AES: Native Instruments – Stanton Final Scratch Breakup

For DJs like Manuela Krause, it’s the Traktor software, not the Stanton hardware, that makes digital DJing a draw. Now NI just has to figure out what hardware will be ideal for this market … perhaps a laptop-based cupholder for our cocktails? (I’d buy that, NI.) Native Instruments, maker of the leading Traktor DJ software (now part of their DJ line, have quietly announced they’re ending their relationship with Stanton, the company that makes the vinyl-to-computer interface Final Scratch. Given that the Traktor/Final Scratch combination has been dominant in the DJ club world, that’s big news. Here’s what Native had …

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AES: Universal Audio DCS Brings Analog Console Features to the Project Studio

Correction: I incorrectly stated that Euphonix themselves collaborated with UA; instead it is Euphonix co-founders and veterans of the company Scott and Rob Silfvast. I apologize for the error. In a way, this is even better; they represent some of the individual design vision behind Euphonix. See Scott Silfvast’s ideas at the end. This weekend is the high-end AES audio show in San Francisco, meaning we get to ogle beautiful gear with serious-looking VU meters and drool-worthy audio quality. Universal’s new modular “desktop console system” is at the top of the list on both counts, and it’s actually geared at …

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Cakewalk SONAR 6 Arrives: Audio Quantize, Dynamic Controllers, 64-bit Vintage Warmth, More

Cakewalk has a major upgrade to their flagship audio software, SONAR, not very long after the release of SONAR 5 last year: Cakewalk SONAR 6 Producer Edition: New Feature Highlights [Cakewalk.com] The banner feature is a new “audio quantize” feature. All the major DAWs have been toying with various takes on beat-synced audio warping, not necessarily copying software like Ableton Live, but trying to appeal to those who use those techniques with something different. It makes sense, given that MIDI has long had this rhythmic flexibility. In the case of SONAR 6, the new features include non-destructive audio quantize, the …

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Vintage Sounds in your PCI-Express Slot: Universal UAD-1 Goes Express at AES

At long last, Universal Audio’s UAD-1e DSP platform brings Universal’s retro-styled mixing and mastering plug-ins to the increasingly popular PCI-Express (PCIe) bus. Why is that cool? Well, for starters, it lets you run effects like perfect emulations of the retro Roland effects shown here. Now, some readers here have been skeptical of the performance improvements of PCIe (though, compatibility-wise, many computers make it a necessity). But Universal says the new cards deliver a quantifiable improvement over PCI and PCI-X. Joe Bryan, VP of technology, says PCIe provides lower system overhead, more reliable low-latency operation, and more tracks (up to 254 …

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@AES: Novation’s New Soft Synth-Playing Smart Keyboard Hands-on

Controlling soft synths with keyboards can be a pain, only because it often requires messing around with templates or MIDI learn to map hardware knobs and faders to onscreen controls. Propellerhead’s Remote is a fantastic two-way protocol that allows your keyboard to automatically control synths — but it only works in Reason. What about the rest of your software? The folks at Novation have a brilliant new keyboard, the ReMOTE SL, that takes that idea to the rest of the soft synth world. Via their Automap technology, the keyboard can configure itself for whatever synth you’re using, displaying each parameter …

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@AES: Digital Guitar Stompbox Smackdown

AES is supposed to be about high-end gear for audio engineers, but apparently no one told the sparring rival computer guitar effects makers. In this corner, from Modena, Italy, the reigning champion: IK Multimedia AmpliTube. And in this corner, from Berlin, Germany, the challenger: Native Instruments Guitar Rig 2. Photos and comparison after the break.

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@AES: Why Software Guitar FX Aren’t Just for Guitars

When you see a name like NI’s Guitar Rig, or a Swedish babe holding a guitar next to IK’s AmpliTube, you probably think about, you know, guitars. (I can hear at least one of my colleagues at Keyboard Mag groaning, “Ewwwww . . . guitars.”) But look closely at either of these products behind the packaging, and what you’re seeing is really a multi-effects package. A really cool-sounding, really cheap multi-effects package, that is. With ultra-flexible digital routing (read: you can create complex stompbox configurations without a tangle of cords) and deeply adjustable presets, this is just begging to be …

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@AES: Native’s Guitar Rig 2 Strikes Back with Control Stompbox and Loops

Digital guitar software/hardware combos? It’s on. Just days after IK Multimedia shows its new version of AmpliTube with new effects and a new hardware stompbox / audio interface / DI box, rival Native Instruments unveils its own upgraded computer guitar rack with new effects and a new hardware stompbox / audio interface / DI box. Not only that, but both IK and NI are at the AES show, which, as the “Audio Engineering Society” moniker implies, is not usually where you’d expect to find new guitar kit. Native Instruments Guitar Rig 2 So, anything different about NI’s announcement (aside from …

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@AES: PreSonus’ New Handheld Audio Interface, Fully Plugged

AES updates through the week — problem with being at the show is, it doesn’t leave much time to write about the show! -PK Let’s face it: what most people need for computer audio is just an easy way of plugging in a mic or guitar or two. Presonus’ new Inspire 1394 is a bus-powered FireWire “handheld” computer audio interface that gives you just that, plus a real phono input for connecting a turntable. All under $200 street, with the usual bundled software (Cubase LE and Acid XMC) and some nice plugins from Audio Damage, Camel, Cycling ’74, and Voxengo). …

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@AES: Pro Tools 7 — Worth the Hype?

Walking the AES show floor, there is just one company that draws the really big crowds: Digidesign. But while Pro Tools 7 is worth the upgrade for most existing users, there are a lot of features that are eliciting yawns among people I talked to. (The number one DAW saw on demo computers at various show booths? Ableton Live.) Pro Tools 7 (HD/LE/M-Powered) What’s new and cool is multi-processor support and flexible audio/MIDI region grouping. The latter feature is the sleeper hit of PT 7: people who love the PT mixing and arranging environment will just love this. There are …

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