A rundown of the new products shown at the recent Frankfurt Music Fair.
Each, year the musical equipment trade holds a massive exhibition in Frankfurt, West Germany, where many manufacturers unveil their new products for the coming year. There are literally hundreds of new products shown though not all of them will ever reach the UK. HSR attended this year's show to bring you this extended 'What's New' feature that includes our selection from the products we believe will be available from UK distributors throughout the coming months.
Vesta Fire will be launching a low cost monophonic sound sampler. The Cutec Octette is still delayed due to technical problems. Accessit have two new modules in the range - an Auto Pan unit and an Enhancer device.
Tascam have a new 16 track on one inch tape format machine. Akai unveiled a polyphonic MIDI controlled sound sampler.
Allen & Heath Brenell demonstrated the CMC 24 mixer with its new computer software.
Promark had a new device called the Bokse which provides MIDI to CV conversion and sync to tape.
Roland have announced a whole new range of recording related products to be released on the UK market throughout the summer months.
The SRV-2000 Stereo Digital Reverb is a 1U rack-mounting unit which utilises 16-bit digital technology with fully programmable parameters. Features include 24 user memories, Pre-delay from 0 to 300 ms, Reverb Time of 0.1 to 99 sec, Room Size up to 37 cubic metres and High frequency damping. Two unusual features of the SRV-2000 are the built-in Gate which has a variable 'gate on' time of 10 to 400 ms and is useful for producing gated reverb effects. Secondly, the programmable two band parametric equaliser allowing control of frequency boost/cut across a two stage sweepable range from 250 to 1 kHz and 800 to 8kHz plus control of the Q factor from 0.1 to 9 in 0.1 increments. Signal-to-noise ratio is quoted at 80dB for the reverb signal and 100dB direct. All memory programs may be recalled via the MIDI facility: available from July.
The SDE-2500 Digital Delay is an up-dated version of the old SDE-2000 and now features MIDI control, 64 user memories, up to 750 ms delay time, feedback, modulation, hold and a S/N ratio of 84dB for the delayed signal. Most parameters can be displayed in one of the two LED readouts and all programs may be controlled via an external MIDI instrument: available from June.
For those who require a compact mixer/power amplifier Roland have introduced the SPM-120. This unit incorporates an 8 into 2 mixer with input gain, treble/bass, effects and pan on each channel, headphone output and twin bar-graph metering. Housed within the mixer is a stereo 60 watt amplifier making this an ideal unit for small PA applications: available from August.
From the Boss division of Roland come a series of five signal processors in the new Micro Rack Series all of which will be available from August. Each unit is half the width of a standard 19 inch rack unit allowing any pair of effects to be mounted together in a special rack adapter.
The ROD-10 Digital Delay is a 12 bit PCM system and offers up to 400 ms of delay at a 16kHz bandwidth and includes both feedback and modulation controls. RCL-10 is a Compressor/Limiter with an integral noise gate and offers a variable compression ratio from 1.5 to infinity, threshold, attack/release controls and, on the noise gate, variable threshold level and decay time control plus an external key facility. The RBF-10 Flanger uses analogue circuitry with a built-in noise reduction system to provide optimum sound quality and a full range of flanger effects. Full control of modulation and feedback are available together with the option of an inverted output. RPH-10 Phaser features three modes of operation to produce distinct phaser effects which may be varied using the modulation, depth and resonance controls. The last unit in the series is the RGE-10 Graphic Equaliser which offers a 10 octave range with +/-12dB of boost and cut per individual band and an LED on each slider gives a bright visual indication of position in low light conditions.
All the Micro Rack Series units operate at -10dB levels and are powered by external 9 volt DC power packs. Further products include the DI-1 Direct Box which employs active circuitry operated by either a 9 volt battery or the phantom power supply from a mixer and provides a simple way of interfacing an unbalanced line into a balanced system: available from July.
Housed in a foot pedal the DSD-2 Digital Sampler allows any sound to be sampled into the unit and replayed either by pressing the footswitch or using an external trigger input. The effect utilises a 12-bit digital system with sampling up to 800 ms at a 7kHz bandwidth and is available from June.
Further information on all Roland and Boss products from Roland UK Ltd, (Contact Details).
DOD are to introduce a new range of effects under the DigiTech name. The RDS series offer three different digital delay units each housed in a standard 1U rackmounting case. All units offer the usual echo, flanger and chorus type effect treatments plus a repeat hold function with the main difference between the three units being the maximum delay time and signal bandwidth. The RDS 900 offers 900ms of delay time with an 8kHz bandwidth, the RDS 1900 provides a maximum of 1900ms delay time at 15kHz bandwidth and finally the RDS 3600 offers a variable range from 1900ms at 15kHz, 3600ms at 8kHz and 7200ms at 4kHz, and also offers a drum sync input for triggering sounds which have been frozen into the memory. Full details from Atlantex, (Contact Details).
Korg are soon to enter the world of sampling devices with the release of their SDD-2000 Sampling Digital Delay. The unit operates in two distinct modes and offers 1029ms delay time at 18kHz bandwidth and up to 4368ms delay with reduced bandwidth. Flanging, chorus, echo and doubling effects are all available and any effect may be programmed into one of the 64 user memories.
In the sampling mode, the unit offers the same duration of sample time as in the delay mode and sound samples may be played back by either a trigger pulse from a footswitch or drum machine. Alternatively, the sample may be played at different pitches by use of a MIDI keyboard. Further details from Korg (UK), (Contact Details).
Studiomaster return to the four-track cassette market with their new Studio 4-2 system which follows in the footsteps of their popular Studio 4 model of the early 1980s. The new Studio 4-2 is cleverly designed around a twin tape deck housed within one unit. The four-track cassette deck runs at double speed for optimum recording quality and the two-track at normal cassette speed making it possible to record and mixdown totally within the Studio 4-2. Dolby type B and C noise reduction is utilised and six large bargraph displays show all signal levels.
An optional Mini Mix module is also available for use with the Studio 4-2 and this is housed in a separate 2U case and features the usual input channel, routing and monitoring facilities associated with four-track cassette systems. If a more comprehensive mixer is required the Studio 4-2 is fully compatible with the RSD Studiomaster 16-4-2 mixer. Further information from Studiomaster, (Contact Details).
Teczon is a new name in the field of recording and the Dub Multi 4x4 personal recorder is one of the first products to come from this Japanese company. Adopting the now familiar four-track cassette format, the unit incorporates a four into two channel mixer together with a normal speed four track recorder. Basic EQ, routing and individual record punch-in facilities are just some of the unit's many features. More information from John Hornby Skewes & Co Ltd, (Contact Details).
Audio-Technica, well known for their range of microphones, have announced the AT-RMX64 4-track cassette recorder/mixer. Designed to offer the highest recording quality within the multitrack cassette format, the AT-RMX64 has an advanced three motor transport system which operates at either double or normal cassette speed, is fully logic controlled and has a digital tape counter with a return to zero function and uses Dolby B & C noise reduction to help maintain a high S/N ratio.
The mixer section is a six into four design and offers two switchable pre/post aux sends per channel, two band EQ with variable shelving, channel to track routing and an overload indicator. The four VU meters provide visual monitoring of signal levels and these may be switched to read from the tape or subgroup. Four group outputs and two aux returns are just some of the other numerous features to be found on the mixer. All signal connections are made via the rear panel with balanced microphone (switchable 48 volt phantom power) and group outputs on XLR sockets and line level signals on standard jack. The AT-RMX64 is seen as a high quality multitrack recorder for applications where ease of use and quality take priority and is particularly suitable for audio-visual production and songwriting. Details from John Hornby Skewes & Co Ltd, (Contact Details).
Harrison Information Technology continue to expand their range of products with the introduction of the SP2 Professional Stereo Pre-Amplifier. This 1U rack-mounting device has been designed to drive power amplifiers such as the HIT X-series and provides a means of using cassette or tape deck and RIAA phono cartridge input as a sound source without the need of a separate mixer. Two channels are housed within the unit, one for the recorded sound input ie. tape or disc, and one for a Hi/Lo impedance microphone. A special Set Override control allows you to set the level of the music so that when the microphone is used the music is automatically faded down to a preset level until the voice-over is complete and then it fades smoothly back up to the normal level. These facilities make the SP2 an ideal unit for PA applications in a concert, conference, pub or disco environment.
The HIT PA150 and PA300 MOS-FET mixer amplifiers both offer similar facilities which include five individual input channels with gain, treble and bass, two input sockets marked line/mic plus switchable reverb and echo. A master module contains master volume, foldback level, master reverb and a presence control. Additional effects such as echo and chorus treatments are provided and these may be altered by the delay, repeat and echo volume controls.
Rear panel connections using jack sockets are provided for the main left/right outputs from the power amp along with an effects send and return, foldback output, slave out and a tape in socket on five pin DIN. Power output is 150 watts and 300 watts into 4 ohms respectively with a frequency response of 20Hz to 20kHz. The echo delay time is variable between 10ms to 200ms and the Accutronics spring reverb line has a fixed decay time of 2.5 seconds. Both units are ideal for all PA applications. Details from Harrison Information Technology Ltd, (Contact Details).