The Tracking ToolBox from Safe Sound Audio makes an excellent mic chain for both studio and live use.
Its wide open range combined with tons of gain, an expander, "Peakride" compression and a limiter makes it very easy to record good levels in your DAW without squeezing the life out of the signal. The Tracking Toolbox can be used as a D.I. via the Instrument input on the front. (The ground lift is on the rear. See pic.). Use the insert to add your favorite EQ to the chain.
The top notch build quality and ruggedness makes it an easy choice for recording on the go and the Tracking ToolBox also provides zero latency monitoring with a built in mix monitor and headphone amp.
- Class A discrete transistor mic pre feeding a servo IC second stage.
- Wide open sound with more than 70dB of gain available.
- Front panel access to a High Impedance instrument input.
- Balanced Line Input: Really easy to use single gain knob for all three inputs.
- Switchable 80Hz hi-pass filter with 18dB/octave slope.
- Balanced Insert allows the insertion of EQ pre dynamics if required OR record direct from the mic amp output (insert send) and use the insert return to make the dynamics section available to a different channel source.
A studio quality expander that's really easy to use. Beautifully smooth noise reduction on voice overs or use it as a gate to kick some life into a drum track.
This is the SMOOTHEST compressor on the planet. If you love compressors which distort and pump, then SORRY this is not for you. The Tracking Toolbox compressor is super smooth using a multistage design called peakride. Very fast when required to be but always in control and never bad tempered! Fully adjustable THRESHOLD, RATIO and ATTACK. 'Follow audio' controlled release time and automatic gain make-up complete the picture.
Switchable fixed threshold limiter for ultimate protection. The limiter design combines programme related elements of 'look ahead' dynamic threshold control with dynamic adjustment of attack time. Another great tool with a dual personality; very fast clipping protection when tracking but also very useful as a creative tool in its own right when pushed into heavy levels of limiting.
Balanced output stage with +27dBu drive capability.
Zero latency monitoring and personalized mix while tracking
The Tracking Toolbox features a stereo mix section and high quality headphone amp. This enables the artist to blend their own signal within the stereo monitor mix and find a comfortable level while tracking.
Quality components and build
Composite Steel and Aluminum Extruded Case which is both physically very rugged and provides very effective screening from other gear and RF.
- Frequency response : -0.5dB points at 5Hz and 60kHz
- Distortion : < 0.01% at 1kHz (typically 0.007%) main signal path working at 0dBu
- Maximum input levels (input gain set to minimum)
Microphone : +20dBu
Line input : +27dBu
Instrument : +18dBu
- Input impedances
Microphone : 2k4 ohms
Line input : > 10k ohms
Instrument : 1M ohms
- Equivalent input noise figure
Microphone : 128dB (max gain with 150 ohms source)
- Output Noise
-91dBu RMS unweighted, measured 22Hz to 22kHz
-93dBu RMS A-weighted, measured 22Hz to 22kHz
- Maximum Output Level (post limiter): > +27dBu
- Output impedance: 50 ohms
- Input Gain Ranges
Microphone input : -5dB to +70dB
Line input : -10dB to +20dB
Instrument input : +4dB to 35dB
Threshold range : -60dB to 0dB
Attack time : typically 3ms
Release time : variable between 90ms and 900ms (tracks the natural audio decay)
Ratio 1:2 with a small degree of ‘soft knee’ at the threshold point
- Peakride Compressor
Threshold range : 0dB to -40dB
Attack time range : 60ms to 1ms
Release time : variable from 90ms to 500ms (tracks the natural audio decay).
Ratio 1:1 to 30:1
Make-up gain : automatically set in proportion to the threshold and ratio settings.
Gain reduction meter : calibrated in dBs.
Threshold : fixed internally to +7dBu (nominal)
Attack time : 100us
Release Time: programme related from 100ms to 500ms
- Monitor Output
For highest quality monitoring use headphones with an impedance of 600 ohms or above.
- Quality precision aluminum control knobs.
- 100% Neutrik audio connectors.
- Audio switching by sealed au-alloy contact relays.
- 100% analogue power supply unit with a super high quality toroidal power transformer feeding three 100% linear power voltage regulators. No nasty wall-warts or switched-mode power stages here we promise!
- Size : 220mm wide by 44mm high (1U) by 225mm deep (excluding cable connectors)
- Weight : 2.2kg (4lb 10oz)
- Power requirements : AC power to the voltage indicated on the rear panel ±10%, 50/60 Hz. Internally switchable between 115VAC and 230VAC
- Mains Cord Fuse (UK only): 3A
- Rear Panel Fuse : 20mm fuse, 250mA 250V (MUST BE ANTISURGE SLOW BLOW TYPE)
- Power Consumption : 15W
$999 at ZenPro Audio