VIENNA: Studer, Neumann, Linear Acoustic/Coding Technologies and Real Sound Lab (RSL) Professional Audio were among the manufacturers to have enjoyed a busy and productive AES 07. The encouragingly busy four-day event - held in Vienna from May 5th to 8th - constituted the 122nd instalment in the Convention's distinguished history, writes David Davies.
For Studer, the Vista 5 digital mixing console and the OnAir 3000 digital desk - the latter now being supplied with new software offering surround options and support for the SCore Live DSP engine - were particular sources of attention. Noted Studer president Bruno Hochstrasse: "There have been excellent levels of interest from the Eastern bloc and, indeed, throughout Europe."
Neumann announced a further expansion of the Solution-D family, which sees three extra capsules for the digital KM D miniature microphone system, namely the KK 131 free-field equalised omni, KK 143 wide-angle cardoid and KK 145 cardoid with high-pass. The company also discussed the imminent 40th anniversary of its classic U87 microphone and plans for a special edition with accessories to mark the occasion.
Not that the U87 itself will be the subject of any alteration. "We will not change this product," confirms Neumann president Wolfgang Fraissinet. "It remains one of the perfect tools."
Coding Technologies - in conjunction with Linear Acoustic and Philips Applied Electronics - demonstrated a new hardware/software solution based on the MPEG Surround compression technique and enabling the creation of a stereo audio signal from a multi-channel audio source for contribution and distribution over existing stereo infrastructures.
The demonstration on the Coding Technologies stand was based around Linear Acoustics' upMAX-MPS professional broadcasting encoder and decoder, and utilised Philips Applied Electronics' 'Buried Data' technique in embedding the MPEG Surround parameters into a fully-backwards compatible PCM stereo audio signal.
The new solution - which will first be employed by Linear Acoustic in its pro-audio processing products - is expected to find a natural home in the production of multi-channel audio from remote event locations like sports venues and concert halls.
"We want to spread the word and tell people what is possible," says Coding Technologies' marketing/communications manager, Gerald Moser. "No one expects to be able to transmit multi-channel audio in a PCM signal... The set-up is totally new."
Finally, Riga-based DSP specialist Real Sound Lab (RSL) Professional Audio - recently joined by Digidesign/Apogee Sound alumnus Ken DeLoria - turned the spotlight on its CONEQ measurement and alignment system, and discussed a new US office co-established and headed up by DeLoria.
Plans for a second US subsidiary to address the consumer electronics market are already in progress, while the company has ambitious plans to establish a comprehensive distribution network.
"We think we will have worldwide distribution arranged in six to nine months' time," says DeLoria.