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Roland introduces V-Drums Friend Jam, social networking for drummers

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Roland has announced V-Drums® Friend Jam, a powerful new social networking tool for drummers.

Roland V-Drums Friend Jam

Since their introduction in 1997, Roland’s V-Drums have been the standard for modern electronic drum sets among players everywhere. Now, the free and easy-to-use V-Drums Friend Jam software app allows V-Drums users across the globe to interact with each other while improving their drumming skills with play-along MP3 songs and practice evaluation features.

Available for both Windows and Mac OS X, V-Drums Friend Jam automatically downloads a suite of practice songs after a user installs the application on their computer. The play-along songs cover popular musical styles including rock, pop, jazz, metal, and more, and feature full-band arrangements minus drums. In addition to these special practice tracks, users can also add MP3 files stored on their computer and jam with their favorite tunes.

By connecting their V-Drums kit to their computer using a MIDI interface (available separately), players can record and evaluate individual performance elements including beat, stamina, and technique. Using their Twitter account, they can share their results and compare how they rank with other V-Drums Friend Jam users around the world. In addition, the included calendar feature records daily playing time, providing an easy and convenient way for players to set and achieve practice goals.

The V-Drums Friend Jam software application is available as a free download from Roland.

More information: Roland / V-Drums Friend Jam


TC Group joins AVnu Alliance

TC Group has announced it will become part of the AVnu Alliance, adding its companies’ expertise to the industry forum’s efforts to establish AVB as the next-generation open networking standard.

AVnu Alliance Marketing Work Group Chairman, Lee Minich, flanked by TC Group CEO Anders Fauerskov (right) and CTO Morten Lave (left)AVnu Alliance Marketing Work Group Chairman, Lee Minich, flanked by TC Group CEO Anders Fauerskov (right) and CTO Morten Lave (left)

TC Group – parent company of leading audio manufacturing brands TC Electronic, Tannoy, Lab.gruppen, Lake and TC Helicon – announced on Tuesday at the opening of Integrated Systems Europe 2011 that it is to become part of the AVnu Alliance, the industry forum dedicated to the establishment and promotion of the IEEE 802.1 Audio/Video Bridging (AVB) open network standard. As TC Group is a major player in key sectors of the pro audio market, the move adds further momentum and specific market and technological expertise to the efforts in establishing AVB as the preferred Ethernet-based audio and video networking environment for next generation products.

Interoperability has long been a key consideration for the group, as it strives to align its diverse portfolio of audio products, with the objective of offering the customer ease of integration and complete system compatibility. TC Group is fully supportive of the move towards IEEE 802.1, stating that the establishment of AVB as the leading open standard will benefit customers, manufacturers and the industry as a whole by providing a level playing field for future product development while giving end users greater confidence in, and choice of, network-compatible devices.

TC Group sees networked audio as a critical issue in pro audio – in both the install and tour world – and has already utilized digital audio networking across multiple branded components, such as the implementation of established Ethernet-based protocols in Lab.gruppen’s PLM Series and Lake’s LM 26. Development of technologies intended to be in line with proposed AVB standards is already being carried out by the group’s specialist division TC Applied Technologies and this formal announcement by TC Group to join AVnu Alliance goes some way to underlining those advances. It also gives substance to the company’s continual efforts to provide customers with the latest and most flexible interoperable system solutions – through the development of products that support AVB as well as other relevant network standards.

More information: TC Group


Focusrite introduces RedNet, Professional Audio Interface System for any DAW

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Focusrite has introduced RedNet, a professional audio networking system.

Focusrite RedNet

Launching with five brand new products and comprehensive control software, it delivers all the features required for a professional studio environment. Focusrite’s 25-year legacy ensures uncompromised sound quality, while its robust, cutting-edge networking technology makes RedNet the number-one choice for the modern recording studio.

RedNet At RedNet’s heart is the tried-and-tested digital audio networking technology Dante(TM) by Audinate, the leading developer of high-quality media networking. Dante uses conventional IP-based Ethernet switches to carry up to 256 channels (128 inputs and 128 outputs) of high-resolution digital audio over a single, standard Ethernet network. RedNet provides extremely low latency: under three milliseconds analogue-to-analogue at any sample rate when using the optional Focusrite RedNet PCIe card. Dante is reliable: it has been in use for some time in the live sound field where it’s deployed at major events, and live systems are routinely tested for up to a week without the loss of a single sample.

Now, Focusrite brings Dante to the studio as part of a complete, scalable system with a range of extremely high quality digital audio interfaces and components. These provide a diversity of input and output options, with the simplicity and practicalities of Ethernet connectivity. What’s more, RedNet is non-proprietary, meaning it will work with any ASIO- or Core Audio-compliant DAW, including Pro Tools 9, Logic and Nuendo.

RedNet interfaces can operate alongside any supported PC or Mac with an Ethernet port (including laptops), using Audinate’s Dante Virtual Soundcard (DVS) driver, meaning portable RedNet rigs can be configured. However, Focusrite’s RedNet PCIe card, which features its own, single Ethernet socket, is dedicated to communicating with the RedNet network. It’s the technology on this card that yields the extremely low latencies that make RedNet the ultimate studio upgrade.

Each RedNet I/O device includes JetPLL(TM) jitter-elimination technology, and delivers dynamic range of 120dB, with 24-bit resolution at sample rates up to 192kHz. RedNet is the embodiment of the traditional Focusrite ethos: providing the high performance of today’s most advanced digital conversion designs alongside pristine analogue circuitry and implementation, with exceptional value for money and stunning styling.

RedNet features

  • 24-bit operation at up to 192kHz sampling rates.
  • Very low latency: under 3ms at any sample rate (when using RedNet PCIe card).
  • Up to 128 inputs and 128 outputs.
  • Superb audio quality with a dynamic range of 120dB.
  • Reliable and robust: Dante technology uses standard networking components.
  • JetPLL technology provides ultra-low jitter in all RedNet I/O devices.
  • Units are hot-swappable, detected and configured automatically on plug-in.
  • Included RedNet software provides easy system configuration and control.
Focusrite RedNet4

The RedNet range will initially comprise five products:

  • RedNet 1: Eight-channel A-D/D-A Interface
    • Provides eight analogue inputs and outputs.
    • Front-panel status and signal LED indicators.
    • Analogue I/O on DB25 connectors.
  • RedNet 2: 16-channel A-D/D-A Interface
    • Provides 16 analogue inputs and outputs.
    • Front-panel status and signal LED indicators.
    • Analogue I/O on DB25 connectors.
  • RedNet 3: Digital I/O Interface
    • Provides 32 digital inputs and outputs.
    • Up to 32 channels of ADAT I/O at up to 96kHz (up to 16 channels at 192kHz).
    • Up to 8 channels of AES/EBU I/O (replaces one ADAT interface).
    • Stereo S/PDIF I/O (replaces one AES/EBU interface).
  • RedNet 4: Eight-channel Mic/Line Input Interface
    • Eight Mic/Line inputs for RedNet (XLRs for Mic inputs, DB25 for Line inputs).
    • Eight professional, remote-controllable Focusrite microphone preamps.
    • Hi-Z instrument inputs on channels 1+2.
    • Gain Range: 63dB (0 to 63dB with -8dB pad; 1dB steps from +8dB to +63dB).
    • Front-panel controls plus comprehensive software for remote operation.
  • RedNet PCIe Card
    • Required for lowest latency performance, such as tracking.
    • Delivers 128 inputs and 128 outputs with less than 3ms latency.
    • Supports sample rates up to 192kHz.
    • Fits into any PC or Mac with a PCI Express card slot.

More information: Focusrite


Hexler updates TouchOSC to v1.6.3

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Hexler TouchOSC

Hexler has released version 1.6.3 of TouchOSC, an iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad application that lets you send and receive Open Sound Control messages over a Wi-Fi network using the UDP protocol.

You can now use the USB cable and iTunes File Sharing to transfer layouts from/to the device.

In iTunes select your device in the column to the left, switch to the tab labeled “Apps” and below the App management screen you’ll find the File Sharing section with a list of apps that support it, which now also includes TouchOSC.

Changes in TouchOSC v1.6.3

  • Support for iTunes File Sharing: Layouts can now be managed via the USB-cable connection using iTunes.
  • Basic multi-tasking support.
  • Multiple controls with the same custom OSC address now receive the same message.
  • ControlPush and ControlToggle now turn on for any received value greater than zero.
  • Added z message sending to all controls.
  • Fixed a bug where it wasn’t possible to enter a custom editor host address.
  • Various minor bug fixes.
  • New icon.

TouchOSC for iOS 3.1.3 or later is available to purchase for $4.99 USD.

More information: Hexler