2005 Winter NAMM: Mackie showed their two recently-announced headphone monitoring products for home and professional studio use; the HM54 Four-Channel Headphone Amplifier and the HMX56 Tabletop Matrix Mixer/Amplifier. Available at authorized Mackie dealers in early Q2, 2005, both models offer Mackie’s trademark robust steel construction and exceptional sonic quality.
HM54 Four Channel Headphone Amplifier
The Mackie HM54 ($199 MSRP) is a 1U rackmount headphone amplifier that features balanced left and right TRS main inputs, as well as left and right TRS “direct inputs” on each of the four channels. From the front panel, each user can select either the main stereo mix with its own input level control, or the stereo direct input on each of the four available channels. In addition, each channel offers its own dedicated headphone volume control, and a button that allows musicians to switch between their custom-crafted direct mixes and the main mix at any time. The HM54 offers a total of eight headphone output jacks—four on the front of the unit, and four on the rear, so that cables can be hidden away where possible.
HMX56 Tabletop Matrix Mixer/Amplifier
The Mackie HMX56 ($299 MSRP) is a compact tabletop headphone matrix mixer/amplifier with advanced routing capabilities. The unit features stereo main inputs, which are automatically routed to each of the six discrete headphone outputs. Four additional mono source inputs can be combined as needed with the main input feed on a channel-by-channel basis using the on-board 4 x 6 source matrix. And to identify each source input, Mackie provides a selection of pre-labeled magnets with common instrument names that can be affixed adjacent to each input source row. In addition, the HMX56 also features and individual effects send for each mono source input and stereo main mix channel, as well as an effects return control on each of the six channels.
With all this functionality combined, the HMX56 allows up to six musicians to customize their own headphone mix, and allowing the engineer to focus on other responsibilities.
“These HM54 and HMX56 are the perfect companions for any analog or digital mixer, or desktop audio workstation where additional headphone outputs and routing flexibility are required,” comment Dan Steinberg, Product Manager for the HM54 and HMX56. “But they aren’t simply applicable to recording environments. The HMX56, for example, is a powerful tool for any performing musician looking to build, and have easy on-stage access to additional custom monitor mixes—thereby ending the time-honored battles between performer and the FOH or monitor engineer. ”
For more information, visit the Mackie site.