2nd June 2014

University of West London installs 6 Unity Audio 5.1 surround systems

University of West London's Music College has recently evaluated numerous studio monitors for the newly built studios and as a result of their tests have installed a total of six 5.1 systems based around The Rock MKII 2 way active near-field and The Avalanche active sub-woofer.

In terms of the choice of the Rock MKII as our main speaker there were a number of key reasons for the choice. The sealed box design was something that really appealed to us with the benefits in transient response and group delay performance. The MKII release extended the frequency response impressively, giving all of the benefits of the sealed box design with the extended response in a box that size normally limited to ported designs.

In listening, the depth of information in the bottom end was clear- The Rock MKII never over excites the room acoustics and is in no way bloated in the bottom end, but still reflects details that bely the box size, particularly when listening at low levels. The performance of The Rock MKII at low level is a real positive, it is great to be able to work at such quiet levels, avoiding ear fatigue and also providing an environment where discussion can take place without having to ride the speaker level- as a teaching tool in the studio monitoring at low level is of great benefit, as is the excellent translation without destroying your hearing!

The ribbon tweeter was also a real surprise on auditioning The Rock MkII, previous listening and mixing sessions with ribbon based speakers had often led to some difficult translation in the top end- The Rock MKII instantly had all of the detail associated with this of the transducer but with a very natural open presentation that really translated. I have found vocal mixing in particular really easy on The Rock MkII, the space and detail available really translates and they have become a real tool for me in checking the all important upper midrange balance and presentation.

I really trust them when it comes to setting my vocal into the track. This level of detail continues through all the elements of your mix, transient detail is particularly impressive, The Rock MKII certainly gives the opportunity to realise a mix full of cohesive energy, everything can be made to have its own place, yet equally can be made to belong. Personally I find I need to trust my speaker, and I have been able to trust The Rock MKII. Initial feedback from students over the last month has been similarly positive, with the quality of work coming out from our Basement 3 studio impressive. Many students have found the key is to work quietly at low levels when some other speakers tend to fall apart The Rock MKII is a particularly impressive performer, and at the right price point!

Dr Andrew Bourbon, Senior Lecturer, London college of music, University of West London

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