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Live Sound Shines at AES 2008

Nov 1, 2008 12:00 PM, By George Petersen

An overview of new products from the annual audio engineering conference.


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AES 2008 featured nearly 400 exhibitors showing off the latest in sound technologies. Especially exciting this year were the newest developments in areas of live sound such as microphones, mixing consoles, and loudspeakers.

AES 2008 featured nearly 400 exhibitors showing off the latest in sound technologies. Especially exciting this year were the newest developments in areas of live sound such as microphones, mixing consoles, and loudspeakers.

The annual convention of the Audio Engineering Society (AES) returned to San Francisco Oct. 2-5, 2008, and as expected, the emphasis was on recording technologies. However, with nearly 400 exhibitors, there was a good selection of gear that's of interest to live-sound and contracting pros — especially in the area of new mics, consoles, and loudspeakers. Here are a few highlights.

STEP UP TO THE MIC

The AKG C 214 is a cardioid-only mic that delivers the same sonic performance as its legendary multipattern C 414 B-XLS cousin. Sound-reinforcement pros will appreciate the C 214's road-tough construction with a die-cast metal body and strong grille. With a switchable 160Hz low-cut filter and 20dB pad, the C 214 will be a popular addition to riders — especially at $649 retail with shock mount, windscreen, and a metal carry case.

JBL EON500 series

JBL EON500 series

Audix updated its popular Micros Series M1250 miniature condenser mic — less than 2in. long — with electronics. The new M1255 has a 12dB hotter output that's ideal for distance miking, such as hung overhead choir mics. A wide array of clips and mounts are offered.

The BP4025 from Audio-Technica has two large-diaphragm capsules in an X/Y stereo configuration. Its switchable 80Hz high-pass filter and 10dB pad make it perfect for high-SPL applications, such as drum overheads. The mic operates on 11 t-52 VDC phantom power (a similar model, the AT8022, also offers a battery-power option), and it includes a 5-pin stereo XLR to dual 3-pin XLR cable. It retails at $749.

Beyerdynamic is now shipping its TG-X 930 cardioid vocal mic, which is based on the capsule of its MC 930 studio condenser model. With its low internal noise level, the TG-X 930 offers an extremely high dynamic range.

Distributed by Hosa, the Da-Cappo DA07 dual-folding ear headset mic features a 2.5mm diameter, a water-resistant omni capsule, full 20Hz-20kHz response, and EMI protection. The DA07's soft silicone ear cushion incorporates a flexible, sprung-steel mechanism that can easily be adjusted to fit a wide range of ear sizes. Available in beige, black, coffee, and white, the DA07 is priced from $530.

DPA showed its new instrument-mount condenser mics. The supercardioid 4099 Guitar, 4099 Sax, 4099 Trumpet, and 4099 Violin models are optimized for each of the four instrument families. The mics can be easily unclipped and repositioned or moved to another instrument with only one hand, while the mounting system is designed never to mar or scratch the finish of valuable instruments.

Bob Heil of Heil Sound unveiled a series of interchangeable mic heads featuring his PR 20, PR 22, and PR 35 capsules, which are machined to fit Shure handheld wireless transmitters. Shipping is slated to begin in January.



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