Tools of the Trade, June 2008

Jun 1, 2008 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.


This 16×4×2 digital performance and recording mixer from PreSonus ( features FireWire recording with JetPLL synchronization delivering 22 channels of recording and 18 channels of simultaneous playback. The heart of StudioLive is the Fat Channel, which is engaged by pressing any Select button. It features EQ and dynamics on every input channel, as well as on every aux, subgroup and main output. The highpass filter and 4-band semi-parametric algorithms are based on PreSonus' digital EyeQ equalizer. Also included in the Fat Channel are compressors, limiters and gates modeled after the company's ACP88. Other features include LED metering, 100mm faders, talkback, multitrack recording software (Mac/PC) and the ability to export to WAV file formats for compatibility with any other DAW. The unit has 16 XMAX mic preamps and two programmable 24-bit stereo DSP engines offering reverbs, delays and time-based effects.


Yamaha ( has released the RH10MS ($159) pro headphones, featuring Ultrasone's patented S-Logic technology. On the lighter side, the cans feature a tip o' the cap to Yamaha's legacy NS10 monitors by using white plating on the outer ear cuffs. On the technical side, S-Logic claims to offer a unique headphone listening experience by reflecting the signals off the surface of the outer ear in different directions rather than firing the transducer directly at the listener's inner ear. The effect simulates listening to speakers from several feet away, allowing listeners to perceive the same volume at significantly lower SPLs. The 265-gram (excluding the 9-foot cord) units feature an ergonomic design, a padded band for comfort during extended wear and a velour storage pouch. Specs include an 18-21k Hz frequency response, 32-ohm impedance and 96dB sensitivity.


For those seeking expert advice on how to tame the wild acoustic space, Auralex now offers free advice that includes product recommendations and placement for customers facing the challenges of larger spaces, such as churches and gymnasiums. Personalized Room Analysis and free Large-Room Analysis forms are downloadable as PDFs from Auralex's site (, or users can call Auralex directly (317/842-2600) to have a copy of either form faxed. Once all sections are filled out and forms are submitted, within two or three business days an Auralex consultant will review the information and formulate suggestions for Auralex products and their suggested placement in the room.


Two new cases from Hardigg ( — SuperMAC and BlackBox (priced per configuration) — offer a range of features inside a tough, roadworthy enclosure. SuperMAC is the company's most compact transport container with a removable rack option. It features patented Comfort Grip handles, recessed cobalt-black hardware, molded-in lid hangers and a Lock N Load quick-latch system that locks racks securely for transit. BlackBox has a rugged steel frame, a 2-inch front lid and a 5-inch rear lid with edge casters, molded-in rib design for secure stacking and interlock, shock-mounts offering two inches of sway space to isolate equipment and an automatic pressure-relief valve.


Digital Sound Factory ( has reissued the original E-mu Proteus sample content for use with Cakewalk's Dimension Pro and Dimension LE synths. Using the original content with the advanced parameters available in Cakewalk's Dimension, the new instrument programs are matched and tuned to the original hardware products. The E-mu Proteus Pack comprises more than 3,500 sounds that can be used with or without the synthesis options of Dimension, providing numerous ways for custom sonic creation. The Dimension LE synthesizer can be downloaded for free at; sample sets start at $19.95.


Promising to be the first update for VST3 compatibility in a commercially available, third-party plug-in, Version 1.1 of VirSyn's ( Matrix Vocoder ($187, Audio Units/RTAS) is now available for Mac OS 10.4 and Windows XP through the VirSyn Website. The plug-in uses VST3's new native sidechaining ability to improve handling and routing when used with all of Steinberg's latest generation of VST3-ready Cubase and Nuendo production environments. Other VST3 features include a new dynamic I/O and busing system, enhanced CPU efficiency, sample-accurate automation and more.


Three new mics from Lauten Audio ( offer a range of features targeted for studio use. The $999 FC-357 is a solid-state, multipattern large-diaphragm condenser model, with Class-A electronics and a dual-diaphragm capsule capable of omni, cardioid and figure-8 patterns. The $1,599 ST-221 has two small-diaphragm tube mics packaged in pairs, featuring interchangeable cardioid and omni capsules, military-grade NOS tubes and high-resolution electronics. The $1,599 LT-381 has a newly designed, dual large-diaphragm capsule; NOS military-grade pentode input and triode output circuit; and variable omni, cardioid and figure-8 patterns.


Mixcraft 4 ($64.95) from Acoustica ( is affordable, Windows-based, multitrack audio (up to 192 kHz)/MIDI recording software that supports third-party VST and DirectX plug-ins, Apple Loops, ACID Loops and its own custom loop format. The included Song Kit lets users create quick demos in dozens of styles, and then mix, master and burn a CD or MP3 directly in the software. It also comes with a well-rounded arsenal of soft instruments, including a virtual Minimoog and B3 organ, a virtual analog poly synth, a 250MB quad-strike grand piano sample and a General MIDI library.

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