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The Tonelux TXC is the latest module from designer Paul Wolff that addresses the many complex issues when dealing with compression.

With the ability to do in-module parallel mixing of the dry signal and the compressed signal, the engineer can now enjoy the parallel or "side chaining" of an instrument with itself and come up with the perfect blend of the original and compressed signal without the problems associated with in-the-box latency.

In addition to the Input/Compressor MIX knob, the TXC has many other features not found on any compressor made today. The TYPE control gives the engineer the freedom to combine the aggressive nature of the Feed Back (labeled 60's) type of compression with the smooth effect of Feed Forward (labeled 90's) compression by blending between the two modes. This allows the compressor to blend the ultra smooth knee of the older style compression and the more aggressive newer style of compression, making some very custom compression knees.

In addition, the TXC has the ability to overcompress with the RATIO control; this allows compression ratios from 1.5:1 to 20:1, then goes beyond with the "OVER:" ratio. "OVER:" settings allow for negative compression, where the gain reduction is greater than the gain of the signal going into it. For example, the compressor can compress an increase in signal of 10dB with a gain reduction of up to -8dB. Meaning, if the signal goes up 10dB, the output will go DOWN 8dB. This feature, along with the MIX control, allows the engineer to restore precisely controlled dynamics to a signal that has already been overcompressed by extracting the peak with the OVER: control and the amount of attack.

The TXC also inserts the now famous "TILT" control into the side chain of the RMS detector. Now you can increase the highs and decrease the lows going into the RMS detector, virtually eliminating the effects of pumping because the Detector is seeing a more uniform distribution of energy across the spectrum, instead of a bass heavy signal as with most compressors.

The Attack control has a X5 switch to allow for a range of extremely fast attack (in the micro second range) when out, all the way through a very smooth slow attack, more suited for leveling when switched in.

The Release control can be almost instantaneous to 3 seconds. The release circuit is a unique 3 stage circuit that auto releases the faster signals at a rate of 10 times the release of the lower frequency signals. Finally, there is an auto-makeup gain system that always keeps the gain at unity regardless of the amount of compression.

The TXC uses the proprietary all discrete TX-240 op-amp and the all discrete TX-260 output stage with the TX-280 transformer. With a 6 LED Gain Reduction meter and an adjustable link control, the TXC can be used in mono or stereo configurations with ease.


The MP1a is a discrete mic preamp featuring a transformer coupled input and output, plus a direct input on the front panel. A 20 dB PAD switch effects both the mic and direct inputs, a 48V Phantom switch and a Phase or POLARITY switch. This module is identical to the original MP1, with the addition of a dual-knob output fader to control the record level of the Mic Pre Output. The larger outer knob sets the mic pre gain, while the smaller inner knob controls the output level.

This configuration prevents accidental bumping of the gain knob when adjusting output levels.

The 8 segment LED VU meter follows the balanced output of the preamp. The level of the VU meter is adjustable over the entire range from off to +28. The PEAK led is set at +14VU or +18 dBu and will grab a fast peak and display it. New to the MP1a is an internal jumper that selects whether the VU meter displays the level pre-fader or post-fader, enabling the engineer to monitor either the actual mic pre gain or the output level of the MP1a.

The combo XLR/direct input is designed for use with a hi-z instrument. The TILT tone control works with both the mic and direct inputs, and features a dedicated in/out switch with true hardwire bypass. When turned up, the TILT control has a 0 to 6 dB boost on the high end while cutting the low end the same. When turned down, it will boost the low end up to 6 dB and cut the high end up to 6 dB.

The rear panel XLR is multed to the front panel as well as the D-Sub "INPUT" on the rear of the V-Rack. The "INSERT RETURN" input of the V-Rack is a resistor isolated mic level input, that can be used when the MP1 is in a live recording situation and there is no splitter. It will bridge the mic line with 10X the impedance to minimize loading of the microphone.

Finally, the MP1a Mic Pre allows the engineer to PFL the output to an external amplifier or to the mixer/master section, for previewing the signal directly off the mic pre output.

See the complete Tonelux line at the AES Vienna Show at the Wave Distribution booth.

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