updated 04:40 pm EST, Thu November 20, 2003
Spike Powered Recording
LOUD Technologies next month will begin shipping its $500 , which it says includes all of the hardware and software necessary to track, mix and record music on a Mac, including Mackie's new XD-2 USB 24-bit Audio/MIDI interface as well as a copy of Tracktion audio recording and sequencing software: "Spike is about providing a turn-key, out-of-box recording solution that will allow even the most technically challenged musician to be tracking and editing their music in a matter of minutes rather than days."
The hardware portion of the Spike Powered Recording System is the new 2-channel XD-2 USB Audio/MIDI interface with 24 bit, 96kHz resolution and support for ASIO 2.0, WDM and OS X Core Audio. The XD-2 features two of Mackie's low-noise mic preamps that deliver extremely low distortion. Each input channel features a "combo" jack that can support a line level or an instrument input in addition to the mic pre. The XD-2 also features low latency monitoring feature by use of a "Mix" knob located on the front panel along with a Monitor level control. Other input/output options include SPDIF I/O, MIDI I/O as well as stereo monitor outputs and front panel headphone jack and level control.
The XD-2 also features an onboard SHARC DSP chip that supports a full suite of dynamics processing for recording. This includes a 4-band parametric EQ, a Compressor/Limiter and a Gate/Expander, all of which can be re-arranged in order along the signal path for each input or output channel. The on-board DSP also allows for low latency monitoring of effects while recording.
Tracktion is a new multi-track recording and MIDI sequencing software application from Raw Material Software. Its intuitive, easy-to-understand interface allows you to record, overdub, edit, mix, and play back any combination of audio tracks or MIDI sequences. It also offers a single-screen interface, provides unlimited track count, full VST and VSTi support, automation, and is bundled effects and soft synths. Also included is a copy of Ableton Live Mackie, a limited version of the loop-based sequencing software application for live performance, based on the original Live software by Ableton.
Mackie is also bundling the new Nomad Factory Warmer-Phaser XD-78 frequency and panning modulator with tube emulation, based on the popular Blue Tubes bundle, as a complimentary plug-in with Spike.