Customer Showcase: STARGAZY – Years

Lyrics:
Must have been a very special year
I was yours and by default you were mine
A year our situations figured out
Like where to go when the cold wind from the bay arise

I should have spoke when you gave me the floor
You shouldn’t lie there was nothing at all
You shouldn’t cry ’cause it’s hard to ignore that the beast of age is coming for all of us

The way we were when we were young
The way it worked when we were strong
The way we’d compromise how we are
The way the cards spilled out

A year lost and a year of poor surprise
One more chance to make this moment last a life
Now you can send this singing soul some rest and piece of mind

I should have spoke when you gave me the floor
You shouldn’t lie there was nothing at all
You shouldn’t cry ’cause it’s hard to ignore that there’s so much more to keep us impure and above the air

The way we were when we were young
The way it worked when we were strong
The way we’d compromise how we are
The way the cards spilled out

To get more from STARGAZY, click here.

Banana Seat – Pump Dance

You may remember Ghostdad from his stint here at ProAudioStar – he starred in a bunch of videos that we did. Since then, he’s been a busy man djing, producing music, playing in the band Win Win, and providing visuals for Porter Robinson’s live shows. He also partners up with Durkin (featured on the blog before here) as Banana Seat. They have a new track out via Fool’s Gold:

Banana Seat set aside the New York vs Boston rivalry with “Pump Dance”, a true bumper of a Clubhouse tune. BK’s Ghostdad and Beantown’s Durkin stuff Technotronic-worthy throwback synths and next level club thump into their bicycle shorts before grinding all up on you and stealing your heart forever. Play ball!


Banana Seat

https://soundcloud.com/bananaseat
https://twitter.com/bananaseat

Durkin
https://twitter.com/durkinmusic

Ghostdad
https://twitter.com/ghostdad

To get more from Fool’s Gold Records, click here.

QSC K12 Giveaway – Get $100 For Entering!

QSC-K12-FB-Ad

We’re giving away a QSC K12 PA setup on our Facebook page. PLUS we’re giving a $100 coupon to everyone who signs up. The grand prize package includes 2 QSC K12 12″ powered speakers, 2 speaker stands, and 2 20-foot XLR cables. Click here to enter!

*Contest ends May 31, 2014. Must be a US resident to be eligible to win. Coupon code is good for $100 off purchases of $399 or more at ProAudioStar. Offer good on brand new, regularly priced items only. Some exclusions may apply, click here for details.

New Gear: Icon QCon Pro & iControls Pro

icon-blog-post

iControl Pro (left), QCon Pro (right)

Recently I had a chance to check out a couple of new items we are carrying here, the QCon Pro ($746.99) and iControls Pro ($386.99) from Icon. Both of these offer motorized faders and the ability to integrate with Cubase, Nuendo, Logic Pro, Samplitude, and Ableton Live with Mackie Control, and with Pro Tools via Mackie HUI Control. I tested these out with Ableton Live.

Setup:
Setting up both of these devices was easy, using the included software and instructions. It only took a few minuted to get either one of them up and running with my software. Once set up all the controls are mapped in a logical way and did what you would expect.

Build:
These units have a good build quality.  They both are heavier than you would expect, and generally feel very solid. As you might expect from it’s higher pricepoint, the QCon Pro definitely has the nicer finish of the 2 units, especially in terms of the faders and knobs not being as plastic-y. Additionally It has multi-colored LEDs, an LCD display screen, and LED level meters for each track. The styling of these might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but for the price I am willing to turn a blind eye to that.

Impression:
In terms of usage, I loved the QCon Pro – it does everything you would want it to, and the mapping for Ableton Live seemed to be spot on. The LCD scribble strips and LED meters made it very easy to be able to adjust almost everything without having to touch – or even look at – the computer.  The iControls Pro took a bit more getting used to, since the lack of any type of display made it a bit harder to use than its larger cousin. However, it still could be a good choice for someone with limited space and/or budget, who is looking to be able to mix tracks on a board, or as part of a portable setup. It’s worth noting that the QCon Pro is fairly large so might be too big for some setups.

Right now there’s nothing that can touch these controllers at this price point. Behringer will be dropping some competition in a few months, and it will be interesting to see how they all compare.

Warm Audio WA76 review and sound samples

To say I’m a fan of the classic 1176 limiter would be an understatement. It’s my desert island studio compressor, my go to squash box. I’ve even built two for my home setup.   When I heard I could get a clone for $599.00, my curiosity was peaked since It cost me more to make one. So, the Warm Audio WA76 had to get an audition.

UA Apollo in PT Mode for Hardware Inserts

UA Apollo in PT Mode for Hardware Inserts

Build:

The WA76 replicates the familiar look of the originals. The chassis is all black with the exception of the orange Warm Audio coffee mug logo and the model and setting printings. Layout is the same, with the two big knobs, two small knobs, two chunky switch assemblies, and single lamp lit VU meter.

The biggest change with the WA76 is the power supply, which is a “lump in the line” external power supply; a cost saving idea for the design and preferable to a wall wart that has the transformer on the plug.  The rear has the DC in for the power supply, In and Out XLR and TRS connectors, and a switch for a 23dB pad for when you are running a pre really hot in front of it. Controls and meter in front are all laid out just the same a any other 1176. The input and output knobs have step detents, which will make it easy for recalls. The Attack and Release have a center detent. Ratio buttons work just like the, meaning, you have the option of 4:1, 8:1, 12:1, and 20:1 ratios to choose from with the expected ability for All Buttons In (British Mode), no ratio (1:1 for just driving the transformers) and any combination of 2 or 3 ratios. Meter switch assembly is the same as well: GR, +8, +4, and OFF.

Sound:

They have decided to model the WA76 after the Urei 1176LN revision D. The rev. D is regarded as the most favorable of the 1176 revisions. It’s just in the place of after including a lower noise and distortion circuitry and just before changing the output amplifier to a class AB (push pull) amplifier. This means it has just the right balance low noise and saturation; clean but not too clean.

Urei used the UTC O-12 input transformer; you can find these used for upwards of $200. Warm has found a solution in the Cinemag CM-2511 microphone input transformer. It’s not a replication of the UTC but is widely used for many clones. The specs are similar with the SM-2511 having a more modern bandwidth. The output transformer is also Cinemag. Everything else is the same discrete circuit with a class A output so it would be expected to be a ballpark replication of the sound of the originals.

I wouldn’t want to do a 1:1 comparison of the limiter with originals, clones, and replicas because they are all so wildly different on what they say is the 1176 “sound”; a problem that has risen from years of tinkering and refurbishing and just plain differences of opinion. I do know what to look for when using a FET limiter and that is near brick wall control of a signal. 1176 just has that added mojo because of its saturation from the 1108 pre amp and the distortion shimmer from the FETs. It will put vocals on your forehead, turn guitars into drills, and set drums on fire.

I’ve included some clips with broad idea of the settings. The most unique choice was “no ratio” setting for the kick drum for added mids. The kick was recorded with a D112 inside and about a fists distance from the beater.  A towel was thrown inside as well to dampen the sound. As a result, you get a very good attack but not much body or tone. Driving the input of the WA76 did nicely to resolve that. Another find was combining 8:1 and 4:1 for a program depending sounding behavior for a very slow guitar strum.

Impression:

Every studio should have a FET limiter and the Warm Audio WA76 is among the best choices with a price that set to make it a no-brainer acquisition.

Specs:

  • True to the Classic 1176 compressor in design and performance
  • Completely discrete signal path
  • Modeled after the D revision
  • Utilizes USA made CINEMAG input and output transformers
  • Supports the famous “all buttons in” ratio setting
  • Ultra fast attack time
  • Class A line level output amplifier
  • Input impedance – 600 ohms, bridges-T control (floating)
  • Frequency Response ± 1 dB 20 Hz to 20kHz
  • XLR and TRS inputs.  XLR and TRS outputs
  • 55db of gain
  • Less than 0.4% total harmonic distortion from 50 Hz to 20 kHz with limiting
  • Signal to noise ratio is greater than 74 dB at +25 dBm
  • EIN -104.1 dbm
  • Attack time, 20 microseconds to 800 microseconds
  • Release time, 50 milliseconds to 1 second
  • Meter provides dB gain reduction and dB output
  • Internal power supply, external 24v AC power transformer
  • 19″ Rackmount chassis, 2U
  • 1-year warranty

New Video! – Korg TRITON taktile USB Controller Keyboard / Synthesizer | ProAudioStar

TRITON taktile is a USB/MIDI controller that includes 512 program sounds from the legendary Korg TRITON workstation. The sounds range from standards such as electric piano and organ to synth leads for soloing and elegant pads, making this a treasury of sounds that will stimulate and inspire you as a player. You can also control the TRITON taktile from your computer via USB MIDI as an external sound module to enhance your existing music production setup.

TRITON taktile is equipped with the same great-feeling, semi-weighted keyboard that’s used on the KingKORG and KROME. Taktile is loaded with functions that make it fun to use, including a touch pad inherited from the Kaossilator that lets you play melodies using just a single finger; trigger pads that let you generate chords in the key and scale of your choice; and an arpeggiator that includes rhythm patterns. The TRITON taktile also delivers the functionality expected from a MIDI controller – it provides all of the basic controllers such as sliders and switches, and makes setup easy.

New Video! – TC-Helicon VoiceLive 3 | Pamela Martinez of Teletextile | ProAudioStar

TC-Helicon VoiceLive 3 is one of the most advanced and versatile multi-effects so far. Create complete sonic textures for Vocals, Guitar, and virtually any other musical instrument. The new phrase looper allows more loop creativity with A-B-C slots. Pamela Martinez of Teletextile lends her talents to demonstrate just a few features of this amazing performance and studio tool.

http://ift.tt/1jnZnvq

http://ift.tt/KHJBw4

From TC-Helicon website:
“With VoiceLive® 3 you get the ultimate 3-in-1 professional performance system for vocals, guitar and phrase looping — and it will rock your world!”

Special thanks to Ed from Brooklyn Music School

http://ift.tt/1jnZnvu

New Video! – Hughes & Kettner GrandMeister 36 | ProAudioStar

For More:

http://ift.tt/1k9xGVm

Hughes & Kettner GrandMeister 36 is a guitar amplifier head driven by four EL84 power tubes for 36 watts and three 12AX7s for the preamp. The GrandMeister’s Smart Rotary Controls is what allows any preamp setting (Clean, Crunch, Lead, Ultra) to have its own EQ, Presence, Resonance, and even Reverb, Delay, and Modulation. Up to 128 customizable presets are accessible and editable with the addition of the matching MIDI board FSM 432 MK III and the GM36 Remote iPad app! ProAudioStar’s own Jeremy Sosville has taken the GrandMeister 36 for a spin and has written a review detailing the features and functionality.

From Hughes and Kettner’s website:
“The GrandMeister 36 is an all analog tube amp with four independent channels: Clean, Crunch, Lead, and Ultra. The 36 watts 4xEL 84 power amp is based on the TubeMeister 36, but the 3x 12AX7 preamp is completely redesigned and offers the widest tonal spectrum we ever included in an amp, from sparkling clean to highest gain. Independent gain, master, EQ settings and even presence and resonance control plus a switchable boost for each channel provide you with all the versatility a guitarist could wish for.

How? The GrandMeister’s Smart Rotary Controls allow each channel to have its own set of controls with only a minimum of pots since each control is fully remote controllable and programmable. That means you can create any sound you want, store it on 128 presets, and recall it via MIDI controller, interface or your iPad. IPad? Yes, the complimentary app for iPad enables you to check the setting of every single control, adjust them, assign names to the presets, and remote control the amp with your iPad — everything in real time. And the best news: the remote control is just the icing on the cake – all controls are accessible directly on the amp or the matching MIDI board FSM 432 MK III (not included).

And if you still feel there is something missing you might want to take advantage of the on-board effects and add some delay, chorus or one of the other modulation effects. By simply pressing FX ACCESS you can make the Smart Rotary Controls for the channel settings now work as effects controls, which keeps your user interface well structured and clear. The GrandMeister is also equipped with digital reverb as well as an intelligent dual break point noise gate, measuring the guitar signal at the input, but cutting the noise between the preamp and effects loop.

However, the GrandMeister wouldn’t be called a Meister if it weren’t for all the great features that made the Meister series so successful. The Power Soak is capable of converting the amp’s output into heat and tone and thereby gives you the opportunity to break 36 Watts down to 18, 5, 1 and 0 Watts — it goes without saying that the Power Soak is programmable and controllable via MIDI as well. Hence you can enjoy the full tube sound at home without annoying your neighbors and even do silent recording at night. The built- in RED BOX genuinely simulates a 4×12″ cabinet and sends the signal directly into the mixer, which makes it an amazingly helpful tool in the studio as well as on stage. And last but not least: The TSC (Tube Safety Control) is an automated system that constantly monitors and readjusts the bias to ensure the power tubes operate reliably and deliver the best possible tone.

The GrandMeister is the dream amp for every guitarist who wishes for unlimited access to great tube tone, including effects – all at a touch of a button.

“Rock on stage, play at home, record at night” at its best!”