By Bruce Hofer, Chairman & Co-Founder, Audio Precision
It's always good to spend time with customers and other audio experts out in the field. Last week I was fortunate to see several customers across England and Scotland, and tomorrow I'm headed down to San Antonio, Texas to meet with the CEA Standards Committee. Here in Beaverton, the sun is rising earlier and it's still day when we go home. The extra light must be giving us all more energy as we continue to release new functionality for the ATS-2, work on Vista compatibility, as well as put the last touches on the next release of the APx family.
Also, special congratulations to the two AP Sales Partners who earned Sales Partner of the Year for 2006, Spectra Sales of Texas and TOYO Corporation of Japan. We have a great network of sales partners that benefits the factory and customers alike. Thank you all.
Several important notes came out of Tech Support and Engineering this month. Please read on for updates on Add-Ins and Vista compatibility.
Add-Ins for ATS-2 Add-Ins are additional software features that can be seamlessly integrated into AP software. Previously available only for AP2700 Control Software, the Add-Ins have been ported to the ATS-2. You can now download a single executable which will allow you to install the User Preferences control, Import/Export .wav file, Document Test Settings, and Delete Traces Add-Ins. Download at http://ap.com/software/ats_software.htm
User Preferences Add-In
This Add-In provides a user interface where you can set user preferences, define multiple preference groups and control how the preferences are applied to tests.
Import / Export .wav Files Add-In
This Add-In provides the capability to Import or Export audio data between a .wav file on disk, and one of three instrument memory buffers: the Arbitrary Waveform buffer, the Acquisition buffer and the Transform buffer.
Document Test Settings Add-In
This Add-In creates an ASCII text file that documents selected panel settings for the current test configuration.
Delete Traces Add-In
This Add-In provides the capability to delete selected traces from the Graph / Data Editor. Sweeps that have any traces removed from view in the Graph are deleted.
Vista compatibility Microsoft's Windows Vista is now available and AP users have begun to ask, does AP software run on a Vista machine ?
For APx, preliminary testing indicates APx500 software is Vista compatible. More in-depth testing is being performed over the next month. For AP2700 or ATS software, the answer is Yes, with some limitations. Windows Vista presents some technical challenges, and while we are fully committed to Vista compatibility, we do not support it at this time. If possible, we recommend that for now customers continue to run AP2700 and ATS software on Windows XP, which AP fully supports.
If you must AP2700 or ATS software on Windows Vista, we are aware of the following limitations:
A maintenance release will be available later this year to make AP2700 and ATS software fully Vista-compatible.
Q: Why is it warm-up important?
A: Before performing a system performance check, adjustment, or calibration we require that an instrument be warmed up. This is important because the resistance and noise of almost every electronic component vary with temperature. This is reflected in the operating temperature range we specify for our instruments. By warming up an instrument you insure that all the components have reached a uniform operating temperature. It will also drive off any moisture that may have condensed inside the unit.
We recommend that instruments be warmed up a minimum of 20 minutes before the performance checks are run, 30 minutes before an adjustment is performed, and 2 hours prior to instrument calibration. It is especially critical that an instrument be warmed up if it has just come out of the shipping container. We recommend that an instrument be warmed up for 2 hours before any use after first being received.
AP instruments contain extremely sensitive, precision analog circuits. Proper warm up will insure proper and accurate measurements.
AP Sales Partner of the Year Every year, AP recognizes the outstanding US and International Sales Partner of the Year. The 2006 award winners are
These partners are recognized for their outstanding work supporting AP's wide customer base, and for leading the charge with the launch and promotion of the new APx family. All of AP's Sales Partners are dedicated professionals, and we thank each and every one for their contribution to the improvement of audio and audio test across the world.
Future of Audio Test Survey Drawing Winner Last month we promised an iPod or a Zoom H4 handheld multitrack recorder to one randomly selected respondent to the second annual Future of Audio Test survey. Using a randomly generated number kindly provided by random.org, the winner of the drawing was Wade McGregor of Mc Squared System Design Group, Inc in Vancouver, Canada. Wade chose the Zoom H4, and writes “I received the Zoom H4 yesterday. Of course, I immediately plugged in a pair of B&K mics and gave the unit a listen. It worked very well. Thanks, again, Wade”.
Congratulations Wade, and thanks to all of the AP customers who responded.
Trade shows The tradeshow season is upon us. AP will be attending NAB in Las Vegas from April 14-19, and IBC in Amsterdam from Sept 7-11.
Visit us at NAB, booth #N6917.
For a free VIP exhibits pass for NAB, courtesy of Audio Precision, just go to www.nabshow.com/VIP and enter the code KB1764.
New Website On Monday, March 5th, AP will launch our new website. Check it out and please send any comments about functionality you'd like to see to firstname.lastname@example.org