Category Archives: Production

Mackie’s DL1608 in the Field with Dierks Bentley and Brad

When Mackie launched the DL1608 Digital Live Mixer with iPad Control at NAMM earlier this year it turned more than a few heads in the industry. This full featured, 16-channel mixer introduced an entirely new take on live sound with its groundbreaking new paradigm – complete iPad control. As Mackie gears up for the launch of the DL1608’s Master Fader control app in June and the arrival of the DL1608 in stores worldwide later this summer, they’re field testing the app by putting it in the hands of front of house engineers in a wide range of real world scenarios.

Most recently, the DL1608 got some face-time with FOH engineers for Dierks Bentley and Brad (Stone Gossard, Shawn Smith, Regan Hagar, Jeremy Toback). Both engineers used the DL1608 for the first time on April 21, 2012 at Seattle independent music store, Easy Street Records. The live show was part of national Record Store Day, an annual celebration where 700 independently owned record stores collaborate with musicians to celebrate the art of music. Easy Street Records features a small venue with a maximum capacity of 750 people that commonly hosts afternoon shows with touring artists scheduled for headlining shows at larger Seattle venues later that evening.  With an extremely tight front of house space, the venue demands a compact mixer solution that can guarantee premium sound and give the engineer massive control.

Both FOH engineers, Pugs (Dierks Bentley) and Barrett Jones (Brad), had time for only a quick tutorial before their 30-minute sound checks.  Normally a FOH engineer wouldn’t touch a digital mixer they’ve never used  just minutes before a show (especially since this performance would be streaming live on Sirius Satellite Radio), but in this case both engineers found the user interface intuitive and comprehensive, with all the functionality they expect in a digital mixer. “Although I had never used this mixer before, it was straight forward, easy to use, and well laid out,” said Barrett Jones.

Besides having an intuitive interface that was easy to navigate with little instruction, another huge benefit of the DL1608 is the ability to control the mixer from anywhere in the venue. “It was great to be able to tweak the monitors from each monitor position on stage with the iPad controller… the ability to mix the show while walking around the floor was really nice,” said Jones.

During the 10-hour day, which featured performances by four bands in total, the DL1608 performed without a hitch and Mackie received tremendous hands-on insight from the engineers. These real world field tests are an essential part of Mackie’s product design process. Stress testing the hardware in a variety of conditions ensures the DL1608 hardware will work reliably for customers. In addition, real world feedback on the Master Fader control application will shape future updates as it continually evolves through simple app store updates, adding value to the DL1608.

The Master Fader app will be available free in the iOS-App Store in June 2012. Mackie will also soon premiere a DL1608 video podcast series offering tons of great information about the DL1608, including all the basics, advanced how-to’s, and tips and tricks. Later episodes will specifically respond to questions that customers pose to Mackie’s Facebook and Twitter accounts. The DL1608 video podcast series will start in May 2012 in iTunes. The DL1608 will begin shipping in Summer 2012.

Avid Announces Pro Tools + Eleven Rack; Delivering Guitarists Unprecedented Studio Power and Incredible Value

Avid® has announced the release of Pro Tools + Eleven Rack, a new specially designed bundle for guitarists that comes with the world’s most popular professional recording software, a DSP-accelerated audio interface that offers hyper-realistic tones of classic amps and effects, and the Eleven Rack Expansion Pack add-on – delivering a powerful live performance and recording solution for guitarists at an incredible value.

  • Expanded collection of emulations of classic amp tones inspired by Fender®, VOX®, Marshall®, Soldano, Mesa/Boogie®, Bogner®, Ampeg® and Matchless®*, among others, provide an incredible range of tones.
  • Enhance tones and embellish tracks with an even broader assortment of classic stompbox effects inspired by MXR®, Electro-Harmonix®, Ibanez®, Pro Co, Univox®, and more*.
  • Compose, record, edit, reamp and mix using industry-standard Pro Tools software.

“We know our customers also demand tremendous functionality from a guitar recording solution,” said Tanguy Leborgne, Avid Vice President, Products and Solutions, Creative Enthusiast. “We responded with Pro Tools + Eleven Rack, providing guitarists with unprecedented recording power, tonal control and versatility – in the studio and on stage – at an incredible value.”

Pro Tools + Eleven Rack is available for£759.99 GBP / 825 € EUR. To learn more about Pro Tools + Eleven Rack visit

For purchasing inquiries, please visit the

* Eleven Rack is not connected with, or approved or endorsed by, the owners of the Ampeg®, Bogner®, Electro-Harmonix®, Fender®, Ibanez®, Marshall®, Matchless®, Mesa/Boogie®, MXR®, Pro Co, Roland®, Soldano, Univox®, or VOX® names. These names are used solely to identify the guitar amplifiers, cabinets, speakers, and effects emulated by Eleven Rack.

Nomad Factory Releases MAGNETIC II – Real to Real Audio Tape Warmer Plug-In.

Nomad Factory,  leader in tube emulation technology, proudly announces the launch of “MAGNETIC II”, a truly realistic “Real to Real” audio tape warming effect plug-in that gives your audio tracks the exclusive vintage tape sound which your ears crave. This effect can inject sterile audio with the warmth and character of classic tube circuitry and analog tape saturation. The plug-in features pure analog reel-to-reel tape speeds, tape/tube saturation and tape color effects, as well as a dedicated vintage style EQ and a built in Boost mastering section. The result is a creamy, warm sound that can only be achieved by MAGNETIC.

MAGNETIC II offers great new features and 9 new tape models that offers the authentic sound of famous vintage tape machines such as Otari MX-80 / MTR-90, Studer A80MkII and many more…

MAGNETIC can be used in many different musical ways. Try using it on individual tracks to add subtle warmth and tape color to your drums or use it to create a filtered cassette AM-radio effect on a vocal. But that’s not all… when used on the master bus, MAGNETIC can warm your entire mix and “boost” it up to broadcast level. It’s just like having a 30+ year old reel-to-reel tape machine at your fingertips, without all the maintenance costs.

From Today through December 31, 2011 the new MAGNETIC II plug-in will be sold at introductory price of $79 (MSRP $149). An upgrade path from MAGNETIC I is also available for only $20. Magnetic II is also available as part of Nomad’s new “Integral Studio Pack III” actually promoted at only $199 (MSRP $599). 

Learn more from the Nomad Factory website:

Queen launch remix competition for ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’!

Queen and Talenthouse have hooked up to bring remixers, musicians and producers a once in a lifetime opportunity; the chance to remix one of the biggest songs of all time ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’.

This will be the first time Queen have released isolated parts or ‘stems’, including Freddie Mercury’s original vocals in order to discover a modern remix of the much loved track.

The winner will be featured on Queen’s official site and across their social media channels including their Facebook and YouTube pages. They will also receive $1,000, Avid Pro Tools software and studio time with a top mastering engineer at Metropolis Studios in London* where Queen famously recorded their hit albums ‘Made In Heaven’ and ‘Innuendo’. The runner-ups will receive Avid music software and Queen goodies.

The deadline for submissions is December 13th 2011. All submitted remixes will go up for public voting on Facebook & Twitter between December 14th and December 21st 2011 with the top finalists then reviewed and judged by both Brian May and Roger Taylor, along with special guest judges Justin Shirley-Smith and Kris Fredriksson, Queen’s resident sound engineers and sound producers.

Finalist announcements will be made on January 18th 2012.

For further information and details of how to enter please visit

  • Travel and 2 nights accommodation will be provided

Avid Pro Tools 10 On Tour

Avid take the brand new Pro Tools 10 software on the road.

Following on from a successful launch at the DV Computer Audio Expo last week (Nov 3-4), the Avid music team are attending the The Music Production Show on the 11th and 12th November 2011 at The Emirates Stadium in North London, followed by three dates at selected hi tech outlets across the country:

  • Production Room in Leeds on the 18th November
  • Absolute Music in Poole on the 26th and 27th November
  • Andertons in Guildford on the 1st December

(please check with individual stores for timings)

“Pro Tools 10 is all about the step up in sound quality and speed”, says David Atkinson, Avid Retail Channel Marketing manager EMEA. “Clearly you can’t experience those kinds of benefits on a web page or webinar so attending shows like MPS and in-store days are critical in getting the message across. Come chat with the team at an event and see the improvements with your own eyes and ears”.

To find out more about the Pro Tools 10 visit

Digidesign Ships X-Form

Digidesign® is now shipping X-Form™, a new high-quality AudioSuite™ plug-in that represents the pinnacle of time compression/expansion and pitch-shifting technology. X-Form delivers unparalleled time stretching and formant-correct pitch shifting to Pro Tools® and Avid DNA™ systems to produce natural-sounding results—even at the most extreme settings—making it ideal for music production, sound design, post production, or any other application that requires time-stretch and pitch-shift processing.

“The secret to X-Form’s natural-sounding, polyphonic, time-stretching algorithm is frequency domain processing, a technology proven more effective than the ‘frame overlap’ algorithms used in most time-stretching products,” reveals Digidesign Senior Product Manager Bobby Lombardi.

Getting high quality, professional results is easy. X-Form features minimal controls to simplify the workflow, yet delivers stunning sound quality whether audio is processed from 1/8 to eight times its original length, or shifted up or down three octaves. Simply choose from two algorithms—Polyphonic or Monophonic—and let X-Form do the rest.

The Polyphonic algorithm is ideal for use on complex audio files, such as chords or an entire stereo mix. This algorithm is truly “best in breed,” and when used with the Transient Sensitivity control, allows you to compress or stretch drum loops and other percussive material without losing crucial attack transients. When working with solo instruments or vocals, simply choose the Monophonic algorithm. Each algorithm was designed to provide exceptional results capable of preserving proper stereo imaging, attack transients, and timing accuracy—even at exaggerated settings.

X-Form is available now via authorized Digidesign dealers and through the online DigiStore for $595 US MSRP.

For more information, visit their web site at

Digidesign Announces The Mbox 2 Pro

Building on the strengths of the Mbox® 2, Digidesign is pleased to announce the Mbox® 2 Pro—a new portable, high-definition audio/MIDI production system that provides high-speed FireWire-powered connectivity, up to 24-bit/96 kHz* audio resolution, and a wide range of analog and digital I/O. It also offers several professional features, including MIDI Time Stamping support, Word Clock I/O, and dedicated studio monitor outputs. With Mbox 2 Pro, novices and professionals alike now have a portable, studio-grade Pro Tools® solution available—one that they could take directly from home to a pro studio and then back again.

“Mbox 2 Pro is a versatile and portable Pro Tools interface,” declares Digidesign Product Manager Matt May. “It’ll accept just about any type of audio gear you throw at it—a couple of microphones, keyboards or other line-level devices, S/PDIF digital source, turntable, MIDI, even Word Clock—and let you capture all of it into a high-quality Pro Tools LE session that’s compatible with professional Pro Tools|HD systems. And with its ultra portability, Mbox 2 Pro is the perfect solution to capture high-resolution audio anywhere—from a large commercial studio to a tiny home studio, or from a field recording to a live recording.”

Designed by the same engineering team responsible for Digidesign’s professional Pro Tools|HD® systems, which are used in top studios around the world, Mbox 2 Pro features plenty of analog and digital I/O options packed neatly into its sleekly compact frame, and supports up to six simultaneous inputs and eight outputs. It also includes award-winning, industry-standard Pro Tools LE™ software and over 50 effects and instrument plug-ins, including DigiRack™ plug-ins, Bomb Factory® plug-ins, the Xpand!™ sample-playback/synthesis workstation, and the Pro Tools Ignition Pack™ to get users started on their masterpiece right away at home, in the studio, and everywhere in between.

For a mere $100 more, customers can purchase Mbox 2 Pro Factory, which includes an additional five high-quality Digidesign and Bomb Factory plug-ins (worth over $1,000), the Mbox 2 Pro system, and an iLok USB Smart Key.

Mbox 2 Pro and Mbox 2 Factory will be available September 15th, 2006 via authorized Digidesign dealers for $799 and $899, respectively, US MSRP.

* Mbox 2 Pro does not support external sync at 88.2 and 96 kHz sample rates.

For more information, visit their web site at

Digidesign Mbox 2 Pro

Lexicon Partners With Wenger To Develop “Virtual Acoustic Environment” For Music Education

Lexicon Pro™, a Harman International Company, has announced a collaboration with Wenger Corp. in the development and release of Wenger’s new Virtual Acoustic Environment™ (VAE™), a virtual environment simulator aimed at the music education market as a rehearsal/teaching aid.

Using Lexicon’s patented technology, the VAE creates extraordinary acoustic room simulations with settings that include Baroque Room, Recital Halls, Auditoriums, Cathedral and Arena. These active acoustic simulations contribute to the sensation of being enveloped — or surrounded — by the sound, and enable musicians to hear themselves as if they were performing inside a particular space. Based on Wenger’s revolutionary V-Room® technology, the new VAE offers an integrated music learning environment with active acoustics for “audio virtual reality” simulations and features built-in recording/playback capabilities.

The VAE can record up to nine single-track sessions with a 60 minute total recording time. Audio transfer of recordings is possible through the built-in USB connection in standard stereo .wav format (44.1 kHz, 16-bit). Accompaniment music may also be transferred to the VAE via this USB connection. By selecting from the nine active-acoustic settings, musicians can learn how to optimize their performance in different environments.

Designed for installation in a Wenger sound-isolated music practice room, the VAE features easy, intuitive operation, including visual feedback from an LED display and backlit, 18-button control panel. An optional foot control provides convenient, hands-free playback and recording.

For more information, visit their web site at

Posted in Education, Production

IK Multimedia Ships “Total Bundle” Series Of Music Production Tools

IK Multimedia is pleased to announce that three new Bundle collections of IK’s award-winning music production tools are now shipping: The “Total Studio Bundle,” The “Total Effects Bundle” and the “Total Workstation Bundle.”

With savings of up to 67% off the full prices for registered IK Users, the IK Total Bundle Series is the most comprehensive collection of instruments, samples and effects available, suiting all musicians at every level of expertise.

The IK Total Bundle Series offers the perfect solution for recording, composing, producing and mastering any style of music, be it orchestral, pop, rock, hip-hop or experimental. These bundles contain all the essential instruments and effects found in a high-quality recording and post-production studio environment, designed to help take music production to the next level.

Three separate collections are available:

Total Workstation Bundle
All of IK’s premier software virtual instrument workstations in one complete package; designed to provide sounds for every genre and style of music.

3 virtual instrument workstation plug-in suites
SampleTank 2.1 XL sample workstation with over 1,700 sounds
Sonik Synth 2 synth workstation with over 5,000 sounds
Miroslav Philharmonik orchestral workstation with over 1,300 sounds
Over 8,000 multi-sampled sounds and 21.5GB of samples included for all instruments types and music genres
An all-around comprehensive solution for all sample-based instrument needs

Total Effects Bundle
Offering 4 different plug-in signal processing suites, the Total Effects Bundle is a complete professional signal processing package designed to get the most complete selection of award-winning analog modeled effects in a single package.

4 effects plug-in suites
Ampeg SVX complete bass-rig with signature Ampeg sound
AmpliTube 2 complete guitar amp and effects modeling solution
Classik Studio Reverb 4 high end reverbs modeled on classic outboards
T-RackS analog modeled mixing and mastering suite
Over 90 DSP effects included. The widest range of analog modeled effects in one package.
The only effects bundle solution covering all basic studio needs for Mixing, Mastering, Reverbs, Guitar and Bass

Total Studio Bundle
The entire collection of IK effects and instruments plug-ins, all the necessary professional quality production tools for everything needed to record, compose, produce, master in every style of music.

7 effects and instruments plug-in suites
SampleTank 2.1 XL sample workstation with over 1,700 sounds
Sonik Synth 2 synth workstation with over 5,000 sounds
Miroslav Philharmonik orchestral workstation with over 1,300 sounds
Ampeg SVX complete bass-rig with signature Ampeg sound
AmpliTube 2 complete guitar amp and effects modeling solution
Classik Studio Reverb 4 high end reverbs modeled on classic outboard gear
T-RackS analog modeled mixing and mastering suite
Over 90 DSP effects included
Over 8,000 multisampled sounds and 21.5GB of samples included for all instruments types and music genres
The most complete selection of effects and instruments in one package covering all studio needs.

All registered IK customers of ANY IK product version (full, upgrade and lite) are eligible to purchase the bundle packages at the upgrade prices.

The Total Bundle Series from IK Multimedia is currently available from all IK distributors and dealers worldwide.

For more information, visit their web site at