Sound Devices Releases New MixPre-3 and MixPre-6 Interfaces



Sound Devices Mix PreSound Devices made waves a few years ago with the release of its MixPre-D audio interface. The company is likely to gain attention once again with the recent announcement of its new MixPre-3 and MixPre-6 interfaces. Sound Devices designed these new MixPre units to be as robust, reliable, and easy to use as the original MixPre-D. But they’ve added some exciting new features and functions to these new MixPre offerings:

The MixPre Series feature Sound Devices’ innovative new Kashmir microphone preamps. These high-performance, ultra-low-noise, discrete, Class-A mic preamps were hand-crafted by Sound Devices. The mic preamps feature a -130dBV noise floor, analog limiters, and new 32-bit A-to-D converters to ensure high quality, stress-free, professional-grade audio recordings.

The MixPre-3 features 3 full-sized balanced XLR mic/line audio inputs, while the MixPre-6 features 4 balanced XLR/TRS combo jacks to connect microphones or line-level devices. Both have a 3.5 mm auxiliary input that can be used for plug-in power mics, 2-channel line-in audio, camera return, or timecode.

Sound Devices suggests that these new MixPre models could be used for a variety of applications, including podcasting, field recording, video production, interview recording, or backup recording in conjunction with a computer.

Both the MixPre 3 and MixPre 6 are currently available for pre-order from most audio equipment vendors. The MixPre 3 retails for $649.00 while the MixPre 6 retails for $899.00.


Sony Announces a9 Mirrorless DSLR Camera



Sony a9Digital camera technology has made some real strides in recent years. It used to be that, if you wanted a good photography camera, you’d buy a high-end DSLR. If you wanted a good video camera, you’d buy a high-end dedicated video camera. But a great convergence has been happening between photo and video-capture, with many modern DSLR cams gaining the ability to take high-definition video, as well as high-resolution images.

Sony is pushing that convergence to the next level with its upcoming a9 camera:

This mechanism-free camera can deliver a-class-above performance conventional mechanical SLRs have only sought. For example, this system realizes a totally blackout-free viewfinder while conventional systems can only try to reduce blackout time. A high-speed, vibration-free, silent Anti-Distortion shutter vastly extends the range of shooting situations while a mechanical system can only aim for lower vibration and quieter shutter release sound. α9 provides continuous tracking of moving subjects for foolproof AF/AE… α9 allows its viewfinder to show not only images of the subject… but also the final image of a shot. Now, thanks to a new image sensor that superbly manages all these roles…

A few highlights of the Sony a9:

  • Full-frame stacked CMOS sensor with integral memory
  • 24.2-megapixel full-frame image sensor
  • Enhanced BIONZ X image-processing engine
  • High-speed continuous shooting at up to 20fps
  • Non-mechanical electronic shutter eliminates blackout with typical SLR mirror action
  • Light directly reaches the image sensor without mechanical interruption
  • Electronic shutter speeds up to 1/32000 sec
  • Anti-distortion electronic shutter allows silent shooting
  • Vibration-free electronic shutter that can keep the camera stable, for razor-sharp images

The Sony a9 DSLR camera body is available now for pre-order with a retail price of $4498.00.


Sonnet’s Echo Express III-D and Echo Express III-R Now Available with Thunderbolt 3



Sonnet Technologies is the leading provider of Thunderbolt-to-PCle card expansion systems; pro media readers; and storage, network and other interface cards for pro users in the audio, video, and broadcast industries. Sonnet has announced that their Echo Express III-D and their Echo Express III-R are now available with Thunderbolt 3.

Sonnet’s Echo Express III-D (desktop) and Echo Express III-R (rackmount) Thunderbolt-to-Ple Express (PCle) three-slot expansion chassis are now shipping with full support for Thunderbolt 3. With the new interface, both systems enable users of Mac computers equipped with 40Gbps Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) ports, such as the new MacBook Pro, to take advantage of Thunderbolt 3’s 2750 MB/s of PCl Express bandwidth to support more fully even the most demanding, highest performance adapter cards.

Echo Express III-D and Echo Express-R Thunderbolt 3 Editions provide one x16and two x8 PCle 3.0 slots to support three full-length, full-height, single-width PCle cards. The III-D and the III-R Thunderbolt 3 editions support the use of every Thunderbolt 3 – and macOS compatible PCle card available, including professional video capture, audio interface, 16Gb and 8Gb Fibre Channel (FC), 10 Gigabit Ethernet (10GbE), SAS and SATA HBA, and RAID controller cards.

A dual-port 40Gpbs Thunderbolt 3 interface, which offers double the bandwidth and connectivity of Thunderbolt 2, enables the Sonnet systems to support 4K video I/O cards at high frame rates, as well as other bandwidth-hungry cards. In addition to support for the most demanding, highest performance PCle cards, the III-D and III-R Thunderbolt 3 editions offer support for connecting two 4K displays or one 5K display. For connected devices requiring extra power, 15 watts is provided to connected bus-powered devices through the Thunderbolt cable.

Both chassis feature a built-in universal 300-watt power supply with a 75-watt auxiliary power connector to support PCle cards with higher power requirements. Also, the systems integrate two large ultra-quiet, temperature-controlled cooling fans to enable their use in noise-sensitive environments. In addition to providing extra space to install two 5.25-inch mobile rack devices within the same enclosure using one of Sonnet’s Mobile Rack Device Mounting Kits, the III-R also features captive thumbscrews for easy card installation.

The Echo Express III-D – Thunderbolt 3 Edition is expected to be available May 22, 2017, at a suggested retail price of $899. The Echo Express III-R – Thunderbolt 3 Edition is expected to be available May 22, 2017, at a suggested retail price of $999.

Visit Sonnet Technologies at the NAB 2017 in Booth #SL9927.


Cerevo Exhibits Leading Streaming Devices at NAB 2017



Cerevo was founded in 2008 and is located in Tokyo, Japan with a branch office in Redmond, WA, USA. Cerevo is a small batch company focusing on making unique networked devices and connected solutions for both consumer and professional users based on its “Global Niche” concept. Cerevo will be exhibiting its complete line-up of leading streaming and IoT devices at NAB 2017.

LiveWedge is the award winning live streaming video switcher, mixer, and recorder with 4x HDMI inputs. It also broadcasts live video simultaneously via the internet. Easy user control is available via the free LiveWedge companion iOS/Android tablet app. It also supports PnP and chroma keying as well as all basic transitions such as wipe, fade, cut, etc.

LiveShell X is the latest and most advanced model in Cerevo’s line of award-winning LiveShell devices. It supports live broadcast streaming without a PC through HDMI input encoding at up to 1080/60p in H.265 or H.264 and real time recording via microSD and multicasting with up to 3 simultaneous streams. LiveShell X provides stable, professional quality streaming. It also supports simultaneous multi-streaming and the ability to add subtitles and lower third graphics.

LiveShell PRO is the Mid-range live streaming device supporting analog inputs as well as HDMI. The LiveShell PRO is a mid-range wireless video streamer. Video and audio is encoded in H.264 and AAC at 720p resolution and up to Mbps bit rate. The replaceable, rechargeable battery allows you to broadcast from anywhere with an internet connection.

LiveShell 2 is the world’s most cost effective PC-less live streaming device. The successor to “LiveShell”, Cerevo’s highly regarded live streaming device that was first released in 2011. This model retains the compact and portable design of its predecessor while adding support for HD streaming. Live streaming is possible via wired LAN or Wi-Fi. The addition of 5GHz Wi-Fi support means stable streaming is possible even in bandwidth-congested areas.

Visit Cerevo at Central Hall booth #C1046 at NAB 2017.

 


Point Source Audio Unveiling CO2-8WL Microphone at NAB 2017



Point Source Audio will unveil the world’s first microphone with built-in backup at NAB 2017. The CO2-8WL Lavalier is two mics in one supporting two separate wireless transmitters.

Point Source Audio is an innovator of miniature microphone technology. They will introduce their latest advancement, a fully redundant dual element microphone – adding to its award-winning collection of miniature microphones on display at the 2017 NAB Show. The microphone offers precisely matched elements for redundancy in a single self contained housing and is ideal for talent requiring microphone backup assurance in live broadcasting and production environments.

The redundant microphone will offer broadcast and production technicians peace of mind with a fast and simple method of providing backup for critical on-air broadcasts of live talent. The mic’s one-of-a-kind design pairs two microphone elements into a single housing to create a form factor that is more streamlined and lower profile. Used with the company’s proprietary razor thin Slider mic clips or EMBRACE Earmounts, redundancy is accomplished with style – not cable clutter.

The built-in backup design mates the dual mics as well as their independent and continuous wire paths into a singlular housing and wire jacket giving technicians a clean alternative to cumbersome cable dressing. The mic cable splits approximately nine inches above connection to the body-pack transmitters to allow ample room for separation of the transmitters.

The matched redundant microphone will be available as a standalone lavalier (CO2-8WL) that is part of the company’s SERIES8 category of performance microphones. Additionally, it will be offered within the EMBRACE category of earmountable lavaliers when absolute mic concealment is needed.

Point Source Audio’s new redundant mic options will be demonstrated to attendees of 2017 NAB Show (booth #C1110) in Las Vegas and are expected to be available for purchase at a number of resellers and distributors worldwide beginning June 2017.


Small Batch Audio Introduces Podcaster Pro



Small Batch Audio introduces the Podcaster Pro rig. This revolutionary USB audio device, no bigger than a book, is the first device specifically made to optimize human voice recording for podcasting.

Small Batch Studio is going to launch a Kickstarter. You can sign up for Adam Curry’s Kickstarter Update email list to get the latest about their upcoming Kickstarter.

Podcaster Pro is for podcasters who are tired of lugging professional musician equipment around, or resorting to post-production to “fix it in the mix”. The entire unit is driven by a Digital Signal Processing microchip, specifically chosen to deliver Zero Latency sound processing. This allows you to do what you never could with even the most powerful PC: adjust and monitor your ‘sound’ with all processing in place while recording (or livestreaming) your show.

A list of some Podcaster Pro features:

* 2 Mic/Line channels. Each has a custom pre-amp with phantom power

* Full processing chains for each Mic/Line input with individual Noise Gate, Compressor/Limiter and 5 band EQ

* A single USB2.0 connector puts two Digital Audio Devices on your computer

* The first sound device is used to get sound in and out of your PC/Mac/Linux computer or laptop

* Use the sound out with your favorite audio software. From a simple music player like iTunes, to a full blown soundboard, you use what feels comfortable. The Podcaster Pro also has a full processing chain for your PC audio with a Compressor/Limiter and 5 band EQ

* The second sound device is for Skype, or any other communications program you like to use such as FaceTime, Mumble or any VOIP application. It is already pre-configured as a ‘mix-1’ in Podcaster Pro and has its own noise gate, Compressor/Limiter and 5 band EQ to make your remote co-host or guest sound optimal.

* An analog output for recording your master signal to an external device

* Two headphone jacks, one on each side of the case for easy access by the host and a guest. Each has volume control that can be assigned to one of only two control knobs on the case, which are nice and big and allow for your guest to adjust their own volume as required.

* Any one of the three ‘soft buttons’ on the case can be assigned as a cough button.


Moniker Guitars Offers New Step Headstock



Moniker StepTexas-based Moniker Guitars is like a dream-come-true for guitar enthusiasts. The company allows guitarists to custom design guitars online. Body shape, pickups, paint job, and more can be selected with the click of a button. Then, on-site artisans get to work, building those custom guitars by hand.

Moniker Guitars already offers plenty of options for players looking for a customized instrument. And the company recently expanded those offerings with the introduction of what it’s calling the Step headstock:

We’re excited to announce a new headstock shape… We’re calling it the “Step” due to the way the 3-D design steps down towards the bottom edge of the headstock.

The main color of the headstock will continue around the sides of the headstock and down the back of the neck. The “step” portion will have its own color which will continue as a binding stripe around the top edge of the headstock.

Moniker admits on its website that guitar players may have seen this design from other instrument manufacturers. But Moniker’s Step headstock is different from other brands because it offers the ability for designers to have two paint colors on the headstock, instead of just one:

…the fun part about our version is the ability to choose the two colors that make up the headstock. In the configurator, the primary color will be selected using the “Headstock” category. The step portion of the headstock can be customized under the “HS Step” category.

Moniker Guitars range in price, depending on individual customization requirements. Moniker’s online guitar building tool is free to use and available for everyone to try.


McDSP Plugins Now on Avid Marketplace with Special Intro Pricing



6050 Channel StripThere’s one ultimate truth of audio production: You can never have enough plugins. These special pieces of software allow digital audio workstations (DAWs) to reach new levels of creative potential. Most DAWs ship with a handful of built-in plugins to get things started. But there’s a healthy and vibrant community of developers designing all kinds of plugins to be used with modern DAWs.

That’s where McDSP comes in. The company’s founder recently announced that McDSP’s plugins are now available on the Avid Marketplace, giving ProTools users easy access to McDSP’s products:

McDSP has one of the largest collections of AAX plug-ins on the planet. Our products support both the AAX Native and AAX DSP formats (along with AU, VST, and VST3). All McDSP plug-ins use a 64-bit internal data path for maximum audio fidelity, have real-time control smoothing just like analog gear, can operate at signal levels above 0 dB for maximum dynamic range, and support dsp chip sharing for the HDX cards. We also support fancy control surfaces like the Pro Tools | S6 and VENUE | S6L.

Effects included in the McDSP collection:

  • EC-300 Echo Collection
  • AE600 Active EQ
  • ML8000 Mastering Limiter
  • 6050 Ultimate Channel Strip (EQs, compressors, saturators, specialized filters, gates and expanders)

McDSP plugins can be found on Avid’s plugin finder, which includes links for purchasing the plugins.


Sennheiser’s MKE 2 Matches Audio to GoPro HERO 4 Videos



Sennheiser points out that we can record extraordinarily vivid films on our actions cams. The audio, however, is often ordinary. That has changed!

Audio specialist Sennheiser has launched the MKE 2 elements microphone. Thanks to its innovative and windproof and waterproof design, the new microphone for GoPro HERO4 Black and Silver cameras lets you capture incredible, high-quality sound even in the most demanding conditions.

The Sennheiser MKE 2 elements is the first microphone to be GoPro-verified for seamless operation with the GoPro HERO4. And just like an ultra-rugged GoPro camera in its protective housing, the new mic has been specifically designed to be tough enough to go virtually anywhere, and easily withstand conditions such as water, wind and snow.

Rugged, waterproof, and uniquely capable of the elements, the MKE 2 elements can take on virtually anything GoPro users throw at it – even activities like surfing, climbing or mountain biking. It is based on a professional Sennheiser miniature microphone design that has been enhance to make it nearly immune to snow, water, ice, and wind, with an elastic suspension cutting out structure-borne noise.

It comes with a robust dedicated back cover for the GoPro HERO4 that ensures seamless, easy operation and a rock-solid waterproof connection with the camera housing. Further proof from the elements is provided by a special foam windshield that, unlike a conventional foam or hairy shield, continues to reduce wind noise for clear sound even when it gets wet.

The MKE 2 elements action mic for GoPro HERO4 Black and Silver cameras will be available starting April 24, 2017. Get ready for your next adventure!


Vaddio Announces New HDBaseT Solutions



Vaddio is the premier global manufacturer of PTZ cameras, professional AV solutions and a full suite of Unified Communication and Collaboration products for the audiovisual, videoconference, and broadcast marketplaces.

Vaddio announced the addition of two new RoboSHOT PTZ Cameras with integrated HDBaseT technology, for transmission of ultra-high definition video and audio, Ethernet, controls, and power – all over a single cable. When paired with a Vaddio OneLink receiver, end-users can eliminate cable clutter and simplify installations, without compromising performance or quality.

The new RoboSHOT 12 and RoboSHOT 30 HDBT Cameras offer superior wide dynamic range (WDR) for clear detail in high-contrast, bright lighting conditions. The RoboSHOT 30 HDBT Camera is designed with an Exmor R image sensor which gives the camera better light gathering capabilities and provides incredible contrast, vivid colors, and sharp images in dimly-lit interiors.

The RoboSHOT 30 HDBT Camera features a 30x optical zoom lens and a 2.3-degree (tele) to 65-degree (wide) horizontal field of view, making it ideal for medium to large venues such as houses of worship, lecture theaters, and IMAG systems. The RoboSHOT 12 HDBT PTZ Camera provides a 12x optical zoom and a 73-degree wide horizontal field of view, making it perfect for video conferencing applications.

The new cameras also include Vaddio PTZ features including:

  • Tri-Synchronous Motion technology which allows all three axes of the camera (pan, tilt and zoom) to move simultaneously for ultra-smooth, natural camera motion
  • Simultaneous video outputs including HDBaseT, HDMI and IP (H.264) streaming
  • Web-based configuration and management

Visit Vaddio at NAB 2017 at Central Hall booth #C8012.