Allen & Heath Zed-10 and Zed-10FX
What Ultra compact mixers
Why Two innovative ultra-high impedance discrete Class A FET inputs allow an instrument to be plugged directly into the mixer, emulating the valve/tube input circuitry commonly found on instrument combos or amplifiers. There’s also a 26dB gain boost switch, which caters to instruments with very low output pickups.
How Manages up to four microphones and two stereo sources with MP3 player compatibility, and provides separate 2-track record outputs and a stereo playback input for 2-track replay or set break music from a CD player. Includes XLR main stereo outputs with inserts, comprehensive monitoring with headphones, and separate monitor speaker outputs; 48V microphone phantom power; and DI level switching for submixing. There’s a USB send and return for PC or Mac recording, playback, and effects. Zed-10FX (pictured) has a built-in FX processor with tap tempo delay settings.
Blue Cat Freeware Upgrade
Why New version makes these plug-ins available for virtually any DAW.
How RTAS plug-in format support for Pro Tools (Mac and Windows), 64-bit applications support for Windows DX and VST under Windows x64, Mac AU 64-bit format support (compatible with 64-bit Logic 9.1 on Snow Leopard), fixed user interface crashes in some hosts under Snow Leopard, and fixed MIDI learn issues.
Price Free download
What 40kHz high definition microphone
Why Offers an extended high-frequency response, fast impulse response, short diaphragm settling time, near-perfect cardioid polar pattern, and high rejection of sounds from the rear of the microphone.
How Considering that very few microphones offer a frequency response above 20kHz, audio professionals will notice subtleties in the sound that are non-existent from microphones with less high frequency range. The SR40 offers a fast impulse response that enables the microphone to acquire fast transients more accurately. The short diaphragm settling time allows the mic to reveal subtle low level nuances in sound that other microphones mask.
Price $1,295 for single, $2,690 for matched pair
Blue Sky EXO2
What Stereo near-field monitoring system
Why Taking the best features from its successful EXO, the next generation of EXO combines true, full-range monitoring with the convenience of a desktop remote control hub.
How This system offers two 3" 2-way satellites with 1" softdome tweeter, separate 8" subwoofer for extended low frequency response, 160 Watts of total system power (35W per satellite, 90W subwoofer), convenient desktop remote control with connection hub XLR/TRS inputs for pro mixers and DAWs, RCA inputs for computer soundcards and CD players, and a 3.5mm mini jack input for iPods and MP3 players.
Palmer Audio PDI-CTC
What Tube DI box
Why Designed to bring out the subtle tonal characteristics of a tube by creating the shortest possible signal path from input to output.
How Incorporates two vacuum tubes, an ECC83/12AX7 and an ECC82/12AU7, for a true tube sound. Four musically voiced wideband filters (low, lo-mid, hi-mid, and high frequencies) offer a wide range of tone control, and an extended dynamic range so that no limiting occurs below signal levels of +30dBu at the line output.
Native Instruments Abbey Road 60s Drums
What Sample library/instrument
Why Recorded using exclusive vintage gear, and provides a versatile arsenal of classic drum sounds with tonal authenticity, playability, and sonic flexibility.
How Features two quintessential drum kits of the ’60s era, a Gretsch and a Ludwig. Classic AKG, Neumann, and STC microphones, EMI TG mixing desks, a valve-based Studer tape machine, and other authentic outboard gear all contributed to this collection.
TC Electronic Impact Twin
What Audio interface
Why Offers a pristine recording path thanks to its two mic pres that feature TC Electronic’s Impact III technology, 192kHz/24-bit HD conversion, plus a set of recording Channel Tools.
How The Impact III Mic Amp has been designed to maximize the signal recorded into a DAW and makes the best of any microphone, from the finest vintage tube mics to the most demanding low-budget condensers. Includes essential recording Channel Tools that optimize the sound with onboard EQ, and Compressor and De-esser that tame and enhance those signals.
Focusrite Octopre MkII Dynamic
What Multi-channel mic pre with dynamics
Why Features eight channels of Focusrite’s mic preamplification, with new, single-dial, VCA-based compressors derived from the classic Focusrite Red 3 on every channel.
How Onboard digital converters, with clocking and jitter-elimination technology, enable you to stream eight channels of 24-bit/96kHz digital audio to and from an ADAT-equipped computer workstation or hard disk recorder, as well as accurately match the shape of the Red 3’s knee, to ensure the characteristics of the classic studio compressor were captured.