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The Drawmer MX40 is a single rack space unit consisting of four independent gates with a couple of twists. A gate allows signals above a certain threshold level to pass through but attenuates signals below threshold so they don't appear at the output. On the MX40, the gated level is switchable between -90 dB and -20 dB so that the output doesn't go completely "dead" when the input drops below threshold, but rather retains some lower level ambient sound. This yields a more natural sound in some applications.
An adjustable bandpass filter can be inserted into the threshold detector path so that, regardless of level, only signals within a certain frequency range will open the gate. This is often preferable to full band gating, and with careful adjustment, you can use the tunable filter to allow the gate to open, for example, on the floor tom, but stay closed on the snare. Similarly, you could adjust another channel to open when the snare it hit, but reject the toms. This goes a long way to improving definition in your mixes. A "key listen" switch allows you to hear the output of the key filter rather than the gated output, making it easy to tune the filter to the desired range.
The Peak Punch™ feature is unique to Drawmer. When engaged, the initial attack when the gate opens is expanded upward momentarily adding punch to the attack of the gated signal. It really works on percussive sounds, improving definition without raising the average signal level to the point where it would be squashed by a following compressor.
The unique Drawmer "traffic light" display clearly shows when gate input signals are above, below, or at threshold for quick setting of threshold controls. The MX40 employs the same "trigger stabilization" as the more advanced DS201 and DS401 gates to prevent chatter and false triggering when the input signal is very close to threshold.
Gate inputs and outputs are balanced, +4 dBu operating level on XLR-type connectors. The external key inputs are ¼" unbalanced jacks.
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