Wednesday, November 10, 2010

ADAM Professional Audio: The Highlight of my Trip to AES 129

I had the pleasure of attending the Exhibits at the 129th AES Convention in San Francisco on Saturday. Needless to say I was floored by just about everything I saw there. I spent hours walking around and around the convention floor. I talked with representatives, played with gear, spoke through microphones, put on countless pairs of headphones & was thoroughly enthralled with just about everything I saw and experienced. However, there was one experience that stood out from the rest.

If the title of the post didn't give it away I'll let the cat out of the bag now.  At the ADAM audio exhibit I heard & saw something that cemented ADAM's awesome reputation with me forever. If you're not familiar with ADAM Audio I'll spend a quick minute explaining what they do and who they are, before I tell you what I heard and saw.

ADAM Audio is a relatively new loudspeaker manufacturer that was founded in Germany around 11 years ago. I say relatively new because it's taken some companies at least twice as long to create & brand something as trusted as ADAM. So, they are in fact new compared to brands like: Neve & Neumann & other greats however, they've already built a brand as reputable, in my opinion. It all started with ADAM's ART (Accelerated Ribbon Technology) Tweeter.  ART Technology revolutionized the studio monitor game & it hasn't taken long for ADAM Monitors to find homes in many of the world's most professional & reputable studios.

This particular post really isn't about the history of ADAM or even their product line for that matter. (I'll save that for another post)  This post is basically my opinion of what I heard @ AES & why it made me absolutely certain ADAM is in fact the best monitor company in the world. I will never buy another brand of Monitor... Ever.  If you continue reading I'll explain why.

In the pro audio world change is often met with speculation & sometimes even harsh criticism. Don't change something that works. IE: The best gear you can buy is modeled from very old vintage gear. ADAM kicked this idea to the curb and completely re-developed their rock solid reliable ART tweeters.  Before I got to AES I hadn't heard their new A7X's. Being that I own their A7's I was obviously thrilled & a little skeptical about the opportunity to hear ADAM's new "AX" line of studio monitors.  It took me 3 seconds to realize the A7X's were far superior to the original A7's. The first thing I noticed was the low end, the A7X's are DEEP! While I enjoy the lighter low end response of my A7's, there is no doubt in my mind one would quickly get used to the new "boom" ADAM Audio has created. The second thing I noticed was how much clearer the top end was. This is obviously where the new tweeter design comes into play. My A7's will punish you at high SPL's, I also enjoy this, they are very bright and as a result quite detailed.  The new A7X's completely blow mine away though, the stereo spread is even better in my opinion & the top end clarity without the bite is evident within moments of hearing these new beauties sparkle.

ADAM's old A7's are wonderful monitors and were no doubt selling quite well, they could have left them alone and continued to sell countless pairs of monitors.  They didn't, they care about sound and obviously want to improve the delivery method of it for everyone. Not only did they change them, they addressed every concern of the foolhardy A7 critics and corrected any issue an engineer could have possibly complained about.

I respect and support companies that produce products because they genuinely care about sound. ADAM took a big risk, they changed something that worked and was selling quite well. Any new product is met with intense scrutiny in the pro audio world, ADAM knew they had something that sounded better and they took the gamble. It paid off, not just for ADAM but for everyone who owns a pair of their new AX line of studio monitor.   If your buying monitors for your project studio and you don't buy ADAM's...  You're cheating yourself out of hearing what the music you work on really sounds like.  Do I love my A7's? Of course I do! I wouldn't trade them even for the new A7X's. I'm used to them and quite comfortable with how they perform in my project studio. However, if I were buying monitors for the first time again and had a choice between the A7's or A7X's.  I'd go with the A7X's and not even think twice..

Why was this the highlight of my adventure to AES?  Because, after listening to the A7X's I knew I made the right choice with my monitors.  I chose a model from a rock solid brand that refuses to remain stagnant in an industry that often times rewards tradition.  The change between the two models really is quite incredible, I can't even explain to you how amazing the A7X's sound.  There's no doubt in my mind ADAM will continue to be an innovator and forever set the bar for professional studio monitoring.

I'm working on a post detailing the ADAM Audio AX Series Monitors and will have it up here in a bit so be sure to check back if you're interested in knowing more about the ADAM Audio line.  Until then, be sure to check out ADAM's website for all the ADAM info you can handle.



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