Tools of the Trade

May 1, 2004 12:00 PM


Education Guide

Mix is gearing up to present its longstanding annual Audio Education Guide in its November 2014 issue. Want to have your school listed in the directory, or do you need to update your current directory listing? Add an image, program description, or a logo to your listing! Get your school in the Mix Education Guide 2014.


The newest plug-ins from Focusrite (dist. by Digidesign,, the Forte Suite for Pro Tools models the ISA 110 EQ and ISA 130 dynamics processors, which are two-key modules from Focusrite's Forte analog console. The Suite includes a 6-band EQ, compressor, gate and expander. To keep screen clutter at a minimum, Forte is scalable, offering the ability to use the modules together as a channel strip or as separate components. For sessions larger than stereo, the ISA 130 compressor supports all Pro Tools surround formats. The Forte Suite supports TDM and RTAS on Mac OS X and Windows XP.


The Two-Can from Coyote R&D ( is a turnkey, two-rackspace audio workstation with room for three internal hard drives. The base unit includes one serial port, one parallel port, one VGA output port, one 10/100 Base-T Ethernet port, three FireWire ports, four USB ports and 512 MB of RAM. The unit is optimized for audio and suitable for running sequencers, DAWs, soft synths and samplers. Prices start at $1,595; many upgrades are available.


Pearl (dist. by Independent Audio, takes rectangular mic capsules to new extremes with the figure-8 ELM-B ($2,425) and cardioid ELM-C ($2,000). The black-chrome — finished mics feature a 7:1 length/width capsule ratio, with more than twice the surface area of large-diameter round capsules, and offer a 12dBA self-noise and none of the in-band resonance found in more traditional designs.


PreSonus ( debuts the AD192, an optional digital output card for the Eureka pro recording channel. The new card features word clock I/O, AES and S/PDIF outputs; 24-bit wordlength; and sample rates of 44.1/48/96/192k. A balanced TRS line input is also included so that only one AD192 is needed to use two Eurekas in dual-mono or stereo applications. Price: $250.


Unveiled at NAB, the Symetrix 6200 ( is a dual-channel, DSP-driven voice processor offering complete signal processing of mic or line-level signals, in dual-mono or stereo. Processing blocks can be edited from the front panel or from a Windows-based GUI accessed via USB or Ethernet. Processes include filtering, parametric EQ, compression, de-essing, gating, room simulation and more. The 6200 also supports HomerLink, an interconnect protocol that's compatible with the Studio Matrix system.


Monster Power's ( Pro AVS2000 rack-mountable automatic voltage stabilizer provides maximum protection from voltage sags and a consistent 120V output, even if AC input fluctuates. The $1,700 unit features sequential power-up with programmable delay, illuminated digital meters for monitoring voltage/amperage/correction, a warning light indicating any serious power fluctuations and six outlets.

MACKIE dXb•400

Aimed at pro recording and post, the latest version of the Mackie ( X Series digital console features a 96×96 channel I/O matrix (48×48 at 192 kHz) and 72 channels of EQ and dynamics at 96 kHz (36 channels with DSP at 192 kHz). The dXb•400 improves on the •200 by offering more advanced surround sound functionality, including 24 buses, flexible panning assignment and full surround monitoring features. The standard UAD-1 DSP card offers access to a wide variety of plug-ins.


Loop/sound effect/sample creator PowerFX ( offers Miracle Beats, a $99 sample CD/VST instrument combo. A LoopMorph feature takes individual slices of drum loops and automatically splits each drum kit element onto individual tracks with each slice. The collection contains more than 500 beats and a unique VST instrument interface, allowing complete creation, control and manipulation of beat loops.


The 8-channel Octane mic preamp from M-Audio ( is designed as a front end for any Lightpipe-compatible hard disk recorder. The $749.95 unit features an M-S matrix encoder, analog direct outs for each channel, word clock and 44.1/48kHz operation at 24-bit. I/O is balanced XLR and TRS; phantom power is switchable in groups of eight channels.


The Audix ( I-5 is a dynamic cardioid instrument mic for stage and studio, with a durable cast-zinc alloy body, dent-resistant grille and black E-coat finish. Every model is laser-etched with its model and serial number. Frequency response is 50-16k Hz, and SPL handling exceeds 140 dB. Retail: $179 with mic clip and carry pouch.


Carrying on in the ViPRE mold, Groove Tubes ( offers the Glory Comp, an all-tube compressor employing seven vacuum tubes. Features include dual-isolated output taps and a custom-wound output transformer for interfacing with -10dBV or +4dBu gear. Controls include 1:1 to 10:1 ratios, attack and threshold controls, and 10ms to two-second release times. Users can select between logarithmic and linear release modes, and, like ViPRE, can view the backlit VU meter in seven different modes. Price: $2,999.


The “too tall” nature of Apple's Mac G5 is solved with Marathon's ( rackmount solution. The $199 G5 Rackmount places up to two G5s side-by-side in 12 vertical rackspaces. The mount is constructed of heavy-duty aircraft aluminum, has rigid cross-bracing to prevent sagging, fits rack depths from 19 to 34 inches and does not require modifying the G5 case.


The PHA-979 from Voxengo ( is a PC VST plug-in that lets users apply an arbitrary phase shift to a DAW audio track. The $39 plug-in will simultaneously shift all frequencies across the signal's active frequency range by the given phase-shift value. Features include phase control for each channel, two quality modes, mono-to-stereo or stereo-to-stereo processing, and support for up to 96 kHz.


TerraSonde's ( new Studio Toolbox offers powerful audio tools in a compact package. Features include a graphical backlit 64×128 LCD, encoder input control, mic and built-in speaker. I/O is on balanced XLR and 1¼4-inch jacks, in addition to unbalanced RCA and MIDI I/O. All graphical functions can be assigned to 40 nonvolatile memories and transferred to a PC or Mac for printing. Also featured is a level meter, transport controller, SMPTE reader/fault detector/jam sync, cable tester (MIDI and audio), phase alignment test and more. The unit is AC or battery-powered and priced at $899.


Gefen's ( FireWire Extender lets audio pros put noisy computers far from the listening environment. The system uses a sender and receiver to transmit data at an average rate of 350 to 400 Mbps over multimode, LC-terminated fiber-optic cables. Price is $899, including connection cables and external power supply.


PC users should check out the new Classic Phaser from Kjaerhus (, which emulates analog phasers from the '70s and '80s. The plug offers up to 12 filter stages, a phase shift area between 50 to 20k Hz, mod rate of 0.1 to 10 Hz, full VST automation and support for sample rates upward of 44.1 kHz.


URS ( now offers two new EQs: the A10 (10-band) and N12 (12-band) for Pro Tools. Features include a numeric window allowing 0.1dB gain adjustments, operation up to 192 kHz, and Pro Control, Digi 002 and Control 24. The new plugs are ported for Windows XP and Mac OS 9 to 10.3.2 and are fully TDM-compatible with Pro Tools | HD Accel, HD and Mix systems (software V. 5.3.1 to 6.2.3); RTAS versions will work with MBox, Digi 001 and Digi 002. Sold direct, the plugs are $499 each or $899 for a bundle.


Designed for studio use, Tannoy's ( active TS8 and TS10 subs measure less than one cubic foot in size. The $399 TS8 has a downfiring 8-inch driver and 200-watt amp; the larger $549 TS10 uses a 10-inch driver/300W amp combo. The units operate down to 32 Hz and 29 Hz, respectively, and utilize Tannoy's BASH amplifier technology, combining the best of Class-D and Class-A/B designs. I/O is on XLRs; the output can be selected as either a direct feed or switched to provide an 80Hz highpass filter.


Like to do it yourself? pcAudioLabs ( lets buyers build their own audio-optimized PC online. The company's Website walks buyers through a building process, offering a variety of components/features and advising the user of any potential audio hardware incompatibilities. The company also offers desktop tower models, rackmount systems, mini PC enclosures and laptops.


The $199 Albino 2 synth plug-in from Linplug ( has a 32-step arpeggiator, three types of oscillators, two separate stereo filter modules with two filter types, four LFOs and a sophisticated effects section. The plug is ported for VST (PC and OS X) and AudioUnits (OS X) and requires VST 2.0 or AU-compatible software and a minimum 500MHz host processor.

API Audio ( is shipping its 8200A summing mixer. The single-rackspace unit offers Solo and Mute functions, direct control over level, panning, a balanced insert and two aux sends on each of the eight balanced line input channels…Applied Acoustic Systems offers Nord Modular users substantial savings on the Tassman Sound Synthesis Studio, now $199. Also, Nord users can upgrade to Tassman 4 free of charge. The offer is available for a limited time at www.applied-acoustics.comCadac released Version 1.07 of its Sound Automation Manager (SAM) software, featuring new multiconsole control capabilities, multilingual version support and enhanced MIDI facilities. Download it free at www.cadac-sound.comIK Multimedia is shipping T-Racks RTAS for PC, AmpliTube and T-Racks AU and VST for Mac OS X, and is offering new upgrade prices on its Digidesign Bundle. Visit…Ambient Alchemy, Skillz 2 Pay the Billz and Sounds of Unseen Worlds are three new loop libraries from M-Audio ( The new loops offer bass wobbles, digital glitchery and atmospheric signals derived from plants, rocks, fungi and short-wave radio in .REX2, .WAV, .AIFF and Acidized .WAV formats that are stretchable across a tempo range from 80 to 160 bpm. Price: $49.95…The new exclusive distributor for Ambient Recording GmbH products in the United States is Sound Devices (www.sound Ambient makes a full line of boom poles, mic support accessories, timecode products and miniature mic solutions…Aimed at the education market and digital music production novices, Steinberg's ( Cubase SE is now available as a stand-alone product. SE offers 48 audio and unlimited MIDI tracks for $149…Digidesign announces new Pro Tools LE Factory and Blue Factory bundles. LE Factory bundles either an Mbox, a Digi 002 Rack or a Digi 002 and more than $2,000 worth of Bomb Factory plug-ins. The LE Blue Factory bundle offers greater savings and a Pro Tools LE Factory system, Blue Bluebird mic and accessory kit. Owners of current LE systems can save by exchanging their current system for a Factory system. Visit for details…Quantec, the German audio manufacturer that brought you the Yardstick room simulator, is now being exclusively distributed in the U.S. by Independent Audio, www.independentaudio.comPropellerhead's ReWire software ( is now supported by Tascam's GigaStudio 3. Among many other things, ReWire allows real-time streaming of up to 256 audio and up to 4,080 individual MIDI channels from one audio application to another…Manifold Labs and Superwave announce the inclusion of the Superwave P8 in every Plugzilla. Additionally, Superwave announced plans to support Plugzilla with its pro line of instrument plug-ins, including Superwave Performer, Superwave Professional and the forthcoming Superwave P8000. Visit www.plugzilla.comdiscoDSP ( releases Version 2.0 of its Vertigo additive synth for the PC. New features include advanced CPU optimization (250% faster than Vertigo 1.x), a Spectrogram editor, stretch envelope, Play mode (poly, mono, legato) and improved morphing with time stretch.

Acceptable Use Policy
blog comments powered by Disqus

Mix Books

Modern Recording and Mixing

This 2-DVD set will show you how the best in the music industry set up a studio to make world-class records. Regardless of what gear you are using, the information you'll find here will allow you to take advantage of decades of expert knowledge. Order now $39.95

Mastering Cubase 4

Electronic Musician magazine and Thomson Course Technology PTR have joined forces again to create the second volume in their Personal Studio Series, Mastering Steinberg's Cubase(tm). Edited and produced by the staff of Electronic Musician, this special issue is not only a must-read for users of Cubase(tm) software, but it also delivers essential information for anyone recording/producing music in a personal-studio. Order now $12.95



Delivered straight to your inbox every other week, MixLine takes you straight into the studio, with new product announcements, industry news, upcoming events, recent recording/post projects and much more. Click here to read the latest edition; sign up here.

MixLine Live

Delivered straight to your inbox every other week, MixLine Live takes you on the road with today's hottest tours, new sound reinforcement professional products, recent installs, industry news and much more. Click here to read the latest edition; sign up here.

[an error occurred while processing this directive]

The Wire, a virtual press conference offering postings of the latest gear and music news, direct from the source. Visit the The Wire for the latest press postings.