The Paris Expo in Porte de Versailles was a perfect setting for an AES show. Attendance was quoted at 5,000 — excellent for a European gathering. Here are a few products that caught our eye.
The DFC PS/1 PowerStation from AMS-Neve (www.ams-neve.com) is a single-operator, lower-cost version of the DFC Gemini console for predub/prelay and print mastering. Stagetec's (www.stagetec.com) Nexus and Aurus consoles offer a new high-density I/O frame that accommodates sub-modules for analog, AES/MADI-format digital and fiber-optic connections. Lawo's (www.lawo.de) much-anticipated mc290 digital console has a new GUI and user interface. It's aimed at no-fail applications, such as remotes, live performance and on-air.
Apple's (www.apple.com) Logic Pro DAW is now fully Euphonix (www.euphonix.com) EuCon — compliant, directly controllable under this flexible command protocol from surfaces such as the MC Media Controller. A EuCon Hybrid Option can control multiple DAWs from System 5.
Neumann (www.neumannusa.com) expanded its Solution-D digital mic line with small-diaphragm models based on its popular 180 Series. The new modular mics have interchangeable omni, cardioid and supercardioid capsules.
Universal Audio's (www.uaudio.com) collaboration with AMS-Neve offers UAD-1 DSP emulations of classic Neve hardware, such as the 1073 and 1073SE EQs. Coming soon are plug-ins of the Neve 33609 bus compressor and 1081 parametric. The Model 10500 digital monitor from RTW (www.rtw.de) provides a high-res audio vectorscope, peak-reading meters and status monitoring on a built-in LCD. Julyah Communications (www.julyah.com) expanded its Centauri II system (now with connectivity of audio codecs to a standard VoIP topology) and the MERK II portable audio gateway codec.
Best of show? Nahimic, A-Volute's (www.a-volute.com) 3-D sound recording/playback system, uses a real-time spatializing engine, generating a 3-D space map, and then places individual sources anywhere within that environment. A six-transducer headphone re-creates the soundfield.
During their joint keynote address, composer/vocalist Emile Simon and her engineer/technologist (and IRCAM instructor) Cyrille Brissot demonstrated BRAAH, a vocal effects controller worn on the singer's arm, and CADRE, a laser controller responding to the location of objects placed within its beams. The potential of computer-controlled instruments is virtually limitless, Brissot argued: “Any object can be a computer interface.”