In these pre-NAMM days IK Multimedia has announced a couple of interesting products for guitarists, AXE I/O and iRig Micro Amp.
AXE I/O is a high-end audio interface and controller, and it’s already available for purchase. The new 2 In/5 Out AXE I/O offers guitar-centric features such as adjustable impedance, streamlined re-amp functions and a variety of instrument input circuits, plus a wealth of recording options including high-end mic preamps, top-of-the-line converters, 192 kHz operation, a wide dynamic range, an extended frequency response and more.
AXE I/O also doubles as a controller that allows guitar and bass players to record and perform with real-time effects like wah and volume, offering hands-free control over their preferred guitar-friendly software.
The inclusion of a great plug-in selection of more than 150 guitar and outboard effects from IK’s leading AmpliTube and T-RackS packages makes AXE I/O an ideal solution for producing top-quality tracks out of the box.
Impressive Speces and Features
The main input channel offers both a fully discrete Class A PURE circuit for pristine, uncoloured sound, as well as a JFET circuit for harmonically rich recordings, to go from transparent to tube-like within a single device. A unique pick-up selector also offers an ACTIVE mode that bypasses unnecessary gain stages for use with active pick-ups, keeping the signal path as direct and clean as possible.
In addition – for the first time in an audio interface – a new patent-pending Z-Tone™ impedance-adapting circuit allows users to adjust the input impedance of AXE I/O to interact with their electric or acoustic guitar’s pickups in a unique new way. This enables changes to tone, transients, dynamics and more, for a massive range of tonal flexibility never heard before.These AXE I/O input stages offer a superior 117 dB dynamic range to ensure the cleanest possible signal, while the extended 3 Hz – 32 kHz frequency response preserves the full sonic impact of any instrument and all its harmonic content, going beyond the 20Hz-20kHz response of traditional audio interfaces.
AXE I/O offers also a streamlined re-amp setup in a single box, allowing users to easily integrate real-world gear into a recording setup without the inherent noise or hum typical of these connections. A dedicated Amp Out enables using real amplifiers and stompboxes without the need for an external signal conversion box or other accessories (or having to unplug existing connections). Conveniently placed on the front panel, it eliminates ground loops to keep even high-gain re-amplification as quiet as possible.
Not Just For Guitars For recording with microphones, AXE I/O offers two hi-quality PURE discrete Class A preamps designed for transparent and clean sound. These mic preamps offer a wide, flat frequency response of 5 Hz to 32 kHz, to avoid unwanted colouration and perfectly preserve the sonic character of vocals, pianos, acoustic guitars or any other instrument, and maintain the character of any microphone plugged in. Their 116 dB of dynamic range provides ultra-quiet sound that’s perfect for recording everything from the most delicate instruments to the loudest amp stack.
Cool Extra Touches
Rarely found on audio interfaces, two dedicated back panel controller inputs enable AXE I/O to double as a software controller and provide connection for two expression pedals, single or double switches. An assignable data knob with push encoder on the front panel also allows switching presets and controlling AmpliTube or any other software in real time, directly from the device.
Full-size MIDI IN/OUT connectors are also available to plug-in floor controllers or to control rackmount gear, keyboards or any other MIDI compatible device. A convenient front panel chromatic tuner offers lighting-fast tuning at the press of a button.Advanced digital control & routing
Software Bundle Included is a massive bundle of over $/€1,000 of software and plug-ins that includes everything needed to track, mix and master right out of the box. The Bundle features IK’s AmpliTube 4 Deluxe and a selection of 10 popular processors from T-RackS 5 for recording, mixing and mastering, plus Ableton Live 10 Lite.
Pricing and availability AXE I/O is available immediately from the IK Multimedia online store and from IK authorized dealers worldwide for only $/€349.99*. All prices excluding taxes
iRig® Micro Amp is a battery-powered, ultra-compact (only 2.6 lbs. or 1.2 kg) combo amplifier with three on-boardanalogue channels plus a high-quality digital interface for direct connection to iPhone, iPad, Mac and PC.
This allows users to expand their tone palette by unlocking a variety of amp and FX models in the included AmpliTube software/app bundle, as well as connecting to their favourite apps for learning, recording and playing. According to the Italian company, iRig Micro Amp also offers powerful sound that rivals larger amps, plus the ability to connect to external cabinets for even more volume.
On board are bass, mid, treble and gain controls to cover a wide range of tones. iRig Micro Amp offers 15W power (7.5W when running on batteries), and combined with its 4″ custom-voiced speaker, pumps out surprising volume at half the size of similarly-powered amps. When additional volume or a bigger speaker is needed, iRig Micro Amp also offers a 4Ω cabinet output to keep up with a full drum kit for band practice.
iRig Micro Amp’s iOS/USB connection lets players connect to their iPhone and iPad directly without additional accessories, as well as to a Mac and PC to process their tone with IK’s AmpliTube app and use their favorite practice, performance and recording apps and software. The guitar’s signal is sent to their device for processing, and the return output plays back directly through the amp’s 4″ speaker, eliminating the need for other accessories. It’s an entire setup in a single integrated unit, with pristine 24-bit, 96 kHz sound quality.
With the included AmpliTube app and software, iRig Micro Amp can deliver a massive range of tones with unbelievable realism. iRig Micro Amp users can download AmpliTube to unlock 10 amps and 26 stompbox effects in AmpliTube CS for iPhone or iPad, and 9 amps/10 stomps in AmpliTube 4 for Mac/PC, for free, providing powerful ways to process their tone right out of the box.
Pricing and availability iRig Micro Amp will be available in March from the IK Multimedia online store and from IK authorised dealers worldwide for $/€149.99*. All prices excluding taxes
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