Steve Rabe, the man who pioneered leading amplification manufacturer SWR Engineering, has found time in-between his designing duties at SWR to start a new company. Steve's last name translated in German means "raven", so it was natural to name the new venture "Raven Labs." Product focus will be on battery operated professional outboard gear including DI's, mixers, preamps, equalizers and effects. All models will feature ultra low noise, low distortion electronics with a wide frequency response and high dynamic range.
The first product, called the MDB-1, is a combination mixer/direct box/buffer/preamp in one small unit 6.7" wide x 1.75" high x 6" deep, and weighs approximately 2 lbs. The MDB-1 boasts an incredible 10 Meg ohm input impedance making it the perfect buffer for any instrument. Coupled with super low noise (-105dB typical), distortion (0.005% @ 1KHz) and a frequency response from 10Hz to 60KHz, makes this one of the finest pieces of equipment in its category. Input headroom is 2 volts RMS. Maximum gain is 3X with "unity" being at 12 o'clock on the volume control.
Two nine volt batteries are used in a +/- arrangement eliminating the need for multiple coupling capacitors than can "color" the sound. Battery life in field tests has been around 100 hours. This unique design will function down to +/- 3 volts.
Over 8 months has gone into the development stages with prototype units being used in a variety of applications by notable musicians such as Jack Casady, Laurence Juber (guitarist with Paul McCartney and Wings), Ric Fierabracci (bassist with Yanni), Mark Browne (Melissa Ethridge, Paula Cole) and L.A. session ace Neil Stubenhaus. All have come back with glowing reports!
To celebrate the release of the MDB-1, SWR and Raven Labs are selling the first 100 units factory direct for $219.
Specifications: (*All measurements taken with fresh 9 volt batteries.)