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The JZ Track 1U Mono Unit Preamplifier from JZ Microphones is made by SPL in Germany to JZ Microphones specifications. The preamp is designed to match the impedance of JZ microphones, their characteristics and expanded harmonic range. It features a de-esser, compressor / limiter stage, 3-band EQ stage, and output stage with metering. The compressor can be linked with a second JZ Track compressor for coherent stereo operation of two units. It offers an optional A/D Card with ADAT and SPDIF outputs (sold separately).
Mic/Line Gain and Line/Instrument
The mic/line gain control determines the level of preamplification for microphone and line or instrument signals. In standard mode it controls microphone preamplification. Engage the line/instrument switch to control line or instrument signals. The preamplification values for microphone signals cover a range from +8 dB up to +63 dB and for line and instrument signals from -12 dB to +22 dB.
The compression control sets the intensity of compression. Turning the control clockwise increases compression. The working area spans between 0 dB (fully left) and -32 dB (fully right). The compressor applies a soft-knee characteristic that helps to keep levels under control and ensures highest recording safety -- and if there is a desire to gain further loudness, the signal can still be processed after recording. At maximal compression it operates with a ratio of 1:3 between input and output signal -- very effective dynamic processing is achievable with unobtrusive sound characteristics.
The limit switch turns the compressor into a limiter. The compression control now serves the purpose of controlling the threshold. It does not function as a peak limiter. There is no guarantee that all peaks are limited. It is therefore advisable when driving a subsequent unit that headroom of 2 to 4 dB remains. Peak limiters have a system-based disadvantage in producing audible distortions considerably sooner.
Make Up Gain
With the make up gain control you can restore the overall level reduction caused by compression or limiting. With assistance of the gain-reduction display, setting the make up gain control is made easy. If the maximal reduction value caused by the loudest tone amounts to -9 dB, for instance, the make up gain control should be set to values around +9 dB. If the compressor/limiter is now switched off, the achieved gain in loudness will be audible.
This control serves to determine the intensity of S-sound reduction. Because processing is undertaken from comparison with the level of the entire frequency spectrum, the processing is more intensive with extreme S-sound levels than with those of lower levels. This processing method achieves a consistent level of the remaining sibilants in the output signal.
The center frequency of the half-parametric bass filter is set with the LMF control (low/mid frequencies). The adjustable frequency range lies between 30 Hz and 700 Hz, enabling this filter to cover a range of about 4.5 octaves, allowing it to be used from the deepest bass to the lower mid-range levels. This together with the MHF filter ensures that the entire frequency spectrum is covered. The LMF-/+ control determines the boost or cut of the LMF filter; the maximum values lie between +/- 14 dB. It also operates to the proportional-Q-principle.
The center frequency of the semi-parametric mid/high frequency filter is set with the MHF control. The frequency range can be set between 680 Hz and 15 kHz so that this filter covers a range of 4.5 octaves, and it can be equally employed in the lower-mid as well as the high range. This together with the LMF filter ensures that the entire frequency spectrum is covered. This control determines the boost or cut of the MHF filter; the maximum values lie between +/- 12 dB. The MHF filter utilizes the proportional-Q-principle, too.
A coil-capacitor filter with so-called bell characteristics and a center frequency of 17.5 kHz comes into operation here. At this frequency the maximum possible accentuation is +10 dB, while maximum possible damping is -10dB.