With the exciting delivery of the new PA system to Rat and the significant advantages and innovations over anything else I have ever heard or mixed on, I though maybe a peek at some other cool and exciting ideas outside the pro audio world, is in order.
Check out these new Michelin wheels known as the Tweel. Thank you Maija for the heads up on this one.
Even cooler, take a look at the video below:
Slipping over into some sound nerd speak, check out this speaker technology:
Like everything in life, for every action there must be an equal and opposite reaction, so to prevent my blog from becoming a black hole and consuming the universe, I have included a web page sent to me be the illustrious Dan Hadley:
Hey! MicroWedge 15 has been released and is now available. These are not much bigger han the MicroWedge 12's, louder and sound every bit as great and have considerably more low end capabilities.
I am heading off to EAW tomorrow to work on some new and exciting MicroWedge products as there are 3 more in the pipeline.
As for a tidbit of info on the K1 system, the LA-8 amps have limited but very specific internal EQ. Unlike trying to EQ a line array with a standard parametric, graphic or digital processor version thereof, the controllable parameters of the K1 EQ are linear phase, locked latency filters. This means you can EQ some elements in a line array without causing interference issues due to phase and time-error interactions between adjoining boxes.
In other words, do you know all that "frequency shading" that so many vendors have been implement without giving it a serious thought about ramifications? Like adding some high frequency EQ to the upper boxes or turning up down the horns in the bottom? Well, depending on the processor, adding that eq causes a phase shift, time shift or both in the HF. Most processors only cause a phase shift while a few cause a time shift as well. This phase shift is so drastic that it can easily be heard with a simple test.
Take a mono music signal and input it into your digi processor of choice. Bypass all EQ and all crossovers so you just get a full range signal. Using headphones, route output 1 to the left ear and output 2 to the right ear. Ok, both ears should sound identical. Now put a 30HZ high pass on one output but not the other. You should hear a shift in the centering of the sound. Almost as if the sound now has a diagonal center. Now try putting tiny amounts of delay on one ear or the other. You will be stunned by how accurately your ears can hear the even 1 millisecond.
OK, so what does this all mean? Well, just as your ears hear those subtle phase and time issues, adjoining line array boxes "hear" them as well and any differential in the time or phase will deteriorate the summation of adjacent boxes, cause unpredictability and reduce the consistency of coverage.
Ok, enough for now, I will try and offer a bit more insight into K1 system with each blog post.
"My favorite thing is sleeping, when I am not awake." I said it jokingly but when I heard the words I began to ponder laying in bed hitting the five minute snooze on my phone alarm. Just a bit more time in a warm bed with too many blankets until finally giving in to haul my humanly body out and start my day.
This aint right. I must be broken. And as I pondered it more it becomes so clear that the reluctance toward entering the new day means something is amiss. Not sure what I will change but need to flip something over and find a way to jumping out of bed something I look forward to.
Perhaps a holiday is in order and I need to embrace some travel and adventure. Any suggestions?
Anyway, back to last month and well, I must admit that I am not much of a holiday human. I get overwhelmed by the lemming masses crowding into streets and stores and I enjoy Christmas music about as much as being late while stuck in traffic on a hot day with no air conditioning. Oh, I sure love that feeling of doing exactly the same thing as everyone else at the same time. That said, the Rat Sound holiday party is always a good time and for the first time in quite a while the three original founders of Rat Sound were all in the same place at the same time. Say hey to Brian and Tommy Rat!
As with any good get together, the story of fun is often told what is left behind.
Perhaps I should also mention that there is a house policy in my home:
"If a human inside the house or on the property inadvertently drops their drink AND the container is made of glass AND the glass breaks, all other humans holding glass containers are required to immediately also drop or throw their glasses causing them to break."
This is a very important rule as it prevents the initial glass dropper from having any bad feelings and helps maintain the positive momentum of the gathering.
**** Sound Nerd Speak ****
It did not hit me fully until the party, nor did it hit me as hard as the planet earth in my surf crash. But it did hit me sure enough as I stood amongst a gathering of so many people I hold in such high regard who joined us for the Rat/L'Acoustics K1 listening party. Little ol' punk rock Rat Sound a huge, 'top of the line' PA system from the worlds most prestigious and respected manufacturer. I feel the same, the world feels the same, from the inside of Rat world, taking on the K1 system was the next natural step, there was no other option that made any sense. It feels exactly the same as when Rat bought the V-Dosc system a decade ago. What hit me was the view point from outside world. The reality that Rat has made such a huge decision, the timing versus the economy and the realization that people are truly excited but me in a bit of a stunned daze. And it dawns upon me that I have been so wrapped up in the inner workings of orchestrating all the business side, the I forgot to remember the most important part, that "ha! we just just got big giant huge awesome new quarter million watt toy!"
The K1 training course was a jam packed three day adventure Headed up by Flo and Steve who were awesome. Day one was theory covering the concepts behind V-Dosc and the new dimensions added into the K1 rig. Day two was software and learning the 3d sonic modeling and capabilities of Soundvision and the control of the LA Network manager software that con troll the processors in the amplifiers. Day three was hardware and flying the rig followed by a party with lots of friends and industry humans coming down to give a listen.
Meet Flo and Scott that headed up the training class:
And the highest concentration of K1 trained humans on the planet Earth
**** End Sound Nerd Speak ****
Oh, and so as not to let the lampi's feel left out and know that I am thinking of them:
And the oh so painful sensation of an abrubt stop. To jump is exhilerating, but to land can be a bit less enjoyable unless a proper preperation is made. Hence the trauma climbing to the great heights of economic wealth without an adequate safety net. And also hence the thrill of slicing through a giant wave while forgetting to avoid the facepart of my head hitting the planet earth. But please, let me rewind.
Sunday November 30th was a quite fabulous surf day. C-Street Ventura saw consistant sets of double overhead waves. My first session with the Gene and Larry from the am crew at 7:30 went pretty well and brought out my five dollar, 8 foot board I bought a yard sale.
It took a little repair work
but it is my favorite as it rides like a mini long board, is super light and fun. But that day with the current so strong, I switched up to the Rat Board for session 2
after breakfast and headed back out with Brian Rat and his two friends as they drove up from down south. All good and the waves were building and we lasted about an hour and a half before heading in.
So exhausted from over three hours out already and pulling out of the parking lot I get a text message from Johnny who Ventura locals may know from Tony's Pizzeria, an awesome cool Pizza spot right up the street. So out of the parking lot and up to park again just up the way and 15 minutes later I am wet suited up for session number three. Oh my, my arm are rubbery and I get the longest surf ride I have ever ridden. Google earth says it is just under a half mile.
I wish I still had a picture of the surf that day to show you but that is another story. Anyway, thrilled and so happy I go to exit the water and a little wave comes up behind me while paddling in and boom crunch ow! Turns out the strong current had dug a trench and while I was trying to paddle in, what seemed to be a small wave jacks up with the tail of my board and shovels me head first into the planet earth. I got no mirror but but my hand indicates lots o blood. Dazed and delerious I stumbled myself out and found an overwhelming desire to lay down and regoup my thoughts and contemplate the long hike bak to the car. Next thing I know the lifegaurds and paramedics have me surrounded and won't let me escape.
I must say that it really smarts to try and restraighten one's own broken nose. I got to ride in a lifeguard pickup truck and an ambulance and most of all I want to thank Johnny for being a hero and looking out for me. He recued my car, brought me my clothes and made sure my surfboard had a safe place to stay till I escaped stich giving nurses and hospital world.
14 stitches and a broken nose and no surfing for three weeks later I was back on track. Not that I missed a day of work.
Most importantly, don't worry, I know what you are thinking and it is ok, the Rat surfboard is fine! What comes to mind is a short story that Anthony K told me once, so I looked it up and found it:
The Story of the Taoist Farmer
This farmer had only one horse, and one day the horse ran away. The neighbors came to condole over his terrible loss. The farmer said, "What makes you think it is so terrible?"
A month later, the horse came home--this time bringing with her two beautiful wild horses. The neighbors became excited at the farmer's good fortune. Such lovely strong horses! The farmer said, "What makes you think this is good fortune?"
The farmer's son was thrown from one of the wild horses and broke his leg. All the neighbors were very distressed. Such bad luck! The farmer said, "What makes you think it is bad?"
A war came, and every able-bodied man was conscripted and sent into battle. Only the farmer's son, because he had a broken leg, remained. The neighbors congratulated the farmer. "What makes you think this is good?" said the farmer.
As told by Executive editor, Elise Hancock, in the Johns Hopkins Magazine, November 1993, page 2, in section entitled Editor's Note
I am not sure what the good part is yet but I know I will find it!