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Gibson Brands announces intention to acquire Cakewalk Inc.

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Gibson Brands to acquire Cakewalk

Gibson Brands has entered into a letter of intent with Roland Corporation and Cakewalk, Inc. for Gibson to acquire Cakewalk pursuant to definitive acquisition agreements to be negotiated by the parties.

According to Gibson Brands Chairman and CEO Henry Juszkiewicz, “If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, Cakewalk must be very flattered that so many of their innovations have become industry standards. As an addition to the Gibson Pro Audio Group, Cakewalk will enhance their flagship professional products, pursue provocative R&D initiatives, and continue to serve the needs of musicians and producers world-wide.”

Following the closing of the proposed acquisition, a new brand, TASCAM Professional Software, will be created to support, promote, and publish Cakewalk’s current and future professional products. Cakewalk President Michael Hoover notes “The world’s most iconic guitar, Gibson’s Les Paul, bears the name of the inventor of multitrack recording—and TASCAM launched a musical revolution by bringing multitrack recording to the masses. The combination will make a fitting home for products developed by Cakewalk.” TASCAM President Yuji Hanabusa states “The future of recording is an intelligent, intuitive combination of both hardware and software. Cakewalk and TASCAM will have the power to realize this future.”

The Cakewalk staff and headquarters will remain in Boston as an independent division. Juszkiewicz concludes, “This isn’t just about wanting to acquire Cakewalk’s respected product line. We’re equally excited about what Cakewalk’s R&D labs are developing for current Cakewalk fans—as well as those who are about to become Cakewalk fans.”

More information: Cakewalk


Tascam announces US-322 & US-366 USB audio interfaces

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Tascam has announced the US-322 and US-366, two new USB audio interfaces

Tascam US-366
Tascam’s new US-366 USB 2.0 audio interface with DSP Mixer.

These interfaces combine compelling new technologies like on-board digital mixers (DSP Mixer) and on-board digital effects (DSP Effects) along with advances on the wildly popular US-122mkII and US-144mkII interfaces. The US-322 and US-366 sport similar aluminum casings for the same rugged reliability plus new improved HDDA (High Definition Discrete Architecture) mic pres. These HDDA Mic Pres offer a wider frequency response (10Hz to 68kHz), high S/N ratio (98dB), low EIN (-120dBu) and low THD+N (0.0045%); qualities rarely achieved in interfaces this affordable.

These all-new interfaces boast low S/N ratio, low THD and the US-366 flaunts 24bit/192kHz recording; certifying these as the best sounding interfaces to be released by TASCAM yet. The 2-in/2-out US-322 features 1 Mic XLR/Line-Guitar TRS input, 1 Mic XLR/Line TRS input, 2 Line TRS and 2 Line RCA outputs. The 6-in/4-out or 4-in/6-out US-366 adds 2 Line RCA inputs and 1 Digital RCA/Optical input/output. One click of the top-loaded “Mixer Panel” button will access TASCAM’s new mixing console screen and on-board insert/send effects for easy-to-use, versatile recording. The digital mixer offers two operational modes, multi-track mode and stereo-mix mode.

After months of organized tests by TASCAM’s esteemed engineers and R&D department, the new TASCAM interfaces are guaranteed to offer new luxuries, reliability and value not found before in competing models. TASCAM’s US-322 and US-366 are bundled with Cubase LE6, feature easy-to-use controls, amazing quality, and feature-rich technology, advantages sure to please professional and amateur recording artists alike.

The US-322 and US-366 are priced ESP $149.99 USD and $199 USD respectively.

More information: Tascam


Precious Sound releases PreBrute for Kontakt

Precious Sound PreBrute

Precious Sound has announced PreBrute, the worlds first sample based Kontakt synth based on the Arturia MiniBrute.

We were lucky to get our hands on one and decided that it would be a ideal synth to sample for our engine. We have spent many months painstakingly sampling the synth with 4 different signal chains.

Our flavour system is just that you can select along the 4 oscillators what waveform and flavour (sampling chain) to choose from, so you have 20 waveform choices but 80 possible choices per Osc including the different flavours.

While sampling PreBrute we pushed our preamps hard to imprint characteristics of the actual pre to the sound resulting in subtle/extreme changes.

We also tracked the raw sound to cassette tape using a Tascam 122mk3, we tracked at a slow speed to naturally roll off some of the high end giving the tape waveforms a really warm and smooth sound.

PreBrute features

  • 2.16GB Kontakt 5 Library.
  • 7,612 24bit samples.
  • “4Scoop” engine for Kontakt.
  • Includes 45 presets.

PreBrute is available at a special 25% off festive discount until January 7th, 2013, priced at £30 GBP (regular £39.99 GBP). Prices inc. VAT. Owners of any “4Scoop” based product are entitled to a additional 10% discount part of a newly established Loyalty Scheme.

More information: Precious Sound / PreBrute


AfroDJMac releases Tape Hiss Vinyl Crackle free Ableton Rack

AfroDJMac has released a new free library for Ableton Live: Tape Hiss Vinyl Crackle.

AfroDJMac Tape Hiss Vinyl Crackle

Last week I received an email from Oliver Chesler, aka The Horrorist, who writes an extraordinarily useful and informative blog called “Wire to the Ear.”  He is always amazingly on point and up to date, whether with production advice, great music, or the latest audio/ iOS gear.  Oliver asked if I do request for Ableton Live Instruments (which of I try my best on); he was looking for samples of cassette tape hiss.  While there’s an assortment of plugin emulators of the tape sound (including Ableton’s Vinyl distortion which I used on this freebie), as we all know, there’s nothing quite like the original.  Funnily enough, just the day before I was looking for samples from vinyl records, and one of the samples I got the most use out of was just the vinyl crackle right before the music starts playing.  So, naturally I thought Oliver’s suggestion was a good one.

After busting out my old Ka-Boom Box, and dusting off what remains of my cassette tape collection, I started sampling empty sections of the tapes.   While I was at it, I took out some vinyl records of varying condition, sampled those, and grabbed a few minutes of tape noise from my Tascam Reel to Reel (the bad boy used on the Super Tape Drums Ableton Pack).  I’ve used those samples to create a pretty excellent Ableton Live Pack for you all!

AfroDJMac’s Ableton Live Instrument #60: Tape Hiss Vinyl Crackle.

The Ableton Pack is a free download.

More information: AfroDJMac


AfroDJMac records drum sounds to reel-to-reel: Super Tape Drums for Ableton Live

AfroDJMac Super Tape Drums

AfroDJMac has released Super Tape Drums for Ableton Live, a collection of drum samples recorded to a reel to reel tape machine.

There’s some kind of magic that occurs when audio is put to tape. One of my best musical investments has been my Tascam 388 Studio 8 Track reel to reel machine. In a world of digital music that can sound as if it were produced inside a sterile vacuum, this tape machine can transport recordings into the warmth and coziness of the living room you used to play with your Legos in. Something about that analog tape just makes things warmer and smoother.

So I recorded some drum samples to the tape…I wound up recording over 450 drum sounds to be more exact! It took about 10 minutes of tape to get them all down.

Super Tape Drums features

  • 5 Ableton Live Sets.
  • 450+ drum samples recorded to tape.
  • 5 Families of drums (8 Bit, Drum Machines, OP-1, Synthesized and Live, Odd Percussion).
  • 30+ Ableton Instrument and Effect Racks.
  • Drum racks that allows you to quickly audition different drum sounds, layer drums together, and browse by drum type (Kick, Snare, Toms, Noise, Cymbals).

The sample pack is available to purchase for $7.99 USD.

More information: AfroDJMac / Super Tape Drums for Ableton Live


AfroDJMac announces Super Tape Drums for Ableton + Pre-Order Deal

AfroDJMac Super Tape Drums Pre-Order

AfroDJMac has announced Super Tape Drums, a drum sample sound library for Ableton Live.

I am very excited to announce that next Wednesday, June 27th, I will be releasing a massive Premium Ableton Live Pack called “AfroDJMac’s Super Tape Drums.”

I took over 450 drum samples from drum machines, synths, 8-bit sources, the OP-1, and acoustic drum sources, and recorded them on to my Tascam 8-track reel-to-reel machine. The magic analog-warmth does to drum samples is beautiful!

From there, I created 30 Ableton Live Drum Rack Instruments with some great features that allow you to manipulate the sounds and cycle through the different drum samples with ease.

The Super Tape Drums will be available to purchase on June 27th, priced $7.99 USD.

AfroDJMac is offering a special pre-order deal for this new Live Pack.

As a way to say thanks to the people that have been so supportive of my work, I have set up a special presale. If you order the Super Tape Drums pack by 12 noon EST on Tuesday, it will only cost you $4.99. On Wednesday June 27th, you will get an email with a link to download the Super Tape Drums pack, before anyone else. Plus as a special bonus, when you preorder you will get an exclusive free download for an Ableton Instrument made with the Roland Juno 106. Entitled, “Juno-Bonus,” this instrument is not a part of my Roland Juno 106 Pack; it was made as a thank you for your preorder.

More information: AfroDJMac / Super Tape Drums Pre-Order


Tascam introduces DP-24 Digital Portastudio

Tascam has announced the DP-24, a 24-track Digital Portastudio with solid-state recording, a color LCD and channel strip controls to make recording simple so you stay creative.

Tascam DP-24

Up to eight tracks can be recorded at a time through its combination XLR and ¼” combo jacks. Input processing like compression and limiting are available during recording, as well as guitar amp simulation and multi-effects for use with the instrument-level input.

Once recorded, tracks can be viewed and mixed on the large color LCD and dedicated mixing controls like nineteen linear faders and a dozen channel strip encoders. Two Mixdown effects including reverb and chorus are also available, as well as a mastering effect. Once finished, songs can be transferred to computer over USB or written to CD with the built-in CD-RW drive.

With its great sound, powerful features and easy operation, the DP-24 is TASCAM’s best Portastudio yet.

DP-24 Digital Portastudio features

  • 24-track digital Portastudio.
  • Color LCD display and 12-encoder channel strip for simple operation.
  • Eight microphone inputs on combo XLR-1/4” jacks with phantom power.
  • Up to eight-track simultaneous recording at 48kHz/24-bit audio resolution.
  • Solid-state recording to SD Card media for better shock resistance than hard drive recording.
  • Instrument-level input for direct recording of guitar or bass.
  • Dedicated controls for EQ, pan and effect sends.
  • Multiple effects processors for input processing, guitar amp simulation and mastering.
  • Virtual tracks for alternate takes and undo.
  • CD-RW drive for mixdown and backup.
  • Built-in chromatic tuner and metronome.
  • MIDI input and output for clocking and control.
  • ¼” monitor outputs, effect send outs and headphone output.

More information: Tascam / DP-24