Radial launches Forest Audio, a new division devoted specifically to designing and building top-end studio equipment for the growing number of artists, engineers and producers that are equipped with high resolution recording equipment and want to ensure they capture the very essence of the source when recording a performance.
According to Radial Engineering president, Peter Janis: "Many folks have been asking me: why in the world would we launch another brand when Radial is so well respected and known? The answer is simple: Radial specializes in instrument interface gear while Forest Audio will focus on high-end studio gear."
The first product Forest Audio is pleased to introduce is the Q6 counter coil equalizer, a unique multi-band coil EQ that combines both passive and active stages in each band to allow the engineer to create an innovative sonic landscape by working one EQ setting against another. By applying standard EQ treatment to enhance tracks, the Q6 is equally capable of rendering tones that span from subtle to sublime.
Janis continues: "For years, engineers have known that passive coil EQs are by far the most musical sounding. The problem is that coils are expensive, finicky and unless carefully applied, can be prone to noise. But if we are to build an EQ, it just seemed obvious that we would have to invest into developing the best and finding a way around the problems. The Q6 is a beast! It has tons of headroom, sounds incredibly musical and is very well behaved."
Housed in a single rack space steel enclosure, the Q6 front panel features 6 separate EQ bands, each of which is equipped with a 12-position boost or cut control. These coil-based passive circuits are intended to overlap to allow the engineer to creatively apply color and tone character to instruments, voice and percussion. A clever mixture of normal, wide and narrow bands extends beyond typical EQs to open the door to even greater artistic treatment. Individual EQ bands are equipped with a front panel bypass to allow the engineer to instantly monitor the effect of each frequency band as needed. A gentle high-cut (low pass filter) has been added to help reduce noise from older gear and noisy instruments.
As an equalizer, the Forest Q6 can be used for traditional tone shaping by inserting it into the audio signal path. Professional balanced +4dB line level and unbalanced -10dB connectivity is supported. This allows the Q6 to easily interface with the professional recording studio and the broadcast world while being able to adapt to the ever burgeoning project studio environment.
To add functionality, a unique 'guitar' oriented front-end buffer may be engaged to connect instruments directly to the Q6 and perform as a true instrument preamp. To ensure the most natural rendering, all active circuitry is 100% discreet, class-A. This is augmented with Drag™ Control load correction to simulate the relationship between an electric guitar and a tube amplifier. To maximize the performance of piezo pickups, a separate 5meg-Ohm input buffer is also provided. A standard 1/4" guitar jack is mounted on the front panel for easy access, while a pair of footswitch-selectable 1/4" inputs jacks are also mounted on the rear panel to facilitate quick instrument changes during live performance. For added control, an effects loop is also present and this too can be remotely turned on via a standard latching footswitch. Sealed mil-spec gold contact relays are employed to ensure trouble-free switching.
With 70volt internal rails and over 40 volts of available headroom, the Forest Q1 is unmatched. The front panel input control allows up to 37dB of gain and with Jensen transformer coupled inputs and outputs; you can be assured that the most natural tone and warm Bessel curve will be produced. Input levels are monitored via a 10 segment ballistic LED meter and power is supplied with an external 15VDC supply and available in 110V, 115V, 200V, 220V and 240V to suit all countries around the globe.
Available May 07 (estimated)
Q6 suggested list price: $2500 USD