Chroma+ is a channel strip & buss compressor in one rack unit
Louder Than Liftoff’s device covers tracking and mixing duties with API and Neve sounds, plus customisable Colour Modules.
If you have limited space, Louder Than Liftoff’s new multi-purpose rack unit Chroma+ could be the only outboard device you need in your studio! The company describes it as a “stereo/dual mono tracking and mixing channel”, which means Chroma+ can be used as a traditional channel strip for recording with compression, EQ or saturation. But where it gets really interesting: it can also be used during mix as a mono or stereo buss processor!
Like the original Chroma for the 500 series, this device has been created with Twin Tone-Amp technology, inspired by API and Neve consoles, selectable as modes A and N, respectively. This means that you can add the desired sonic characteristics to the audio signal with the push of a button. You can audition the two signature sounds without re-patching or swapping preamps, which makes Chroma+ “the only processor of its kind” to offer this, Louder Than Liftoff says.
A FET-input DI was developed for Chroma+ and this can accept stereo sources such as synths as well as mono sources like guitar and bass. And for vintage vibes, there’s a switchable Retro mode, which can provide an 80s-style personality to the DI.
Chroma+ also boasts the ability to transform into a “Mega Mono channel”, offering more creative processing chains. By engaging the CH 1>2 switch, the output of channel 1 feeds into channel 2 and puts the power of two Chroma+ into the series, with channel 1’s output still available via its XLR connector. Think of it like this: recording a guitar through an API preamp, compressing it with an 1176 to give it a tonal boost, then feed it into a second Neve amp for additional colour.
Louder Than Liftoff’s new device is also capable of being customisable by installing your choice of Colour analogue plug-ins. These are priced from $69-129, and can be installed into the Colour Module slot on each channel’s printed circuit board. Once installed, you can change the Colour Modules’ wet/dry mix with a blend knob. I’m a big fan of the Colour modules myself, having two DIYRE Colour Palettes installed in my 500 series rack for colouring buss mixes!
The rack unit is available in four pre-loaded configurations to suit various workflows:
Tube comes pre-loaded with 2x Pentode Mk2 Colour modules for tube mojo and two-band Baxandall boost/cut
Comp comes pre-loaded with two Implode Colour modules for classic 1176-style FET compression
EQ comes pre-loaded with two FET Filter Colour modules for midrange cut and FET saturation.
Standard comes without any Colour modules, allowing free reign over customisation.
Chroma+ will be shipping from late January 2020, with a discount available for those who pre-order before 31 December 2019. Introductory prices are on offer, with the Chroma+ Standard set at $1399, and Chroma+ configured versions (Tube/Comp/EQ) at $1499.