAT-2
Small FormFactor,Playback Problem Solvers
NewfromRadial istheSAT-2($99)stereo audioattenuatorandmonitor controller andBacktrack($349)compactstereoaudio switcher.SAT-2connectsbetweenaplayback deviceandapairofpoweredspeakers,and featuresXLRorunbalanced inputs,XLRbalancedoutputs, levelcontrol,dimswitchwithadjustable level,andmonosumandmuteswitches.Backtrackconnectsbothinputsourcedevices via¼-inch or 3.5mmconnectors, andallowsswitching/mutingbetweenthemusingthefront-panelcontrolsor aJR-2 remote footswitch.
Twin-Channel,ClassD Power Amp
Featuringa small, dual-mono block design, the Drawmer MPA-90 ($695) works asa tabletop or rackmount unit. The fanless design features 90W per channel (into4 ohms) or 180W bridged. The rugged steel chassis offers easy switching from stereo to mono-bridged with the flick ofa switch, and either balanced XLR or unbalanced phono inputs. Other features include thermal, overload and power-up/down protection, plus front-panel standby, fault and clip indicator LEDs.
GRACE DESIGN M900
Reference HeadphoneMonitor andDAC
The new m900 fromGrace Design $499 isa headphone amp/DAC combo designed for pristine playback from USB,S/PDIF or Toslink sources. The unit uses the same analog circuitry and DAC asGrace’s larger monitor controllers but ina smaller, portable form factor. Features include the latest generation AKMDAC chipset, operation up to 384 kHz PCM or DSD128, precision level control in 0.5dB steps, dual parallel headphone outputs, and operation from laptop USB power. Also included is an additional 2A USB power supply and USB connector for high-power-mode operation.
INV-Lite($79)from Rycote’s InVisionrangeofboomshockmounts isspecificallydesigned forindoorboompole recordingwithultra-shortshotgun microphones. Featuresincludea “Cam-lever” designthatgripsthemicatits rearneartheXLRwithout touching theinterferencetubeslots,anda“Wide”designallowingattachmentof foamslip-onsolutions.Thenew rodweight-distribution systemprovidessuperbbalanceacrosstheentiresuspension. Models arecompatiblewith DPA4017C,SankenCS-1e,SennheiserMKH 8060andSchoepsMiniCMITmicrophones.
KII STUDIO MONITOR
Brought to the U.S. and distributed by Grace Design, the new KiiStudioMonitorSystem ($11,495a pair) features four 6.5-inch woofers,a 5-inch midrange and 1-inch waveguided tweeter, all individually driven by six 250-watt Ncore amps per box. The enclosure features true cardioid dispersion addressing problematic bass issues. Other features include analog and AES/EBU inputs, an Active Wave Focusing crossover filter, and selectable correction for free-standing or near-wall placement. Short-term SPL: 110 dB; peak SPL: 115 dB.
8-BIT EFFECTS FOR UAD-2
EmulationofEpic Sound-Mangling Hardware
DevelopedbySoftube forthe UAD-2platform,theOTO Bis- cuitplug-in($249)isanexacting emulation ofthehardwarebox favoredbyEDMproducers, DJs, and remixers. Featuresinclude versatile8-bitcrushingwith individuallyswitchableand invertiblebits,ananalogstereo multimodefilterwith resonance control,‘brain-mode’ offering fourdifferentlo-fieffects,andemulatedtruediode-clippingoninput.Theplug-inis availableexclusively for UAD-2hardwareandApollointerfaces.
AUDIFIED MIXCHECKER PLUG-IN
DSPReference Monitor Simulation
TheMixCheckerplug-infrom Audified($149)promisestobeaone- stopsource foralltypesof referencemonitor solutions. Simulation offersacousticmodelsofcomputerdevices andclassic reference monitors. The Compensationcontroloffers fourclearlylabeled buttons totellMixCheckerthatyouareusing average5-inchor 8-inchspeakersorheadphones.Theplug-inis availableviadirect download for32-and64-bitAAX, AU,VST2,andVST3-compatible plug-in forMacOSX(10.6-10.11)and Windows(7-10).