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Native Instruments releases updated TRAKTOR KONTROL S4 & S2

Native Instruments has announced the release of new versions of the 4+1 channel DJ system TRAKTOR KONTROL S4 and its 2+1 channel counterpart, TRAKTOR KONTROL S2.

Native Instruments Traktor Kontrol S4
The S4 and S2 perfectly combine a premium DJ mixing interface, built-in 24 bit/96 kHz soundcard, and an intuitive interface engineered for seamless control of TRAKTOR software.

Both all-in-one DJ systems now offer an improved look and feel with added control over the latest TRAKTOR PRO 2 features. Furthermore, both the S4 and S2 are now plug-and-play with TRAKTOR DJ – the world’s most successful DJ app for iPad and iPhone.

Trusted by countless professional DJs for unparalleled creative possibilities and supreme work flow, the sharply redesigned TRAKTOR KONTROL S4 and S2 now feature color-coded RGB buttons that trigger and identify loops, cue points, and samples for improved visual feedback. Also upgraded are the high resolution jog-wheels, which now feature aircraft-grade aluminum plates for increased durability and performance. The advanced Flux Mode feature is now instantly accessible on the S4 and S2 via dedicated buttons on each deck, and TRAKTOR PRO 2’s Remix Deck controls can now be accessed directly from the units. TRAKTOR KONTROL S4 introduces a new separate booth output on the main out section of the rear panel which can be switched between Main or Booth, allowing for separate booth output volume – essential for many pro DJs.

In addition to offering all core TRAKTOR PRO 2 controls, the KONTROL S4 and S2 are now plug-and-play with TRAKTOR DJ – even more closely uniting hard and software. Both units deliver physical control for every function including cue points and Freeze Mode. Boasting a compact size, robust build, and innate TRAKTOR DJ integration, TRAKTOR KONTROL S2 is the ideal choice for iOS-based DJ setups.

Both TRAKTOR KONTROL S4 and S2 include a full version of the flagship TRAKTOR PRO 2 with Remix Decks® software, opening up a wealth of creative possibilities. TRAKTOR KONTROL S4 and S2 are now available in stores worldwide and at the NI Online Shop.

TRAKTOR KONTROL S4 is available to purchase for $799 USD / 799 EUR, TRAKTOR KONTROL S2 costs $499 / 499 EUR.

More information: Native Instruments

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Blue Cat Audio updates Blue Cat’s MB-7 Mixer to v2.03

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Blue Cat MB-7 Mixer 2

Blue Cat Audio has announced the release of several updates for Blue Cat’s MB-7 Mixer 2, the multi-band processing plug-in with VST hosting capabilities.

The updates mainly improve compatibility with additional VST plug-ins (including VST Shells), adds support for virtual instruments hosting, tempo synchronization and more (full list below). A free add-on skin is now available for download to streamline the usage of the plug-in in single band (broadband) mode.

The plug-in can be purchased alone or as part of three bundles: Blue Cat’s Energy Pack, Blue Cat’s MB Dynamix Pack or Blue Cat’s All Plug-ins Pack, the complete Blue Cat Audio collection bundle. The special introduction offer (20% off) is still available until September 30th.

Changes in MB-7 Mixer v2.03

  • The plug-in can now host VST instruments.
  • Added support for plug-ins bundled into a VST Shell.
  • Hosted VST plug-ins can now sync with the host’s tempo.
  • AudioSuite support (offline processing) for the AAX version.
  • Some VST plug-ins that required tempo sync used to crash on load or produce no sound.
  • Fixed compatibility issues with FabFilter plug-ins.
  • Some VST plug-ins used to crash when reloading a Pro Tools session in Pro Tools 11.

Blue Cat’s MB-7 Mixer 2 for Windows and Mac (VST/AU/RTAS/AAX/DirectX) is available to purchase for 74 EUR / $96 USD until September 30th, 2013 (regular 99 EUR / $129 USD). The upgrade from Blue Cat’s MB-7 Mixer 1 is 19 EUR / $25 USD.

More information: Blue Cat Audio / MB-7 Mixer 2

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Avid intros S6 Control Surface

Avid has announced the S6 Control Surface, a major new addition to its industry leading family of control surfaces for sound recording, mixing and editing.

Avid S6

Avid S6 is designed for audio professionals in the most demanding production environments, delivering the performance needed to complete projects faster while producing the best sounding mixes. In addition, S6 provides mixing professionals with a state-of-the-art solution that easily scales to meet their current and future challenges.

“Working in ever more complex environments with fast project turnarounds, mixers need intuitive, tactile control of editing and mixing, and the ability to easily work with other artists, engineers, and facilities,” said Chris Gahagan, senior vice president of products and services at Avid. “Drawing on more than 20 years of leading edge innovation, the S6 delivers the game-changing modularity, superior ergonomics, and streamlined collaboration to meet mixers’ changing business requirements.”

Built on the same proven technology that is core to the industry-leading ICON and System 5 product families, the Avid S6 enables mixers to quickly turn around complex projects while swiftly handling last-minute changes. With its unparalleled ability to simultaneously control multiple Pro Tools® and other EUCON™-enabled DAWs over simple Ethernet, S6 also speeds workflows and enables network collaboration on a single integrated platform.

Avid S6 modular design

S6 features

  • Revolutionary modular design — Adapting to every stage of a user’s business, the S6 control surface can be customized with the addition of the modules needed to match current workflow. It can be horizontally and vertically scaled as the client base grows. Pre-configured S6 M10 or S6 M40 surfaces may be purchased with the required faders, knobs, etc. already provided or, with S6 M40, further personalized with different channel control combinations.
  • Superior ergonomics — A traditional, familiar console layout allows easy transition from previous systems. The multipoint touchscreen quickly and easily accesses plug-ins, large track counts, surround panning and more, while top-lit status knobs and high resolution OLEDs add operational efficiency. Additional 12.1” displays on S6 M40 systems further enhance instant project overview by providing deep visual feedback on key items such as channel names, audio meters, routing, clip names, and scrolling waveforms. Ultimate recall enables quick location for last-minute mix changes.
  • Intelligent studio control — Compatible with Pro Tools and other popular EUCON-enabled DAWs, S6 enables detailed work on up to eight audio workstations simultaneously, as well as the ability to switch sessions in seconds from a single control surface across the facility. High-speed Ethernet connectivity makes it easy to reconfigure operations as business requirements dictate.

The S6 control surface will be available worldwide in Q4 2013. As a modular system, S6 is available at a variety of prices, with M10 configurations starting at $21,995 USD and M40 configurations starting at $43,480 USD.

More information: Avid / S6 Control Surface

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Native Instruments announces updated TRAKTOR KONTROL S4 & S2 DJ systems

Native Instruments has announced new versions of both the industry-leading 4-channel DJ system TRAKTOR KONTROL S4 and its 2-channel counterpart, TRAKTOR KONTROL S2.

The KONTROL S4 and S2 perfectly combine a premium DJ mixing interface, built-in 24 bit/96 kHz soundcard, and an intuitive interface into a powerful all-in-one DJ system engineered for seamless control of TRAKTOR software. Both units now offer an improved look and feel with added control over the latest TRAKTOR PRO 2 features.

NI Traktor Kontrol S4
KONTROL S4 and S2 are now plug-and-play with TRAKTOR DJ – the world’s most successful DJ app for iPad and iPhone.

Trusted by countless professional DJs for its unparalleled creative possibilities and supreme work flow, TRAKTOR KONTROL S4 now features a sleek new design with 8 color-coded RGB buttons that trigger and identify loops, cue points, and samples for improved visual feedback. Also upgraded are high resolution jog-wheels which now feature aircraft-grade aluminum plates for increased durability and performance. The advanced Flux Mode feature is now instantly accessible on the KONTROL S4 and S2 via dedicated buttons on each deck, while TRAKTOR PRO 2′s Remix Decks controls can now be accessed directly from the units.

Traktor Kontrol S4

Built to the same professional standards as the TRAKTOR KONTROL S4, the KONTROL S2 has also been redesigned with RGB backlit buttons, reinforced knobs, and high-res jog wheels also with new aluminum plates. In addition to offering all core TRAKTOR PRO 2 controls, the KONTROL S2 is now plug-and-play with TRAKTOR DJ, delivering physical control for every function including cue points and Freeze Mode and thus yet again redefining on how to embrace integration between hard- and software. Its compact size, robust build, and innate TRAKTOR DJ integration make TRAKTOR KONTROL S2 the ideal choice for iOS-based DJ setups.

Both TRAKTOR KONTROL S4 and S2 include a full version of the flagship TRAKTOR PRO 2 with Remix Decks® software, opening up a wealth of creative possibilities.

Traktor Pro 2

TRAKTOR PRO 2 offers powerful cue, loop, and sampling functions, a suite of over 30 effects, pro-grade EQs, and fluid playback control of up to 4 decks. DJs can instantly add live editing and sampling to their sets with the use of TRAKTOR’s Remix Decks. Eight Remix Deck slots can hold a total of up to 64 loops or one-shot samples and ready-made Remix Sets from renowned artists are available for instant use.

TRAKTOR KONTROL S4 and S2 also now boast flawless integration with the revolutionary TRAKTOR DJ app for iPad and iPhone. With a 2-channel mixer, 3-band equalizers, and eight professional effects, TRAKTOR DJ brings the quality of TRAKTOR PRO software to the compact and tactile iOS platform. Both units charge connected iOS devices when in use.


Controllerist Mad Zach performs a spectacular routine on both TRAKTOR KONTROL S4 and S2 with TRAKTOR PRO 2 and TRAKTOR DJ.

TRAKTOR KONTROL S4 and S2 will be available for $799 USD / 799 EUR and $499 USD / 499 EUR respectively. Both can be pre-ordered at the Native Instruments online store.

More information: Native Instruments / Traktor Kontrol S4 & S2

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Philips and Armin van Buuren intoduce M1X-DJ System

Philips M1X-DJ System

Philips and Armin van Buuren have launched the M1X-DJ System, a combined DJ controller and sound system.

Combining a sleek design aesthetic and easy-to-use interface with innovative technology, the M1X-DJ allows anyone who wants to mix, play and share their music in one portable device. It combines a DJ controller and sound system that comes integrated with an Apple Lightning connector and Bluetooth® connectivity and works seamlessly with the djay 2 app from Algoriddim.

“Fans often ask me what equipment they should buy when they want to start mixing themselves,” said Armin. “A lot of kit can be expensive, so with the M1X I wanted to create something that’s accessible for everybody. The other great thing about the M1X is that you can play it wherever you want, whether that’s the beach, the park or your street: it’s the ghettoblaster reinvented for today.”

“Music drives us, especially in its ability to let people express themselves through their own unique sound,” said Ruggero Nardone, senior manager consumer marketing, audio at Philips Lifestyle Entertainment. “The M1X-DJ makes mixing, playing and sharing tracks simple. Everyone loves a great party and this product will deliver a great music experience, whatever the setting.”

“We are thrilled about the release of the M1X-DJ,” said Karim Morsy, CEO of Algoriddim. “djay users of any skill level will be excited to control their music in a whole new way with this unique new DJ system.”

The Philips M1X-DJ System includes speakers that output an impressive 80-Watts of sound. Optimized for iPad® and compatible with the iPhone 5®, the system includes an Apple ‘Lightning’ connector and Bluetooth wireless connectivity. Using the djay 2 app, you can switch between tracks on your playlist or mix tracks together for a sound that is truly your own. The integrated DJ controller allows you to mix and scratch your music using two professional grade platters, cross faders and controls – just like a professional DJ would use.

The system is simple to use and provides an authentic DJ experience for beginners to professionals, depending on how you choose to use the features. With multiple inputs and outputs, aspiring artists can link up multiple M1X-DJs or bigger stereo systems for a more club-like sound. Bluetooth connectivity allows you to share your favorite music from Bluetooth-enabled devices. When the party moves outside or to a remote location that may not have accessible power, the M1X-DJ will play for five hours with D cell batteries.

To help make the most of your mix, the Philips M1X-DJ works seamlessly with Algoriddim’s djay 2, an intuitive DJ app that makes it easy to get started fading and mixing tracks. Downloaded by millions of users around the world, Algoriddim’s djay has won the prestigious Apple Design Award and has charted as the #1 top paid app on the iTunes App Store. The app makes it easy to get started for beginners and has advanced features for those with more experience.

The Philips M1X-DJ Sound System will be available in November 2013 with a recommended retail price of 399.95 EUR.

More information: Philips

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PreSonus announces StudioLive AI-Series Digital Mixers with Active Integration

PreSonus has announced its new series of StudioLive AI hardware/software digital mixing and recording systems, each with Active Integration technology.

StudioLive AI-series mixers retain the same surface-driven functionality that made StudioLive mixers famous, while adding even more processing power, enhanced workflow features, and Active Integration technology. Like the original StudioLive series, they’re incredibly intuitive and easy to learn and use.

PreSonus StudioLive AI 32.4.2 mk2

The series consists of three models: the 32-channel StudioLive 32.4.2AI, with 24 dedicated mix buses; 24-channel StudioLive 24.4.2AI, with 20 dedicated mix buses; and 16-channel StudioLive 16.4.2AI, with 16 dedicated mix buses.

Unrivaled sound quality is provided by premium Burr-Brown A/D/A converters and new DSP architecture based on the acclaimed 64-bit Studio One® audio engine. Robust DSP performance, direct Wi-Fi and LAN communication, fast and intuitive workflow, an onboard FireWire s800 interface, and a tightly integrated software suite for Mac®, Windows®, and iOS® create a streamlined working environment for both live and studio use.

Redesigned from the ground up, these state-of-the-art mixers provide analog workflow with extensive dual signal processing on every channel and bus and actively integrated software that solves real-world problems and lets you record and distribute what you mix. All signal processing-Fat Channel processing, reverb and delay effects, graphic EQs, the works – is available on all channels and buses at all times. Configurable networking and communications option cards ensure your investment won’t be outdated as new technologies emerge.

Active Integration is the difference

PreSonus Active Integration (AI) is a complete, networked, tightly integrated hardware/software ecosystem in which every touch point in the system communicates to enhance the user experience and solve practical problems in ways not previously possible.

PreSonus StudioLive AI

In StudioLive AI-series digital mixers, Active Integration technology provides wireless or wired (Ethernet) remote control over nearly every feature, thanks to tight integration with the newly redesigned PreSonus StudioLive AI Software Library for Mac®, Windows®, and iOS®, which is included free with StudioLive AI-series mixers. The new mixers sport a FireWire s800 interface and an Ethernet control port on an upgradeable card that can be swapped for optional Dante, AVB, or Thunderbolt.

Thanks to Active Integration, StudioLive AI-series digital mixers deliver an extended feature set, including twice as many internal effects buses as first-generation StudioLive mixers (two reverbs and two delays on dedicated buses), the ability to create two complete sets of parametric EQ and dynamics-processor settings for each channel and bus and make quick A/B comparisons at the touch of a button, and more.

Seamlessly integrated software

The StudioLive AI Software Library has been redesigned for the Active Integration platform and includes the latest versions of PreSonus’ tightly integrated software bundle for Mac and Windows: Capture™ 2.1 multitrack-recording software, Studio One Artist® 2.6 DAW, and Virtual StudioLive-AI editor/librarian/control software with Smaart Measurement Technology™.

In addition, StudioLive Remote-AI control software for iPad® and QMix™-AI aux-mix control for iPhone®/iPod® touch will be available free from the Apple App Store.

All of these applications are designed to communicate with each other and with the mixer. For example, channel names entered in SL Remote-AI are broadcast throughout the network (including Capture), so you only have to name a channel once-and you can name it from anywhere, including the StudioLive AI mixer.

Here’s a level of integration you won’t get anywhere else: When you record with Capture 2.1, you have the option of saving the StudioLive AI mixer scene along with the Capture Session. Studio One 2.6 can open Capture Sessions natively, and when you open a Capture Session that includes a StudioLive AI mixer scene, the Studio One mixer is set to match your StudioLive AI mix scene, including fader values, mutes, pan, and FX send mixes. Fat Channel settings are loaded into Studio One’s new Fat Channel Native Effects™ plug-in. Now you can listen to your mix on your laptop, just as it sounded during the gig, even if the StudioLive AI mixer is packed and on its way to the next gig.

Last and far from least, PreSonus’ award-winning Studio One® DAW has been updated to version 2.6. In addition to the aforementioned ability to import StudioLive AI scenes from Capture 2.1 and apply the scene to its own mixer and new Fat Channel plug-in that can share presets with VSL-AI, version 2.6 adds Nimbit® and SoundCloud™ dashboards to the Start page, extended hardware-controller support, major metronome enhancements, and much more.

StudioLive AI digital mixers are expected to be available at PreSonus dealers in the third and fourth quarters of 2013, with the StudioLive 32.4.2AI coming first, followed quickly by the other two models. MAP/street price is expected to be $3,999.95 USD for the StudioLive 32.4.2AI, $2,999.95 USD for the 24.4.2AI, and $1,999.95 USD for the 16.4.2AI.

More information: PreSonus / StudioLive AI

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PreSonus updates Studio One to v2.6

PreSonus has announced the release of version 2.6 of Studio One, a significant upgrade to the company’s award-winning digital audio workstation software for Mac and Windows that adds groundbreaking integration with PreSonus StudioLive AI-series mixers, Nimbit, and SoundCloud and more than 50 other improvements and workflow enhancements.

When you launch Studio One 2.6, you’ll immediately notice that the Start page has been enhanced. A new Nimbit dashboard on the Start page provides access to up-to-date Nimbit® user account statistics (number of fans, number of active promotions, and sales) directly from Studio One.

PreSonus Studio One

In addition, the user receives help messages on how to engage with fans and customers and boost sales.

A new SoundCloud™ dashboard displays key statistics from a user’s SoundCloud account, as well as a scrolling display of the SoundCloud activity stream.

StudioLive AI-series mixer users will enjoy a special new connection with Studio One. When you record to the newly updated Capture™ 2.1, you can now save StudioLive AI mixer scenes along with your Capture audio. In Capture, this means you can play back audio through the mixer using the original scene that was in use during recording, even if it was recorded on a different StudioLive AI mixer. That’s pretty cool but it’s just the start.

When a Capture 2.1 session is opened in Studio One 2.6 Artist, Producer, or Professional, and a mix scene is present, all the fader, pan, mute, and Fat Channel settings for each track are automatically imported into Studio One. What makes this so great is the new Fat Channel Native Effects™ plug-in, which is a native version of the StudioLive 32.4.2AI mixer’s Fat Channel, including the gate, compressor, limiter, and four-band fully parametric EQ.

Studio One Fat Channel
The Fat Channel effect plug-in in Studio One 2.6.

With the plug-in and the saved mixer scene, you can play your tracks using the same processing and settings that were being used during recording-even when you don’t have a StudioLive mixer available. The Fat Channel presets are compatible with their StudioLive AI counterparts and can be exported from Studio One to a StudioLive AI mixer via Universal Control. The Fat Channel plug-in also is a regular Native Effects plug-in, so you can use its powerful processing on any of your Studio One tracks and mixes.

Studio One has long integrated with Mackie Control/HUI-compatible hardware controllers; in version 2.6 (all varieties, including Studio One Free), this support has been considerably enhanced. Mackie Control/HUI integration now includes Send slot navigation, Sends support, Control Link mapping, momentary Mute/Solo, Track Edit mode, FX Bypass mode (EQ Button), add insert/send/instrument, plug-in/instrument list and preset list navigation, and more.

The metronome features have been enhanced significantly, including accent and offbeat click, convenient click-track rendering, custom click samples with drag-and-drop and menu options, and even save all metronome settings, including click sounds, as a preset. You also get a visual numerical count-in when you hit the Record button.

Studio One Professional users will enjoy enhancements to the Project page. A new CD time display shows the current CD length of your project, and the Transport bar shows relative song position. The update also delivers improved ISRC text input.

Version 2.6 also adds a long list of workflow and editing improvements, enhancements to the MIDI engine, and more. In fact, the update has so many enhancements and new features that we can’t list most of them here. For a complete list, please see www.presonus.com/products/Studio-One/whats-new.

Studio One 2 is available to purchase for $399 USD (Prefessional) / $199 USD (Producer) / $99 USD (Artist). Prices ex. VAT.

More information: PreSonus / Studio One

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