Welcome to Part Two of the Tape Op NAMM 2021 Buyer's Guide!

No surprise here, but the NAMM Show is moving to an all online experience this year due to COVID-19. There will be a ton of good online talks and resources available to check out and registration is FREE. Many of our advertisers use the NAMM show to announce new products, so here is a look at many of them in lieu of walking the showroom floor. 

If you see something you like, please support our retail advertisers and know that when you purchase via links in this guide we receive a small commission that helps Tape Op keep the lights on! Enjoy!

NAMM Show 2021 Buyer's Guide: Part 1
NAMM Show 2021 Buyer's Guide: Part 3

Solid State Logic



To the casual observer SiX looks like any other compact desktop mixer. Look a little closer and like all SSL consoles, SiX reveals a carefully considered feature set that is driven by an obsessive desire for total flexibility, to encompass every creative eventuality. It may be small but SiX is a classic SSL design. It carries the DNA of 40 years of true expertise in creative studio workflow. Listen to SiX and you will experience the impeccable sonic performance that is the hallmark of every SSL console. SiX is powerful, intuitive and quickly becoming regarded as the most efficient ways to achieve profession quality audio productions.  

SSL Fusion 

SSL Fusion

Fusion is an all-analogue 2U stereo outboard processor created for the modern hybrid studio. Fusion introduces six completely new analogue colouration tools designed to bring the perfect combination of added tonal character, weight and space to your mix bus or stereo stems, with the detail, warmth and finesse that only real analogue circuits can provide.


SSL 2+ 2x4 Audio Interface 

Solid State Logic consoles and production tools have been at the heart of countless hit recordings and award-winning soundtracks for the past 40 years. We know how to make audio sound amazing, and more importantly, we understand the creative process, which is why features like Legacy 4K analogue enhancement, low latency monitor mix and pro-level convertors are all part of the package. The SSL 2+ also offers expanded I/O via its 4 outputs and dual, independent headphone outs, and comes bundled with the SSL Production Pack - a selection of professional quality software, featuring SSL Native plug-ins DrumStrip and VocalStrip 2, and a host of DAW’s and samples, helping you to get the most out of your creative session. 

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Focal/NAIM America

SPL Phonitor One

SPL Phonitor One

The Audiophile Headphone Amplifier with innovative Phonitor Matrix and outstanding sound quality.



The Design Of The Amplification Stages

Two Burr-Brown OPA 2134 SoundPlus™ operational amplifiers provide the pre-amplification. These are specially designed for audiophile circuits and are characterized by extremely low noise and minimal distortion of only 0.00008%.

The Power Amplifier

The output stage of the headphone amplifier is designed as a push-pull amplifier in class AB mode. The bipolar transistors share the amplification of the positive and negative half-waves, which produces a higher gain and a higher output voltage than in Class A operation, where only one transistor amplifies both half-waves.

The Revolution in the headphone amplifier is the Phonitor Matrix, with adjustable crossfeed, thanks to which you can create mixes with headphones that sound the same on speakers. The Phonitor Matrix in its largest expansion stage has three setting parameters: Crossfeed, Speaker Angle and Center Level. In the Phonitor One, the center level is preset to -1 dB and the speaker angle to 30°. These are the most commonly used values. 

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Focal Listen Pro Headphones

Focal Listen Professional Headphones

Listen Professional circum-aural closed back headphones are the essential work tool for music production. Their tonal balance and precision in terms of audio spectrum make them perfect to evaluate the sound work quality. In addition, their comfort and accessories will make them very attractive for people travelling on business trips. The sound quality and the dynamics of these headphones are very surprising considering that this quality is usually found on more expensive items. The attention to detail of these headphones can be also shown thanks to the various patents and technologies which belong to Focal. Hence, a brand new driver membrane was developed. The main goal was to propose a solution which would keep all the dynamics from the original track while reproducing accurately  every single detail on the whole audio spectrum. Even if Listen Professional headphones are closed, they produce a very lively sound, giving the feeling of semi-open headphones while still providing the isolation of closed headphones.

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Focal Shape 65

Focal Shape 65 

Shape 65 is the reference of the Shape line. Although it’s dedicated to nearfield monitoring, this monitor enables extraordinary monitoring quality, in the lowest to the highest frequencies. Simply a must, this monitor will express its full potential from a listening distance of three feet away (1 metre).

The three monitors are all made in France and integrate five innovations to maximise acoustic transparency. Designed to meet the needs of nearfield monitoring, Shape monitors combine an ingenuous design and numerous settings optimised for the acoustics of small listening rooms.

These innovations provide remarkable acoustic transparency. These new work tools distinguish themselves through the wide and extremely precise stereo image. The bass register is articulated and controlled. The lower mid-range and mid-range benefit from extreme neutrality, and without any masking effects, making equalisation of these essential registers much easier. Finally, the new tweeter is what’s at the source of the very high definition. It efficiently reveals any hissing, and it’s also very precise in the very high end.

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Red Panda Labs

Red Panda Labs makes unique DSP-based effects for experimentally minded musicians. Their algorithms combine modern signal processing with the character of classic digital hardware.  Our pedals handle line level signals with stereo input/output and full MIDI implementations. 

Red Panda Labs Particle 2

Particle 2

Particle2™ is a granular delay / pitch shifting pedal that chops a signal into small grains then rearranges, shifts, and mangles it, using granular synthesis in real time. Results range from radical pitch and delay modulation to shimmering repeats to time stretching, stutter, and glitch sounds.


Red Panda Labs Tensor

The Tensor

The Tensor™ gives users live reverse and tape stop effects, pitch shifting, time stretching and hold functions that can be combined in creative ways. Slow down, speed up and rewind in real time. Stretch or compress time with no pitch change. Loop, overdub, and randomly slice phrases up to 4.8 seconds. 

Red Panda Labs Context


The Context

The Context™ is a reverb pedal inspired by 1980’s rack mount reverbs. 8 algorithms include room, hall, cathedral, plate, spring, gated, reverse reverb, and a granular reverb inspired by the Ursa Major SST-282.   Delay and reverb are available in all modes, along with flexible modulation, dynamics, and tone controls for a powerful reverb in a small package.

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Josephson Engineering

Josephson C705


Josephson Engineering C705

The C705 microphone is the new and most affordable model in the Josephson Engineering large diaphragm microphone line. It features the same large single-diaphragm condenser capsule used in the Josephson Engineering C715, with cardioid pick up only, the transformerless discrete output circuit and internal shockmount used in the C716 and C700 microphones, and a new housing.

One of the big challenges with a new microphone is producing a robust housing with minimal acoustic impact, which will last for decades and still look great. To achieve this goal, a new reduced resonance grille was designed, and Josephson Engineering is using an all steel housing, case-hardened using ferritic nitrocarburizing for a rugged grey-black finish often used for truck drivetrain parts and firearms. The major housing parts (aside from screens) are precision fabricated by Latch Lake Music of Eagan, Minnesota, where their process was perfected for their micKing® stands, well known for their high level of quality and durability. The remainder of the microphone is made in the USA at Josephson Engineering’s factory in Santa Cruz, California.

The C705 is suitable for detailed vocal and instrument recording as well as live sound reinforcement.

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Josephson e22S

Josephson Engineering e22S

The e22S microphone was developed in response to Steve Albini’s request. He needed ruggedness (to withstand drumstick hits) and a lower profile (preferably side-address). The e22S is now his “one mic in the studio that gets used on every session.”

The physical profile allows unobtrusive placement in tight percussion layouts, and the capsule geometry is optimized for spot miking. The circuit uses a cascode discrete FET front end, combined with a custom Lundahl output transformer. The e22S has low self-noise, and handles high sound pressure levels for minimal distortion on extremely loud passages.

“The specific need addressed by the e22S was drum kit recording, and the mics are used in that capacity nearly every day, but once they were in our hands, they quickly became a favorite mic for many instruments, including acoustic guitar, mandolin, banjo, guitar amplifiers, organ and horns. The e22S is easily the most versatile microphone in our cabinet.

“On loud sounds like drums and guitar cabinets, the 609 head amplifier delivers a crisp, clear signal that is free of distortion, at a level that doesn't require an external pad.” —Steve Albini

Go-to applications include; drums, stringed instruments, electric guitar cabinets, piano and vocals.

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Josephson C725

Josephson Engineering C725

The C725 provides classic large diaphragm studio microphone performance using a hybrid of tube and solid state technology. The included separate power supply provides switchable directional patterns, and a special selector for sun and moon modes. “Sun” mode provides full level operation with many of the sonic attributes of classic vacuum tube microphones, and “moon” mode provides increased linear character with a higher maximum SPL.

The head grille uses Josephson’s patented aluminum foam, combined with an internal highly open mesh added for contamination protection. No other structure is needed, so internal reflections are random and minimal, allowing improved sound pickup. The capsule assembly is internally shockmounted and the housing features a satin nickel finish for durability in studio use. The internal circuitry is related to other Josephson mics, with a cascode topology for best linearity. Instead of two FETs to build the cascode, the voltage-gain section uses a custom low-noise FET, while the current gain stage uses a new production pentode vacuum tube. This allows the low noise of the FET to coexist with the dynamic characteristics of the vacuum tube. The output is provided through a custom nickel-core transformer.

The C725 is suitable for detailed vocal and instrument recording.

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Eventide Audio

Eventide Blackhole

Blackhole Reverb Pedal

Create haunting echoes, ethereal landscapes and otherworldly ambience with Blackhole, a reverb pedal as big and as mysterious as the cosmos. Blackhole lets guitarists and bassists explore beyond the ambience of mere earthly Halls, Rooms, Plates or Springs. Blackhole will take you on a journey from cathedral-type spaces to a universe of out-of-this-world soundscapes. The pedal includes onboard tone controls, modulation, and infinite reverb settings with mono or stereo operation, MIDI, preset storing, and most importantly a new compact, easy-to-use interface.


  • Five presets loaded at your feet with dozens more available with Eventide Device Manager (EDM) software
  • Freeze footswitch holds the effect allowing you to play over the reverb tail.
  • Unique Gravity control to custom-tailor the reverb tail in two realms: Normal or Inverse decay
  • MIDI capability over TRS (use with a MIDI to TRS cable or converter box) or USB
  • Multiple Bypass options: Buffered, Relay, DSP+FX or Kill dry
  • Rear panel Guitar/Line Level switch for selecting use with guitar, synths, FX loop or DAW interface

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Eventide Generate


Take Chaos to the next level with Generate. Developed by Newfangled Audio, Generate is a marquee polysynth combining several revolutionary chaotic oscillators with all the features you’d expect in a first-class synthesizer. Create beautifully complex pads, warm moving keys, jittery sequenced basses, out-of-control leads, and 'oh my God' textures.

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Price: $149 / $99 thru October 19

Eventide TriceraChorus


Price: $99 / $39 thru Nov 9

TriceraChorus is inspired by the classic tri-choruses and stompbox choruses of the 1970s and early 1980s. These units used bucket brigade delay (BBD) chips to create chorusing. TriceraChorus pairs rich BBD-style tri-chorusing with another classic effect of the 1980s: Eventide MicroPitch detuning. This effect can be used to thicken the sound, to add static chorusing, and to spread the stereo field by detuning the left and right signals in opposite directions.

TriceraChorus features three chorus voices: Left (L), Center (C), and Right (R). A three-phase LFO modulates the delay times for the Left, Center, and Right voices. The frequency of the LFO is set by the Rate knob. The Left and Right modulation signals are always -120 and +120 out of phase relative to the Center modulation signal, as shown below. This combination of the three modulated delay voices creates lush chorus sounds. Price: $99 / $39 thru Nov 9




Royal Q Equalizer

McDSP Royal Q

 The Royal Q is a dual-channel 4-band equalizer featuring parametric and shelving EQ, mid/side processing, and trim controls.  The Royal Q equalization is complimented by a custom analog section for a truly unique hybrid processor. The Royal Q offers independent (or linked) control of the left and right (or mid and side) channels.  The Royal Q will be free to registered APB-16 and APB-8 customers. Expected ship date is March 2021.  


The McDSP Analog Processing Boxes

The McDSP Analog Processing Boxes (APB-16, APB-8) combine the flexibility of software with the fidelity of premium analog processing. Each channel can be controlled by an AAX, AU, or VST3 plug-in, giving true digital workflow with genuine analog performance. Processing options include compressors, mastering limiters, transient enhancement devices, multi-channel and multi-band applications, and so much more... we're only getting started. REVIEW

Royal Mu Compressor and Limiter

McDSP Royal Mu

The Royal Mu is a dual-channel compressor and limiter.  Features include analog biasing and saturation, mid/side processing, equalization, and a full featured analog compressor and analog limiter. The Royal Mu offers independent (or linked) control of the left and right (or mid and side) channels. The Royal Mu will be free to registered APB-16 and APB-8 customers. Expected ship date is March 2021. 

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Peerless Mastering

Peerless Mastering

We are a state-of-the-art mastering facility offering the highest quality stereo and 5.1 mastering, CD, Apple Digital Master, and full audio restoration. Our GRAMMY-nominated engineers Maria Rice and Jeff Lipton are exceptional at giving their clients the best quality and service, guiding them through the final phase of their sonic process with ease and expertise.  As more and more artists are choosing to record in project and home studios, professional mastering in an acoustically accurate room has never been more important. 

You’ll be amazed when you hear how incredible your music can sound.  


JZ Microphones

JZ Microphones Black Hole


Discover Excellent Clarity and Full Richness!

The Black Hole Series is the result of relentless improvement of technology, spanning more than 30 years and it has repeatedly questioned the status of the all-time classics.

Excellent clarity and full richness are how industry professionals describe the sound of the Black Hole series microphones BH2 and BH1S.

These handcrafted studio microphones are designed for engineers and producers demanding only the best and give true confidence in any kind of recording situation!

“When it comes to microphones, I keep my Black Hole at the top of my mic arsenal. Truly stunning on acoustic instruments. So clear, smooth, and versatile. A real winner in all applications!"
-RAFA SARDINA – 15 Grammy Awards

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JZ Microphones V67


Classic Vintage Vibe Loved Throughout Decades!

The soul of many classic recordings we all love so much are the legendary microphones that shaped the sonic characteristics of the golden age of music.

The natural warmth and seemingly effortless precision of the recording achieved back in the day inspired JZ Microphones to re-imagine the beautifully sounding microphone, giving it the benefits of today’s available technology. 

All JZ Microphones products have been designed with strict “no-compromise” rules and are handcrafted and tested in Latvia (EU) by a team of highly qualified experts!

“The JZ V67 has become one of my main vocal mics. The amount of detail is outstanding and I keep picking it over some of the classic microphones! It’s an extremely balanced mic and makes any vocals I record with it so easy to mix.”
-ROMESH DODANGODA - Bring Me The Horizon, Motorhead, Funeral For A Friend

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JZ Microphones Amethyst


Full and Rich Vintage Sound That Sits in The Mix Without EQ!

Revered by top professionals in the industry The Amethyst gives you that classic vintage sound attributed to the golden age of music. 

While simultaneously offering state-of-the-art components and showcasing the possibilities of modern technology, each and every Amethyst is carefully hand-made by our senior craftsmen and thoroughly tested until there are absolutely no doubts about the end result! The technology behind JZ Microphones has tested and polished for more than 30 years and today combines best technical solutions traditionally found in classic microphones as well as widely recognized, innovations and improvements, achieved through painstaking research and application.

“These mics truly sound great on everything. From orchestral recording to drum overheads, the Amethyst is a Swiss Army knife of recording. Warm, detailed, and useable in any situation.”
-SCOTT MICHAEL SMITH – Katy Perry, John Mayer, The Revenant

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Radial Engineering

Radial JX42

JX42 V2

The JX42 V2 is a streamlined instrument and amplifier switcher that instantly provides your rig with the ability for professional & seamless changeovers without signal coloration or additional noise. Class-A signal buffers preserve the tone of your instruments, with four inputs accessible on either the front or back panel of the JX42. Large backlit on/off switches select the active input, with the ability to have multiple instruments active simultaneously. Inactive inputs feed a pair of always-on Tuner outputs, which are buffered and mirrored on the front and back panels.

The two amplifier outputs can feed separate amps and switch between the two, or you can use them to create a redundant system with the ability to the backup at the press of a button. Both outputs are transformer-isolated and feature ground lift switches to eliminate hum and buzz when connected to multiple amplifiers, while switching between the two is silent and free of pops or clicks. The JX42 V2 also makes it easy to remotely control all switching functions, using Radial's optional JR-5 and JR-2 footswitches, or you can use your own MIDI controller for hands-free operation. An internal power supply for the JX42 V2 allows standard IEC cables to be employed for ease of use with worldwide concert touring.   

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Radial JX44

JX44 V2

Designed to meet the needs of meticulous guitar techs and built to handle the rigors of concert touring, the JX44 V2 is the professional's choice for managing and switching guitar signals on stage. Four instruments or wireless receivers can be connected and activated simultaneously, with all inactive inputs automatically feeding a buffered Tuner output, streamlining instrument hand-offs and silent tuning during a performance. Inputs and outputs feature large illuminated switches for instant visual feedback, and redundant front-panel input jacks accommodate for last minute changes on the fly.

Four unbalanced outputs are all transformer-isolated with ground lift and 180 polarity reverse switches, ensuring multi-amp setups playback without phase issues or ground loop noise including hum and buzz. A Radial DI box output is also included for when a direct feed from acoustic instruments to FOH is required. This direct out is selectable and can be tied to input-4 or fed from all the instrument inputs as needed, making it suitable for recording the entire performance for future Reamping purposes. 

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Radial EXTC Stereo

EXTC Stereo

The original EXTC Reamper is a wildly popular 'secret weapon' of mixing engineers in studios around the world, making it possible to send any recorded signal through guitar effects pedals, and leading to a whole new range of exciting sonic possibilities. Now Radial's latest Reamping problem solver, the EXTC Stereo, gives you the ability to connect stereo effects pedals such as reverbs and delays to the line-level inputs and outputs of your console or recording interface. Use it to send drum overheads to a multi-tap delay, or breathe new life into a stale keyboard patch with a flanger or chorus pedal. Try it on vocals, strings, or any prerecorded track to add a new creative element to your mixes and revitalize your old pedal collection.

The EXTC Stereo features both XLR and 1/4" TRS connections to integrate with any audio interface, along with send and receive level controls to optimize the signal path through both modern and vintage pedal effects. A wet/dry blend knob gives you precise control over how much of the affected signal gets mixed in, with an EFX Loop on/off switch for quick auditioning. Learn more about the EXTC Stereo and the rest of the Reamp series at www.radialeng.com/reamp

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Universal Audio

Universal Audio LUNA

LUNA Recording System

LUNA gives Apollo interface owners the fastest recording environment for music production, editing, and mixing. LUNA’s Accelerated Realtime Monitoring (ARM) gives users seamless hardware-software integration for capturing audio through UAD plug-ins with no discernible latency, offering Mac-based Apollo users the most natural, analog-style workflow of any DAW available.

With LUNA Extensions, unlock analog sounds and workflows including premium Neve Summing and Studer A800 and Ampex ATR-102 tape machines. You can also sculpt warm analog tape tones with the included Oxide Tape Extension. Far beyond plug-ins, LUNA Extensions are built into the fabric of LUNA's mixer, giving you authentic analog sounds without having to manage multiple plug-in windows.

LUNA Instruments bring UA’s expertise in modeling, sampling, and synthesis to software instruments, featuring the most expressive and realistic software piano ever made — Ravel — and the holy grail of analog synths, perfectly emulated in software — Moog Minimoog.

LUNA is constantly improving through its integrated user feedback tool. Thanks to generous input from the entire LUNA community, the latest software update features over a hundred user-requested enhancements and fixes, with many more to come.

Take your recording further, and work faster and smarter than ever in LUNA Recording System

Universal Audio Neve 1084

Neve 1084 Preamp & EQ Plug-In

The channel strip powering a handful of rare Neve 80 series consoles, the Neve 1084 channel amplifier and EQ is a lusted-after audio masterpiece. Its class-A preamp offers signature Neve clarity and character, while its colorful palette of EQ options take it several steps beyond the famed 1073.

Exclusively for UAD hardware and Apollo interfaces, the Neve 1084 Preamp & EQ plug-in impeccably emulates the analog character, warmth, and color of this 1970s British channel module. UA delivers all the features of Neve's original analog design by thoroughly modeling the dual-stage class?A "Red Knob" preamp, post-fader output amplifier, and musical EQ filters. 

Harnessing Unison technology, the Neve 1084 plug-in captures the hardware’s mic preamp impedance, gain stage “sweet spots,” and circuit behaviors, giving you all the sheen and punch of the original module. Easily add shimmer to vocals with the three selectable high band filters. Use the mid band to inject muscle into piano and strings, or use the selectable Hi Q and shape more surgically. The plug-in's low band lets you tighten a kick drum, push guitars, or beef up a synth bass. Plus, you can clean up sibilance and low-end rumble with selectable high and low cut filters.

Universal Audio Apollo X4

Apollo x4

Apollo x4 allows musicians and producers to easily track, overdub, and mix larger projects with elite-class A/D and D/A conversion, four Unison-enabled preamps, and QUAD Core realtime UAD plug-in processing — all in a desktop Thunderbolt 3 audio interface for Mac and Windows. 

Built upon UA’s 60-year heritage of audio craftsmanship, Apollo x4 confidently outperforms everything in its class with 127 dB D/A dynamic range, along with an included bundle of UAD analog emulation plug-ins and LUNA Recording System, giving you a fully-stocked analog studio, right on your desktop. 

Beyond the included Realtime Analog Classics Plus plug-ins, Apollo x4 lets you tap into the full library award-winning UAD Powered Plug-Ins at near-zero latency, regardless of your audio software’s buffer size and without taxing your computer’s CPU.

The Unison mic preamps on Apollo x4 let you track in real time through exacting mic preamp emulations from Neve, Helios, API, Manley, Avalon, Universal Audio and many more. Exclusive to UA Audio Interfaces, Unison technology nails the tone of these sought-after tube and solid state mic pres — including their input impedance, gain stage “sweet spots,” and the component-level circuit behaviors of the original hardware.

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Arturia Keystep


KeyStep 37 is a controller evolved to meet the creative needs of musicians across the board. Intuitive features like Chord mode, Scale mode, Strum, and real-time LED note feedback make it the perfect option for beginner and professional beat-makers and composers combined. Instant MIDI CC control, advanced connectivity such as USB, CV pitch, gate, and mod, as well as a high-end compact 37-note keybed that make it a reliable controller for your workflow.

The unique interplay between KeyStep 37’s features is designed to unlock and connect musical ideas in real-time. It encourages spontaneity and experimentation, letting musicians and producers dive into the creative process.

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Arturia Polybrute


Arturia is thrilled to introduce PolyBrute - a 6-voice analog powerhouse, with unprecedented expressivity and sound morphing capabilities, built to let you perform fearlessly, compose with fluidity, and infinitely explore sound in perpetual motion. 

Imagine being able to sweep all the parameter settings between two different patches all at once. PolyBrute goes even further with its groundbreaking ability to gradually morph between two completely different states within any patch.

Each pure analog voice is a feature-packed ,sonic power tool featuring two highly versatile Brute waveshaping VCOs, a full-spectrum noise generator, enhanced Steiner multimode filter, custom low-pass ladder filter, 3 LFOs, 3 Envelope Generators, and more. They all meet up in the Matrix to bring you patching flexibility normally reserved for modular systems.

An instrument that responds to your every command for ultimate performance control.  The new Brute flagship has landed. Raw, powerful, organic - the Brute range is all about the tactile immediacy of analog synthesis. Explore it for yourself…

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Antelope Audio

Antelope Zen Go Synergy Core

Zen Go Synergy Core

Antelope Audio’s first bus-powered USB-C interface is optimized for ultra-low latency recording, high-resolution playback, creative beat making and podcasting from virtually anywhere. The Zen Go Synergy Core allows self-recording artists and home producers to create freely with technology used by award-winning artists. The device delivers best-in-class sound quality and onboard effects in an accessible 4x8 format. 

The two Discrete low-noise ultra-linear preamps offer a choice between mic, line and Hi-Z mode for any tracking session involving a microphone, synth, guitar or another instrument. With dynamic range of up to 127dB, the AD/DA converters provide pristine detail and plenty of headroom during playback. The stand-out sonic quality of the device would not be possible without the main pillar of the Antelope Audio sound - the 64-bit AFC™ clocking technology from the company’s high-end master clocks. 

36 analog-modeled effects come for free with the interface and over 50 are available for additional purchase including exclusive emulations of classic and rare analog outboard effects, and 3rd party expansions like Antares’ Auto-Tune Synergy. The effects are processed in real time with imperceptible latency on the Synergy Core onboard platform with easy to set-up direct monitoring.

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Orion Studio Synergy Core

Antelope Synergy Core

With high-fidelity sound and comprehensive I/O the cross-platform Orion Studio Synergy Core has no trouble being the heart of your studio. Capture the sounds of all your instruments with 12 discrete preamps and signature clocking technology that set apart Antelope’s famed master clocking. Employing a sophisticated design with ultra-linear components, the preamps give realistic detail and micro-dynamics. If you want no coloration you have the option to hard-bypass the preamps via Direct-In feature and hit the 124dB A/D converter directly. With 128dB on the D/A stage and the DC-coupled line inputs and outputs, the interface is specially designed to bring any synthesizer to a whole new level.

The interface presents you with your own virtual studio by allowing you to create with 50 included real-time analog-modeled plugins from an expandable library. Thanks to the Synergy Core plugin processing platform, you can work on a session with up to 256 plugins loaded simultaneously with no perceived latency. This happens with zero CPU load and no need for external DSP accelerators.

Other connections include sixteen line outs on DB25, two analog inserts, two reamp outs, S/PDIF & two ADAT, word clock I/O, two stereo headphone outs and two stereo monitor outs.

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Orion 32HD | Gen 3

Antelope Audio Orion32 HD

With Orion 32HD | Gen 3 you get high-fidelity sound straight into your HD rig. The multi-channel interface is compatible with the Avid HDX, HD Native and HD Thunderbolt Native systems via two HDX ports allowing for a total of 64 channels of audio. The interface also works with MADI and USB 3.0 for easy integration with your studio. Avoid bouncing between session by taking advantage of simultaneous operation from all ports, and work on multiple DAWs at once.

High-resolution audio on the way in is provided by an A/D converter with 124dB of headroom and 129dB on the D/A stage. Your recordings and playback sound will greatly benefit from increased width, separation, and detail thanks to Antelope’s signature Acoustically Focused Clocking technology with DDS. Articulate audio reproduction is provided by a mastering-grade D/A monitor converter with 136dB of headroom.

Start producing with 38 included plugins from a collection of emulations of rare and vintage analog gear. Every plugin runs in real-time with imperceptible latency on an integrated FPGA platform, which saves your host computer CPU and memory.

Connectivity options include 32 channels of analog I/O via eight DB25 connectors, S/PDIF, two ADAT ports, word clock I/O and an atomic clock in.

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Royer Labs

Royer R10

Royer R-10 Ribbon Microphone

The R-10 is Royer’s least expensive ribbon microphone at $499.00 US and it’s all of a Royer, from being hand-built in Royer’s Burbank CA factory to utilizing the same ribbon element and magnet/frame structure as used in the R-121.

The R-10 is an excellent choice for high SPL instruments like live electric guitars (it was the only mic on Dave Grohl’s guitar cabinet on the last Foo Fighter’s tour) due to its internal 3-layer wind screen system, which provides additional protection to the ribbon element against air blasts. The wind screen also cuts back on proximity effect, letting you close mic a guitar cabinet with less bass buildup. The ribbon transducer is internally shock mounted, protecting the ribbon element from vibrations and shocks and its hum-bucking design delivers extremely low residual noise

Paired with the dBooster, the R-10 is great on acoustic instruments like acoustic guitar, fiddle, and ukulele.

The R-10 ships in a compact carrying case that includes an adjustable swivel mount.

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Royer 121

Royer R-121 Ribbon Microphone 

The R-121 is Royer’s flagship ribbon microphone, extremely natural sounding and used by studio and FOH engineers around the world as a #1 call for electric guitars, trumpets and brass sections. It’s also used heavily for drum rooms, drum overheads, percussion, acoustic instruments and strings. 

One of the most widely used methods for recording electric guitar is to blend an R-121 with an SM57. The R-121 reproduces the guitar with the sound and feel of standing in front of the amplifier, with all the body, mids and highs your speaker cab is delivering, while the SM57 adds upper midrange punch and high end bite. Blending the two mics to taste offers a great variety of tonal options.

The R-121 can handle up to 160 dB SPL (@ 1kHz), so close miking loud electric guitars and trumpets is no problem. R-121s are used extensively onstage for live electric guitars.

The back side of the R-121 records slightly brighter than the front when it’s two feet or closer to an instrument, making a backward R-121 a nice choice for acoustic guitar and other acoustic instruments.

Hand-built in the USA, the R-121 comes with a lifetime warranty to the original owner and the first re-ribbon is free within five years of purchase.

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Royer dBooster

Royer dBooster In-line Signal Booster

Royer’s “dBooster” is a high-end, in-line, phantom powered signal booster for use with non-powered ribbon and dynamic microphones. It offers two switchable levels of gain; 12 dB or 20 dB, giving your mics plenty of level for use with virtually any preamplifier. 

The dBooster is designed like the input stage of a high-end microphone preamplifier, and it sounds like it. Rather than the inexpensive FETs normally used in in-line lifters to achieve gain, the dBooster utilizes a series of paired bi-polar transistors and op amps for extremely clean boost. It also has regulated power and gobs of noise suppression.

The dBooster’s Class A, 3.6K-Ohm input is perfect for passive ribbon and dynamic microphones and helps the unit deliver clean gain with virtually no noise or self-distortion. Its 300-Ohm low-impedance output keeps things clean in the studio and also shines on live stages, driving long cable lengths and difficult loads like mic splitters and vintage-style preamps with no loss of gain, no increased distortion, and excellent headroom.

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Terry Audio

Terry Audio CEQ


Years in the making listening to every component, Terry Audio's 6 Band Passive 'CEQ' Mastering Equalizer has created the mountain to consider the question: “Can there be better than vintage?” With clever adaptations of heritage circuits from 60's program equalizers and lathe cutting amps, Terry (Chief Technician for Shadow Hills for almost a decade) delivers the passion project for total tonal craftsmanship to keep the depth of modern mastering walking hand in hand with the vibrant tonality and soundstages of past decades.

Terry Audio CEQ

Along with the equalizers' wide palate, several switches allow transformers and buffer amplifiers to be added for coloration or removed for true 'single-ended' mastering in his new expanded build for 2020. To top it off, a 'Shift' control selects either heritage metalized paper-in-foil capacitors or polypropylene filter banks for two fundamental equalizer builds on a switch. Fully stepped, 1/3db controls built with Elma switches and custom wound in house inductors. Available in black or antique white. $4900 

Terry Audio CEQ

Upcoming in 2021, Terry Audio will offer Urei 811/813 Mastering Crossover modifications and updates designed in tandem with Ed Long’s “Time Align” calculations as well as roller guide upgrades for Ampex 440 and Scully 280 tape machines.





Undertone Audio

Undertone Audio MPDI-4


The MPDI-4 is musical, it's powerful, and, man, is it flexible. It features four individual Mic Preamp/DI circuits housed in a single 1RU chassis.  With by-passable transformers, switchable output headroom, and adjustable THD characteristics, the sound of the MPDI-4 can range from clean, lean, and pristine to warm, thick, and harmonically colorful. Whether you're working with a high-energy punk band, a quiet jazz trio, or a symphonic orchestra, the MPDI-4 can bring out the best elements of any musical instrument. If you're a novice recording engineer just starting out; if you're a studio on a budget; or if you're a recording artist wanting to get your sound to a more professional level, the MPDI-4 is the mic pre you must have in your tool box. Don't believe us? A-B your vocals, your drums, your guitar on the UTA designs versus any other mic pre out there, and then you'll hear it for yourself -- UTA wins again. REVIEW

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Undertone Audio MPEQ-1


The MPEQ-1 is what you get when you merge Undertone Audio's EQ and our custom UTA mic pre.  It features the same flexible and musical Class A discrete circuitry, the uniquely powerful HP/LP filters, and an exciting new approach to a Class A mic pre. You can use the equalizer and the mic pre separately or as a complete channel strip.  The mic pre has a custom input transformer and a carefully chosen output transformer -- both are optimized to accentuate the most flattering sonic qualities inherent in audio transformers.  The unique mic pre design makes both of these transformers bypass-able, offering users a choice between the detailed clarity of a Class-A transformer-less design or the vintage musicality of a dual transformer mic preamp. Whether you're a high-end mix engineer looking for surgical precision or a hobbyist looking for pro-grade tools that can be scaled down for a home studio, the MPEQ-1 is a game-changer.

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Undertone Audio UnFairchild


Can you say instant classic? A painstaking recreation of the much-loved Fairchild, the genius of UTA's UnFairchild 670M II is the simplicity of the audio path, which consists of only two transformers and four paralleled Vari-Mu tubes, and that is it. But UTA has added features that were never available on a Fairchild. The UnFairchild sports 6 original preset Time Constants and 4 variable Time Constants (attack and release), MS function, side chain processing, a true bypass, fine adjustment of left/right balance, user adjustable DC Threshold, and Feed-Back vs. Feed-Forward functionality. With the UnFairchild, we've made this extraordinary circuit flexible enough to handle  every compression task on any style of music. When your work as a recording engineer is ready for the next level, adding the UnFairchild to your repertoire of gear will set your tracking, mixing, and mastering apart from the crowd. REVIEW

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Storybook Sound

Storybook Sound

Storybook Sound and friends enthusiastically support the excellent missions shared by AES, TapeOp, and all virtual attendees during this time of reinvention. Since March, we’ve been hunkered down mastering music with Chris Harford, Blanc du Blanc, Rebecca Turner’s Omniana, Sad About Girls, Emily Hurd, Electroluxx, Speed the Plough, Girls on Grass, Nation Beat, the Cucumbers, Keith Kenny, Naughty Clouds, OPTO-S, Hani, David Greenberger, the Reducers, Halse, Ivan Nahem, the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, and many more. We’d love to hear from you!



LA Sound Panels

LA Sound Panels Portable Recording Wall

Portable Recording Wall

Our Portable Recording Wall is two 24″ x 84″ x 2″ panels hinged together, both sides covered in fabric.  They fold up and are easy to store.  Clients have used them to create acoustic walls for mixing environments, tracking vocals and other instruments, and used as gobos in live rooms.  They are very versatile and effective for any commercial or home recording studio.

LA Sound Panels

24" x 48" x 2" Acoustic Panel

LA Sound Panels 2″ Acoustic Panels are ideal for first and second reflection points in your room. We recommend you begin the treatment of your room with these broadband panels and you will immediately hear a difference in your listening environment. Our 2″ panels also work great for “deadening” rooms such as vocal booths, home theaters, restaurants, event spaces, art galleries, music venues, rehearsal rooms, and any other space with acoustic issues.

LA Sound Panels

Acoustics/Studio Buildout Consulting

LA Sound Panels now offers consulting services for everything from basic acoustic fixes, sound transfer issues, to full studio build outs. Consulting can be done on site or remotely through Zoom.  We can help you turn your home studio into a professional sounding recording environment, help fix exterior noise pollution in your recording environment, to building out your dream studio. 



Overstayer Audio

Stereo Voltage Control

Overstayer SVC

The Overstayer Stereo Voltage Control combines the gain control and punch of VCA gain cells, the warmth and character of our discrete analog Harmonics circuitry, and the sculpting power of an ultra-smooth 2-band shelving EQ. The SVC has dynamics control from fast peak limiting to smooth RMS compression, with multiple starting ratios and a Behavior control to create new and unique envelopes. Use the LEVEL control to drive into Harmonics to further bend transient peaks, adding musical harmonic color and cohesiveness as well as increasing apparent volume. The EQ and filters allow you to shape and drive as much low warmth or smooth top presence as desired. Each of its multiple stages can add its character and harmonics, cumulatively transforming the signal in a way not normally possible within a single device.

The integrated blend control allows even aggressive settings to be balanced tastefully. You can further create custom compression shaping by using the sidechain high-pass filter for low end response, or even further by using the external sidechain insert. REVIEW

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Overstayer Modular Channel

Modular Channel 8755D

The Modular Channel is a fluid analog stereo channel instrument for music, tracking and mixing, capable of sophisticated processing from subtle layed shaping to total chaos.

The 8755D is a stereo channel with filters, eq, compression, and harmonics stages throughout, with sophisticated routing and a series/parallel mixer matrix. High-quality components and circuitry are used throughout. Though the unit can get extreme, the design aesthetic is that of a console in that it is capable of handling and maintaining the fidelity of a full mix through the unit. REVIEW

Overstayer Imperial Channel

Imperial Channel Model 8776A

The 877 series modules are self powered, self contained channels that can be used on their own (no chassis required) or as part of a larger framework for recording and mixing. The 8776A features mic, line, and instrument inputs, as well as filters, 4 band eq, FET limiting, and controls to shape and exploit the harmonic character of the circuitry throughout. Modules can be mounted vertically in dual, quad, or a 10 space rack-mountable chassis (5RU high). Audio connections are via XLR and TRS connectors with access to several points in the signal path.

The Imperial Channel’s preamp and drive amps were inspired by late 60’s English solid state consoles. Their primitive design makes them incredibly forgiving with a wide range of nonlinearities before overt clipping (a wide sweet spot), and with that they are generous with low order harmonics, and can be driven into full distortion. These stages are ‘cushioned’ in this design allowing them to be used exploited in new ways.



Flea Microphones


Flea 47

Actually this mic is an exact replica of the U47. It is equipped with F7 capsule – our exact replica of M7 capsule, our replica of BV8 transformer and TELEFUNKEN EF12 or Andreas Grosser EF12ER tubes. We focus on EF12 tube as we consider its sound character closest to original. This mic is possible to use for almost everything and always sounds perfect. The body is duraluminium and is nickel plated . The grille is available in two versions: glossy chrome or matt nickel.

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Flea 12


This mic is an exact replica of C12 and involves a modern style power supply with integrated pattern switch. As standard, it is equipped with Tim Campbell's CT12 capsule - great choice if you are considering the clones of original CK12 - and with 6072 tube. The transformer is our own replica of original. Considering the sound, it is simply "Rolls-Royce". In some applications this mic will seem somewhat neutral, but it benefits will stand out during mixdown. It's fantastic for vocals, acoustic instruments as well as ambient miking. Those, who have not experienced, will not believe.

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Flea 49


FLEA 49 is an exact replica of M49 microphone. All mechanical parts are absolutely exact replicas. FLEA 49 is fitted with capsule F7 - our exact replica of legendary M7 capsule. Another important part is transformer which is also our exact replica of transformers used in M49 mics. The last important part of the electronical system of the microphone is its tube, triode, carefully selected for noise reduction. This mic is fantastic not only for female vocals. You can - taste it !!! The sound is soft and pleasant.

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NAMM 2021 Buyer's Guide: Part 1
NAMM 2021 Buyer's Guide: Part 3

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

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