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NAMM News 2023


Amphion, a leading manufacturer of studio monitors, has recently launched the One25A, a 3-way active studio monitor that deviates from their otherwise entirely passive range. According to Amphion CEO Anssi Hyvönen, the new monitor is a natural progression from the active 2-way filters used in their Base systems since 2015. The One25A boasts an active 3-way high-resolution filter that provides a balanced sound, excellent stereo imaging, informative mid-range, and unhyped LF response. As Amphion puts it, the One25A is "beautifully honest" and a must-have for anyone familiar with their speakers.


Antelope's first venture into the monitor market, the Atlas i8, is a powerhouse with its two identical 8" LF drivers sealed in an isobaric configuration, enabling greater bass output from a smaller cabinet size. The built-in DSP offers FIR/IIR filters for superior stereo imaging, while a coaxial driver eliminates comb filtering in the mid and high frequencies, making portrait or landscape positioning possible. With 400W of digital amplification delivering 200W/100W and 100W to the LF, Mid and HF drivers respectively, the Atlas i8 packs a punch. It also comes with AES/EBU connectivity and a software control panel for various EQ and room optimization functions. Priced at USD $4500 per pair, it competes with top names like PMC, Focal, Barefoot, and HEDD. Keep an eye on customer reviews to see how it fares.


Avid has collaborated with Danish converter experts DAD to elevate their already top-tier MTRX audio interface with the MTRX II. The modular system is highly flexible, offering 64 channels of I/O over Avid's proprietary DigiLink format, 256 Dante channels, and 64 MADI channels. With a new Thunderbolt 3 module, MTRX II can be used with any DAW system with a native channel count of 256. This Dolby Atmos-ready interface comes with DADman Pro control software and a monitoring matrix of up to 512 x 64, making it ideal for multi-channel power users, large recording studios, and film post-production. Priced at 6800€ ex VAT, availability is expected from August. Experience unparalleled audio quality with the MTRX II.


Cranborne Audio, a UK-based company, has captured the attention of the industry with their innovative Carnaby 500 Series EQ module. This 3-band parametric EQ features a fresh approach to equalization, utilizing harmonic saturation to boost and cut frequency content. The additional harmonic saturation adds an "exciter" element to the audio path, providing a dynamic response that changes as the circuits are driven harder. Users can process audio in the same way as a standard 3-band EQ, but with added flavor. The Carnaby 500 also features Cranborne's "Optosync" feature, allowing stereo linking of two or more units, making it perfect for bus processing and complex stem mixes. Priced at an affordable 699€ inc VAT, this EQ module offers a new and unique addition to your sound processing arsenal. Experience the Carnaby 500's exciting new approach to EQ today.


After 12 years, Empirical Labs has returned with their latest hardware offering: the PUMP 500-Series compressor. The PUMP is designed to be a versatile workhorse compressor, incorporating elements from several of Empirical Labs' popular products, such as the Distressor, Arouser, and Mike-E. The unit offers eight compression ratios, ranging from 2:1 to 20:1, each with its own unique compression curve. With stepped Attack/Release controls, the PUMP allows for easy recall, while the soft Opto-Coupler release feature provides additional flexibility. The powerful "Attack Modification" feature shapes the initial Attack envelope for more pronounced transients, allowing for retention of snap without sacrificing compression. Additionally, the PUMP includes a germanium diode saturation clipper. Priced at an affordable 789€ inc VAT, the PUMP offers a lot of value and is perhaps the closest thing to a "500 Series Distressor" currently available. Get your hands on the PUMP and experience the versatility and power of this new compressor.


Canadian manufacturer Flock Audio showcased their new Patch VT, a 128-point patchbay system with 64 inputs and 64 outputs that is digitally controlled. They also exhibited their CX standalone hardware module which provides eight channels of transparent mic/line boost for seamless compatibility with the +4dB line level standard used in the rest of the Flock Patch range. The connectivity is through DB25’s located on the rear of the unit, with a couple of front panel balanced I/Os. Flock's patch system maintains the sonic integrity of analog routing, with no digital converters in the signal path. It allows users to execute patching using an easy-to-use digital app, resulting in less cabling, more functionality, and the ability to save and instantly recall routing setups. Moreover, the system enables users to keep the usual patch bays' tangle of cables in a remote machine room, making it an appealing system.


Neumann's KH120 II nearfield monitors are the next step up from their already popular KH Series. These compact monitors provide unmatched accuracy and balance across the frequency range, now with improved LF response, higher SPL, and increased linearity. Neumann's proprietary MA1 Automatic Alignment technology ensures phase linear crossovers and room alignment, while a 5.25" woofer and 1" tweeter receive 145W/100W amplification. With pricing starting at €1789 inc VAT, the KH120 II is the perfect choice for those seeking the ultimate in nearfield monitoring.


The Prism Sound Dream ADA-128 is a modular converter with up to 128 channels of conversion, sample rates up to 768kHz, and a remote-controllable user interface. It has four independently synchronised clock domains, allowing simultaneous running of four different sample rates, making it ideal for multi-room facilities. The converter also features Prism's "Advanced Digital Routing Architecture," which enables internal and external point-to-point routing and makes it suitable for Dolby Atmos facilities. The Dream ADA-128 is the flagship model of Prism Sound, and it is a flexible, high-quality converter that can handle complex high-channel count systems.


That sounds impressive! The RNDI-8 is a DI box that packs 8 channels of the same circuit into a 1U rack, making it a convenient solution for larger studios, high-end live rigs, and synth users. Its custom transformers and FET amps ensure a clean and focused sound that captures the full depth of any source and provides a great platform for post-processing. The RNDI DI box has been popular since its introduction in 2015, with over 25,000 channels sold.


The SSL B Series Dynamics Module is a new 500-Series processor unveiled by SSL at the NAMM. It features the compressor and expander/gate sections from the 4000 B-Series console, known for their more aggressive and colored sound compared to the cleaner E-Series topology. The compressor section offers three stepped ratios, a de-esser setting, and four switchable release times, while the expander/gate section has five release settings. Both sections can be bypassed, and the feature set includes stereo link and LCF. The first shipments are expected later this summer.


Trinnov’s ST2 Pro room optimizer has been widely recognized as one of the best acoustic room correction systems for pro audio users. Trinnov has now released a new product, the NOVA optimizer, after four years of development. Unlike the previous system, which was based on custom PCs running Linux, the NOVA uses an ARM processor and comes in a smaller 1U chassis, with a price tag of 3549€ inc VAT. The NOVA can process and optimize up to 6 channels (perfect for 5.1 surround), includes bass management, and is a powerful monitor controller. It can also be used as an audio interface for direct DAW-to-monitor integration via Audinate's Dante Virtual Soundcard software. The product is expected to ship in June 2023.