Monthly Archives: August 2006

Crowley And Tripp To Unveil The Recordist Ribbon Microphone And Recordist Ensemble Stereo Kit At AES

American ribbon microphone maker Crowley and Tripp are unveiling their new Recordist and Recordist Ensemble Stereo Kit at AES in San Francisco this October, adding a new voice to their established line of highest quality U.S. ribbon mics, and raising the bar for Blumlein ribbon recording.

The company’s newest ribbon microphone – The Recordist – is voiced for realistic reproduction of classical and jazz performances where a full-range, natural sound is desired. As with other Crowley and Tripp products, the Recordist’s high output, low noise design excels with location recording devices and digital audio interfaces, without the need for special high gain ribbon mic preamps. The Recordist is priced at $1,295 each, and comes with its own low diffraction rotary mount for exact placement, a durable Pelican™ case for location gigs, and a three-year warranty.

The Recordist Ensemble Stereo Kit fills the need for those who want to record in realistic Blumlein stereo, but need the tracking flexibility not offered by integrated stereo ribbon microphones. The Recordist Ensemble Stereo Kit consists of two matched Recordist microphones, extender bar, two low diffraction rotary mounts, and is offered at an introductory price of $1,995. Recordist mics come with a three-year warranty, a durable Pelican™ case and a stage-appropriate gunmetal gray finish.

In addition to the Recordist, Crowley and Tripp manufactures the Studio Vocalist, Soundstage Image, Proscenium, SPLx Custom, and Naked Eye ribbon microphones completely in the U.S. Each microphone is an original design carefully voiced for a variety of applications in recording studios and on location. See and hear the full line of highest output, lowest noise Crowley and Tripp microphones at booth #1431 at AES.

For more information, visit their web site at

Crowley And Tripp Recordist Ribbon Microphone

Access Music Releases Virus TI Software Suite v.1.2.3

A software update for the Virus TI synthesizer and PC/Mac components is available for download on

The new version is a Universal Binary build supporting PowerPC and Intel based Macintosh computers. It also improves the startup behaviour of the Virus Control plug-in, feels much snappier, fixes a couple of bugs which caused crackling with certain patches and lowers the CPU consumption when the plug-in window is open.

The free update requires Windows XP SP2 or MacOS 10.4 and is available now.

For more information, visit their web site at

Royer Labs Ships The R-122V Vacuum Tube Ribbon Microphone

Royer Labs is pleased to announce the R-122V Vacuum Tube Ribbon Microphone, the company’s newest addition to the venerable R-Series microphone line, is now shipping. The R-122V is a compact, monaural, bi-directional microphone, and is the first commercially produced vacuum tube ribbon microphone available.

A limited production vacuum tube studio ribbon microphone, the R-122V utilizes the same patented large-ribbon transducer assembly that is found in the R-121 and R-122 Active Ribbon microphones—providing a familiarity of sonic performance associated with the R-Series microphones. The R-122V exhibits a flat frequency response and a well-balanced soundfield, and provides an output of -37dB, which is approximately 13dB hotter than an R-121. Like its predecessors, the R-122V’s ability to withstand high SPL levels makes it well suited for applications that were previously considered off limits to ribbon microphones.

The R-122V’s offset-ribbon design positions the ribbon element toward the front of the microphone body. This design enables high SPL handling on the front (logo) side of the instrument, with the option of a slightly brighter response when recording via the microphone’s back side (3 feet and closer; phase reversed in this position).

The R-122V’s active electronics utilize a NOS (new old stock) U.S. built, military 5840 triode-connected vacuum tube and Royer’s proprietary toroidal ribbon matching transformer (patent pending). A Jensen® 8:1 ratio output transformer provides an electrically isolated, fully-balanced output signal. The R-122V can drive virtually any preamplifier and long cable runs (from power supply to preamp) with ease. The active circuitry provides optimum impedance to the ribbon element at all times, preventing over-damping of the ribbon element and assuring consistent microphone performance. The R-122V receives an extensive burning in procedure to assure proper settling of the vacuum tube.

The R-122V employs a pure (99.99%), low mass, 2.5-micron thick aluminum ribbon. The R122V’s unique, patented offset-ribbon transducer assembly incorporates rare earth Neodymium magnets in a specially designed flux frame, which forms a powerful magnetic field while reducing unwanted stray magnetic radiation. The smooth frequency response and phase linearity of the R-122V, coupled with its classic triode-connected vacuum tube circuitry, enable the R-122V to deliver a consistent acoustic performance with stunning realism. Frequency response is excellent, regardless of the angle of sound striking the ribbon, and off-axis coloration is negligible.

With a satin nickel body finish and black transducer finish (18-carat gold finish is optional), the new Royer Labs R-122V is a visually striking microphone. This superb microphone comes in a camera style case with a dedicated power supply, a shock mount, and the included cable set is equipped with military grade locking type XLR connectors.

John Jennings, Royer’s VP of Sales and Marketing commented on the company’s new offering, “There is quite a bit of history behind this microphone. We actually developed vacuum tube ribbon microphones, including the R-122V, about a year before the release of the company’s phantom-powered active series. The vacuum tube ribbon mic designs were created specifically to establish an internal standard to compare the solid-state active mics against. With the introduction of the R-122V, we’ve now come full circle.”

Jennings also states, “The R-122V’s low end is extended and there is tremendous detail and depth in the midrange. It’s very lush sounding. It will perform well on a variety of applications, and it has the headroom to handle extremely loud sound sources, but we feel it is best utilized in classical and acoustic applications where capturing the subtleties, nuance, and depth of performances is most desired.”

The new R-122V Vacuum Tube Ribbon Microphone carries a suggested retail price of $2,995.00 and is available now.

For more information, visit their web site at

Royer Labs R-122V Vacuum Tube Ribbon Microphone

Posted in Microphones

RME Ships Fireface 400 36-Channel 24 Bit/192 kHz FireWire Audio Interface

Synthax Audio AG today announced that RME is shipping the little brother of the highly acclaimed Fireface 800 – the Fireface 400 – worldwide. Rather than simply being a compact version of its illustrious relative, the portable, fiery little Fireface 400 is a newly designed product whose flexibility, functionality and performance sets it apart from other devices and sets new standards among 19-inch half-rack products in much the same way as its bigger brother has in the full 19-inch category.

The Fireface 400 is the only device in its category to offer active jitter suppression, additional stand-alone functionality, direct device operation, professional quality I/Os, and an unsurpassed 648-channel matrix router. And, everything is operational up to 192 kHz. Included in the Fireface 400:

  • Support for up to 192 kHz
  • Two digitally controlled high-quality mic preamps
  • Two balanced universal line/instrument inputs
  • SteadyClock for maximum jitter suppression and clock refresh
  • Simple stand-alone operation via display and rotary encoders
  • TotalMix: 648-channel mixer with 42 bit internal resolution
  • 54 level meters displaying peak and RMS, calculated in hardware
  • Full mobility with reliable bus power support
  • For use with Windows and on Mac

Thanks to the DSP-based mixers, all 18 input and playback channels can be routed and mixed to any of the 18 physical outputs. This makes the Fireface 400 an indispensable tool for monitoring, with up to 9 completely independent stereo sub-mixes possible. Copy/paste of routings, fader grouping and the unique matrix window represent just some of the other outstanding features. All mix functions can be remotely controlled via MIDI using any Mackie-compatible controller.

The 8 channels from the ADAT optical I/O can be used simultaneously with the analog channels. The coaxial SPDIF I/O is fully AES/EBU compatible (as always with RME) and can operate up to 192 kHz. The optical SPDIF, alternatively provided via the ADAT I/O, also operates up to 192kHz. Rounding off the Fireface 400’s feature set is a word clock in- and output (BNC), plus two low jitter, high-speed MIDI in/outs (using 5-pin DINs), culminating in a versatile, user-friendly product of the highest quality.

The Fireface 400 retails at €899 and US $1199.

For more information, visit their web site at

RME Fireface 400 36-Channel 24 Bit/192 kHz Audio Interface

otiumFX Updates Compadre Beatpuncher Plug-In To Version 1.1

otiumFX has updated their compressor, Compadre Beatpuncher VST, to version 1.1.

This is a free upgrade for registered users.

Changes in version 1.1:

  • Improved CPU performance
  • Faster attack time (now goes down to 0.1 ms)
  • Changed response for gain reduction meter & clip indicator
  • Fix: registration glitch causing the plug-in to sometimes appear unregistered
  • Fix: Weird panning behaviour in some hosts with certain material

Unfortunately it has not been possible to maintain preset/song compatibility with the previous version, so it is recommended that you keep version 1.0 on your system while making the transition. The trial version will also soon be updated.

For more information, visit their web site at

Gibson Guitar Introduces Billie Joe Armstrong Signature Model Guitar

Gibson Guitar has partnered with Green Day guitarist Billie Joe Armstrong to create the Gibson Billie Joe Armstrong (BJA) Signature model guitar, it was announced today. The guitar was created through a partnership with Armstrong and the Gibson USA design team in Nashville, Tenn. and is based on the specifications of Armstrong’s vintage 1950’s model Gibson Les Paul Jr.

The guitar took a little over a year of design and modification with hands-on analysis from Armstrong throughout Green Day’s worldwide tour. The Gibson BJA Signature guitar boasts a custom modified pickup, unique to any other guitar produced. It will be available in three colors: vintage sunburst, classic white and ebony. It also comes with a custom hard shell case with leopard-print interior and the Green Day signature “Shock Guy” logo on the exterior.

“For years I have been looking for a guitar sound that could live up to the guitar tone I hear in my head. The first time I played my 1956 Les Paul Jr. guitar, it matched that tone perfectly. Les Paul Jr. guitars can reproduce the punch of power chords and the power of big open chords with perfect string definition,” said Armstrong. “I have worked hard over the last two years to make sure my artist series guitar would live up to the legacy of the classic Les Paul guitars of the fifties.”

The Gibson Billie Joe Armstrong Signature Model specs are listed below. The MSRP is $2,169.00 USD.

Pickups: Stacked Double-Coil Special Design P-90
Hardware: Nickel
Fingerboard: Rosewood
Scale: 24-3/4″
Nut Width: 1.687″
Nut: Molded plastic
Bridge: Non-compensated wraparound
Neck Material: Mahogany
Body Material: Mahogany
Controls: Volume and Tone
Colors: Vintage Sunburst, Ebony and Classic White

For more information, visit their web site at

Gibson Billie Joe Armstrong Signature Model Guitar

Posted in Guitar

Line 6 Ships Variax Acoustic 300 Steel/Nylon String Modeling Guitars

Line 6 announced today the debut of Variax® Acoustic 300 Steel and Nylon string modeling guitars. The latest additions to the Variax family of guitars, the incredibly affordable Variax 300 Acoustics deliver a crucial set of tones inspired by the award-wining Variax Acoustic 700. Both the Steel and Nylon 300 versions offer exceptional feedback-resistance on stage, and unique and intuitive tone shaping options for the recording guitarist.

Variax Acoustic 300 Steel and Nylon feature a unique and simple Body control knob. On Steel, the Body control goes from small parlor to full-bodied jumbo while Nylon can move from a bright and punchy flamenco to warm and round classical. Controls also include mic position, compression, and reverb/ambience, which can all be saved along with the model to any one of 10 user selectable locations. An easy to read display shows the preset number and becomes a built-in chromatic tuner at the touch of a button.

Both instruments feature a mahogany body with spruce top, and a mahogany neck with a rosewood fingerboard. Variax Acoustic 300 guitars include a custom TRS cable, XPS Mini direct box/power supply, and are available in a natural gloss finish.

Variax Acoustic 300 Steel Pricing: MSRP $839.99, Street $599.99
Variax Acoustic 300 Nylon Pricing: MSRP $839.99, Street $599.99

For more information, visit their web site at

Posted in Guitar

Nine Volt Audio Releases Stylus RMX Format Bass Collection

Stylin Basslines: Electric & Synth Edition is the first bass collection designed with Stylus RMX users in mind. With over 550 loops, this collection covers a wide range of styles and grooves using vintage, modern, fretless and electric upright basses, and vintage analog, modern analog and computer based synths.

As part of the BPM Flex Series™, any loop in the collection can be used at virtually any tempo without artificial stretching or unwanted audio artifacts!

Stylin Basslines also includes 150 new and original bass infused RMX multis to get you going when inspiration is coming slow.

Whether using Stylus RMX, Reason or any other REX2 player, Stylin Basslines is said to add “bump” to any track.


  • Contains the Stylus RMX format with 130 suites and 566 bass grooves
  • Contains 150 Stylus RMX multis, utilizing the Stylin Bassline loops and other Nine Volt Audio bonus guitar loops
  • Contains a bonus section of 85 guitar loops from previous Nine Volt Audio releases.
  • Contains a Reason Refill and a separate folder with the REX2 files. This allows the loops to be used in other programs that support the REX2 format
  • As part of the BPM Flex Series™ loops in the REX2, Refill and Stylus RMX formats can be used at virtually any tempo without artificial stretching or unwanted audio artifacts. The tempo listed with each loop is more of a suggestion to the user, than a hard-and-fast rule
  • All loop file names identify the musical key
  • All loops were recorded at 24/96 resolution. As bass frequencies benefit little from high resolution recordings, we opted to dither them to 16/44.1 for the disc, which benefits the user by requiring less RAM per suite and faster load times while using Stylus RMX

Pricing and Availablity:

Stylin Basslines: Electric & Synth Edition is now available on DVD-ROM or as a download for $69.99 at

For more information, visit their web site at

Nine Volt Audio Stylus RMX Format Bass Collection

Posted in Plug-Ins, Synth, Technology, VST

Allen & Heath Announces Updates For Xone:3D Mixer/Controller

Allen & Heath has released a new software suite comprising new firmware and Mac configuration utility software for its mixer/controller, the Xone:3D. The updates include an improved interface for Mac users and greater MIDI functionality.

The updated utility software provides an interface – identical to the PC version – for users with Mac computers to set up and configure their 3D unit.

Key to the firmware release – v.1.10 – is the inclusion of a MIDI merge facility, which enables MIDI data from external devices to be combined with the MIDI data from the Xone:3D control surface and passed via USB to the software. The new firmware also includes full MIDI duplex, which enables MIDI data generated by the software to be sent back down the USB and out of the Xone:3D MIDI socket to an external device, such as a sequencer or sound generation module.

MIDI time clocks can now be generated either internally by the Xone:3D, or by an external device, with the 3D clock turned off. This is a great feature that enables multiple DJ set-ups to all synchronize to a common MIDI clock.

Further improvements include improved tolerance to USB clock jitter that in extreme cases could cause degradation of the soundcard audio output, smoother MIDI clock generation, and improved response of the encoders and jog wheels.

The Xone:3D is the amalgamation of a high performance 4 stereo channel DJ mixer, a top spec 8-channel USB soundcard, and a comprehensive MIDI control surface with 105 different controls that can be mapped to manipulate any music software.

The unique design offers DJs and producers an integrated performance workstation, providing all necessary control on one surface. This offers flexibility during live performance or production work when the user can introduce various clips and samples, sync them with other music sources via the USB soundcard, and build a unique set.

For more information, visit their web site at

Allen & Heath Xone:3D Mixer/Controller

Posted in Mixers

Blue Cat Audio Releases Chorus And Stereo Chorus v.3.0 Plug-Ins

Blue Cat Audio has released a new version of its freeware Chorus and Stereo Chorus directX and VST plug-ins.

Main changes:

  • Advanced MIDI control with customizable parameters, curve response, and MIDI learn
  • Blue Cat’s Skinning Language V1.2.1 support
  • Now supports one skin per preset and a global default skin: customize each instance of the plug-in in the same session
  • All parameters can now be fine tuned thanks to a text-edit popup window that appears when double clicking on user interface widgets

Blue Cat also has a step by step tutorial available to learn how to use the new advanced MIDI control features.

For more information, visit their web site at

Blue Cat Audio Chorus And Stereo Chorus v.3.0 Plug-Ins

Blue Cat Audio Chorus And Stereo Chorus v.3.0 Plug-Ins