Another month's worth of hot products.
Surrey mixer manufacturers Soundtracs have just underlined their commitment to both ends of the sound reinforcement market with the release of new products. The first, the CP6800, is likely to become the company's flagship — it's an analogue desk with sophisticated, post-SSL digital routing, which may be interfaced with Video Synchronisers, making it an ideal broadcast A/V applications mixer, as well as, of course, a recording machine. Available in a variety of configurations the CP6800 is fitted with an onboard computer and monitor with disk storage, a SMPTE reader, and eight way events controller housed in a 6U-high remote rack. Two meter bridges are available, (conventional VUs or LED bargraphs) and the console is supplied complete with stand for around £20-25,000, which makes it very competitive for machines of this sophistication.
Down amongst the mortals meanwhile, you'll find the Soundtracs FM Series 15u high 19" rackmounting mixer, again available in a variety of configurations: as an 8-10 monitor mixer; as a 12-2 PA mixer; as an 8-4-8-2 Recording/PA mixer (mono & stereo inputs), or as a 12-2 Broadcast mixer (mono and/or stereo inputs). If you want to use it for gigging, it can of course be flight-cased and being a modular design (up to 14 modules can be fitted into the aluminium and steel mainframe) the precise mix of mono and stereo inputs, with and without remote start, group outputs, four or eight monitoring, monitor ins and outs, PA/Rec master or Monitor masters, can be assembled to your needs. Prices will be 'competitive'. Stay tuned for further details in following issues...
If you can't wait that long, more info on the CP6800 and FM/FMX ranges of mixers, as well as the rest of Soundtracs' extensive range, can be had on: (Contact Details).
Syndromic Music manufacturers of the marvellous Digidrum hardware/software package for the Spectrum and Commodore 64 home micros raved about in our news pages last month, have taken a very serious step forward into 'pro' software with a graphic editor for Akai's popular S612 sampler and CBM 64/128 micros.
The Samplerscope package, imported from US software company Ultimate Media Inc on disk only for CBM64/128's and Passport MIDI interfaces, offers very precise editing of samples using Microvox-style 'Start', 'End', and 'Loop' flags. A multi-window screen display shows the whole sample, and 'magnified' views of the waveform leading up to a splice point, and immediately following it, allowing the necessary zero crossover point to be identified. Split points can be cross faded, which opens up some interesting possibilities for sound changes overtime, and samples edited on the package can be stored on either the 612's own Quickdisk or the CBM's disk drive (three to a disc).
The package, complete with detailed user manual, costs £129 inc VAT, whilst the top-range Passport interface is a further £199.95. A less sophisticated version of the same interface, lacking some of the former's drum-machine sync facilities, goes for £149.95. All these products are available direct from Syndromic.
Potential customers can call in for a demo at (Contact Details).
Fane have announced further additions to their range of high quality Studio range in the shape of the CX12 and CX15 Co-Axial speakers. These comprise an HF horn mounted coaxially with the bass driver; this eliminates time delays and consequent phase anomalies between the HF and LF regions and thus enables more even dispersion. These speakers are already available in enclosures as the Custom Sound HPC115CX and HPC112CX high performance cabinets, and thus join the large number of Fane speakers available in proprietary products from practice amps to professional bass rigs. Further details may be obtained from Audio Factors on (Contact Details).
Nice to hear of a British firm producing high quality goods at competitive prices. The firm in question is Syncom, King's Lynn based experts, and the product, their catchily named T108U MIDI Thru unit. Not the sexiest item in the world to look at, this effect-sized box is, however, solid enough to stand up to the rigours of onstage use (quite a novelty for a MIDI peripheral) and dead handy if you own anything more sophisticated than one synth and a drum machine. Just bung your master MIDI Out into this unit's single In, and presto — you have eight MIDI Thrus, 'star' networked, thus avoiding the timing delays associated with the more common 'daisy-chain' connection, and allowing ridiculously complex MIDI set-ups to be realised very easily. The unit is powered separately by a 7-12v DC unit (available separately — you've probably got one already), and there will soon be a battery option available too.
But the best thing about Syncom's snazzy gadget is its price — at £29.95, it's cheaper than all the competition — and better constructed than most of them. For further info on the little marvel, contact Syncom on: (Contact Details).
Barely have the winners of last years' Synthesizer Tape Contest, organised by Roland (UK) Ltd and Synsound, been announced than it's time to think about going in for this year's. The competition, open to individuals and groups, amateurs and professionals alike, is judged on the basis of an entry in the form of a piece, no more than five minutes in length, recorded using multitrack or sound on sound techniques and produced entirely or mainly with synth or computer instruments.
Prizes include three Roland Alpha Juno 1 polysynths, seven Roland TR505 drum machines, a selection of books records and tapes,and the chance to appear on The Winners Pieces, a compilation tape of the best entries which will receive wide distribution in the music business.
Deadline for entries (on cassette only) is October 31 st, so go to it. Incidentally, the current compilation tape is still available from Synsound (Dept STC) (Contact Details), which is also the address you should send your entries to, and the address from which further info about the comp can be obtained.
JHS have added a matching bass guitar, model BEG50MRB at £89 retail, to the popular Encore EG50 six string instrument.
The new bass model is in Metallic Red finish and features a split single coil pickup with separate tone and volume controls.
The design incorporates a double cutaway body with balanced headstock, featuring individual covered machine heads, and a fully adjustable combined bridge and tailpiece section, and if it's as good as its six-string partner, should do well. Our very own guitar reviewer Dave Burrluck called that beast "The best guitar in it's price range I've ever reviewed."
Keyfax 2, the follow up to Julian Colbecks invaluable keyboard quick reference guide to electronic keyboards hit the shops about a month ago, but it's worth mentioning here in case you missed it. It's a paperback goldmine of information for the buyer, seller, owner or just a plain fan of electronic keyboards, offering over 300 potted reviews of all manner of keyboards, from 'classic' monos to the new breed of sophisticated samplers. 70 new reviews have been added to the original edition including a section on 'addon' and update kits for existing synths (a non-Roland MIDI mode for the Juno 60? It's all here...), and an improved section on MIDI/Computer set-ups. Could be the best seven quid you've spent in ages...
Keyfax 2: Julian Colbeck's Definitive guide to electronic keyboards, Virgin Books, £6.99.
Word has reached us that Drummers Incorporated, the organisation founded a year ago by drummer and enthusiast Tony Bingham, is now, according to him, 'the biggest society for drummers in Great Britain.' Membership at present stands at 200, with some notable names attaching themselves to the society's masthead. Honorary President is none other than Simon Phillips, whilst the list of Vice Presidents includes such luminaries as Brian Bennet of The Shadows and Lloyd Ryan (remember his drum clinic in these very pages?)
Drummers Incorporated publish a quarterly newsletter (the present featuring an in-depth interview with the Honorary Pres about his playing technique) organise drum clinics, and visits to drum factories — Simmons was the last so blessed. Anyone interested in finding out more about Drummers Incorporated should write to Tony Bingham, at (Contact Details), enclosing an SAE.
Jim Marshall Products Ltd, home of rather loud amplifiers and holders already of the coveted Queen's Award For Industry, have added another gong to the prize cabinet with the announcement that they are now the holders of the 1986 Milton Keynes Export Award. New towns of the world beware. Jim Marshall is gunning for you next.
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