NAMM: TC-Helicon VoicePrism vocal processor

     21/01/01
The VoicePrism is a digital vocal channel processor, and the demo was very compelling. This was one of my favorite items at the show this year, I wish I needed a vocal processor! The TC Electronic booth was essentially the same as last year, and again was one of the better ones for checking gear out, in my opinion. The display area of their booth consisted of several classy looking columns with racks built in that are filled with TC processors. At hand level is a CD player and a selector switch that allows you to send the CD signal to any device in the rack. You listen on headphones, and can get a pretty decent impression of what the gear can do. The VoicePrism has 128 fully editable presets and the front panel controls are plentiful and easy to sort out without a manual. The demo CD contained dry recordings of female and male vocals, making it easy to hear what the VoicePrism is capable of. Basically, just grab the knobs and press the buttons, and see what happens! A highly interactive, immediate and enjoyable experience that is analog-like in its user friendlyness. The VoicePrism allows you to apply compression and dual parametric equalizers to the vocal input signal, splits the signal into a lead voice and harmony effect channels, and then allows you to route the signal to two effects processors that include Delay, Chorus, Flange, and Reverb. The reverb has pre-delay. TC calls the main vocal signal the lead channel, and has a thickening algorithm that creates double tracking effects. I must say that this thickening was quite effective and easy to play with. The harmony channel has four independent formant corrected pitch shifters to create harmonies. These harmonies can be further altered with parameters called: Gender, Vibrato, Timing, Randomizing, and Scooping. I didn't get a chance to play with all those, so I can't comment on them, but if they are as good as the rest of the box they are great. The post-effects section of the VoicePrism is where you apply any chorus, delay, flange or reverb effects to the signal. There are two post effects processors. The VoicePrism has a mic inputs on the front panel, along with a headphone jack and level control. The back panel sports 1/4" bal/unbal outputs plus a SPDIF stereo digital out. In addition, there is a line input on the rear panel along with an Aux input. The aux input feeds an external signal into the final effects blocks and mixes them with the vocals. If you are looking for a vocal channel this is a box that you will probably want to take a look at. It is digital, so anyone wanting an analog signal path might not find it to their taste, but it is worth a look in any case. Not sure about price or shipping date, sorry. Albert


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