Musikmesse 2013 Report

Jun 1, 2013 9:00 AM, By Mike Lawson

New Product Highlights from the 2013 Musikmesse/Prolight + Sound Frankfurt Show


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photo of Musikmesse 2013

Held in a convention center that dwarfs the annual WInter NAMM Show's home in Anaheim, the annual Musikmesse international trade fair and its show-within-a-show, Prolight + Sound, took place in Frankfurt, Germany, from April 10 to April 13. Over the course of four days, more than 2,000 exhibitors demonstrated products in multiple halls throughout each day. Each year I've attended, I've learned to make a direct dash to Halls 5 and 8, which contain the products I'm most interested in seeing from music production, live sound and recording studio equipment manufacturers.

This report highlights the top items I saw during Musikmesse/Prolight + Sound 2013.

photo of AKG K612


Hand-crafted in Austria, the K612/K712 PRO headphones models from AKG both are open, over-the-ear headphones with a self-adjusting genuine leather headband, aluminum arches and solid rivet construction. The K612 PRO model is designed for professional monitoring, whereas the K712 PROs are designed for mixing and mastering and feature a detachable cable.

photo of Allen & Heath Qu-16

Allen & Heath Qu-16

The impressively versatile 19-inch rack-mountable Allen & Heath Qu-16 digital mixer is compatible with Allen & Heath's ME Personal Mixing System and features 16 mono inputs (TRS + XLR), three stereo inputs (TRS), four stereo FX returns, 16 buses, 12 mix outputs (L/R; mono mix 1-4; stereo mix 1-3), four FX engines, AES digital out, moving faders, recallable AnaLOGIQ preamps, Qu-Drive direct multitrack recording and playback on USB drives, an 800x480-pixel touchscreen, iLive FX library, dSNAKE Remote Audio Port, and more.

screen shot of Pro Tools 11

Avid Pro Tools 11 metering options

Avid was showing off the newly-announced Pro Tools 11, which adds a wide range of new features to the company's flagship software app. Pro Tools 11 is now a fully 64-bit app with its all-new Avid Audio Engine, promising multiple times the processing power of Pro Tools 10 to allow the use of more virtual instruments and effects plug-ins in your sessions. Pro Tools 11’s meters are a bit taller; you can expand all Send views while also using a mini meter on the mix console screen. In fact, Pro Tools 11 has 16 different metering types in all, delivering an impressive array of choices for maintaining levels in your sessions. A much-requested feature is finally here with Pro Tools 11’s new Offline Bounce to Disk, which not only delivers faster bouncing of your mixes, but also allows for simultaneous bouncing of 16 multichannel stems and the ability to bounce a bus individually. On the down side, older Mac Pro users who’ve been shut out of running OS X Mountain Lion will also find themselves shut out of Pro Tools 11, as it requires OS X Mountain Lion to operate. Pro Tools 11 is slated for release in Q2 of 2013 and is offered in a wide range of upgrade and cross-grade pricing packages.

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