New audio products are coming to the market this year (2018) and Chris and Brian go to the NAMM trade show in Anaheim, California to check out the new products like speakers, audio mixers, microphones, and even find a few surprises along the way. Find out what’s coming out this year, what’s worth noting, and how you can take advantage of the training courses offered at NAMM.

Check out the Podcast for the details and check below for a list of the new products:

Allen & Heath dLive s7000

Not new, but we discuss it in the podcast as Brian attended training on the console. A&H describe the s7000 perfectly; “Throughout the dLive design process our guiding aim has been to create fast and transparent workflows that allow the engineer to focus on the mix, not the mixer. “

The more we go digital, the easier it is to create a mixer that has everything but is a pain in the you-know-what to use because the designers didn’t consider the workflow. Not the case with the s7000.

Audio-Technica Next Gen 3000 and 5000 Series Wireless Microphones (not mentioned in podcast)

“The new generation 3000 Series Wireless offers twice the MHz tuning range as the previous versions, giving users the power and flexibility to operate within the congested UHF spectrum.”

For the 5000, “the receiver features a tuning bandwidth of 148 MHz: 470–608 MHz and 653–663 MHz (duplex gap). And you have the option of selecting a standard receiver (ATW-R5220) with two balanced XLR outputs or a receiver (ATW-R5220DAN) that also includes a Dante output.”

Also new is “an antenna cascade output that connects up to eight receivers so a single pair of antennas can feed up to 16 channels of wireless, an auto squelch feature that automatically adjusts the squelch setting to maximize operating range while minimizing potential interference, and a backup frequency that can be quickly swapped by pressing the transmitter’s multifunction button in the event of unexpected interference. Software enables remote monitoring and control of the wireless system.”

Additionally, “The ATW-T5202 includes a high-pass filter and an industry-standard thread mount that allows for the use of six interchangeable A-T microphone capsules, as well as other compatible capsules.”

Bose ToneMatch Mixers

For those that use the Bose T1 and F1 portable audio systems, they used to have a small ToneMatch mixer. They’ve increased the channel-count and a few other things with the new larger ToneMatch mixers including a 4 and 8 channel mixer.

“The T4S integrates with your performance using illuminated tactile controls and indicators for spontaneous sound adjustments, even on dimly-lit stages. Jump into settings with the fast-learning, intuitive control interface. Additional features like tap tempo delay, built-in chromatic tuner, and recallable scenes makes it easy to be ready to play.”

FutureSonics

My friend Daniel East works for this amazing in-ear company and we talked at NAMM. They have everything from the custom-mold in-ears to the traditional-fitting Spectrum G10’s (and they sound great!) Look at FutureSonics before looking elsewhere.

Hearback

Pardon me if I slam Hearback for a moment but their website needs an update. Ok, that being said, they’ve released a new in-ear monitoring system, OCTO, which can include a gooseneck microphone for musicians to talk to each other. It’s definitely a simple system considering what’s available, but that’s ok because not all musicians need a ton of options.

LR Baggs

Want to get a better sound out of the acoustic guitars? The best place to start is at the source and LR Baggs makes a new line of acoustic guitar DI boxes with a variety of functions. Why work on the mixer to create a sound when the DI box can do it for you?

Mackie In-Ears

Mackie is diversifying into new areas, from DI boxes to in-ear monitors. These moderately-priced in-ears come in single and dual drivers. While we didn’t get the chance to listen to them, we recognize it’s an already competitive market so we expect them to compete with the other mid-range in-ear monitors.

“Specially selected dynamic and balanced armature drivers offer the perfect balance of vocal clarity and ample low-end for optimal performance on stage.”

Also, the cables are replaceable — always a bonus.

Peavey Versarray Speakers

Peavey isn’t always highly regarded in the pro audio world but it doesn’t mean everything they make should be dismissed. Brian and I listened to the new Versarray ribbon line array powered speakers and were very impressed. Played without any additional system processing, these speakers sounded amazing and a small system would be good in the right-sized sanctuaries.

“Peavey Electronic® introduces the new Dante® enabled Versarray™ Pro, a powered, fully articulating line array system with ribbon drivers.”

“The powered cabinets include network control for the advanced user as well as quick push-button control for setups where time is of the essence. Network controls include FIR filters, 10 band parametric EQ, noise gate, limiter, auto off, and all back-panel functions. The Versarray Pro also incorporates Peavey’s Mark III ribbon drivers and proprietary CLEAR FORM™ Waveguide.”

PreSonus EarMix

We had to see this coming and that’s not a bad thing. The more mixer companies offer personal monitor mixing ability, the more they are going to focus on meeting the needs of the musicians, and in this case, it’s going beyond a simple iPhone/iPad interface.  It’s a full-on on-stage personal mixer.

“Designed to work seamlessly with the PreSonus® StudioLive® Series III family of mixers, yet compatible with other AVB-enabled systems, the PreSonus EarMix™ 16M personal monitor mixer provides…fully professional sound quality, build quality, and features, including a high-performance headphone amplifier, to ensure you have the monitoring you need for any situation.”

“Each EarMix 16M accepts 16 mono channels of input via AVB networking—and you can network multiple units with a StudioLive Series III mixer.”

Royer R10

Finally, a ribbon microphone that sounds great and is affordable.

“Handles SPLs of up to 160 dB @ 1 kHz. The R-10’s compact size and mounting system allows for flexible, unobtrusive positioning.  Protected by a 3-layer windscreen system and internally shock-mounted ribbon transducer. The ribbon transducer is wired for humbucking to reject electromagnetically induced noise.”

“The R-10’s built-in windscreen provides superior protection from air blasts and plosives. It also reduces proximity effect (bass buildup from close miking) so guitar cabinets and acoustic instruments can be close-miked with less bass buildup. The R-10’s internally shock-mounted ribbon transducer isolates the ribbon element from shocks and vibrations, increasing the ribbon element’s durability.”

Sennheiser G4

Saving the best for last, Sennheiser is releasing the newest version of the evolution G3-series wireless system, the G4. Yes, the “evolution” series. What? You think it should be the “Creation” series? Jokes aside, it’s really an outstanding system both in sound quality and features.

Among the features, it includes fast frequency allocation for up to 12 receivers via the new linking function — which makes wireless RF configuration a snap. And, it has RF output power control which can work in your favor when you’re running a lot of wireless systems on your campus.

That’s it for the items we thought were worth mentioning. We talk more about them on the podcast.

The original story appeared here.