The Liquid Channel transports classic front-end processing into the digital age, removing the need for endless patching and adding fluidity and reliability to the studio environment. Quite simply, The Liquid Channel is every mic pre and compressor combination in history, inside a single 192kHz 2U device.
This is achieved through a unique two-part process. Firstly, the use of dynamic convolution techniques is applied, utilising lightning fast SHARC chips applying unique level-dependent impulse responses to every sample of audio. However, whilst this is more than sufficient to identically re-synthesise a compressor’s sonic behaviour, in order to replicate precisely every subtle nuance, the preamplifier must physically match the way in which the classic unit interacts with a given microphone. The Liquid Channel’s solution to this problem lies in its vast analogue front-end. A preamp with the ability to change its impedance and vary its signal path to either transformer or electronic, perfectly replicating the interaction characteristics of the original, whilst remaining entirely transparent within the signal path.
The Liquid Channel can therefore replicate precisely the sound of any classic mic pre and compressor. With entirely digital front panel controls, all parameters can be saved in one of ninety-nine user memories, meaning that entire session set-ups can all be recalled at the touch of a button. A brand new digital EQ is also available, providing a comprehensive and truly ‘liquid’ channel strip.
A USB connection on the rear panel links to a software application enabling the archiving of both emulations and surplus user memories, as well as providing remote operation of the unit itself. The Liquid Channel comes complete with forty classic mic pre’s and forty classic compressors but is infinitely expandable, since the USB port also facilitates downloads of further emulations.
Finally, to account for variances in amounts of second order harmonic distortion (usually perceived as warmth) from one preamp to the next, a dial is included to permit control over this value. This essential feature ensures hardcore vintage enthusiasts are satisfied, bringing total control over every sonic attribute.
Essentially, The Liquid Channel provides an unlimited supply of vintage sonic performance for the price of one unit, with all the added benefits of digital processing and control.
Robert Jenkins, Focusrite's Director of Product Strategy comments “Liquid Technology is the final product of two years pure research into what makes an analogue box sound exactly the way it does. The results of this research have enabled us to develop a hybrid system of analogue and digital technology, capable of recreating every sonic attribute of any classic processor. Focusrite has a history of manufacturing high performance equipment, and of making that technology affordable to all those at every level of the recording industry. The Liquid Channel goes further and makes the obsolete, the priceless and the historically significant, available to everybody for the first time.”