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Cadac Continues Expansion Across Production Sectors (19/3/2010)

Cadac, the leading UK heritage mixing console manufacturer, continues its expansion across all areas of sound production – including sound touring, theatre sound, event production, location and studio recording – with the ongoing diversification of its product portfolio and core technologies, resulting in the presentation of a range of new products in final production form at this year’s Prolight + Sound exhibition.

The new products exploit the company’s unique analogue engineering heritage and advanced digital signal processing technologies to provide a range of fully digital and hybrid designs; the fruition of renewed investment in R&D and production facilities from its Soundking Group parent company.

At the apex of Cadac’s digital development programme is the S-Digital mixing system. Designed from the ground up for the theatre and live sound markets, the S-Digital console uniquely combines the audio character, tools, features and surface architecture of the long standing industry standard Cadac J-Type analogue theatre console, with all of the operational and creative benefits of the most advanced digital live production console yet designed. Optimal system features include hot swappable input and output modules, embedded processing and full redundancy backups on power supplies, inter-system communications, audio path and control.

Commenting on the S-Digital development, Peter H McGuire, Operations Manager, Cadac Holdings Ltd., stated: “From its conception the S-Digital was engineered with the express intention of replicating the audio quality and extending the functionality of the Cadac J-Type, which became the de-facto console for musical theatre following its launch in 1992. The S-Digital has been designed in conjunction with practicing sound engineers to provide a new level of control, with all of the performance superiority of the J-Type. The console further integrates all of the digital processing, traditionally provided with external equipment usually stowed under the console or around the sound booth. The S-Digital offers the sound designer a tool for the specific task of achieving a first class sound experience for the audience.”

Being shown at Prolight + Sound in it’s final production version, the S-Digital console has already attracted a substantial number of pre-orders, with the first of these currently being delivered. The S-Digital console on the exhibition floor will be complemented by a ‘live’ console in the Ronnie Lane Mobile Studio Airstream caravan parked on the stand.

Also now in final production form, the LIVE1 series is a fully specified, fully Cadac budget console that exploits the company’s heritage engineering to provide exceptional functionality and quality at a competitive price. Designed by the company’s analogue console team to offer an affordable Cadac Sound console for FOH applications, the LIVE1 series is based on Cadac's traditional audio circuits and available in 16/4/2, 24/4/2 and 32/4/2 formats. The LIVE1 combines many of the high end features associated with large format Cadac concert and theatre desks with an innovative digital I/O and networking interface unique to any console at this price point.

Input channels feature a totally new mic amp design, individual phantom power and high pass filter switching, 4-band EQ with shelving high and low bands, PFL and Mute (AFL mode set from master section), 100mm faders with signal-present and overload indicators, six auxiliaries switchable pre/post in pairs, 60mm aux master faders, and four subgroups. All models have four stereo inputs as standard and six returns (four with sends to aux 5/6), as well as two returns on 100mm faders with sends to subgroups and aux 5/6. The Master Output section features dual outputs and talkback section.

A further development derived from Cadac’s heritage console designs is a new series of outboard processors, making the classic Cadac sound available in 19 inch rack mount outboard form and offering sound engineers a highly affordable upgrade path for any live or location mixing set up, or music production suite. The first of these is the ME2, a dual channel Mic Pre-Amplifier Mixer / EQ with analogue outs and, like the LIVE1, a digital I/O and networking interface unique on a product at this price point.

The ME2 provides two independent audio paths, each with a dedicated hand tuned classic Cadac proprietary mic pre-amp (with +60dB gain) and 4-band fully parametric EQ. The audio path features fully balanced inserts - switchable pre- or post-EQ - in addition to balanced auto-compensating analogue outputs. An AES-3 digital output (switchable between 44.1kHz, 48kHz, 96kHz, 16-bit and 24-bit) and synchronisation via internal or external BNC word clock, enables direct connection to digital audio workstations, digital mixing consoles or recording devices. Multiple ME2 units can be buss-linked to create a small format multi-channel console, with each audio path equipped with dedicated level/pan controls as well as mute and PFL.

Commenting on the LIVE1 and ME2 product developments, Cadac Holding Ltd. General Manager, Bob Thomas, stated: “Both the LIVE1 and ME2 provide a feature set and level of quality that only Cadac can offer. They represent the culmination of over 40 years of industry leading engineering combined with the very latest digital audio signal processing developments, and are the result of a new product development strategy that will see Cadac firmly established as a leading supplier of mixing and processing systems in all areas of live and studio based production, bringing Cadac to a significantly wider audience in the future.”

Already a popular attraction on a Cadac’s exhibition stand, and appearing for the first time at Prolight + Sound, is the Ronnie Lane Mobile Studio. Representing Cadac’s heritage in the live recording market all the way back to the early 70’s, the famous Airstream mobile, deployed on recording sessions for the likes of Led Zeppelin and The Who, has been refurbished with a classic Cadac Concert Series console. At Prolight + Sound the RLMS will also feature an active S-Digital console demonstrating the power and quality of the famous brand’s new flagship console.

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