Wednesday 26 February saw Group Technologies takeover Brunswick’s capacious Wick Studios, turning it into the world-class GTX mini-expo dedicated to their brands. Highlights included the Australian debut of DiGiCo’s Quantum 338, a demo of Nexo’s new workhorse P+ range, Austrian Audio’s innovative OC818 microphone, and RCF’s formidable range of powered loudspeakers.
Being the excellent hosts they’re renowned to be, Group Technologies ensured the drinks were flowing, the food trucks were sizzling, and the assembled professionals from around Australia and NZ were treated to entertainment into the night. It was a lesson in how to run a trade event and inspire your guests in an industry that fails to be engaging surprisingly often for one full of event professionals.
Amongst a huge display of loudspeakers at pretty much every market-point, RCF’s Emanuele Morlini was singing the praises of their ART 745 and HD-35A powered two-ways. Both run 1400W peak, and produce 133 and 132dB max SPL respectively, but the main talking point is their low crossover point of 800Hz. This is a phenomenon we’ve seen from major manufacturers of both line arrays and studio monitors in the last year or so, and it leads to better vocal clarity and midrange performance. We’ve tried to get the secret to the new trend, but no-one would talk until Emanuele – it’s all about new, bigger compression drivers. The ART 745 is rocking a 4″ and the HD-35A a 3”.
David Bigg, Product Specialist at DiGiCo, was surrounded by eager punters at the new Quantum 338. It started shipping two weeks ago, with the unit at The Wick already sold and two more on the way into the country. There’s brighter, bigger, capacitive touch screens, HD scribble scrip screens, the Quantum engine originally from the SD7 Quantum, and a new control computer. Klang immersive mixing, which became part of the DiGiCo family last year, is integrated into the console, so engineers don’t have to leave their mixing environment and go to a separate computer. The new Klang DMI card, also on show, has increased the available channel and output count while reducing latency down from 2.68 milliseconds to 250 microseconds.
Nexo’s Joe White hosted a comprehensive listening session on the P+Series, running us through the coaxial P8, P10 and P12 models, with and without subs. An update to the classic PS Series, which were based on technology now 30 years old, the P+ are a convincing successor, with Swiss-Army-Knife features including adjustable dispersion and multiple mounting options that make them a flexible investment for production.
Austrian Audio’s extremely entertaining CEO Martin Seidl was beaming with pride as he demonstrated the remarkable OC818 large diaphragm condenser microphone. Made with a ceramic capsule that is so consistent it can be stereo-pair matched with any other OC818 or its less featured sibling the OC18, it can also be remotely controlled via Bluetooth, meaning you can change polar patterns settings without bothering the artists as you experiment during the recording process.
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