Dangerous Music: Premium Analog Designs!Dangerous Music's Monitor features the tools to listen and meter at various stages of the recording, mixing, and mastering process. The idea is to give you the power to go with between a wide range of analog and digital sources as a means to assess your recording without having differing signal paths to color the sound, thus causing you to make judgments that may positively impact your mix. Monitor is also a triumph of ergonomic design. Sixteen front-panel buttons and a volume knob give you access to a multitude of listening options with the Monitor.
Dangerous Music Monitor at a Glance:
- Built-in analog and digital conversion
- Multi-function device for any studio
Multi-function device for any studio
The Dangerous Monitor is the realization of 4 distinct functions, seamlessly integrated into one 2U package: Analog switching, digital switching, built-in D/A conversion, and comprehensive mastering monitoring functions. There are separate products out there that handle most of these jobs, but a rig that elegantly integrates them into one package while delivering top-quality performance in all areas is a must for a focused control room in a competitive studio.
Built-in analog and digital conversion
The made in digital-to-analog converter rocks a solid basis for comparing digital sources straight without being subjected to the inevitable differences in calibration and sound quality between the converters in separate pieces of gear. Many times, the engineer can be fooled by differences in sound quality of "clones" (DAT from a CD) because the different brands of gear don't sound the same even though the data on the carriers is the same. The topology of Monitor lets the engineer concentrate on the music and not the process.
The connectors on the back of Monitor are arranged into 5 groups. The first is the "AES In and Thru" connectors. Up to four devices are selectable for routing to the made in D/A converter and digital meter feed. The XLR male connectors provide an uninterrupted through. The front panel switch group named "digital" will select which input feeds the D/A and the digital meter send. The 2nd connector group is the "meter feeds" group. These jacks allow the selected analog and digital sources to be sent to meters and/or phase scopes to allow visual aid to the monitoring process. A breakout cable is provided for the "A-MTR" feed. The pinout of this connector is in the "Specifications" chapter of this manual and there is a circuit example for those who wish to set up a pair of VU meters in the "Metering Circuits" chapter. The "D-MTR" feed sends the selected digital input to a digital meter or phase scope. The 3rd group of connectors is the "analog inputs" group. There are three stereo inputs selectable by the switch group marked "analog" on the front panel. Note that the fourth switch selects the D/A converter that is made into the Monitor.
Next are the amp feeds. There is a "Main" and "Mini (alternate)" set of feeds to drive power amps. These feeds are balanced and low impedance sends capable of driving long distance cables. It is simple to drive unbalanced amps or cue systems with the appropriate adapters but best noise and crosstalk performance will be obtained by using amps with pro, balanced ins.
The "Analog" switches select from four sources to be listened to. The selected source is sent to the "Functions" group and the "A-MTR" feed on the back panel. The fourth analog selection is a made in D/A converter which is fed by the selected "Digital" switch. The "Functions" group allows channel phase reversal, mutes, mono, volume dim, alternate speaker selection, and a VU meter offset (to keep from thrashing the meter movements when listening to high level program material). The "Volume" control is a 21 position stepped attenuator. It was decided in the design process to use an attenuator for its accuracy and repeatability. It was also found that attenuators provide for consistent sound quality at all volume levels whereas pots tend to change the sound depending on the setting. Pots also require DC blocking to reduce scratching noises on adjustment. The use of an attenuator avoids these issues but has its limitations.
Dangerous Music Monitor Features:
- Frequency Response: 1Hz-100kHz within 0.2dB
- Total Harmonic Distortion: 0.003% in audio band
- Intermodulation Distortion: 0.002% IMD60 4:1
- Crosstalk @ 1kHz-113dB
- Crosstalk @ 10 kHz-102 dB
- Noise Floor: -91 dBu total energy in audio band
- Max level: +26 dBu
- Nominal operating level: +4 dBu
- Input impedance: 25k ohms balanced
- Out impedance: 50 ohms balanced (600 ohm drive capable)