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AES 2019: Show Recap for Classical Freaks
Old 3 weeks ago
  #1
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Plush's Avatar
AES 2019: Show Recap for Classical Freaks

Attended the 2019 NYC AES show and have the following selective report for Classical Freaks.

Theme of this show was Immersive Audio and DANTE. At least three demo rooms from Neumann, PMC, and Genelec catered to 3D Immersive playback with excellent workshops. A standout for me was the lecture / demonstration from Florian Camerer of ORF Austrian Radio.

What you need to understand was that the show was mostly smaller specialist manufacturers with a lot of major players missing in action. Due to cost of the show and the number of shows worldwide no doubt. Even Sony had a small booth that showcased their new immersive software called "Architect." Nagra did not exhibit for the first time in memory.

Microphone manufacturers were out in force with both high end and Chinese mics aplenty. Standouts were the Josephson booth and their new hybrid fet / tube mic, the Josephson 725. A gorgeous sound. Schoeps had a nice booth with the co-CEO's of the company present. New miniature Collette preamp CMC 1 was featured.

Triad Orbit and Gefell had new pre-made rigs for 3D recording. Gefell offered new stands and holders that position the mics for a variety of 3D pickups. Triad Orbit had premade Decca Tree stands as well as 3D rigs made up. A handy solution.

Much research has gone into comparing various 3D / Immersive techniques and the most comprehensive is being done by Prof. Hankook Lee of Huddersfield University in England. Download his 26GB 3D Microphone Array Recording Comparison (3DMARCo) at:

https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.3474285

Software was very big at the convention with a whole section of the front floor space devoted to small booths of plugin manufacturers.

FLUX was among the more sophisticated with their SPAT 3D source positioner software. They are in a partnership with IRCAM Paris.

MAGIX offered a new version of Samplitude 4 and Sequoia 15 and also announced a subscription program for Samplitude.

ACON Digital had a new version of their Acoustica DAW with a sophisticated Restoration Suite as part of the Pro version.

Claude Cellier from PYRAMIX was in excellent form promoting excellence and his Pyramix company. A lot of interest in his offerings of course.

SONOSAX has a new marketing / customer relations man named Fabrice Junod. Very personable and knowledgeable, he and Jacques SAX, showed off the new SONOSAX Dante card for their SX-R4+ recorder. Along side that new development was their fantastic new 2 channel M2D2 mic preamp and a/d converter with all input formats. DANTE to be released at the end of the year and M2D2 for release mid November.

Dr. Douglas Doherty of DACS held forth with some revisions to his fantastic DACS line of preamps, monitor controllers, headphone amps etc. Headquartered in Newcastle, England, this specialist manufacturer uses a Crookwood dac in his monitor controller.

Red FOCUSRITE boxes continue to proliferate with any number of inputs that you need and excellent sound and features. Ted White heads up the Focusrite charge and all have very good sound for the computer recordist.

A very high recommendation from me for the new AUSTRIAN AUDIO OC 818 microphone. I have been using it here and it has a rich sound with a lot of detail. Made in Vienna it outclasses any AKG 414 varietal big time.

What I can tell you is that the show had a dampened level of optimism
with some real desperation showing on the faces of some presenters and manufacturers who deal in music recording gear. Pro Audio sales is in a crisis right now in my opinion with customers only willing to buy inexpensive items and inexpensive software plugins. The base of real pro users is shrinking fast.

I had not attended since the Los Angeles show in 2014 and the same faces were seen as back then.

Will the AES show still be presented in 10 years?

To help presenters / exhibitors, the show should move out of New York and hold conventions in Nashville, Chicago, and LA. Exhibitors told me that it costs a minimum of $10,000 for a card table size booth at the AES show. Add travel and hotel and promotion on top of that and it is no wonder that many major names stayed away.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #2
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jimjazzdad's Avatar
Hudson - thank you for taking the time to give us this report
Old 3 weeks ago
  #3
Gear Head
 

Thanks very much indeed for sharing this!

If you might have any further impressions of the Austrian Audio OC 818 they would be of great interest to me and, I suspect, many others.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #4
Gear Addict
 

The only other thing I found interesting at the show was the MS speakers. It has three small speaker drivers in one box and you can adjust the stereo width on the fly. very cool idea. I am not sure the actual sound quarlity as one can't judge on sound at the show. It is a passive speaker so you need to bring your own amplifier, plus buying the decoding box from 1-sound.



https://www.1-sound.com/ms-technology


I went to the show on Friday morning, the last day of the show. It was not very lively, to say the least.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #5
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ithinknot View Post
Thanks very much indeed for sharing this!

If you might have any further impressions of the Austrian Audio OC 818 they would be of great interest to me and, I suspect, many others.
in a nutshell: the best 414 akg never did! and then some...
Old 3 weeks ago
  #6
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by deedeeyeah View Post
in a nutshell: the best 414 akg never did! and then some...
Thanks - I know the current era 414s pretty well. As no technical details seem to be forthcoming as yet, how does the Austrian Audio response line up - 'flattish' in the XLS vein, or 'pop vocal' like the XLII?

(Obviously, they have their own special virtues beyond the AKG comparison, but it would be good to have a sense of general character from a user - my own usage would be purely classical.)
Old 3 weeks ago
  #7
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ithinknot View Post
Thanks - I know the current era 414s pretty well. As no technical details seem to be forthcoming as yet, how does the Austrian Audio response line up - 'flattish' in the XLS vein, or 'pop vocal' like the XLII?

(Obviously, they have their own special virtues beyond the AKG comparison, but it would be good to have a sense of general character from a user - my own usage would be purely classical.)
don't wanna interfere/divert the thread too much...

(and cannot report on vocal use as i never have used a 414 in this application for 35+ years; guess it'd be a bit silly given the choice i have)

i used the oc818 as a center mic in a m/s setting (and compared it to a few other ldc's in this application), as a spaced stereo pair inside a grand piano, right above the strings (for live jazz mixing) and a bit higher up in a pseudo x/y setting (for classical piano recording):
by comparison to my (very old and beaten up) c414b-uls and c414eb mics, the oc818's performed better in every way, it's as simple as that!

oh, live on saxes, trumpets and trombones and on leslie top worked very well too!

a more interesting comparison in our genre will be with the tlm170 though...

Last edited by deedeeyeah; 1 week ago at 01:31 AM.. Reason: typo
Old 3 weeks ago
  #8
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Larry Elliott's Avatar
Thanks Hudson for the report.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #9
Thanks Hudson, that’s an awesome assessment! The time taken to compile all of that is much appreciated.

KB

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plush View Post
Attended the 2019 NYC AES show and have the following selective report for Classical Freaks.

Theme of this show was Immersive Audio and DANTE. At least three demo rooms from Neumann, PMC, and Genelec catered to 3D Immersive playback with excellent workshops. A standout for me was the lecture / demonstration from Florian Camerer of ORF Austrian Radio.

What you need to understand was that the show was mostly smaller specialist manufacturers with a lot of major players missing in action. Due to cost of the show and the number of shows worldwide no doubt. Even Sony had a small booth that showcased their new immersive software called "Architect." Nagra did not exhibit for the first time in memory.

Microphone manufacturers were out in force with both high end and Chinese mics aplenty. Standouts were the Josephson booth and their new hybrid fet / tube mic, the Josephson 725. A gorgeous sound. Schoeps had a nice booth with the co-CEO's of the company present. New miniature Collette preamp CMC 1 was featured.

Triad Orbit and Gefell had new pre-made rigs for 3D recording. Gefell offered new stands and holders that position the mics for a variety of 3D pickups. Triad Orbit had premade Decca Tree stands as well as 3D rigs made up. A handy solution.

Much research has gone into comparing various 3D / Immersive techniques and the most comprehensive is being done by Prof. Hankook Lee of Huddersfield University in England. Download his 26GB 3D Microphone Array Recording Comparison (3DMARCo) at:

https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.3474285

Software was very big at the convention with a whole section of the front floor space devoted to small booths of plugin manufacturers.

FLUX was among the more sophisticated with their SPAT 3D source positioner software. They are in a partnership with IRCAM Paris.

MAGIX offered a new version of Samplitude 4 and Sequoia 15 and also announced a subscription program for Samplitude.

ACON Digital had a new version of their Acoustica DAW with a sophisticated Restoration Suite as part of the Pro version.

Claude Cellier from PYRAMIX was in excellent form promoting excellence and his Pyramix company. A lot of interest in his offerings of course.

SONOSAX has a new marketing / customer relations man named Fabrice Junod. Very personable and knowledgeable, he and Jacques SAX, showed off the new SONOSAX Dante card for their SX-R4+ recorder. Along side that new development was their fantastic new 2 channel M2D2 mic preamp and a/d converter with all input formats. DANTE to be released at the end of the year and M2D2 for release mid November.

Dr. Douglas Doherty of DACS held forth with some revisions to his fantastic DACS line of preamps, monitor controllers, headphone amps etc. Headquartered in Newcastle, England, this specialist manufacturer uses a Crookwood dac in his monitor controller.

Red FOCUSRITE boxes continue to proliferate with any number of inputs that you need and excellent sound and features. Ted White heads up the Focusrite charge and all have very good sound for the computer recordist.

A very high recommendation from me for the new AUSTRIAN AUDIO OC 818 microphone. I have been using it here and it has a rich sound with a lot of detail. Made in Vienna it outclasses any AKG 414 varietal big time.

What I can tell you is that the show had a dampened level of optimism
with some real desperation showing on the faces of some presenters and manufacturers who deal in music recording gear. Pro Audio sales is in a crisis right now in my opinion with customers only willing to buy inexpensive items and inexpensive software plugins. The base of real pro users is shrinking fast.

I had not attended since the Los Angeles show in 2014 and the same faces were seen as back then.

Will the AES show still be presented in 10 years?

To help presenters / exhibitors, the show should move out of New York and hold conventions in Nashville, Chicago, and LA. Exhibitors told me that it costs a minimum of $10,000 for a card table size booth at the AES show. Add travel and hotel and promotion on top of that and it is no wonder that many major names stayed away.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #10
Lives for gear
Great and detailed summary Plush, complete with historical perspectives much appreciated here, as the preceding thanks acknowledge. A nice heads-up on what to look out for in the market, alongside emerging trends for classical/acoustic recording people !

Don't forget to check here too for AES 2019 specifics: https://www.gearslutz.com/board/aes-...iety-show-nyc/

Last edited by studer58; 3 weeks ago at 08:23 AM..
Old 3 weeks ago
  #11
Thanks for sharing!
Old 3 weeks ago
  #12
Lives for gear
 

Agree about future of AES as a convention...
Old 2 weeks ago
  #13
Lives for gear
 
Tommy-boy's Avatar
 

Great report Plush!

Here some of my observations.

I was able to go to AES for a few hours one day. I enjoyed the Schoeps booth. I had to check out the CMC1, which is insanely small. This will be a great tool for many. Scott Boland from Redding Audio (US Distributor) was also on hand.

It was good to stop by the SoundRadix booth. I already use their AutoAlign plugin when recording jazz big bands. Before their plugin, I measured distances btw mics when setting up and did manual delay offsets in post to line up the audio. The plugin makes this all automatic and much faster. They've come out with a new plugin called Auto Align Post, which is supposed to build off of the AutoAlign plugin to handle continuous alignment, even when microphones are moving during the recording.

I also spent time at the Sound Devices booth checking out the Scorpio, 833, and mixpre devices.

I have a 788T and am in the market to add more channels. As much as I liked the Scorpio and the 833, I felt that their screens were really tiny and would be difficult to see. I suppose many will use the app to get the info on their phones or ipads. For now, I opted to get another 788T and just pulled the trigger on a used one from Trew Audio. I think the metering on 788Ts is easier to read without adding other devices to the mix.

Checked out fader control surfaces with the Scorpio and Mixpre series - the 3rd party controllers they had hooked up seemed to do a nice job.

For simple capture, the mixpres seem hard to beat. And the SD peeps explained that two mixpres can be synced to use together for expanded channel count, which is a plus.

Checked out the Sonsax SX-R4+. Compared to the newer SD units, the screen is easier to read. Seems like a straight forward uncluttered layout. Got to check out the new 2 ch recorder too. Very compact.

It was good to see the gentlemen from Hazelrigg, who build the DW Fearn equipment. As they are in my neck of the woods, they invited me over to check out the equipment sometime. Gotta build my budget back up before I demo their gear as gearlust might overtake me. I would like to add 2 channels of Fearn at some point.

I also got to see and demo the new KU5a from AEA. Although it's tough to really demo a mic in the noisy atmosphere, I liked what I heard.

As for location - I like it in NYC as it's easy for me to get up there. But I am surprised that they don't move it around like they used to. For a while it toggled btw LA and NYC. Adding Nashville would be interesting.

I was originally planning on checking out the NAB side of things too, but ran out of time.

Any other Remotesters have observations?

-Tom
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