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  • Meris 440 Microphone Preamp first impressions.

    Meris Audio is a new company that are based in Los Angeles. They were started by a gent called Terry Burton. Prior to this, he set up Strymon, a name synonymous with superb guitar effect units and worked doing hardware design at Line 6.

    They have just released their first product- a new preamp, called the 440. It's a 500-series module and is compatible with the many chassis and desks that are currently available.


    Out of the box, it looks really nice. The build quality is superb. The front panel contains the controls you'd expect to see on a preamp- your input and output levels.  there's a pad switch to remove 20dB from your input level, high-pass filter to help stop low frequencies causing problems, a high-shelf boost, phase inversion and the phantom power switch. Below these controls is an effects loop send and return.


    Taking it out of the box, you are immediately impressed with the build of it- the metal chassis feels really solid and the main board is substantial. You can see an array of components and iron in the form of the Cinmag transformers that handle the input and output signals.



    These units should really appeal if you're after the sound of the classic American consoles. The Cinmag transformers that are in it are similar to the ones API used in the 312 pre-amps- renown as the sound of the 70s West Coast; Think The Doors and The Rolling Stones...

    The effects loop is a feature quite unique for the 440. It handles signals at the same level as pedals, so that guitarists can get a great clean sound thru the 440 before sending that signal off to the effects pedals and back again. This results in a much better overall sound as you are capturing the tone of the pre-amp, but able to get the right signals into the remainder of your guitarists signal chain without any other patching and re-amping of signals.

    The return input also acts as a direct injection (DI) for guitars and bass allowing you to plug straight into the unit at the right levels.

    Firing it up, we were immediately taken with the cleanliness of it- plugging in our Fender acoustic, it sounded clean, broad and dynamic without any boom. Plugging in our Pearl Priority, we tried it for a bit of vocal and were equally impressed with the richness and tone. Driving it hard resulted in a little compression and a subtle change to the sound, but not the kind of saturated over-drive that driving some preamps results in.

    Overall, we'd really recommend this to engineers who are after a clean preamp and are working with guitarists and bassists, but also want something that works equally well on vocals. You can read more on the product here and we've got ours on demonstration now- drop us a line to arrange a visit.


  • Get Up to $1,295 in UAD Plug-Ins FREE When You Purchase an Apollo Audio Interface!

    Thinking about getting one of the very fine Universal Audio Apollo interfaces? Now, is a great time they have just launched a new time limited offer. Free UA plugins....MmmmmMMmmm

    See below for details!


    Get Up to $1,295 in UAD Plug-Ins FREE When You Purchase an Apollo Audio Interface!

    From October 1st - December 31st 2014, purchase and register a new Apollo Audio Interface — any Twin, Apollo, or Apollo 16 model — and you can get up to $1,295 worth of UAD Plug-Ins — from the likes of Neve, EMT, Studer & Manley — for free!*

    No coupons or redemption codes are necessary. The plug-in(s) will be automatically added to your account once you register your new Apollo interface.

    Already own any of the promotional plug-ins? No problem. Purchase and register a new Apollo Twin, Apollo, or Apollo 16 and you’ll receive a single-use coupon of equal value to the plug-in(s) you already own.

    * Free plug-ins vary based on the Apollo model purchased. For more information, visit

  • Universal Audio UAD-2 Thunderbolt Satellite Systems shipping soon

    2 Satellite TB Front copy

    Universal Audio have just announced new versions of their UAD-2 Satellite systems with Thunderbolt.

    By using thunderbolt, they've overcome the limitations to bandwidth that the firewire systems had, so allowing them to get more DSP onto a card.

    They're due to start shipping next month and we're taking pre-orders!


  • Metric Halo Autumn Sale!


    If you're in the market for a new high-end audio interface for your mac, we've some nice savings on Metric Halo interfaces for the Autumn.

    Metric Halo have been in the interface game for quite a long time and they're highly regarded for top level professional solutions. Drop us a line for more information!


  • Native Instruments Komplete 10 and Komplete Kontrol announced!


    Native Instruments have just announced the Komplete Instrument. At first glance, its a controller keyboard- albeit a very good looking one- but pigeon-hole it in the DAW controller with ever other MIDI controller on the market and you’ll miss where NI are coming from with this. Here’s our cheat sheet to understanding fully what this new board is about and why we think you should get excited.

    Conceptually, Native Instruments’ aim with Komplete Kontrol is to bring an experience more like that of hardware workstations to users of Komplete 9 and 10. It is not designed to take over from your current controller that you use for all your regular instruments and DAW control, but rather to sit along side as a dedicated board in the same way you might with a Korg or Roland workstation. The idea being is that you then have the best of both worlds. Ease of use and immediacy of a hardware workstation with the range and quality of the computer-based sounds.

    So; what does Komplete Kontrol have, feature-wise, that we should be so excited about? Let’s start with the obvious eye-candy- the light strip- the row of multi-coloured LEDs that sit at the top of the key bed. As well as looking fancy and adding to your studios flashing light count, you’ve got a very quick visual reference for functions like key switches, patterns and note data. You’ll know instantly when you pull up a Kontakt library, for example, where the key switches are. Patterns are colour-coded differently, and if you’re playing a pattern, you’ll see which notes are triggering.

    The key bed itself is a really high quality Fatar Supreme action. They’ve used the best-quality synth action that Fatar have available meaning that you have one of the most responsive and tactile actions available.

    The top panel features 8 rotary controllers. Native Instruments have spent a great deal of time setting all these controls up so that when you load an instrument, you’ll have direct access to the most popular controls directly there. They’ve also made these knobs capacitive- touch sensitive- so as soon as you touch one, all the relevant information associated with that control is brought up for you to analyse, so you’re always aware of what each control does and where you are in your edits. Other controls are accessible across multiple pages, and as you might expect, the screens change to reflect what it is you are editing.

    Rather than a standard mod wheel and pitch bend, Native Instruments have gone with a touch strip- a little like the ones found on some of their DJ controllers. They’ve done this for a very good reason- namely that you have the ability to program these strips do some very cool things like controlling how fast the pitch returns to the centre, or possibly controlling the speed and range of an lfo with how you manipulate the mod strip.

    The last feature is a rather understated addition of previous/next path browse buttons. Something rather ubiquitous on hardware workstations and synths, this is where the power of the new keyboard really lies and where your workflow and conceptions of Komplete will really change. This is where with the included Komplete Instrument software becomes more like hardware. Rather than thinking in terms of, “which instrument do I want to use”, you will be able to approach composition in terms of “what sounds do I want”. The actual engines of creation are no longer a worry- whether the sound you want is in Kontakt or Massive, you’ll be able to filter by sound type, basses, pianos, synths etc, and use those prev/next buttons to simply move thru sounds- making finding the right sound as easy as possible.

    Taken together, this really feels like the final piece in the puzzle and makes the Komplete system a formidable package no matter how you look at it. Whilst the price sets it at the top end of available controllers, if you’re a Komplete user, you’ll not find anything else that currently offers you even half the available features that this does.

    With the new versions of Komplete, Native Instruments have added 10 new instruments and effects to 10, taking the total to 39 with a 130GB sound library, and 15 to Ultimate, taking that to 75 products with a 440GB sound library.

    Komplete Kontrol and Komplete 10 will be here on the 1st October. We’re expecting high demand for this and are taking pre-orders with a deposit to secure stock from the early shipments. We’ll have the 61 key on display as soon as they land- call or email us and we can let you know when it is in for you come and try out, along side Komplete 10.


  • Ultrasone Edition 5

    We had a bit of a treat today- its not often you get to audition £3000 headphones... Welcome to the Ultrasone Edition 5!


    Limited to 500 sets world wide (only 20 of which are in the UK), these are probably the most expensive headphones that we've ever had the opportunity to audition. And we were impressed!

    Everything about the Edition 5 oozes quality- right from the first unboxing, Ultrasone have really gone to town with these. They're presented in a beautiful leather-bound case with a micro fibre cleaning cloth, two cables (a short one and a long one) and jack adaptors and a headphone stand.



    Picking these up and putting them on, we were immediately impressed with the feel of them. The different materials they've used really give the headphone a tactile quality and what usually feels like an afterthought, the included cables are both of a very high construction quality.

    Listening to them is incredible. They're musical and revealing, able to kick out some serious sound but never with any signs of stress or fatigue. We auditioned a range of material and found them to be very balanced across everything we put on, with an extraordinary sense of space- a real surprise for a closed-back headphone.

    Whilst we know that £3000 isn't going to make getting a pair of these everyones top priority, if you are one of the 20 people in the UK lucky enough to be able to own a pair of these, you won't be disappointed.

    If you are seriously interested in being one of these 20, we are more than happy to arrange a demonstration for you. Call or email us for information.

  • AKG Headphones now available on demonstration in our show room


    We've pleased to announce that we've now got AKG Studio headphones now in store for demonstration. If you're looking at a reliable and great-sounding headphones for monitoring, we've the semi-open K240 MKII and the closed back K271MKII in stock and on demonstration.

    For people after a higher-end headphone for critical listening and reference use, we've got the K702 and the K712 Pro on demonstration.

    Call us on 0121 270 5652 or email us if you want more information or if you want to arrange a demonstration of these or any of the other headphones we have in store.

  • Half-Price Toontrack EZ Drummer Expansions!



    Toontrack have a rather nice summer offer on for August- you can pick up any of their EZX Expansion libraries for half price! Available as either a serial code or a boxed version, we can order these and get them out to you in no time!

    EZX Expansions work with EZ Drummer and Superior drummer. They're great sounding drum libraries that are very flexible and sound great with the minimum amount of faffing. Well recommended all round! We've got them available for demonstration in store too- call or email us to arrange a demonstration!

  • Half-Price offer on Arturia Software Synths!

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    Believe it or not Arturia have been bringing us awesome recreations of many classic synths for 15 years now! To celebrate, they've got a great offer on until 8th September where you can pick up 10 of their synths including the Jupiter 8V, CCS-80V and Mini-V in their V-Collection 3 for £149! 

    If you fancy getting your hands on a copy, drop us a line and we'll get it sorted!

  • Resident Audio T4- The worlds first Thunderbolt-Powered Audio Interface



    Meet the new Resident Audio T4. This is the first Thunderbolt bus-powered audio interface on the market.

    Featuring 4 microphone pre-amps and a selection of possible output configurations, MIDI I/O, these promise to be an interesting option for mobile musicians. They'll be landing this month and going out around £399.

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