07 April 2011

Is Analog Audio Equipment dead or still kicking and alive?


These days, high tech and complicated audio system are mostly in digital domain. Although analog audio equipment is still around they are less popular. The main reasons are because of features. Digital equipment has more features, lighter, small in size and very convenient to use. On the other hand analog equipment is heavier, big in size and less features.

Digital equipment is made of either hardware or software based or both (a combination).

As an example, the digital audio mixer, Presonus Studiolive series, it is small in size, many features built in such as 31band EQ, Effect processor and many more that you can insert to all channels mic and Line input. It is a combination of hardware and software digital audio system.

Another example is your home PC. The PC can be configure as virtual guitar power amplifier i.e. Studio Devil Virtual Guitar Amplifier. All you need is an electric guitar, audio cable, quality loudspeaker and good sound card installed in the PC and you are ready to rock n roll. It is extremely easy to setup and the sound is as good as the analog guitar amplifier.


With all these advance features of the digital audio equipment, will the analog audio equipment quickly fade away and vanish? Not so fast, In spite of all the advance features in digital technology, analog is much alive and still kicking and can co-exist in the digital domain.

For example, have you come across The VPR Alliance? No? Yes? Not sure?
Basiclly VPR Alliance is a program of standardization and consistency guidelines for manufacturers who wish to make or produce analog products designed to fit into API's 500 series rack format" (it is a type of equipment rack with built in power supply).

500-6B

6-slot lunchbox® with built-in Power Supply

This rack commonly know as lunchbook, house a variety of audio modules (compact size) including preamps, EQs, compressors and so on (kindly refers below).

With the VPR Alliance, the manufacturers who stick to the specification requirement of the rack can create Lunchbox modules set to one preferences or requirement. This format gives one the freedom to choose and match a variety of analog modules which lead into production of the desirable sound.

Personally, I am comfortable with analog audio equipment because I can actually feel them unlike the virtual digital equipment. The feel is not there, it all virtual, not real. In my opinion, Analog equipment is very far away from dead.

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