See the new BCD Audio ALT-1D on the Canford stand 9-C01 in Hall 9 at IBC2012, Amsterdam, 7th – 11th Sept.

BCD Audio launches new ALT-1D mic amp at IBC2012

Mike Law of BCD Audio has announced a new version, ALT-1D, of his established and popular ALT-1 stand-alone microphone amplifier.

The original ALT-1 microphone amplifier was designed in 1993 in response to demand for a simple to use stand-alone microphone amplifier for journalist and unattended studio use. The unit was to be as simple to use as possible, with the minimum of controls, but the best attainable audio performance under real operating conditions in the field. It has been a popular product with around 4000 unit sales to date.

A unique feature of the unit was the ‘Take’ switch, which when pressed would make the unit learn the correct audio gain required for that user. Once the unit has learnt the setting, the compressor / limiter/ AGC system would maintain the correct level. The remoteable ‘take’ switch allows the unit to be controlled from a news control system.

Since then, further applications have appeared, and units are installed in news and weather booths, direct to PC recording, unattended studios and emergency microphone use in main TV news studios. The unit is in use world-wide in these roles.

Mike Law, BCD Audio CEO said “It’s not easy to replace a winning product, but increased manufacturing costs and the switch to surface mount production has made a replacement unit essential. All of the original features are however maintained, with some carefully thought out extensions.”

Front panel switching and LED indicators for Compressor / Limiter and AGC are retained. Mic input on balanced XLR with switchable phantom power is retained. Line output on balanced XLR is retained, and now includes fault protection. The DC inlet is retained, but the unit can now be powered from the D9 in fixed installations.

A remote ‘take’ switch with LED connects at the D9, and replaces the remote control mini-jack variant. An added ‘mute’ input is added as well. An unbalanced audio output is present at the D9, for use with unbalanced destinations, such as PC sound cards.

Mike Law started out with an early passion for electronics and a summer job allowed him to work at UK mixer manufacturer Alice, where he learnt about broadcast audio, and 3 years at Birmingham University where he learnt about PA systems, lighting and putting on bands, culminating in an honours degree in Electronic Engineering. Mike worked at Alice, designing audio mixing consoles until redundancy allowed him to set up his own UK company with the help of two Swiss recording studios, with the aim of producing a digitally controlled music console. The ideas behind that console is the basis of much digitally controlled analogue audio in use today.

His company, BCD Audio continues to this day, and Mike has become a specialist in designing digital and analogue audio systems, and has kept up with the times, and can now talk DSP and VHDL when he can find someone to converse with.

Mike is an associate of the IPS, a member of the AES, and is on the SC-02-02 committee, and is a member of the IET.

About BCD Audio:

Established 25 years ago to provide high quality audio systems for radio and television broadcasting, BCD Audio’s in-house skills were immediately sought after by prestige clients including the BBC and ITV companies. Today, BCD Audio’s designs are heard and seen all over the world, keeping broadcasters on air 24/7.

The product range has grown from pure analogue engineering to fully embrace today’s digital world, from standalone black box problem solvers, to dedicated rack mount units and full Eurocard infrastructure systems. BCD Audio can also deliver bespoke audio solutions to a client’s exacting requirements.

At the forefront of technological advances, BCD designers use the latest digital systems, often implemented with FPGAs or processors with network control.

BCD solutions now often involve video too, and the in house design skills include the processing of SD/HD video, with a bias towards audio embedding, de-embedding and DSP.

In-house manufacturing has also evolved; BCD have their own surface-mount assembly plant, and are capable of producing units in-house with fine-pitch components on multi-layer boards.

Recent projects include an automatic audio-triggered webcast system for the UK Parliament, which has evolved into a radio station webcast system, a 1U HD video capable audio mixer, and a fully digital audio monitor unit. BCD Audio rack- based systems have been specified in recent OB truck, radio station and TV studio presenter audio monitoring designs.

Mike Law concludes “We welcome enquiries from broadcast and installation companies, and if the solution is not already on the shelf, we will be happy to design and build it!”

Contacts for further information

Mike Law, CEO
BCD Audio (Acrone Ltd),
5 Bristol Way,
Stoke Gardens,
Slough, Berkshire,
SL1 3QE, United Kingdom

Telephone: +44 (0)1753 579524
Fax: +44 (0)1753 577981

Mel Noonan
Stylus Media Consultants
Broadcast Industry authoring & communication
office: +44 (0) 1525 756 097

300DPI CMYK photo attached: the new ALT-1D from BCD Audio

Higher res photos by request to Stylus Media Consultants