FetHead is a low-noise, high quality, in-line microphone preamplifier. It provides improved sound for Ribbon and Dynamic microphones. The electronics are housed in a robust metal chassis with a balanced 3-pole female XLR input and a balanced 3-pole male XLR output, rugged enough for use at home, in the studio or on tour.
You may remember these innovatively shaped monitor speakers first came out a couple of years ago when acoustics guru Andy Munro and Sonic Distribution’s James Young & Phil Smith first collaborated on the Egg system under the sE Munro brand.
The Eve SC205 have garnered a lot of praise from reviewers and owners alike - it’s not hard to understand why. The Eve SC205 offers a nice transparent and open top end and a tight low end.
The Cloudlifter CL-1 is a single channel box with XLR connectors on either side with four rubber feet under it and a handy little strap so that you can attach it to a boom stand. It’s that simple, setup in seconds. All you need to do is make sure you are sending phantom power from your preamp to it… this is how the magic happens.
PreSonus make some very cool stuff these days with everything from their hugely popular digital mixers to audio interfaces and monitor controllers, live sound equipment as well as their DAW Studio One.
The PEX500 is a one channel transformer coupled Passive Pultec Equalizer. It’s an all discrete design based upon their hybrid amplifier. Lindell say that the PEX500 is their take on the magical classic Pultec design.
As I’ve already said, I’ve never been a fan of control surfaces, I always find myself looking at the screen and that then defeats the object of using them in the first place, however this was not the case with the Console 1, in fact I had been mixing for some time and the screen on my Mac went to sleep. I was mixing with my ears!
Unsurprisingly the Maag PREQ4 is very good, both in terms of build and sound. In the short time I’ve spent trying it out I feel sure that this will be a pre-amp I’ll be using most of the time - it makes my voice sound good - that in itself is a minor miracle.
Asking me to try new headphones is like asking me to try a new beer, or a new bed, or to wear some new shoes - I’m already comfortable and I partly think that if it ain’t broke, then don’t mend it. However, only a fool closes their ears (no pun intended) to new ideas. So in this case, part curious and part altrusitic for the sake of the entire audio community (satire), I decided to give the KRK a spin.
No one would argue that over the last few years, that when it comes to bang for your buck, Focusrite audio interfaces have been a real bargain, offering both quality and value. This has led users to grow accustomed to Focusrite audio interfaces having more holes than a Swiss cheese whilst being a great price. So when the Forte was announced, offering just 2 in and 4 out at a much higher price, some users were confused - even more with unit having the name ‘Forte’ which was last used for the legendary mixing desk built some decades ago.
In our recent interview with Phil Dudderidge we raised the question of the name of this new baby and his response was that both had been best-in-class at their time. In an industry where everyone seems to be heading to the bottom of the pond with ‘more for less’ offerings, the idea of ‘less for more’ is intriguing and led us to want to give this baby a real run for its money.
If you hear our recent live podcast from the MPS, then you will have heard the debate over quality. Some suggested that pro quality was only available for the few, I responded that interfaces like the Focusrite Forte offered high quality recording for the many - so was I right or is it time to eat my words?
I have always been huge fan of my M-Audio Axiom Pro. so asking me to review a Focusrite Impulse 49 controller is hardly fair - however setting aside my Axiom fan-boy gush, I decided to take on the challenge with an open mind and to see what was wrong with it. By the way that last line was a joke if you missed it.
Joking apart, Novation have been working hard in the last few years to try and get a look into the huge market share that M-Audio have been commanding with their controller keyboards. Controller keyboards have to tick so many boxes these days, firstly as a MIDI keyboard controller with a great action and then offer all the other bells and whistles such as performance and DAW control.
Comparisons are bound to be made, so right off the bat I will explain the key difference in the way that an Axiom handles the more powerful side of control versus the Novation. M-Audio Axiom Pro employs a system called Hypercontrol which maps controllers for the DAW and associated plug-ins at a system level. Novation use a system called Automap, which is in effect another piece of software that sits on your system and does some clever translation between the keyboard and the DAW and plug-ins. Automap has not always had a good press, so I was keen to see how the latest incarnation, Automap 4, would stand up to scrutiny, especially from this Axiom fan-boy.
There’s a lot of small near-field monitors on the market, but this offering from ESI intrigued me.Mostly because they seem to offer a cheaper alternative to my trusty Yamaha HS50M monitors at around 75% of the price, so I called up my buddies at Time and Space and had them ship a pair up to me - if for nothing else, to satisfy my curiosity.