Mackie Introduces Spike

Sep 8, 2003 12:00 PM, Editors


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Mackie Designs Inc. announced an all-inclusive compact recording system. Available in Q4 2003, the Spike Powered Recording System ($419) includes all of the hardware and software necessary to track, mix and record music on a Mac or PC, including Mackie's new XD-2 USB 24-bit USB audio/MIDI interface, integrated Tracktion audio recording and sequencing software, a copy of Ableton Live Mackie and more.

"Many musicians looking to get started in the world of computer-based recording are discouraged by the complexity and limitations of existing software and hardware systems," commented Dan Moore, recording product development manager at Mackie. "Spike is really about providing a turnkey, out-of-box recording solution that will allow even the most technically challenged musician to be tracking and editing their music in a matter of minutes rather than days."

The hardware portion of the Spike Powered Recording System is the new 2-channel XD-2 USB audio/MIDI interface with 24-bit, 96kHz resolution and support for ASIO 2.0, WDM and OS X Core Audio. The XD-2 features two of Mackie's low-noise digital mic preamps that deliver low distortion, plenty of headroom and a clean, detailed sound. Each input channel features a "combo" jack that can support a line-level or an instrument input, in addition to the mic preamp. Other input/output options include S/PDIF I/O, MIDI I/O, stereo monitor outputs, and front-panel headphone jack and level control.

The XD-2 also features an onboard SHARC® DSP chip that supports a full suite of dynamics processing for recording. This includes a 4-band parametric EQ, a compressor/limiter and a gate/expander, all of which can be rearranged in order along the signal path for each input or output channel. The onboard DSP also allows for low-latency monitoring of effects while recording.

The software bundle that ships with the Spike Recording System includes a copy of Tracktion, a new multitrack recording and MIDI sequencing software application from Raw Material Software. Tracktion's interface allows users to record, overdub, edit, mix and play back any combination of audio tracks or MIDI sequences. Through a drag-and-drop interface, Tracktion provides unlimited track count, and full VST and VSTi support automation. Tracktion ships with a number of bundled effects and soft synths. As part of the Spike Powered Recording System, Mackie is also including is a copy of Ableton Live Mackie, a powerful loop-based sequencing software application for live performance based on the Live software from Ableton. Mackie will also bundle the new Warmer-Phaser modulator based on the Blue Tubes bundle from Nomad Factory.

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