Allen and Heath unveil the new Xone:4D and ZED-R16

Allen and Heath has selected the forthcoming Sound Recording Technology (SRT) show, to unveil the new Xone:4D performance DJ controller and the new ZED-R16 home recording mixer.

Evolved from the revolutionary Xone:3D, the Xone:4D has an enhanced feature set, combining a fully-featured, high specification professional analogue DJ mixer with 105 MIDI controls, and a new high-end 96 kHz/24bit 20-channel USB 2.0 soundcard.

The mixer section is based on the award-winning Xone:92 and features 4 triple-input stereo channels (soundcard, phono and line), 3 band total kill EQ, 2 stereo effects sends, 2 analogue VCF filters with LFO, VCA crossfader and dual-rail channel faders, DJ mic and cue monitoring system.

For the assignable LFO, a new editable step-filter function has been developed, encouraging creative combinations of the tempo-detecting BPM counter and tap tempo. Each MIDI fader becomes a filter cut-off frequency, enabling users to “draw” their own tempo-locked LFO waveform.

There is also a new 16-bit tempo detecting circuit, which constantly monitors the BPM and outputs a MIDI clock to help synchronize MIDI-controlled music replay software with external source programme material.

The stereo FX sends can be used with external equipment such as effects units and samplers and now both FX sends can be routed to the USB audio system and sent to the PC. Following customer feedback, the FX2 hardware output can be switched to act as a Main Mix record output.

There are two dedicated MIDI control strips comprising 8 60mm faders, 16 centre-detented rotary controls, 10 rotary encoders with push switches, 32 switches (8 illuminated), and 2 improved high quality custom jog wheels with 4 navigation switches. The Xone:4D’s MIDI sections now have a ‘shift’ function giving two layers of MIDI controls, allowing 227 mappable MIDI messages from the 105 MIDI controls on the front panel, and a fader pickup algorithm allows seamless movement between the layers.

In addition, several mixer functions generate and respond to MIDI, and the BPM counter provides MIDI start/stop and clock. The Xone:4D provides full control of external MIDI devices including the most sophisticated DJ performance computer environments. Overlays are available to identify the control function for popular software applications.

A high performance 20-channel USB2.0 soundcard is built into the mixer, featuring 4 analogue stereo inputs and outputs, transmitting audio at up to 96kHz with 24 bit resolution. It uses USB to interface the mixer audio and MIDI to a PC where the sound may be manipulated in real time using any music software application. The soundcard also produces SPDIF, COAX and optical digital inputs and outputs. A low latency ASIO driver is provided for audio streaming between the 4D and PC. Each mixer channel has its own soundcard input routing switches allowing for complete flexibility on what gets sent to or from the PC.

The Xone:4D will be available from July, SRP: £1519 +VAT ((£1784 inc. VAT).

The Allen & Heath ZED-R16 combines an analogue recording mixer with a FireWire soundcard, MIDI controls and ‘home-studio’ routing so you can build tracks in the studio, record live gigs, mix-down and remix.

“Allen & Heath used to be well known for its recording mixers and the last one we designed was the GS3000 – a traditional analogue mixer – nearly ten years ago,” explains designer, Mike Griffin. “The way the recording musician works now is quite different, so with the ZED-R16 I was looking to offer a product which addressed the world of digital recording. ZED-R16 offers an interface to that world but also offers great analogue functionality – where you can mix in digital or analogue.”

The ZED-R16 can be employed as a standard analogue mixer while recording multi-track via FireWire or ADAT, a traditional inline mixer recording with send and return per channel via FireWire, or as a MIDI controller via switchable channel faders. It features 16 mono inputs, 2 stereo inputs, a high quality dual mic pre-amp, 4-band fully-parametric EQ, 4 auxes, a stereo bus, 2 stereo returns, and 18+18 FireWire I/O and 8+8 ADAT I/O.

For studio work, there are control room speaker outputs, two separate artist monitor feeds, two analogue recording outputs in addition to the digital interface, and a dedicated internal condenser talkback mic. Each channel has its own independent soundcard channel, so instruments can be recorded simultaneously (pre or post EQ) into the sequencer separately. To minimise clock jitter and provide synchronicity between the ZED-R16 and other devices, the mixer is equipped with the professional JetPLL™ digital audio chipset.

ZED-R16 is equipped with a host of MIDI control options. As well as the 4 dedicated MIDI faders, 12 rotary controllers, 12 switches, and 5 dedicated transport switches, all channel faders can also be switched to become MIDI faders. As with all models in the ZED range, the ZED-R16 is also bundled with Cakewalk’s SONAR LE music production software. In addition to multi-track recording, the ZED-R16 allows mixing down in analogue, then recording back into the computer in digital.

For live use, the ZED-R16’s 4 aux buses become foldback feeds and FX sends, and the main XLR outputs feed the PA system, and the record feed signal can easily be assigned pre and post EQ using the buttons next to the faders.

The ZED-R16 will be available in July, price TBA.

Allen and Heath

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