TerraTec-Producer has announced that its Expandable Controller Keyboard AREA 61 will be available in spring this year.
Based on an unprecedented design, the AREA 61 is an expandable keyboard system for studio and live musicians. It is a genuine musical instrument with freely selectable, integrated sound generators (e.g. KOMPLEXER DSP soundboard) that may also serve as a central control unit for all software sequencers and virtual instruments in computer based music studios. AREA 61 comes with an integrated USB 2.0 high speed audio and MIDI interface. Features such as an advanced low latency architecture, 24-bit/96kHz resolution and discrete headphone power amps ensure high fidelity and assertive sound in the studio and on stage. Another hallmark feature is the Ploytec FMC audio algorithm, which debuts with the AREA 61. All of this comes in a stylish yet robust aluminum chassis that predestines the AREA 61 for using it on stage as well as in the studio.
Everything under control
The instrument's 61 velocity sensitive, half-weighted keys feature two aftertouch zones. Two pressure sensors offer various touch control options for the left and the right hand. For example, the keyboardist may play a left hand chord and control the volume level by varying aftertouch pressure, while playing a right hand lead line using a different sound and aftertouch to control a filter. A three color LED chain with 15 segments surrounds each of the 10 programmable rotary encoders. Every encoder comprises not only the control dial, but also a push button that triggers various events. The AREA 61 editor software can run as a VSTi plugin to be fully integrated to your host application. Two rubberized control wheels and seven buttons serving menu control and navigation purposes are easy to reprogram using the included control software, so players can conveniently remote control a sequencer.
USB 2.0 audio and MIDI system
AREA 61 comes with a built in high quality 24-bit/ 96 kHz audio system. USB 2.0 high speed enabled, it features an analog stereo input/output. A discrete amplifier powers the separately adjustable headphones, delivering plenty of punch for auditioning sounds. The two MIDI ports are on board for internal communication; they also accept external sound generators and MIDI input devices. Thru configures as a separate USB MIDI output to provide a USB MIDI I/O interface alongside the standard keyboard MIDI output. A standard TerraTec Producer practice, ASIO and CoreAudio drivers are part of the package to defeat latency.
New sound generation options
In addition, keyboardists have access to the integrated KOMPLEXER DSP sound modules for use as a classic synthesizer, that is, also without a computer. To this end, TerraTec Producer now offers the KOMPLEXER VST, a synthesizer that runs as a VSTi plug-in and as a standalone DSP application. Comprising a real synthesizer based on the Waldorf MicroQ , it provides more than 400 parameters for shaping the perfect sound. And if this complexity seems a bit overwhelming at first, keyboardists can go to the Easy Edit page, choose from the many presets and easily manipulate their selections using eight macro controls. Best of all, entire banks port from KOMPLEXER VST to AREA 61's on-board KOMPLEXER DSP. This means KOMPLEXER VST goes wherever the keyboard goes, without having to carry a computer.
The WAVE XTABLE module is a 128 voice, GM- and XG-compatible waveboard offering more than 500 top-drawer sounds. Further modules will be developed. Users can employ other vendors' compatible wavetable cards, making the AREA 61 a remarkably extendible instrument. The integrated sound generator's analog output signal is routed to the output mixer and may be auditioned with the 2.0 audio system's playback signal as well as on the input monitor. Finally, recording the output signal via USB 2.0 is a further possible option. The AREA 61 is much more than another Controller keyboard.
Another optional Soundboard for the AREA 61 will be provided by MIDITEMP with the new DoX1, a HI-Synthesis soundengine by KORG with 62-voice polyphony, 660 high quality sounds from the successful KORG-TRITON series, 30 drumkits, two effect processors and GM/GM2 compatibility.
Priced at €899.00, TerraTec PRODUCER's AREA 61 including KOMPLEXER DSP board, KOMPLEXER VSTi and Steinberg's Cubase LE will be available in spring 2007.
These following optional sound expansions are already available for the AREA 61 keyboard:
- KOMPLEXER DSP Board, virtual analog Hardware Synthesizer, Waldorf MicroQ compatible . Price: €199.00
- WAVE XTABLE waveboard, 128 voices, GM/XG compatible soundboard more than 500 top-drawer sounds und drumkits. Price: €149.00
- DoX-1 Wavetable Daughterboard by MIDITEMP, HI-Synthesis soundengine from the successful KORG-TRITON series,
660 high quality sounds, 30 drumkits, two effect processors and GM/GM2 compatibility. Price €499.00
Technical Data – AREA 61 Keyboard
- 61 full size keys with 2 aftertouch and 4 split zones Velocity sensitive/half-weighted keys.
- Foot switch connector.
- 10 soft touch rotary encoders with push buttons.
- Rotary encoders with three color LED chain and 15 segments.
- Soft touch wheels for modulation and pitchbend.
- Transpose buttons (octave up/down).
- Menu, transport and transpose buttons.
- Robust aluminium chassis.
- 2 x 16 character backlit LCD display with adjustable contrast.
- Programmable keyboard zones.
- Perfect audio and MIDI integration for the KOMPLEXER DSP hardware synthesizer module Optional WAVE XTABLE module integration.
- Third party wavetable card integration possible Interactive communication with virtual software synthesizers.
- Control software with firmware upgrade feature for Mac and PC.
Technical Data – USB 2.0 high speed audio/MIDI system
- Ploytec FMC (fixed master clock) USB algorithm eliminates jitter.
- Stereo 2 channel analog input and output – 1/4" (6.3mm) jacks.
- Separate headphone output with volume control.
- 2 separate MIDI I/O ports (internal/external).
- MIDI In, Out and Thru - Thru configurable as a separate USB MIDI Out.
- 24-bit/96kHz audio resolution for recording and playback.
- AD/DA converter with up to 192kHz and 108dB(A) SNR.
- Direct monitoring with playback summing and Electronic audio mute.
- Ultra-fast low latency ASIO 2.0 and WDM drivers under Win XP.
- HAL plugin driver for extreme low latency running under Mac OS X.
- VSTi plug-in AREA 61 / DSP editor for Mac and PC.
- Compatible to USB 1.1 with 24-bit/48kHz maximum.
- Support for Mac OS X and Windows XP/VISTA.
- Sound module expansion.
- Integrated KOMPLEXER DSP hardware synthesizer module.
- Extension slot for KOMPLEXER DSP and other wavetable modules.
- Manipulate your sound presets directly with the rotary encoders.
- Blend the sound of the on-board generator with the USB 2.0 playback signal, route them to analog outputs, and record them via USB 2.0.
- Hardware DSP soundboard is supported by an integrated separate USB MIDI port.