[caption id="attachment_53717" align="alignright" width="300" caption="*** Jeff Keith in Wheatstone’s audio processing lab ***"][/caption]New Bern, NC – March 2014… As one of the world’s premiere designers and manufacturers of professional broadcast audio equipment under the Wheatstone and Audioarts Engineering brand names, Wheatstone Corporation’s product development labs exercise the most stringent quality control procedures at every step of the development cycle. For this reason, the ability to know precisely how something will sound is a mission critical consideration throughout the development process. To ensure the sonic accuracy of each and every product the company releases, extensive testing and evaluation takes place—and central to this process are D5 and D8 studio reference monitors from San Diego, CA-based Equator Audio.
Jeff Keith, CPBE, NCE, is the Senior Product Development Engineer at Wheatstone Corporation and is the engineer primarily responsible for the development of the company’s audio processing products. Much of his work involves analysis and research of, and ongoing improvement to, the science and algorithms used in the company’s state-of-the-art processing products. Both at his home and work, Keith looks to his Equator monitors to ensure consistency throughout every step of the product development process. He discussed his preference for Equator Audio monitors.
“I have two pair of Equator D5s at my residence and a pair of D8s in the lab at work,” Keith states. “One pair of D5s resides in my living room for general music and sound listening while the other pair is used in my home audio lab, where I conduct research and development for DSP-based audio processing algorithms that will later be used in Wheatstone’s products.”
“As for the living room set,” he continued, “after I installed the D5s, my completely non-audiophile wife surprised me by actually commenting on how great they sounded. This pair serves as an invaluable reference for how the non-trained ear is likely to perceive sound. In my home-based lab, the work I perform there requires extremely critical listening skills and the ability to notice sometimes very subtle sound differences between similar algorithms. This type of work requires one to be able to literally hear ‘inside’ the sound, and the accuracy and revealing nature the D5’s makes them ideal.”
At Wheatstone’s audio processing lab, the work continues. “The work that takes place in our lab is an extension of the work I do in my home lab,” says Keith, “with the exception that, here, we also have the ability to compare all of Wheatstone’s audio processing products to those of our major competitors. This work also requires an extremely accurate and revealing set of monitors; hence the D8’s. Even though the lab itself isn’t a perfect acoustical space, the D8’s perform admirably well in both the frequency and time domains.”
In discussing those Equator monitor attributes that most appeal to him, Keith was quick to point out the sonic consistency throughout the entire frequency range. “Both the D5’s and D8’s sound uncannily accurate,” he reports. “The sound is so ‘real’ that you can almost feel the emotion the artist was experiencing when they recorded a particular song. I like the fact that, unlike other (and sometimes more expensive) monitors I’ve auditioned, the Equator D-series have no noticeable peaks or dips in their response curves. As I mentioned before, they sound uncannily accurate. For this reason, I know I can trust them.”
Prior to shifting his attention back to the business of the day, Keith offered these parting thoughts about the Equator D Series monitors and their impact on his work at Wheatstone Corporation, “Our company’s audio gear performs near the limits of what can be quantified by measurements with even the most expensive test equipment but, to many customers, it still has a definable ‘sound’. Accurate monitors like the D-series enable us to hear—with great accuracy—what our gear sounds like. During a typical year, we host many visitors. Most of them are customers who come to our factory to see their newly purchased products being made and/or tested and configured. Working in the broadcast industry, these customers know what good sound is and, without exception, upon hearing the Equator monitors in our processing lab, they frequently ask, ‘Where did you get those awesome speakers?’ In my book, that’s one heck of a compliment.”
To learn more about Wheatstone Corporation, visit the company online at www.wheatstone.com.
About Equator Audio
Equator Audio is committed to delivering studio reference monitor solutions that overcome the myriad of challenges faced in today’s audio production. Whether the challenge is on the production line or in the studio control room, Equator is dedicated to identifying and addressing it. Our products are used daily in mission-critical applications at many of the world’s finest recording studios. For additional information on all Equator Audio products, visit the company online at www.equatoraudio.com.