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Akai MPK88 keyboard

mpk88_web_angle_largeAkai is now shipping one of its latest products the MPK88 keyboard.

The Akai Professional MPK88 is a professional performance keyboard controller with MPC production controls. The MPK88 draws on the design of the popular MPK49, the first keyboard ever to feature MPC pads. This first-of-its-kind keyboard is ideal for performance, starting with a premium, fully weighted, hammer-action keyboard, adding MPC pads, Q-Link controls, and a selection of MPC technologies. The MPK88 is born for the stage and is equally at home in the studio.

It features an 88-key keyboard and 16 genuine MPC pads. The hammer-action keyboard is fully weighted and features aftertouch for expressive melodic control. The MPC pads are pressure and velocity-sensitive to capture every nuance of your creative concepts. The pads can access four banks of sounds, so you have 64 samples at your fingertips with the touch of a button.

The MPK88 places dedicated transport controls within your reach for easy control of some of the most important tracking and editing controls. The MPK88 has modulation and pitch-bend wheels for expressive musicality, and two assignable footswitch inputs enable you to connect an expression pedal or other continuous controller and a footswitch for momentary controls like patch change or start/stop.

One of the most important input devices on an MPC is its Q-Link assignable control section. Akai Pro built a massive collection of Q-Links into the MPK series. The MPK88 gives you eight virtual knobs that are assignable to control nearly any software parameter. You can control three different parameters per knob thanks to the knobs’ three-bank selection, totaling 24 parameters of instant, hands-on control. Like the virtual knobs, eight virtual faders and eight virtual buttons also control three banks of parameters each, so you get 24 virtual faders and 24 virtual buttons. That’s 72 Q-Link controls!

The MPK88 is a MIDI controller that sends its MIDI values over USB. It is bus powered, so all you need to connect and power the MPK88 is the supplied USB cable. Because it is MIDI compliant, the MPK88 works with most MIDI recording, sequencing, and performance software for musical performers from keyboard players to producers to DJs and even VJs!

The MPK88 comes with Ableton Live Lite Akai Edition, one of the most popular and powerful performance and production programs in the world. Ableton Live Lite enables musicians to spontaneously compose, record, remix, improvise, and edit musical ideas in a seamless audio/MIDI environment.

More information about the product: Akai Professional

Steinberg CI2 Advanced Integration USB Studio

large-CI2_angleSteinberg Media Technologies announced its new product – the CI2 Advanced Integration USB Studio.

High quality audio hardware offering both recording and controller features combines with the included Cubase AI5 and Advanced Integration technology to offer a complete production solution engineered specifically for newcomers and mobile production environments.

The CI2 USB audio interface features two mic preamps with XLR/TRS combo connectors and 48v phantom power as well as a Hi-Z input, allowing connection to just about any audio signal, including large diaphragm microphones, guitars, basses and line inputs.

CI2 also features many workflow features designed to make the entire hardware and software system very easy to use. The AI Knob controller becomes a sound browser with a single push, and is integrated into browser windows in Cubase to find the right instrument sound or loop more quickly by scrolling through and (de)selecting entries in the sound browser windows. Interactive Recording mode uses the optionally available footswitch for hands-free recording, ideal for guitarists and vocalists recording their own performances. The Project Assistant is a new Cubase AI5 feature that offers a large range of templates for many production tasks and genres, allowing for setup of new projects in seconds.

The included Cubase AI5 is a streamlined version of Steinberg’s highly successful Cubase 5, with audio technology found in countless professional production environments worldwide. Cubase AI5 offers up to 48 audio tracks, 64 MIDI tracks, a range of audio and MIDI plug-ins, virtual instruments, the Cubase Key, Score and Drum editors, comprehensive automation and much more.

CI2 supports both Windows and Mac OS X.

More information about the product: Steinberg

Elation Design Wash LED PRO

large-DesignWashLEDPro1Elation introduced one of their latest products the Design Wash LED PRO.

This high-output moving LED head combines smooth RGB+W color mixing, very fast speed, and impressive brightness in a compact package that fits neatly into tight spaces and tight budgets.

Thanks to this brightness and its rich, vivid RGBW colors, the Design Wash LED PRO is ideal for entertainment and theatrical applications, where dramatic movement and a sense of excitement are demanded. A fully automated moving head, the Design Wash LED PRO delivers a 180-watt output from 60 3W RGBW SSC LEDS (22 red, 17 green, 15 blue and 6 white). The addition of white LEDs to the unit’s RGB mix makes it possible to produce more vibrant colors and pastels as well as a true white.

“This is a very fast moving light with rich, vivid colors, so it can generate a lot of excitement and cover a range of moods,” said Loader, Director of Sales at Elation Professional. “It’s versatility in terms of producing colors, strobing, operating in different modes, and panning makes it an even greater value, because the same fixture can be used in so many different applications. The quietness of the fixture has also been commented on by customers who have seen the unit, saying it is the quietest moving head fixture they have ever seen/heard.”

The flicker-free Design Wash LED PRO features a smooth dimmer (0-100%), 15° lens / 28° beam angle, 603° pan, and 265° tilt. Other features include 13 DMX channels, 3-pin and 5-pin DMX control, LCD display and onboard control. The Design Wash LED PRO operates in DMX, Master/Slave, and Sound Active modes.

Weighing in at only 16.75lbs. (7.6kg) and measuring just 16.5″W x 12.5″D x 19″H, (420 x 320 x 480 mm), the Design Wash LED PRO is affordably priced with an MSRP of $2,499.95.

More information: Elation

SM Pro Audio Nano Patch Plus controller


SM Pro Audio presented their latest product – The Nano Patch Plus, a passive volume controller.

The Nano Patch Plus really comes into its own when connected between your computer audio interface/sound card master outputs and a pair of active (powered) monitor speakers. One of the benefits of passive volume attenuation is that you no longer have to control volumes with your software’s master volume fader. Reducing levels from your software only reduces the audio bit depth. It is much more appropriate to keep your software masters at unity and attenuate the audio to your active monitors with a passive controller like the Nano Patch Plus. This way you can maintain maximum audio resolution and attenuate your monitoring volume with the confidence that the sonic integrity of your audio is not compromised.

No active circuitry, buffers, transistors, batteries, or power supply of any kind can interfere with the main passive output of the Nano Patch Plus. It simply delivers attenuated signal. Pure, simple transparent.

The Nano Patch Plus‘s rotary control (the same pot as used in our M-Patch 2) allows precise level adjustments within 1dB from 0 to -40dB. In addition, the Nano Patch Plus features completely balanced operation with its combo XLR/TRS input jacks, TRS outputs or unbalanced mini jack I/O.


Super compact 2 channel analog passive volume control

Rotary volume attenuation control

Mute button

Completely transparent operation

No power required

2 x combo inputs (balanced and unbalanced)

2 x TRS outputs (balanced and unbalanced)

1 x Mini jack I/O

Available in black and silver

The Nano Patch Plus is available for $54.

More information about this product: SM Pro Audio

iZotope Preps Audio Libraries for iPhone/Touch

izotopelogoiZotope, Inc. is getting on the Apple-created mobile craze that is the iPhone. Since the platform’s introduction in 2007, thousands of apps of been created for the iPhone, and now iZotope sees a market for their high quality audio algorithms on the iPod Touch and iPhone alike.

“We are seeing a significant demand for our audio effect libraries on the iPhone as thousands of developers are flocking to this revolutionary platform. These developers are redefining the way consumers interact with their music and audio,” explained Mark Ethier, CEO of iZotope. “With our offerings for the iPhone, we are excited to enable their innovation as the first to offer high quality audio algorithms for developers to integrate into their applications.”

iZotope’s new Mobile Audio software development library is predicated upon audio DSP code from iZotope’s consumer and professional lines. iZotope believes their technology can make a big splash in this part of the mobile market by allowing 3rd party iPhone/iPod Touch developers to incorporate it into their apps. The first of these developers will be Marcus Satellite and Audiofile Engineering, with their “FiRe” and “SmackTalk!” applications.

“We already rely on iZotope’s expertise and audio DSP for our Mac OS X line of products, so it was natural for us to work with iZotope to bring high quality audio processing to the iPhone,” explains Matthew Foust, Co-founder of Audiofile Engineering.

For more information, click here.


S4 Studio Production Computer Gets Production Boost

musicxpcToday MusicXPC has announced their intention to boost production of their Professional S4 Studio Production Computer. Effective immediately, the production will boost will make more of the Production Computers ready for shipment, a device which is designed from the ground up to accommodate for audio tracks and virtual instruments.

The Professional S4 Studio Production Computer sports a 2.83GHz Intel Core 2 Quad processor, complete with a 12MB cache and 1333 MHz front side bus. Also featured is a 20x dual-layer DVD+/-RW drive, 4GB DDR3 Dual Channel 1333MHz RAM, and a quad setup of SATA II 7200RPM hard drives for over 4 terabytes of possible storage (SSD also available). Not too shabby a lineup of features, eh? Pretty beefy.

The Professional S4 Studio Production Computer sells for $2,799.00.

The full slate of features is as follows:

– Intel Core 2 Quad 2.83 GHz 12MB cache CPU
– Chipset: Intel P45 + ICH10R
– 1333 MHz Front Side Bus
– 4GB DDR-II Dual Channel 1333 Mhz RAM
– 20x DVD+/-RW Optical Drive (Dual Layer)
– DDR2 512MB nVidia Geforce N9400GT Graphic Card
– HDMI, DVI, VGA output
– SATAII 4 x 1TB 7200rpm 32MB cache System Drive
– Realtek ALC1200 HD Audio
– 600W Power Supply
– 1 Headphone output,
– 1 Microphone input
– 8 USB 2.0 ports
– 2 E-SATA port
– 2 IEEE 1394 [TI Chipset]
– 10/100/1000 Gigabit LAN port
– Black Aluminum chassis
– Temperature Heat-Pipe technology
– Microsoft Windows XP Pro®
– Dimension [211x486x494.5mm] [WxHxD][8.3×19.1×19.5″]
– Gross weight 15.4Kg [33.95 lbs]

Week Off

Sorry for the lack of posts lately, I was all last week in London and this week I’ve been doing all the delayed job, so tomorrow this blog will come back to its normal post frequency.

PRS Starla Guitar

PRS Starla Guitar

It looks like PRS is renewing its product line with some new models, besides the Al Di Meola signature model released some days ago, today they have introduced a new model called PRS Starla, a solid body single cut-away guitar with Bigsby tailpiece with custom pickups that looks like a really interesting model for guitar players.

The PRS Starla Guitar features mahogany body and neck, Indian rosewood fingerboard, 22 wide fat frets, 24.5″ scale length, Tune-O-Matic bridge, Bigsby B5 Tailpiece, Starla Treble and Bass Alnico double-screw pickups, 3-way blade switch and volume and tone controls.

The model is available in vintage cherry, vintage mahogany, vintage orange and black finish. We have no info about availability nor price of the PRS Starla Guitar, but I hope it’s not very expensive because it looks like a very good option.

Neumann TLM 103 D Mic

Neumann TLM 103 D MicThe German company Neumann is releasing a new model, the TLM 103 D Mic, based on the analog version with similar name, TLM 103, and that will be a very good addition to computer-driven recording studios because its high quality and easy-to-use with computer. This digital mic will make you ask if you really need those mic preamps and A/D converters.

The specifications of the Neumann TLM 103 D Mic are cardioid polar pattern, pressure gradient transducer, 28-bit audio resolution, from 44.1 to 192 kHz sampling rates, 20 Hz to 20 kHz frequency response, built-in A/D converter, AES/EBU, AES 42 and S/PDIF outputs and +48V phantom power.

The Neumann TLM 103 D Mic comes with a shock mount and is also available in a starter kit (including digital connections and elastic suspension). Looking at the features of the Neumann TLM 103 D Mic you can say that this will not be a cheap mic, its price is near $2,000 and is now available.

Gibson Inspired By Lee Ritenour ES-335

Gibson Inspired By Lee Ritenour ES-335

Lee Ritenour is one of the most prolific jazz guitar players from the United Stats with almost 40 albums recorded, including solo and collaboration ones. The Gibson Inspired By Lee Ritenour ES-335 is a very cool semi-hollow body guitar that I’d love they release a Epiphone version so I could afford it.

The features of the Gibson Inspired By Lee Ritenour ES-335 are laminated maple body, 1-piece mahogany neck, Lee Ritenour neck profile, rosewood fingerboard, 22 frets, 24.75 scale length, Nashvile Tune-o-matic bridge, stopbar tailpiece, 2 '57 Classic humbucker pickups, 3-way pickup switch and 2 volume and 2 tone controls.

There will be 2 different models, the Aged version, that will be only 25 units available and will be signed by Lee Ritenour, and the “standard” version that will include vintage old stock components and there will be 100 units available, both of them will come with antique faded cherry finish. The Gibson Inspired By Lee Ritenour ES-335 is now available and its price is $5,400 for the aged version and $3,200 for the VOS version.