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New Vi3000 is first Soundcraft desk with built-in Dante

The latest addition to Soundcraft's range of digital live consoles, the Vi3000 represents a powerful, single-package approach to mixing for the live and installation markets – and it's Dante and MADI-ready too.

Soundcraft has announced the release of the Vi3000, the company’s first digital live sound console to feature a 64 x 64 channel Dante networking protocol interface built-in as standard. An additional MADI interface enables the console to be hooked up to Soundcraft’s Realtime Rack, the high-spec outboard plug-in engine showcased at the NAMM show in January.

The Vi3000 is aimed at the market space between the Si Expression mixers and the successful Vi6 large format mixing system. The [Vi3000] sort of fits into the Vi range,” said Soundcraft’s senior product manager Andy Brown at a pre-launch showcase of the device last week, “but at the same time, it’s stepping into the future.”

Soundcraft has approached the Vi3000 with a new industrial design, and applied updated cosmetics and graphics to its look. Operation is based around ‘SpiderCore’, a powerful DSP engine created from technology developed by sibling brand Studer. Brown explained: “We’ve taken [SpiderCore], and we’ve adapted it and transplanted into this surface. So, this is an integral broadcast console if it has to be, or it can also connect up to stage boxes as well as be used with a remote I/O system.”

Brown added: “The key difference to the existing products like the [VI6] is that all the DSP and I/O is built into the surface.”

The Vi3000 incorporates the same, patented Faderglow and the Vistonics-based control surface found on the preceding Soundcraft consoles. Other benefits include high quality mic preamps, first developed for the Studer Vista 1 but not yet been used in another Soundcraft product. “We have packaged this in an appropriate way for the market and given you the right kind of I/O for the jobs that need to be done,” said Brown.

“If you’re a sound engineer you want to know that you can go out and get a great sound every night on the desk, that you’re not going to be fighting against the desk, that the sound quality is good and the user interface is good – the Vi does all that. If you’re a rental company you need to know that your investment is good and you’re going to keep making money out of the product.”

The desk is expected to make its first public appearance at the Prolight + Sound expo in Frankfurt next week.