The pro-audio industry is gearing up for the 133rd Audio Engineering Society Convention, with multi-Platinum record producer Steve Lillywhite set to deliver the Keynote Address. The AES has been continuously updating its Preliminary Event Calendar as this convention promises to be one of the most informative, and far-ranging AES events to date.
“In addition to our traditional programme, this Convention marks the introduction of three timely new tracks,” said Committee co-chair Jim McTigue. These include the Networked Audio Track for Audio over IP networks, the Sound for Pictures Track focused on key technical and creative issues related to digital audio production for feature films and TV, and the new Project Studio Expo. “These events epitomise the AES mandate as the industry’s most authoritative platform for addressing critical issues of technical concern,” added McTigue.
Live sound will also be a major focus at this year’s convention, starting with The Women of Professional Concert Sound featuring a panel of all-female FOH engineers: Claudia Engelhart, (Bill Frisell, Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter); Deanne Franklin, (Tom Waits, David Byrne, Pink) and Michelle Sabolchick Pettinato, (Gwen Stefani, Jewel, Melissa Etheridge).
Acoustics For Small Live Sound Venues – Creating (& Fine-Tuning) The Consummate Performing/Listening Environment will address effective solutions for eliminating noise leakage out of and into venues, innovative acoustic treatments, room tuning and realistic programs for accessing club site selection.
Transplanting studio production to the live arena; computer-based solutions and infrastructure requirements; the symbiosis between lighting and video and new career paths in addition to practical engineering challenges will all be covered in Live Sound Engineering – The Juxtaposition of Art and Science.
Further live sound highlights include a panel on tuning a loudspeaker installation, more debate on studying live sound vs. learning on the job, specialist panels on live sound for jazz performances and corporate events and an exploration of audio DSP (do you know your guzzintas from your guzzoutas?).
Equally as in-depth is the convention’s Tutorial Program, which will cover a wide range of both contemporary and traditional topics. Convention co-chairs Vene Garcia and Mike Wells developed a diverse programme of tutorials including Social Media For Engineers And Producers; Small Room Acoustics; Large Room Acoustics; Sound System Intelligibility; Mastering For Vinyl - Today's Challenges; Binaural Auditory Models; Noise on the Brain Part II – Higher Fidelity: Poppy Crum, Dolby; Getting the Sound Out Of (And Into) Your Head - The Practical Acoustics of Headsets; and An overview of Audio System Grounding And Interfacing.
The 133rd Convention won’t be without a few exciting product announcements to report on.
To being with, Prism Sound will be celebrating its 25th anniversary, and is promising to launch two new recording products “so sensational and innovative that Prism Sound can hardly bear to keep them under wraps until the show”.
In addition to the mystery products, the company will make a very limited edition series of 25 black, numbered Orpheus audio interfaces available for sale, which will include the normally optional Thunderbolt adapter. These will be available on a first come, first served basis.
Solid State Logic will unveil three new product developments at AES. With hundreds of Duality consoles already in use, SSL is planning to enhance and maintain this strong position with a new version called the Duality Pro-Station. The winged layout of the Pro-Station is designed to serve producers and engineers who wish to conduct their DAW session editing/arrangement and audio mixing from a single central position. The new shape allows the console centre section to accommodate a 27"Apple Cinema Display mounted on an articulated arm, enabling it to be pulled forward towards the operator when desired to create a more traditional computer operating configuration for more intensive arrangement and editing work. (The picture shows a prototype unit installed in the House Of Rock in Los Angeles.)
SSL will also be adding to its groundbreaking A-FADA system to Duality. First introduced with the AWS 948, A-FADA (Analogue Fader Accesses DAW Automation) is an innovative way of using DAW automation to drive the analogue faders on an SSL console which results in the ideal combination - workstation automation: analogue sound. Also debuting at the show will be the E-Series EQ Module and E-Series Dynamics Module for the popular API 500 Series modular rack format. The legendary 1980s SSL SL4000 E is recognised as a classic desk and release of these new modules makes the gritty tonal character of the channel processing from the console available to a new group of users.
Telefunken Elektroakustik is introducing stereo sets of microphones from its R-F-T series of large-diaphragm vintage tube microphones at AES 2012.
The AR-51, AK-47mkII, and CU-29 microphone systems, now being offered in matched stereo pairs, feature a custom dual power supply capable of powering both microphones at one time, as well as a locking flight case that contains both microphones, cables, shockmounts, and wooden mic boxes. All the electronic components in each system are matched sonically and electronically, including matched capsules, transformers and vacuum tubes.
Broadcast manufacturer RTW will showcase the newest version of its TouchMonitor TM3 unit, the TM3-3G for use with 3G SDI audio streams. Like the original TM3, the TM3-3G offers loudness metering compliant with global standards including EBU R128. If equipped with the corresponding software licence option, the integrated de-embedder can output up to 16 audio channels from the 3G SDI signal on eight AES3 two-channel ports.
The optional timecode licence expands the feature set of the TM3-3G to allow external or SDI timecode signals to be decoded, displayed and used for additional functions.
Canadian home entertainment company Simaudio will debut their new pro-audio product range under its Moon brand, details of which will be announced at the conference. The current Moon range includes high-end preamplifiers, amplifiers, converters and disc players for the home audiophile market. In September, the company signed an exclusive worldwide distribution agreement with Audio Plus Services, distributors of Focal Professional, Lauten Audio and Vovox products in North America. Audio Plus Services will be the exclusive distributor of the new pro-audio products.
As part of its continued distribution and technology partnership with Optocore and its new subsidiary, BroaMan, Clear-Com will be displaying two new models of the BroaMan DiViNe V3R-FX-ICOM-SDI video and intercom signal transport interface.
The intercom and video interface is distributes multiple feeds of high-quality audio, HD video, data and intercom. For intercom and audio, the V3R-FX-ICOM-SDI is equipped with (four) four-wire RJ45 ports. The V3R-FX-INTERCOM and X6R-FX-INTERCOM are intercom/audio interfaces without video.
DPA Microphones is teaming up with ResInno, designers of specially engineered piano legs, at this year’s AES Convention. ResInno’s Grand Rossa piano design, inspired by the 1957 Ferrari Testarossa race car, will be on display at the DPA booth.
To emphasise the enhanced audio abilities of the grand piano, as well as those of DPA Microphones, the companies will affix DPA’s 4099 d:vote, 4006, 4011 and 2000 Series microphones to all areas of the piano. Attendees will be able to listen to each individual microphone through various headphone listening stations connected to each microphone and set up throughout the DPA booth.