April 15
2015

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April 15, 2015

Great Portable PA Sound Made Simple: HARMAN’s dbx Introduces goRack™ Performance Processor

FRANKFURT, Germany – HARMAN’s dbx today announced the introduction of the goRack™ Performance Processor, an easy to use loudspeaker management processor that enables a portable PA system to be optimized for the best-possible sound quality. The goRack incorporates the best of dbx’s acclaimed DriveRack series processing simplified down to its purest form, in a sleek and compact unit that fits into the palm of the hand. “The dbx goRack boils all the essentials of our industry-leading DriveRack processors into an affordable product that is incredibly simple to use,” said Jason Kunz, Market Manager, Portable PA and Recording & Broadcast. “With the introduction of goRack, bands and musicians everywhere can now easily and significantly improve the sound of their PA.”

The goRack offers processing including EQ, compression, AFS Automatic Feedback Suppression, Subharmonic Synthesis for enhanced low-frequency response and more. Five buttons offer access to the most commonly used processing effects, and a large data wheel lets users quickly dial in any of the goRack’s processing sound-enhancement effects including 20 musical genre-based 31-band graphic EQ settings. The goRack’s compressor is based on the design of the original and highly acclaimed dbx 163X. The goRack also includes dual dbx mic preamps, selectable mic/line input settings, and AUX input and left and right channel volume controls.

The dbx goRack connects between a mixer and an amplifier via its stereo inputs and outputs, which accommodate both XLR and 1/4-inch connectors. It can also be used as a stand-alone performance processor/mixer for a solo artist.

The dbx goRack Performance Processor will be available in July 2015 at a suggested street price of $99.95.

HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures and markets premier audio, visual, infotainment and enterprise automation solutions for the automotive, consumer and professional markets. With leading brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon®, Mark Levinson ® and Revel®, the Company is admired by audiophiles, musicians and the entertainment venues where they perform. More than 25 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with HARMAN audio and infotainment systems. HARMAN has a workforce of approximately 17,600 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $5.9 billion during the last 12 months ended December 31, 2014.

April 14
2015

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April 14, 2015

Top Nashville Producer/Engineer Robert Venable’s Drum Sound Secret Weapons: dbx's 160x Compressor and 386 Preamp

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Robert Venable is one of Nashville’s A-list producer/engineers. He’s the owner of Off The Wall Studios and has worked on hundreds of recordings by artists as varied as Megadeth, Scott Stapp, Disciple, INXS, Neal McCoy and dozens more. Venable has won a GMA Dove Award, has been nominated for a GRAMMY and is known for his ability to develop a personalized “sound” for each of his artists, most recently on Kelly Clarkson’s latest album Piece by Piece. One of Venable’s specialties is getting killer drum sounds – with the HARMAN dbx 160x Compressor/Limiter and 386 Dual Vacuum Tube Preamp as key sonic elements.

Venable became a fan of dbx compressors while working at his first recording studio job at Phase 4 Studios in Tempe, Arizona. “The producer pulled up a track and the bass drum was hitting it just right. I asked what he was using to make it so punchy and he pointed to the dbx 160 sitting on top of the rack. It was one of the older units from the 1970s but still sounded amazing. From that point forward I was sold.”

Venable currently has two dbx 160x compressors at Off The Wall. “I use them on literally every drum recording session I do. There isn’t another compressor you can just insert into your bass or snare drum signal path that just sounds right.” He likes the fact that the 160x is so easy to use. “You don’t have to tweak attack or release settings – because you can’t! Just set the Threshold to taste and it’s like you’ve patched in a ‘make your drums punch you in the face’ preset.”

In addition to tracking bass and snare drums through the 160x, Venable uses his as parallel buss compressors on drums. In his rock mixes he’ll mult the drum buss and route it through the 160x units, “slam” them with signal and bring them up under the main drum buss. He notes, “Say hello to thickness and piercing drums!”

In addition to the 160x Venable is a fan of the dbx 386 dual-channel tube mic preamp, which is a favorite for running hi-hats through. “I love the way it sounds when you mic up a hi-hat and feed it into the 386 with some drive.” Another novel technique is for Venable to set up a mic in the studio’s stairwell to add some natural reverb and decay to drums and guitars. “Take the sound off that mic, push it through the 386, compress it to death and push it up in the mix…it’s gold!”

Now, everyone can enjoy Venable’s slamming drum sounds – he and his business partner Lester Estelle Jr. have just released OTW Drums (www.otwdrums.com), a drum sample library that includes more than 4,000 samples of vintage, classic, custom and other drums. The dbx 160x was used on every single bass and snare sample. OTW Drums offers users unprocessed and processed samples of every drum. “The unprocessed samples are basically raw hits and we didn’t really do anything to them,” he noted. “The processed samples are a little more ‘put together’ and polished, and sound like ‘my’ signature sound.”

dbx is clearly an essential element in Venable’s drum sound and nowhere is this more evident than on Kelly Clarkson’s new album Piece by Piece and the track “War Paint.” The song is extremely drum-heavy and called for a lot of tom toms. Venable overdubbed the floor toms two or three times to get a big, “stacked” sound, but then had to make sure the bass drum would punch through. He placed a dynamic mic just above the drum, aimed towards the edge of the snare shell towards the drummer’s lap. “I ran that signal through the 386 to give it a little more edge, then ran it into the 160x and compressed the snot out of it. Even with all those low frequencies bouncing around all over the place, the attack of the kick was perfect. Need energy in your track? Do that!”

Venable has tried other compressors and keeps coming back to dbx. “There’s something about the dbx compression curve that makes the attack work so well with drums and electric bass. I challenge you to find a comparable compressor in the price range that sounds this good, without having to fight to get there. With the dbx 160x I know I can get the sound I want.”

HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures and markets premier audio, visual, infotainment and enterprise automation solutions for the automotive, consumer and professional markets. With leading brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon®, Mark Levinson ® and Revel®, the Company is admired by audiophiles, musicians and the entertainment venues where they perform. More than 25 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with HARMAN audio and infotainment systems. HARMAN has a workforce of approximately 17,600 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $5.9 billion during the last 12 months ended December 31, 2014.

HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures and markets premier audio, visual, infotainment and enterprise automation solutions for the automotive, consumer and professional markets. With leading brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon®, Mark Levinson ® and Revel®, the Company is admired by audiophiles, musicians and the entertainment venues where they perform. More than 25 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with HARMAN audio and infotainment systems. HARMAN has a workforce of approximately 17,600 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $5.9 billion during the last 12 months ended December 31, 2014.

April 07
2015

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April 07, 2015

dbx Professional Is Fundamental for SAE Instructor Jason Munn in the Classroom and Studio

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Jason Munn currently serves as the lead audio technology instructor at the SAE Institute in Nashville. Formerly a school band director and music teacher, Munn decided the time had come for a change three years ago and chose to pursue a career as an audio engineer. Upon graduating from SAE Institute Nashville in 2012, he joined the staff and saw his role expand to his current position teaching five courses this semester. Throughout Munn’s teaching and his continung work as a freelance engineer, one constant is HARMAN dbx compressors, crossovers, and limiters.

As a musician, Munn had been using dbx gear since the late 1990s, but it wasn’t until moving to Nashville to pursue a career as a professional Audio Engineer did he become well versed with the brand. As an instructor at SAE, Munn currently teaches subjects such as signal flow, live sound, audio post production and multimedia.

For Munn, there is a certain clarity and functionality about how dbx products are designed that make using them for teaching extremley intuitive. In one of the introductory courses at SAE, compression and limiting concepts are taught using the dbx 1066. Because the 1066 is a stereo gate/expander, compressor and limiter, the students learn to gate the signal, then compress it, and finally limit the signal to attenuate any remaining transients that might result in clipping. “The metering is clear, everything is labeled with industry standard terminology, and the knobs and pots are durable; plus, if you need to look something up, the manuals are thorough and well written,” added Munn.

“I love the dbx 160 for compressing drum mixes; its a classic piece of gear. With the dbx 160, I can have the drum mix lightly compressed or absolutely crushed. It’s simple to use and it just sounds awesome, especially the attack and release for drums. This is just one of those pieces of gear I will always have a soft spot for.”

Munn continues to mix in some freelance work when he can and of course always stays current with what is coming down the line from dbx. “I’m really excited about the new 500 series products that are going to be available soon. I have a feeling they will be in my personal home studio.”

April 06
2015

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April 06, 2015

dbx Professional Is Fundamental for SAE Instructor Jason Munn in the Classroom and Studio

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Jason Munn currently serves as the lead audio technology instructor at the SAE Institute in Nashville. Formerly a school band director and music teacher, Munn decided the time had come for a change three years ago and chose to pursue a career as an audio engineer. Upon graduating from SAE Institute Nashville in 2012, he joined the staff and saw his role expand to his current position teaching five courses this semester. Throughout Munn’s teaching and his continung work as a freelance engineer, one constant is HARMAN dbx compressors, crossovers, and limiters.

As a musician, Munn had been using dbx gear since the late 1990s, but it wasn’t until moving to Nashville to pursue a career as a professional Audio Engineer did he become well versed with the brand. As an instructor at SAE, Munn currently teaches subjects such as signal flow, live sound, audio post production and multimedia.

For Munn, there is a certain clarity and functionality about how dbx products are designed that make using them for teaching extremley intuitive. In one of the introductory courses at SAE, compression and limiting concepts are taught using the dbx 1066. Because the 1066 is a stereo gate/expander, compressor and limiter, the students learn to gate the signal, then compress it, and finally limit the signal to attenuate any remaining transients that might result in clipping. “The metering is clear, everything is labeled with industry standard terminology, and the knobs and pots are durable; plus, if you need to look something up, the manuals are thorough and well written,” added Munn.

“I love the dbx 160 for compressing drum mixes; its a classic piece of gear. With the dbx 160, I can have the drum mix lightly compressed or absolutely crushed. It’s simple to use and it just sounds awesome, especially the attack and release for drums. This is just one of those pieces of gear I will always have a soft spot for.”

Munn continues to mix in some freelance work when he can and of course always stays current with what is coming down the line from dbx. “I’m really excited about the new 500 series products that are going to be available soon. I have a feeling they will be in my personal home studio.”

HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures and markets premier audio, visual, infotainment and enterprise automation solutions for the automotive, consumer and professional markets. With leading brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon®, Mark Levinson ® and Revel®, the Company is admired by audiophiles, musicians and the entertainment venues where they perform. More than 25 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with HARMAN audio and infotainment systems. HARMAN has a workforce of approximately 17,600 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $5.9 billion during the last 12 months ended December 31, 2014.

March 27
2015


Dbx 676 front email

March 27, 2015

dbx Begins Shipping 676 Tube Mic Pre Channel Strip

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – HARMAN’s dbx today announced the 676 Tube Mic Pre Channel Strip is now shipping. The dbx 676 is a vacuum tube-based microphone preamplifier that offers a host of flexible sound-tailoring options to deliver extraordinary audio quality in recording and live sound applications.

The dbx 676 employs a high-gain, Class A tube preamp section based around a 12AU7 vacuum tube that can be adjusted to be clean and pure-sounding or dirty and full of harmonic character. The 676 incorporates the Compressor/Limiter design from the highly sought-after dbx 162SL and a 3-band parametric EQ, enabling exacting control of dynamics and tonal balance.

“Whether you need a preamp that provides pristine, rich sound quality and tube warmth, want to add some edge and personality to vocals and instruments or are seeking to improve the sound of your recording or live rig, the dbx 676 is the ideal tool for taking your sound to the highest level,” stated Jason Kunz, Market Manager, Portable PA and Recording & Broadcast, HARMAN Signal Processing.

The dbx 676 offers ¼-inch and XLR inputs and outputs, a front-panel instrument input and a side chain insert. An optional digital output card is available. The 676 allows for precise tailoring of input and output levels, which can be monitored by its large multi-function VU meter.

The compressor/limiter section provides extremely flexible control of dynamics including threshold, attack, gain and release, auto attack and release, hard and soft knee compression, dbx-exclusive AutoVelocity™ manual and OverEasy® modes and PeakStop™ limiting algorithm and many additional functions. The 676’s 3-band parametric EQ allows adjustment of level and bandwidth at frequencies that have been carefully chosen for maximum musical effectiveness.

The dbx 676 Tube Mic Pre Channel Strip has a U.S. street price of $999.95.

HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures and markets premier audio, visual, infotainment and integrated control solutions for the automotive, consumer and professional markets. With leading brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon® and Mark Levinson ®, the Company is admired by audiophiles, musicians and the entertainment venues where they perform. More than 25 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with HARMAN audio and infotainment systems. HARMAN has a workforce of approximately 16,000 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $5.3 billion for the twelve months ended June 30, 2014.

January 22
2015

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January 22, 2015

dbx Introduces DriveRack VENU360 Loudspeaker Management System With Mobile Device Control at NAMM 2015

ANAHEIM, California – At NAMM 2015, HARMAN’s dbx announced the introduction of its DriveRack VENU360 Loudspeaker Management System, which enables a live or installed sound speaker system to be precisely optimized for the best-possible sound quality. Successor to the industry-standard DriveRack 260, the new VENU360 adds a host of additional features including mobile device control, additional input channels, improved DSP and easier operation.

“The DriveRack VENU360 provides a level of loudspeaker tuning that’s far beyond anything previously available,” said Jason Kunz, Market Manager, Portable PA and Recording & Broadcast. “The result is sound systems that simply sound better, with the major advantage of having complete control of the VENU360 from a laptop, tablet or even a smartphone."

The DriveRack VENU360 is a highly configurable and flexible device, which includes the latest advancements in dbx’s AFS™ and AutoEQ™ algorithms (first introduced in the well-received DriveRack PA2). It provides expanded input processing and includes dbx’s useful AFS (Advanced Feedback Suppression), which automatically detects and precisely removes problematic feedback-causing frequencies. Other input processing includes 31-band graphic EQ, 12-band parametric EQ with narrow-notch capabilities, dbx compression, subharmonic synthesis for enhanced low-frequency impact, backline time delay, and noise gating.

Multi-crossover configurations are possible with support for full range, 2-way or 3-way operation (custom mono 4-way, 5-way or 6-way configurations are also available). Extensive output processing is provided with 12-band AutoEQ (eight AutoEQ bands, four user configurable bands), dbx compression, automatic gain control, subharmonic synthesis, noise gating, tower delays (up to 1000ms per output), 8-band parametric EQs (used for speaker tunings), dbx limiting and driver alignment delays.

Connecting a dbx RTA-M measurement microphone (sold separately) to the front-panel RTA mic input allows dbx’s proprietary Level Assist and AutoEQ algorithms to be utilized, for automatic, precise system balancing and equalization of the loudspeakers within the venue, for a smoother, more accurate system frequency response. Since AutoEQ is now located in the output processing stage, independent sections of a system can be equalized automatically. This allows AutoEQ to be used on the FOH system as well as the stage monitors, zones and tower delays!

The DriveRack VENU360 can be set up and operated from a compatible iOS, Android, Windows or Macintosh device via an easy-to-use app and a standard Wi-Fi router connected to the rear-panel Ethernet port. The VENU360 also has a front-panel LCD display with on-screen “map”-style navigation and input and output meters and mutes for system setup and monitoring.

An improved automated Wizard setup utility now supports stage monitors, making setup of an entire sound system fast, easy and precise. The dbx Wizard automatically configures hundreds of audio parameters with the push of a few buttons, with no previous audio experience required. Among the Wizard’s many functions are Level Assist, AutoEQ, AFS and built-in speaker and amp tunings for JBL loudspeakers, Crown amplifiers and many more. Up to 75 user configurations can be saved, eliminating the need to enter the same system or venue settings over and over again.

The dbx VENU360 provides balanced XLR analog and AES digital inputs for connection to a mixer, with support for mono, stereo, LCR and aux-fed sub configurations. Six balanced XLR outputs can be configured for PA system front of house, stage monitors, delay towers, zones and more. The VENU360 is also compatible with BSS Audio Contrio Ethernet wall controllers. Future firmware updates can be made via the USB port and firmware update utility.

The dbx DriveRack VENU360 will be available in April 2015 at a suggested price of $799.

HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures and markets premier audio, visual, infotainment and enterprise automation solutions for the automotive, consumer and professional markets. With leading brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon®, Mark Levinson® and Revel®, the Company is admired by audiophiles, musicians and the entertainment venues where they perform. More than 25 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with HARMAN audio and infotainment systems. HARMAN has a workforce of approximately 16,600 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $5.6 billion for the 12 months ended September 30, 2014.