(Click for a close-up)
Symetrix, a provider of signal processors for the broadcast market, announced the first shipments of the AirTools Studio Matrix. This modular system is intended to handle audio routing and ancillary signal processing in small- to mid-sized broadcast facilities.
A modular system, the Studio Matrix consists of a variety of rack-mountable components, most with onboard DSP, that network to each other in order to form a powerful system, centrally located in the facility. That central location is typically the main rack room. The resulting system is capable of not just routing and switching, but mixing, dynamics, automatic gain control (AGC), parametric and graphic equalization, multiple modes of filtering, and much more. Any component can be made redundant. Onsite system control is handled in a number of ways, while Ethernet capability provides for remote access over the Web.
The individual components, whose names are all taken from Greek mythology, will be introduced to the market in phases. The first phase includes the Icarus and Ulysses, with 16 mono line-level analog inputs and outputs respectively. Future releases will include Narcissus, supporting eight channels of AES/EBU input, and Oedipus, with eight channels of AES output. Homer, a four-input/four output remote breakout with mic/line inputs and phantom power, is intended for use in air and production studios providing remote I/O for the system. As many as four Homers can interface with Iliad, a DSP-based 16x16 integrated in the Studio Matrix ring in the rack room.
Control I/O will also be available in the initial phase. This RS485-based device expands control functionality by supporting analog pots, closures, and encoders, and MIDI controllers such as fader packs. It also includes open collector and binary relay outputs that can interface with other external equipment, giving Studio Matrix the ability to actively provide feedback and interaction with other systems around the facility.
More information and the latest version of Studio Matrix Designer, a PC-based application for layout and control of a Studio Matrix system, is available online at www.airtoolsaudio.com. Studio Matrix hardware is available through broadcast equipment resellers.