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The ULN-2 2d from Metric Halo is a portable, high quality FireWire based, multi-format audio converter and interface. Housed in a single space rack-mount chassis, the unit provides 12 inputs and 14 outputs of simultaneous I/O, while having the ability to be powered entirely from the FireWire bus of a laptop computer, or from an appropriate DC power source.
The ULN-2 2d is equipped with two balanced analog inputs on Neutrik combo connectors, two channels of digital I/O (AES/EBU and S/PDIF) and eight channels of ADAT lightpipe I/O. Two balanced analog outputs and two balanced monitor outputs are available for connecting directly to power amps or self powered monitors. Wordclock I/O and dual FireWire connectors, along with 24 bit/96kHz converters on all channels, make the ULN-2 2d a perfect tool for digital recording.
The unit is the perfect tool for capturing audio wherever inspiration hits, in the studio or on the road. Well suited to any recording situation, the microphone preamps provide exceptional detail and an ultra-fast slew rate. Fully balanced analog inserts allow outboard analog dynamics processing to be introduced between the preamps and the A/D converters.
On-board DSP powers the v.5 MIO Console that can function as a mixer, router and control application. The software can be used to route any input to any output, providing powerful and flexible mixing possibilities. A "Record Panel" allows for straight forward recording of incoming audio without the need for additional DAW software. This is particularly useful in situations where immediate editing is not required, but stable, fool-proof recording is.
Enter the Jensen Option
With the transformer option installed, the ULN-2 acquires that classic character. A few years ago, we fitted a prototype ULN-2 with a pair Jensen JT16-A's just for fun. We found that there were some very nice benefits to transformer coupling the input stage of the ULN-2. The Transformers impart a more "glossy", "smoothed" sound than the capacitively coupled ULN-2, which simply faithfully passes the source. Sonically, it's kind of like the difference between images shot on film and images shot in HD.
Enjoy complete isolation
A second benefit is that the transformer completely electrically isolates the preamp from the source – raising the common mode rejection above its already excellent performance, and providing a measure of confidence when dealing with the unknowns of location sound.
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