For the first time in maybe forever, the AES Show in NYC has been moved online due to COVID-19. It makes sense, but we’re going to miss seeing all of our friends in person at the show. 

Make sure to check out the online AES show here: https://aesshow.com/

In lieu of walking the floor we thought it'd be fun to put together a virtual walkthough of the floor and what you would have seen from some of our advertisers who we meet with at the show. If you see something you like, please support our retail advertisers and know that when you purchase via links in this guide that you are helping Tape Op keep the lights on! Enjoy!

AES Buyer's Guide Part Two
AES Buyer's Guide Part Three

Ear Trumpet Labs

Eat Trumpet Labs Edwina

Edwina

Edwina ($599) is a versatile large-diaphragm condenser microphone for close-to-medium distance micing of vocals, acoustic instruments, and a variety of sources on stage and in studio. With meticulously tested, hand-wired electronic components, Edwina is designed specifically for feedback rejection in demanding live settings. Her smooth, detailed sound excels at all kinds of stage duties, from vocals to acoustic instruments to drum overheads, and also shines in the studio as a warm, accurate recording mic. She is optimized as a single-source mic, but with a sweet spot from one out to 18 inches, she does great capturing voice and instrument together for solo or even two performers. Edwina is handbuilt in Portland, Oregon and used by artists like The Milk Carton Kids, Andra Day, Jerry Douglas, and Sierra Hull. REVIEW

Ear Trumpet Labs Myrtle

Myrtle

Myrtle ($640) is a distinctive large-diaphragm condenser microphone with spring-suspended retro styling. Ideal for vocal performance use and single-micing small acoustic ensembles both live, in studio, and in livestream concert applications. With classic 1930s vintage styling and highest quality hand-wired electronic components, Myrtle offers warm, detailed sound, astonishing feedback rejection, and a low end tuned for accurately capturing acoustic instruments from any distance, with a sweet spot starting at 6" out. Myrtle is handbuilt at the Ear Trumpet Labs workshop in Portland, Oregon and used by artists like Brandi Carlile, The Wood Brothers, Band of Skulls, Sara Bareilles, The Lone Bellow, and Mary Gauthier.

Ear Trumpet Labs Nadine

Nadine

Nadine ($599) is a large-diaphragm condenser microphone specifically designed for use on upright basses, tuned to provide the most natural sound for acoustic bass in a live setting or in studio ensemble recordings. The low end is tuned to give a flat response at the mounting distance, and the cardioid pickup pattern provides very natural sound by picking up as much of the surface of the bass as possible. Physically, the mic is separated into the body, which securely straps to the tailpiece with velcro elastic, and the head, which mounts easily between the strings above the tailpiece using a rubber grommet. The 14-inch Mogami cable that connects the two parts makes it easy to place the mic ideally on any bass. This mounting system makes Nadine both easy to move from instrument to instrument and secure enough to leave on one bass permanently. After years of being asked for a mic specifically designed to meet the needs of the acoustic upright player, we think we've found the best design yet for this demanding application. Handbuilt in Portland, Oregon and used by top bassists like Christian McBride, Missy Raines, Barry Bales, Mark Schatz, Daniel Kimbro and more.

Buy From Reverb

www.eartrumpetlabs.com

 

Telefunken

Telefunken TF11

TF11

The TF11 is the newest member of the Alchemy Series and TELEFUNKEN Elektroakustik’s first large diaphragm phantom-powered condenser microphone. Blending an Austrian-inspired voicing similar to the legendary C12 with modern FET high performance, the TF11 yields a beautifully open and detailed 3D sonic image, with a quick, accurate transient response, high SPL handling, and low self-noise. The TF11 features a unique combination of circuit elements shared with other TELEFUNKEN Elektroakustik designs. The CK12-style edge terminated capsule is a single membrane version of the capsule featured in the TF51. The amplifier is a unique proprietary take on the classic FET mic amplifier similar to the M60, coupled with a custom large format nickel-iron core transformer by OEP/Carnhill made in the UK. Premium through-hole components include UK-made polystyrene film capacitors, Nichicon Fine Gold electrolytic capacitors, and a high-performance, ultra-low-noise JFET amplifier. The TF11 was developed to bring the Alchemy Series pristine audio quality into a more compact and convenient package, designed for the studio, built for the stage, and priced for everyone. Created, hand-assembled and tested in the USA, all critical components are subject to the same high standards as the rest of TELEFUNKEN Elektroakustik’s product line.  Available as single mics, or matched stereo sets

www.telefunken-elektroakustik.com         

 

Electric and Co.

EC6 Tube Microphone Preamplifier and DI

Electric and Co. E6

The Electric & Company EC6 Tube Microphone Preamplifier is a deluxe version of our EC600 amplifier circuit (Ampex 600/601). The EC6 uses EF86 and 12AU7 tubes, Cinemag input and output transformers, classic and boutique film/foil capacitors, mil- spec film and carbon composition resistors, mil-spec potentiometers, and a host of other top shelf components to deliver an authentic 1950s era American tone. When pushed, the EC6 delivers a complex harmonic signature giving the user a wide range of control over the tonality. Think of it as an American V72 that takes its coffee black. REVIEW

Buy From Vintage King

Electric and Co. E7

EC7 Tube Microphone Preamplifier and DI

The Electric & Company EC7 Tube Microphone Preamplifier is a deluxe version of our 6072 amplifier circuit. The EC7 uses 12AY7 and 12BH7 tubes, Jensen input and output transformers, boutique polypropylene and polystyrene film/fil capacitors, mil-spec film and carbon composition resistors, mil-spec potentiometers, and a host of other top shelf components to deliver an absolutely gorgeous sound. The EC7 exhibits a rich low end, a sweet top end, and a healthy amount of color. Think of it as a big, warm, electric hug for your music.

Buy From Vintage King

www.electricandcompany.com

 

Pearlman Microphones

Pearlman TM-47

TM-47

This microphone is based on the venerable U47 and is built in a body reminiscent of the classic look of the 50s and 60s. The stock TM-47 is a cardioid microphone made with the Pearlman K47 style capsule (made in Southern California), a 6SJ7 or 6AC7  tube, hand wired, point-to-point circuit with paper-in-oil output capacitor, and the Pearlman BV8 type output transformer. All Pearlman microphones come with shockmount, Mogami cable with Neutrik connectors, USA made power supply, and aluminum carrying case. .. Gluten free.

Buy From Vintage King

Pearlman Church

 

CHURCH

The PEARLMAN “CHURCH” microphone is a faithful remake of the Stanley Church MGM microphone from the 1950’s. I have stayed true to the original schematics including the use of vintage, refurbished K47 and M7 capsules, a hand selected 6072 dual triode (12AY7) and the original TRIAD transformer that is being made again especially for PEARLMAN MICROPHONES after fifty years of it not being available. The CHURCH mic is built in the same housing as the TM-1 and comes with all the goodies; power supply, shockmount, handbuilt Mogami cable and aluminum carrying case. This is truly a limited edition mic as only a limited number can be built. You will not believe your ears. Please inquire for International Shippng.

Buy From Vintage King

Pearlman TM-1

TM-1

The Pearlman TM 1 Microphone was designed by and is hand made by Dave Pearlman of ROTUND RASCAL RECORDING STUDIO. It is a high-quality microphone made for professional studio use but priced for the home recordist. Many studios using digital recording, (Pro Tools, etc.), need a front end system to warm up their recordings. All Pearlman microphones include power supply, cable, shock mount, and aluminum case.  NO GMOs.

Buy From Vintage King

www.pearlmanmicrophones.com/

 

 

 

Kludge Audio

Kludge Audio 506 EQ

Kludge Audio Model 506 Equalizer

The Kludge Audio 506 equalizer is the inductor-based equalizer that everybody wanted in 1975, but couldn't have because the technology didn't exist.  It uses a standard inductor-based topology just like we were using in 1975, but it's built with materials and performance that were impossible back then. We started with a classic inductor design and took it to the limit with custom built inductors and precision amplification that sound cleaner and more subtle than anything possible before. It's the best of old and new. It's an old design, built by hand with traditional methods and solid design, but built to be cleaner and more accurate without losing the characteristic sound of the inductor equalizer. No fancy options. Just three bands of great sound, with tunable top and bottom shelf filters and a widely-sweepable midrange peaking filter. Not too wide. Not too narrow. It's just right.

Kludge Audio Transwarmer

Kludge Audio Model 510 Transwarmer

The Kludge Audio 510 Transwarmer is a solution to a common studio problem. It is a 500-series board that incorporates a specially-designed audio transformer that produces a mellow and soft warming effect that is relatively constant with level. This makes it much easier to use than other typical transformer color devices. Because it's designed for modern studios it includes a termination load so it can be used into modern inputs of relatively high impedance, but you don't have to use it if you prefer the sound without it. Just like our 506 Equalizer, it takes the best parts of traditional technology and the best parts of modern design to integrate classic sounds into modern studios. REVIEW

Kludge Audio 511

Kludge Audio Model 511 Germanium Preamplifier

In the Kludge Audio tradition of taking older designs and building them out to the utmost possible with modern technologies, we bring you a microphone preamp with a germanium front end designed well beyond what was ever possible in the days when germanium transistors were common. It is reasonably quiet and has plenty of gain but when overloaded provides a gentle and warm limiting effect which allows you to get a dense and mellow sound rather than the unpleasant buzziness typical of conventional modern designs. This allows it to be used for aggressive limiting on anything from vocals to horns. It's a colored preamp with a wonderful and surprisingly versatile coloration, not for use on everything but a tool every studio should have in their kit. Just like our famous equalizers it is the best of old and new together. REVIEW

www.kludgeaudio.com/500

Millennia Music & Media Systems

HV-316

Millennia HV-316

Millennia's new HV-316 is now shipping. A 16-ch remote Dante-enabled microphone preamplifier designed for critical acoustic recording in harsh environments. HV-316 is the most technically-advanced microphone preamplifier in Millennia's 28-year history. Technical Hall of Fame HV-3 micamps with legendary timbre realism and dynamic uniformity, packaged in a lightweight 1U aircraft-grade aluminum chassis. Up to 256 channels of HV-316 or legacy HV-3R remote micamps can be controlled by a single instance of Windows-based AELogic, Millennia’s third-generation front-end control software. Employs 16-ch of meticulously integrated, latest-generation AKM 192kHz A-D converters, multi-paralleled for extreme dynamic range performance and trusted Millennia sonics. +36dBu input headroom / 130dB dynamic range. Remotely control Gain, Polarity, Pad, Mute, channel Linking, high-pass filter, selectable true-DC Ribbon or Phantom paths on every channel. Unlimited scene recall scripting and scribble-strips – ideal for the return of live shows.

  • Powered by both 12VDC and worldwide 80-264VAC. Redundant, fail-safe powering
  • High energy “pi filter” shielding provided on audio and digital feeds, destroys Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and cellular interference
  • Ultra-reliable power supply rated for 650,000 hours MTBF operation

Special limited-time “pandemic pricing” on both 8ch ($3,500) and 16ch ($5,300) versions. Analog output option card also available ($749). Designed and manufactured in N. California.

Buy From Sweetwater

www.mil-media.com

 

FabFilter

FabFilter Saturn2

Saturn 2

Distortion has played a huge role in music history. By driving and distorting a guitar amplifier, rock-and-roll was born in the 1960s! Since that day, distortion has been used in many forms, and not only to get that crunchy electric guitar sound. Today, distortion is used to color sounds in various ways while mixing, by driving vacuum tubes, saturating tape and even by reducing bit rate. FabFilter Saturn 2 offers many flavors of distortion and sound mangling, combined with multi-band audio processing and virtually endless modulation possibilities. From subtle, clean and warm tube or tape saturation to the wildest multi-band guitar amp effects: FabFilter Saturn 2 delivers!

Main new features:

New User interface
Linear phase mode, making Saturn's multi-band processing much more suitable for mastering purposes.
Adjustable slope for crossovers, offering 6, 12, 24 and 48 dB/oct options.
New 'Superb' HQ mode in addition to the existing HQ mode, reducing aliasing to an absolute minimum.
Fully redesigned and modernized interface, including a new design of modulation sources and slots.
Modulation visualization for modulation sources and targets.
Introducing new Amplifier, Transformer and Foldback & Breakdown FX styles
Adding new Tube, Tape and Saturation styles
A more comprehensive Modulation section

Buy From Sweetwater
Buy From Vintage King

www.fabfilter.com


 

DistroKid

DistroKid

DistroKid is a digital distribution service that musicians use to put music into online stores and streaming services. These include iTunes, Spotify, Apple Music, Google Play, Amazon, and more. Most albums hit iTunes the same day artists upload them to DistroKid (other distributors can take anywhere from a few days to a week).

DistroKid doesn't take a commission and offers unlimited uploads for a yearly subscription fee (starting at only $19.99). As you may know, this is vastly different than the traditional model, which charges per release (generally around $40) and takes usually around 9% per sale/stream.

HyperFollow

HyperFollow is a completely free (and awesomely powerful) promotional tool for anyone using DistroKid.

Today, it’s a must to have one link that leads to your music on all streaming services. And that’s where HyperFollow comes in. The instant you finish uploading at DistroKid, you can start marketing your release and collecting presaves on Spotify (including fan email addresses) with HyperFollow. As soon as your release goes live on its release date, your HyperFollow page will AUTOMATICALLY UPDATE(!) to include links to all the streaming services. You're even able to edit your HyperFollow page to include links to Bandcamp, links to videos, etc. Your HyperFollow link never changes, and you’ll never hafta update your marketing copy or social media posts.

You can find your HyperFollow link on your DistroKid album page.
www.distrokid.com

 

SoundRadix

SoundRadix Surfer EQ

SurferEQ 
Radically Musical, Creative Timbre Shaper

SurferEQ is a ground-breaking pitch-tracking equalizer plug-in that tracks a monophonic instrument or vocal and moves the selected bands with the music. Synthesizer filters can track the pitch to maintain the timbre of the sound throughout the instrument's voices. However, sound equalizers have always been static. While being effective for broad tone-shaping and room resonance correction, standard EQs do a poor job at maintaining the vocal or instrument's timbre as the music changes. Enter SurferEQ. SurferEQ tracks the pitch of a monophonic instrument or a vocal source and can adapt its bands' frequencies relative to the music in real-time, maintaining the natural harmonic balance of the sound source and making it possible to shape the source's timbre relative to the notes being played.

Features

  • Groundbreaking pitch-tracking equalizer
  • Original asymmetric, morphing EQ algorithms
  • Innovative Harmonic Filter
  • Side-chain input enabling external pitch detection
  • Spectral Gate (normal and reversed)
  • 3-mode MIDI control, including an innovative EQ Instrument mode
  • Zero-latency mode
  • Spectrum analyzer and Spectral Level Meters
  • Undo/redo
  • 64-bit internal processing

SoundRadix POWAIR

POWAIR
Radically Smart & Natural Compression

POWAIR was designed to be a smarter, more natural sounding compressor. It’s a dual-stage loudness leveler/compressor powered by a novel, proprietary compression engine which provides greater transparency and control than ever before. The first stage is a K-weighted loudness leveler, perfect for leveling a voice-over or auto-adjusting the level of different pieces of music. In its second compression stage, POWAIR uses an innovative gain detection and reduction engine, capable of fast gain changes with minimal distortion and adaptive response to the source. The unique Punch feature enables full control over the transients’ levels during the attack stage, making it possible to shape the transients’ lengths while keeping peak levels under control. And in an industry first, POWAIR features Adaptive Compression to maintain an average compression action, adding intensity and glue while keeping the natural dynamics of the recording.

Features

  • A novel, ultra-fast gain detection and reduction compression design
  • K-weighted loudness auto-leveler
  • Punch enables precise level control of transients during the attack period independent of attack time
  • Adaptive Compression enables maintaining average compression for natural performance dynamics
  • Machine learning-based perceived loudness auto makeup gain compensation
  • Band-pass and band-reject side-chain filter
  • External side-chain key input
  • Mono, stereo and mid/side operation modes with continuously-variable compression link control
  • ITU-R BS.1770.4-compliant LKFS and true-peak output level meters

SoundRadix Auto-Align Post

Auto-Align Post
The Fast & Simple Way to Get Location Mics in Phase

Auto-Align Post automatically corrects the delay and comb-filter phase issues occurring when mixing a recording of multiple moving microphones, such as in the case of a shoot set-up using a boom microphone in addition to an actor’s lavalier microphone or multiple on-set microphones. Until now, phase/time aligning multiple moving microphones was a tedious, time-consuming job that often required several ear-twisting days to complete.

Not anymore.

Building on the proprietary technology of our groundbreaking Auto-Align™ plug-in, we’ve developed a next-generation algorithm that makes phase/time correction of a moving multi-microphone recording of an entire film a matter of a few clicks and a short coffee break.

Features

  • Corrects for distances of up to ~112 feet / ~34 meters or a delay of ±100ms
  • Dynamic mode enables continuous phase/time correction for moving actors or cameras
  • Static mode enables fixed phase/time correction for stationary microphones
  • Transparent, filter-free design
  • Multi-channel support
  • Highly optimized for CPU efficiency and operation speed
  • Easy to operate - no manual adjustments required

www.soundradix.com

 

Cranborne Audio

Cranborne Audio C500

Camden 500

Camden 500 is a multi-award winning, 500-series lunchbox-compatible preamp with unparalleled technical performance as well as a unique, ‘Mojo’ saturation circuit - enabling it to be the cleanest and most transparent preamp you’ve ever heard, as well as the most colourful at the turn of a dial. Designed from the ground-up, Camden 500 achieves ground-breaking low-noise and low-distortion performance as well as complete frequency and phase linearity at all gain settings - enabling you to crank up the gain without adding noise or colouration. For moments when that extra bit of ‘British’ character is required, Cranborne Audio developed Mojo - two discrete analogue saturation styles that transform Camden 500 into the fattest, warmest, and most characterful preamp in your arsenal - all at the turn of a dial. Perhaps best of all, unlike transformer and other legacy designs, Mojo can be subtle, it can also be exaggerated, but it can also be bypassed. Track though Mojo to commit to vintage preamp effects, or use it during the mix phase to impart analogue situation on your channels and mix bus - Camden 500 is one of the only preamps on the market that excels during tracking as well as mixing. REVIEW

Buy From Vintage King

Cranborne Audio EC2

Camden EC2

Based on the multi-award winning Camden 500 Preamp and Signal Processor for the 500 series lunchbox format, Camden EC2 combines the sonic capabilities of one of the markets cleanest and most transparent preamps with the flexibility of a standalone, 1u, 19” chassis that can integrate into any recording setup with or without 500 series connectivity.

Featuring two discrete instances of Cranborne Audio’s ‘Camden’ preamp topology, two channels of Mojo analogue saturation, as well as two reference-grade headphones amplifiers, Camden EC2 is not only a significant preamp upgrade for any studio, but also a powerful monitoring solution. 

Use the headphone outputs and line mixers to monitor the preamp signals directly using headphones during mic placement to find the sweet spot of the instrument/source or create true, zero-latency artist mixes by mixing the preamp signals with external playback from the Aux Input jacks on Camden EC2’s rear panel. You can even just use the headphone outputs as your new golden standard for mixing and mastering by monitoring just the stereo line input directly. 

Buy From Vintage King

Cranborne Audio 500ADAT

500ADAT

500ADAT is the only 8-slot, 500 series lunchbox on the market that features built-in A/D, D/A conversion and ADAT connectivity. Simply connect 500ADAT to your audio interface using two ADAT cables, and you instantly have access to 8 slots of 500 series processing and reference-quality conversion whilst freeing up the I/O of your beloved audio interface.

500ADAT also features all of the analogue essentials that unite digital and analogue production workflows such as an 8-into-2 analogue summing mixer, zero-latency artist mixer with 2 reference-quality headphone outputs, and true ADAT & SMUXII/IV transmission to enable operation at sample rates up to 192kHz. Use 500ADAT during tracking to record more inputs with your current interface, or use 500ADAT during mixing/mastering by routing audio from your DAW and into the slots as hardware inserts to process you audio using analogue 500 series modules as genuine analogue plug-ins. Creating a true, analogue/digital hybrid studio has never been easier with 500ADAT.

Buy From Vintage King

www.cranborne-audio.com

 

BABY Audio

Baby Audio Super VHS

Super VHS

1980s Lo-Fi Plug-in

As kids of the 80s we have always been drawn to the sound of slightly out-of-tune synths, warm tape saturation, gritty samples and grainy reverbs. So we set out on a mission to capture the lo-fi spirit of our favorite decade — and bring it into a new decade. Meet a complex algorithm with eight simple knobs. We named it ‘Super’ for its powers and ‘VHS’ for its sound.

Baby Audio Parallel Aggressor

Parallel Aggressor

A zen-like approach to parallel processing.

You’re probably using parallel processing all over your mixes already. But Parallel Aggressor is designed to give you the maximum sonic impact with the lowest possible track count. No extra busses or mix faders needed! The plug-in splits and hosts three copies of the incoming audio track, allowing you to add parallel 'Spank' (compression) and 'Heat' (saturation) to beef up any signal.

Baby Audio Comeback Kid

Comeback Kid

A delay worth waiting for!

Comeback Kid is an intuitive delay plug-in that lets your sounds return as a better version of themselves — loaded with character and analog flavor. The effect lay-out is inspired by the creative workflow of hardware. There are no sub-menus or hidden features. Just an ultra-flexible delay engine — along with 14 ‘flavor knobs’ to add sonic goodness to your wet signal.

About BABY Audio:
BABY Audio is a Los Angeles based software company founded by a European team. In the shadow of palm trees and the entertainment industry, we passionately pursue our vision to bring you the most inspiring audio tools in the business. 

https://babyaud.io/

 

Apogee Electronics

Apogee Electronics Symphony Desktop

Symphony Desktop

Symphony Desktop for Mac, iPad pro and Windows packs the legendary sound quality of Apogee’s rack-mount Symphony I/O Mk II into an elegant and inspiring 10×14 audio interface that sits on your desk and fits in your bag. With Symphony Desktop, musicians and producers are empowered to record, overdub and mix with the music industry’s most respected AD/DA converters and mic preamps.

By combining superior performance, with new features like mic preamp emulation, the Symphony ECS Channel Strip plugin and ultra low latency recording with hardware DSP and Apogee native FX plugins, Symphony Desktop will amplify your creativity in your studio or on the go and give your recordings the Apogee sound quality Advantage.

Features

  • Most affordable Symphony series interface ever
  • Cutting edge components and circuit design deliver detailed and pristine flagship sound quality
  • 2 Advanced Stepped Gain mic preamps, up to 75dB of gain, variable impedance
  • FET instrument input with electric guitar tube amp charcteristics
  • Apogee Alloy Mic Preamp emulation (Analog processing + DSP modeling) Includes
  • British Solid State & 50s American Tube
  • Built-in hardware DSP processing of Apogee FX Rack plugins
  • Includes Symphony ECS Channel Strip Tuned by Bob Clearmountain – Native and hardware DSP versions with EQ, Compression and Saturation
  • Includes Symphony Reverb – Native version
  • Flexible, zero latency plugin workflows: Print, Monitor and DualPath Link workflows
  • Dynamic touch screen display for comprehensive hardware control
  • 2 assignable headphone outputs: 1 x 1/4′′, 1 x 1/8”
  • 10 IN x 14 OUT simultaneous channels of audio
  • MIDI over USB
  • Digital I/O: 2 x Optical Toslink (ADAT,S/PDIF)
  • Works with: macOS, Windows, iPad Pro 

Buy From Vintage King
Buy From Sweetwater

Apogee Electronics Clearmountain's Domain

Clearmountain’s Domain

For decades, engineers, producers, and musicians have marveled at Bob Clearmountain’s mixes. Recordings by iconic artists like David Bowie, Chic, Roxy Music, The Rolling Stones, Bruce Springsteen, Bryan Adams, INXS, and so many more, are prime examples of how Clearmountain’s work elevated the role of “the mixer” to that of an essential creative partner in the process of making records. Clearmountain’s ability to build a soundscape and atmosphere where voices and instruments seem to effortlessly live in an intimate space but all blend together seamlessly set new standards for mixing. And, his artistry and passion to reveal the true character of the song and highlight the emotion of the music, gets to the heart of what inspired the song from its inception.

While this is a craft honed over a career of many experiences, accomplishments and hit records, there are secrets that can be shared and Clearmountain’s Domain offers one of Bob’s most refined and important techniques in a simple and streamlined plugin.

Apogee’s Clearmountain’s Domain plugin reproduces Bob Clearmountain’s personalized FX signal chain for creating the cohesive spaces, expansive dimensions, and rich atmospheres where his mixes live. Classic presets help you to recreate the sonic environment of your favorite Clearmountain mixes. Advanced views reveal Clearmountain’s decades of expertise and empower you to create your own musical mix domain.

Apogee Electronics Symphony MKII

Symphony I/O Mk II

Intuitive touchscreen. Future-proof modularity. Flagship sound quality.

Symphony I/O Mk II is a multi-channel audio interface featuring Apogee’s newest flagship AD/DA conversion, modular I/O (up to 32 inputs and outputs), intuitive touchscreen display and optional world-class microphone preamps. Designed to deliver professional sound quality for audio recording, mixing and mastering, Symphony I/O Mk II is the ultimate music production centerpiece for any modern studio.

  • The new Symphony I/O Mk II comes with direct connectivity to one of 4 different platforms- Thunderbolt™, Pro Tools® HD, Dante™+ Pro Tools® HD, or Waves SoundGrid network.
  • Best AD/DA conversion of any Thunderbolt™ audio interface
  • Up to 32 channels of modular analog I/O with optional mic preamps
  • Best per-channel value of any interface in its category
  • Choice of Thunderbolt™ (Mac), Pro Tools® HD (Mac/PC), Dante™+ Pro Tools® HD (Mac/PC, or Waves SoundGrid (Mac/PC) connectivity.
  • Ultra-low latency performance – 1.35 ms with Thunderbolt and Logic Pro X
  • All new, highly customizable Symphony Control software provides easy access to all I/O parameters
  • Intuitive touchscreen display and front panel control
  • Designed in California, Built in the U.S.A.

Input and Output Flexibility

There is a Symphony I/O Mk II solution for everyone; the home studio, project studio, commercial recording studio and scoring stage. Choose from four base I/O configurations, 2×6, 8×8, 16×16, or 8×8 with 8 mic preamps and easily expand as your studio grows. With two module slots and the capacity for up to 32 inputs and outputs of A/D & D/A conversion per unit, Symphony I/O Mk II offers the best per-channel value of any interface in its category.

Legendary Sound Quality

Apogee engineers have made it their passion to improve every new flagship product by using the latest in electrical components and designing optimized circuitry that often exceeds the expectations of the component manufacturer. This is the Apogee Advantage. Symphony I/O Mk II is the culmination of this 30 year commitment and raises the bar on all Apogee products before it with even better audio clarity and sonic transparency. In fact, when equipped with either the new 8×8 or 16×16 Mk II I/O modules, Symphony I/O Mk II outperforms all other multi-channel audio interfaces available for Pro Tools HD or Thunderbolt based systems, making it the flagship audio interface for the entire professional audio industry and the obvious choice for countless GRAMMY winning artists, producers, songwriters and engineers.

Buy From Vintage King
Buy From Sweetwater

www.apogeedigital.com

 

MXL Microphones

MXL Revelation II

MXL REVELATION II Tube Microphone

As the successor to MXL’s renowned REVELATION Tube Mic, which is often regarded as the greatest microphone ever produced by MXL, the REVELATION II utilizes the latest design and manufacturing technologies to offer the remarkable clarity and versatility of the classic MXL REVELATION, but at a fraction of the price. The MXL REVELATION II is a studio microphone that delivers the warmth and intimacy of a classic tube microphone with a lush mid-range, adding unique sound and color to any microphone locker. Offering extended clarity and punch for balanced recordings, the REVLEATION II features a dual gold-sputtered, 6-micron diaphragm and hand-selected EF86 pentode tube, which provides rich and transparent sound. Adjustable by a variable pattern control knob, the REVELATION II’s polar pattern selection is virtually limitless and allows for seamless transitions between cardioid, omnidirectional and figure-8 polar patterns. With dark violet and black chrome finishes that are sure to stand out in any recording environment, MXL’s REVELATION II comes equipped with Mogami cables and wiring, providing exceptional audio fidelity. Whether used to record vocals, instruments, percussion or deployed as a dependable room mic, the MXL REVELATION II brings a classic sound to any recording application.

MXL AC-44

MXL AC-44 Miniature USB Conferencing Microphone

MXL Microphones’ AC-44 offers crystal clear speech intelligibility in a compact design for applications that require accurate voice recognition with limited installation space such as huddle rooms, conference rooms and video meetings. With a footprint measuring only 2.5x3-inches, and 1-inch tall, the AC-44 is an ideal solution for a home workstation or a “work from anywhere” kit. The AC-44 uses MXL’s signature 3-capsule boundary design to create a small microphone with a wide pickup arc. The microphone’s 180-degree cardioid pickup pattern provides excellent sound rejection from the back, focusing on the sources in front of the mic while rejecting unwanted noise. Powered by a simple USB-C connection, the AC-44 is compatible with any computer without having to download any drivers — making the AC-44 a true plug-and-play microphone solution, which is especially beneficial for remote work applications. Designed with a rugged, all-metal frame and durable metal grill to ensure it can withstand the rigors of daily use in any work environment, the MXL AC-44 is available in three different colors: white, black and cobalt blue, with the ability to offer custom colors and capsule configurations for special applications.

MXL BCD-1

MXL BCD-1 Live Broadcast Dynamic Microphone

MXL Microphones’ BCD-1 is an end address dynamic microphone with warm, rich tones designed to make vocals stand out in any recording or live performance application. With a tuned grill that eliminates internal reflections and a built-in shock mount that prevents unwanted noise, the BCD-1 is an ideal solution for capturing crystal clear audio in a variety of settings. Optimized for recording speech, the BCD-1 is renowned for its use in podcasting and radio applications and is also great for recording vocals for music. The microphone has excellent noise rejection, making it an ideal solution for use in noisy rooms and its built-in swivel mount allows for perfect positioning when combined with the optional MXL BCD-Stand. Additionally, the versatile solution can be affixed to any manufacturer’s microphone stand. Its cardioid polar pattern makes the BCD-1 a dynamic broadcast solution that delivers a bright and pristine sound. Weighing in at 1.25lbs/567g and measuring 157.5mm/6.2 inches in length and 50.8mm/2 inches in diameter, the BCD-1 features a rugged black metal finish and ships in a durable, protective case with an MXL WS-002 foam windscreen. The BCD-1 is an extremely cost-effective microphone that delivers a high-quality solution at an affordable price.

www.mxlmics.com

 

TransAudio Group

Daking Comp IIT

Daking Comp IIT

The Daking COMP IIT is a handmade compressor/limiter designed to be easy to use and sound like much more expensive comp/limiters.  Built in the USA, it offers excellent sounding compression on all kinds of sources in the studio.  The COMP IIT features Jensen transformers on both the input and output which feature lower distortion, adding subtle color and providing that much sought after analog “glue” when used on stereo sources.  Whether in the hands of a highly experienced engineer who needs fast workflow, or a novice who is not sure how to best set up a compressor, the COMP IIT gives professional results without a big learning curve.   

With big old-style analog meters and a simple setup, the COMP IIT is easy to understand and easy to use.  Designed carefully by Geoff Daking and Dave Thibodeau to behave well on a variety of real in-studio applications, it may challenge your notions of how good a two-knob compressor can be.  

The two channel COMP IIT can operate in dual mono or stereo linked mode for a beautiful stereo image.  With it’s streamlined controls and high quality analog hardware, both novices and professionals can quickly achieve great sounding compression.

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ATC SCM20a

ATC SCM20A Pro

Hand-crafted in England, the ATC SCM20ASL Pro studio monitors offer high end performance in a compact sealed cabinet.  It’s ideally suited to critical nearfield listening, LCR surround monitoring in small-medium rooms, or used as surround channels in medium to large control rooms.  Many top professional mixing and mastering engineers rely on ATC monitors to deliver extremely low distortion and accuracy for their work.

The 2-way design includes an ATC 1” S-Spec soft dome tweeter and ATC 6” Super Linear Mid/Bass Driver.  The mid/bass driver integrates a 3” soft dome to cover both mid and low frequencies optimally unlike traditional 2-way designs that can lack in midrange performance.  ATC builds all their own drivers and amplifiers in-house to their own specs.  As an active monitor the SCM20ASL Pro has an ATC 250W Bi-Amp pack on board.  The combination of driver engineering and the finely tuned active circuit results in ultra low distortion for catching extremely fine details, providing wide, even dispersion, and pinpoint 3-dimensional imaging.

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Auratone 5c Amp Bundle

Auratone 5C Amp Bundle

The studio classic Auratone 5C Super Sound Cube and A2-30 Amplifier are now available in a convenient bundle!  The A2-30 is purpose built for the 5C’s and outputs 30w per channel at 8ohms with an accurate, neutral sounding circuit.  The amp features the same footprint as the 5C which looks great on a meter bridge or desk.  The bundle is available with black or woodgrain finish 5C’s.

The 5C, which became famous in the 1970’s and 80’s and has been used in virtually every major recording studio worldwide, is still the undisputed industry standard for “real world” referencing in the recording studio.

Durability, flat full-range response, amazing power handling and portability have made Auratones the Recording, Broadcasting, and Motion Picture industries favorite “mixdown monitors.” . . . for comparison and final mixes, auditioning, remotes, and reference standard speakers.

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www.transaudiogroup.com

 

Ingram Engineering

Ingram Engineering EQ50

EQ50

The Ingram Engineering EQ50 is a 500-series equalizer module that contains extremely versatile and musical sounding low cut, high cut, and see-saw filters. The unique see-saw filter contains combined low and high frequency control that allows broad frequency response adjustments with a single control knob. These key filter functions are provided with a simple and intuitive user interface.

The unit features differential input and output. Both input and output can operate in balanced or unbalanced modes. A high current, cross-coupled active output buffer mimics the behavior of a transformer, providing constant gain for balanced or unbalanced operation, when either the positive or negative output signals are grounded. Therefore, the output can drive differential or single ended output with no extra user configuration needed.

The simple controls and circuit layout belie the finely tuned and expertly engineered design. Extremely high input common mode rejection capability is realized, even down to critical power supply frequencies. High qualify film caps, low distortion resistors and excellent quality integrated active stages realize a high headroom, low noise, and low distortion equalizer with superb audio quality that is ideal for individual tracks or for mixing and mastering stereo signals when the modules are used in pairs.

Ingram Engineering MPA575

MPA575

The Ingram Engineering MPA575 is a 500-series unit that features a lightly colored mic pre-amp, compressor, variable low cut filter and unique see-saw EQ with combined low/high frequency control. A transformer input with variable mic load impedance is provided to allow shaping of tones. A high current buffer provides electronic balancing, isolation and capability to drive capacitive loads.

The compressor is a program dependent soft-knee feed-forward design. A single knob controls compressor threshold, ratio and make-up gain. A second MPA575 see-saw EQ is dedicated to the compressor path and is used as a side chain filter.

The compressor can be placed before or after the compressor with the press of a button, no patch bay needed. And, when not used, the compressor and equalizer can be bypassed when not in use.

Noise matching and damping are carefully optimized to realize outstanding results for the widest range of microphones. Proper gain distribution and the input attenuator design give the most possible headroom.

Together, these form a mini channel strip that performs all essential analog signal processing functions needed before committing audio to a recording medium. This no-compromise design is superbly engineered for maximum usability and excellent tone quality. 

www.ingramengineering.net

 

D.W. Fearn

VT-2

D.W. Fearn VT-2

An essential part of the workflow of so many artists, engineers, producers, and other audio professionals, VT-series microphone preamplifiers have long been the go-to weapon of choice as an ultra-high fidelity mic pre during tracking. Any microphone and any sound will benefit from the improved clarity, definition, and lack of solid-state artifacts. In designing the VT preamp, no compromise in sonic quality, reliability, or ruggedness was permitted. Like the best tube equipment of the 1950s and ’60s, the VT preamp is built on a heavy-gauge aluminum chassis, utilizing point-to-point wiring. The front panel switches control sealed, gold-contact precision relays for all audio switching. Four class-A triode amplifier sections (in two tubes) in each channel comprise the entire active circuit. This surprisingly simple circuit, along with top-quality components and careful design optimization, results in the sonic superiority that the VT preamp has become known for. Newly integrated, the VT-2 features a switchable 43 dB pad, enabling it to be patched into the Master Buss during mixdown and mastering to provide D.W. Fearn’s unique sonic signature to the final mix or mastering process. The new design makes the VT-2 a veritable triple threat, equally at home in recording, mixing, and mastering.

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VT-5

D.W. Fearn VT-5

The VT-5 equalizer will change the way you think of eq. It’s smooth and sweet, and can be very subtle at mild settings, but quite strong with aggressive use of the controls. Creative use of the low boost and cut will create a powerful bass that has to be heard to be believed. The high boost adds just the right brightness to vocals, guitars — any sound, or even an entire mix. Even with extreme settings, a VT-5 will never sound harsh. This equalizer uses passive LC circuitry with class-A triode vacuum tube stages for the input and output. The LC-style passive equalization circuitry is based on the classic designs that are still the best-sounding way to achieve high-quality tonal control. All controls are stepped for precise repeatability and uniform matching between units. High-quality rotary switches are used with 1% metal-film resistors. All of the audio capacitors are polystyrene or polypropylene. The inductors are custom-made for us by Jensen.

New VT-5 units have been optimized to eliminate the need for an internal fan. The VT-5 Equalizer has been designed to provide an exceptional tool for audio professionals.

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VT-7

D.W. Fearn VT-7

The VT-7 has an all Class-A vacuum tube audio path, like all our products. The gain reduction elements utilize circuitry that duplicates the sound and characteristics of the finest classic vacuum tube compressors, without depending on tubes that are no longer manufactured. The control circuitry is modern solid-state analog.

The VT-7 has a highly transparent sound, although it can be used more aggressively when needed. Artifacts of the compression process are substantially lower than in most other compressors.

The two channels may be used independently or linked for stereo. In addition, a third position on the Link switch inserts a high-pass filter (HPF) in the side-chain to reduce the gain-reduction sensitivity of the VT-7 to low frequencies. This allows a bass-heavy mix to have a better frequency balance and prevents heavy low-frequency audio from modulating the audio level. New VT-7s have been optimized to eliminate the need for an internal fan. Like all our products, the VT-7 is designed to process high-quality audio and make it sound even better.

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www.dwfearn.com

 

GIK Acoustics

GIK Art Panels

Acoustic Art Panels featuring the Tape Op Series

Forget about simple canvas prints that only provide a decorative image - our sound-absorbing Acoustic Art Panels are an amazing way to decorate while reducing noise in your space. We've made the process easy too: upload your artwork or browse our gallery of 1M+ images, get an instant online proof, and select from 10 sizes and 5 thicknesses. Whatever image or size you choose, our Acoustic Art Panels are guaranteed to make your room look AND sound better. For a limited time, Tape Op is releasing six of their popular covers exclusively as Acoustic Art Panels. You do not want to miss out on this series!

GIK VISO Booth

VISO Booth (Vocal ISOlation Booth)

Introducing the perfect compact device for singers, songwriters, voice actors, voice-over artists, YouTube content creators, and podcasters looking to significantly improve recording quality. The slim and lightweight design makes the VISO Booth versatile enough to take with you anywhere, and adds aesthetic to any environment with a front plate that has our unique 1D binary pattern cut into it with a beautiful blonde finish. Use the VISO (Acoustic Vocal ISOlation Booth) to conveniently record studio-quality vocal tracks or voice-overs wherever you are working. ISOlate your vocals from harsh reflections within the room. 

GIK Gotham Quadratic Diffusor

Gotham N23 5" Quadratic Diffusor

Don’t risk missing out on true diffusion by simply putting blocks in an uncalculated, random sequence. The Gotham N23 5" Quadratic Diffusor gives you even 2-dimensional diffusion of high frequencies with our popular precision-cut 23-root diffuser. The striking look of the Gotham N23 5″ Quadratic Diffuser brings with it unparalleled performance: turning damaging reflections into a sonically pleasing diffused sound field, while controlling yet retaining higher frequencies, while making the stereo field larger.

www.gikacoustics.com

 

Cloud Microphones

Cloud Microphones CL-1

Cloudlifter CL-1

Cloudlifter Mic Activators use phantom power from your preamp, interface or mixer to provide up to +25dB of ultra-clean gain, maximizing your microphone’s signal strength and clarity.  This reduces the amount of gain required from any preamp, mixer, or interface and lowers the noise floor, resulting in a cleaner, stronger signal that delivers more of the sound of the actual mic itself! The Cloudlifter comes in a single, two, or four-channel versions, are Made in the USA and carry a lifetime warranty. REVIEW

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Cloud Microphones CL-Z

Cloudlifter Z 

The Cloudlifter CL-Z Mic Activator provides new tonal possibilities with its variable input impedance control - the “Vari-Z knob”. With a continuous range from 150 ohms to 15k ohms, the Vari-Z knob provides ultimate control over your microphone’s character by providing the ability to precisely match – or creatively mismatch – the input impedance of dynamic, tube and ribbon mics. In combination with its variable high-pass filter and 3 position gain selector, the CL-Z can sonically transform one microphone into the sound of many mics. REVIEW

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Cloud Microphones 44-A

Cloud 44-A Active Ribbon Microphone

The Cloud 44-A Active Ribbon Mic reawakens the spirit of the classic RCA Type 44 ribbon microphones for today’s applications. It is the first and only active ribbon mic on the market with switchable Voice/Music response curves, making it a versatile addition to your mic locker. The Voice setting reduces the bass proximity effect associated with being close to the microphone and reduces rumble and vibration. The Music setting gives you full bass response on a variety of sources when you’re looking for that classic ribbon mic sound. The Cloud 44-A is made in the USA and ships with a custom hardwood case. REVIEW

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www.cloudmicrophones.com

 

Triad-Orbit

Triad-Orbit SB-1

SB-1

Starbird SB-1 fully integrates Triad-Orbit design and technology into George Starbird’s iconic studio stand concept, including:

 

  • Triad Air Assist™ provides pneumatic power to automatically raise Starbird stands & booms.
  • BoomStop™ Safety Lock positively secures Starbird booms for safe, worry-free operation.
  • StarBase™ is a massive cast iron base with retractable legs that pivot for optimum positioning and tuck away under the base for efficient storage.
  • VariBal™ Counter Ballast System offers effortless, adjustable positioning and the ability to add additional ballast.
  • OA™ ball joint, equipped with the patented Triad-Orbit IO™ quick-change coupler, delivers a 360° range of motion for positioning of microphones, lights or AV devices.

Since delivery in September 2018, Starbirds have found homes worldwide in motion picture and recording studios, sound stages, location sites and small studios. Not only is Starbird a superior stand for decca tree and drum overhead micing scenarios, it is being used with camera and lights simultaneously in music videos, cooking shows, and content creation for social media platforms.

Not only does it soar to an incredible 16 foot height, it is equally at home in a low profile room with its boom extended, perfect for string ensembles.

Triad-Orbit SM-1

SM-1

Configuring a mixing room to meet the precise specifications required by Dolby Atmos is a worthwhile investment. However, it can leave some studio owners in a perpetual state of anxiety: what if someone nudges a speaker? If something gets bumped out of place, it could cost several thousand dollars to have the room re-measured.

Triad-Orbit offers a wide range of components for integrating the Precision System into any space right out of the box. 

From the standard SM-1 mounting bracket to truss mounts to extension pipes, there’s no need to add expensive and time-consuming custom fabrication to your design and integration process. 

Mounts are available for JBL and Genelec speakers, and more are being added as they are vetted.

Triad-Orbit’s Precision System features a redundant locking mechanism that keeps speakers pointing in the right direction, no matter what.

To adjust pan, simply loosen the redundant locking arm on the top, pull the pin from the bottom, and swivel to your liking. Tilt is adjusted by loosening the redundant locking knob on the left side and pulling the pin from the right. SM-1 can pan or tilt in 15-degree increments, and then lock the speaker in place.

Triad-Orbit IO-S6

IO-S6

IO-S6 opens creative options for your Avid S6 console. IO-S6 connects to the rear of the console on the mounting frame and provides IO (In/out) connectivity to add your favorite accessories, such as: nearfield monitors, cameras, microphones, laptops, sheet music. Pair with the following Triad-Orbit products; IO-A1A or IOA2A telescoping extensions and M2 micro adapters for camera mounting, IO-A2A and Orbit boom for microphones, IO-Desk for laptops, notes, sheet music, IO-VM for displays. Designed at the request of our friends at AVID, IO-S6 enhances your workflow by providing accessories quickly and easily with a simple click.

Pictured is a small speaker mount system using IO-S6. Components shown are: IO-S6, IO-A2A telescoping extension, IO-LCK locking swivel, and our new IO-SPKR IO-equipped mounting speaker plate.

Whether you are live streaming a tutorial or your session, comping vocals, or mixing, Triad-Orbit enhances your workflow by integrating devices and accessories into your AVID S6 environment.

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www.triad-orbit.com/

 

Steinberg

Steinberg Cubase Pro

Cubase Pro

Cubase Pro condenses decades of music software development experience into the most advanced and intuitive audio production environment available today. Used by star producers and musicians for composing, recording, mixing and editing music, Cubase Pro combines outstanding audio quality, flexible handling, state-of-the-art audio and MIDI tools with a range of inspirational VST instruments and effects in a way that cements your personal approach to music production. Uniting technical innovation and artistic inspiration, Cubase Pro represents an awesomely powerful yet instantly accessible music production environment.

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Steinberg UR-C Series

UR-C Series

Sharing the same heritage as the highly acclaimed AXR4 interfaces, Steinberg showcases the premium range of USB audio interfaces featuring 32-bit/192 kHz audio resolution. Connecting via USB-C and USB 3.1 Gen 1 SuperSpeed USB to any Windows and Mac computer, as well as to iOS devices, the UR-C series delivers an array of audio interfaces with different input/output capabilities, robust build quality and exceptional value for money.

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Steinberg UR-RT

UR-RT Series

With the UR-RT2 and UR-RT4, Steinberg introduces a range of exceptional audio interfaces which feature switchable Rupert Neve Designs transformers on the front inputs for rich harmonics and enhanced musical sound. Rupert Neve is a true legend of the professional recording industry, and the UR-RT models add his renowned expressive, musical sound quality to USB 2.0 interfaces.

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www.steinberg.net

 

Retro Instruments

Revolver Dual-Channel Tube Compressor

Retro Instruments Revolver

As an experimental project in 2011, a few Retro Instruments REVOLVER’s were built and field tested with select studios. We started with the famous British-modified Altec 436 compressor and added features you need for tracking, mixing and mastering. We needed it right for Rev. A. Here it is. REVIEW

Features:

  • A most desired compression signature.
  • Ideal for the stereo bus and excels at tracking, mixing and mastering.
  • Independent controls with stereo linking.
  • Continuously variable input, output, attack, release and threshold.
  • Dual Threshold Control allows control of ratio and amplifier saturation.
  • Low noise and high separation.
  • High-quality audio transformers deliver low distortion and ruler flat response.
  • Fully differential all-tube signal path.
  • Transformer-balanced inputs and outputs on XLR connectors
  • Illuminated VU meters
  • Front panel meter zero controls
  • Internal tube balancing facility
  • 120 or 240 Volt operation

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Retro Instruments 500 Pre

500 Pre

We took the circuit topology of the Sta-Level and packed it into a single width 500 module. The 500PRE three tube gain stage exhibits the same detail and depth. As with all Retro products, the feeling of the musical performance is delivered with the Retro Instruments 500PRE. Distortion, Noise and Frequency Response of the 500PRE are outstanding; but overload characteristics are not generally revealed by standard measurements. The 500PRE tubes gracefully limit the signal at +18 dBu. Whether you’re just going for clean gain or pushing the 500PRE into overdrive, it won’t ever sound plastic and brittle like solid-state amplifiers can. REVIEW

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Retro Instruments Doublewide II

DOUBLEWIDE II

The DOUBLEWIDE II is a single-channel compressor that installs into two slots of a standard 500 series rack yet it requires only 130-milliamps of current—just like the original Retro DOUBLEWIDE compressor. Also retained from the original are the gray painted front panel, high-quality US-made Simpson gain- reduction meter, and hand wiring throughout (no troublesome ribbon cables). DOUBLEWIDE II’s excellent build-quality is apparent starting with the American-made PC board and extends to the durable and attractive stainless steel case and, don’t forget, we only use Cinemag’s highest-quality input and output transformers for authentic tone and weight plus the complete freedom from external interference and noise. During initial user testing and comparison, the DOUBLEWIDE II immediately exceeded all expectations with increased flexibility and control that many original DOUBLEWIDE users have demanded. With both faster attack and release (recovery) times now possible, the DOUBLEWIDE II excels at energizing vocal tracks as well as controlling bass, guitars and drum tracks in an elegant and transparent way or go extreme and radical—or dial in anywhere in between! REVIEW

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AES Buyer's Guide Part Two
AES Buyer's Guide Part Three

Tape Op is a bi-monthly magazine devoted to the art of record making.

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