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AES 2015 Gear Preview



The 139th AES convention is just about to take place in New York next week until the start of November, so here's a preview look at some of the new products on show, and what we expect to see on our shores later this year and early next...


Crane Song


Crane Song Avocet IIA

Dave Hill and Crane Song is using AES to release a further update to his Avocet II monitoring controller with a new improved D/A option bringing it to the new CraneSong Avocet IIA. There is also now a dedicated subwoofer output for each of the three monitor outputs and levels are programmable in 0.25db steps.

This features Crane Song's new Quantum DA fifth generation converter technology which Dave Hill explains as "the Quantum series DAC is the most accurate that I have ever designed, typical jitter from 10Hz to 20Kz from the internal clock is 0.055pS and from 1Hz to 100KHz it is less than 1pS"

Avocet IIA KMR


Crane Song Solaris

Alongside the new Avocet IIA there is the new Crane Song Solaris D to A converter, featuring three separate analog outputs, a headphone amplifier output and the input section connecting via AES, spdif, Optical and USB accepting sources up to 192k.

The Solaris is taking advantage of the new Crane Song Quantum D/A that appears in the Avocet IIA  with the front LCD display showing sample rate, input source and level metering.





Bettermaker C502V Compressor

Polish designer Bettermaker has released a brand new 3 in 1 compressor for the 500 Series format which they are showing at AES. The Bettermaker C502V is their first compressor with recall features, similar in design to their already popular EQ series, and has three compressor modes :

  • BM : For gentle mastering mode but with unique attack behaviour - has the widest range of settings
  • SG : Classic British VCA inspired buss compressor -
  • DX : Based upon the aggressive Classic 160A style -

Bettermaker C502V KMR

Features :

  • Digital recall via USB
  • Plug-in control
  • USB Sidechain (use like a plug-in - no physical i/o required)
  • Stereo / Dual mono and M/S mode - (You can compress M and S signal individually)
  • Wet/Dry for both channels
  • Unit to unit internal linking - so you don't need to have USB cables in the front of multiple units if used side-by-side in a 500-Series enclosure.


Barefoot Sound


Barefoot Micromain MM26

Barefoot Sound has launched the new 4-way MM26 monitor. It had been noticed by a few eagle-eyed viewers that a prototype had been making an appearance on some of the Mix With The Masters video clips based at Studios LaFabrique, but it is now a final design and due for release early next year.

Following on from the successful MM27 Gen2, the Barefoot Micromain MM26 is a 4-Way design with 6 drive units housed in a sealed enclosure with all the qualities of the existing range - but with the added midrange detail of the larger MiniMain12.

Barefoot MM26 KMR


Barefoot MM26 Cross Section KMR


Inward Connections


Inward Connections are showing their new Brute II - which is the same as 500 Series favourite 'The Brute' but now available as a stereo-linkable 1u Rackmount version. Some extra features include a Wet/Dry Mix control, internal linking and 4 ratio settings to choose from.

Alongside the Brute II there is a new 500 Series VCA compressor called the Bad Boy, providing a larger variety of compression options, also with a new Wet/Dry mic circuit.

Inward Connections KMR

Inward Connections Bad Boy KMR

Inward Connections The Brute II KMR



Soundtoys 5 Effect Rack

Just prior to AES, Soundtoys released their long awaited update to the Native Bundle FX to Version 5 (nearly a year since their first showing). Bringing all the Soundtoys 18 plug-ins within the option of a single plug-in in a new custom Effects Rack, allowing user chains to be created.

A global recycle mode allows output of the rack back into the input for weird and wonderful effects loops. Upgrade paths are currently available from all previous versions.

Soundtoys 5 KMR


Prism Sound


Prism Sound is launching MDIO-HDX boards for their popular Titan and Atlas range of converters, allowing direct connection with AVID Pro Tools HDX or HD Native systems via the 'Digilink' connection.

Prism MDIO HDX Module KMR


Fix Audio Designs


Fix Audio Designs is a brand new company from Paul Wolff, and is launching new products at AES including a Rack Mount Blender module for side chaining devices, and using as a hardware parallel device...

Fix Audio Blender KMR


There will be a Fix Audio Designs Console based upon the idea of expandable 500 Series modules in various layouts, which will be interesting to see how each of the sections break down...

Fix Audio Console KMR

Alongside this hardware there are also two plug-ins Paul has developed in conjunction with Softube, a Flanger and a Doubler...We look forward to checking out all his new ideas.

FIX Flanger KMR FIX Doubler KMR




New Console ?

Rumour has it that AMS-Neve are due to be showing a new console, as the following statement is posted on their AES exhibitor information page :

"We're proud to announce that a brand new Class A analogue console will be introduced that will undoubtedly become a staple in many recording facilities. See it first at AES!"

...We will post info as soon as we have it!


By Nick Mitchell

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