Professional Sound - April 2017 - Page 22

PRODUCT TESTS RTW MM3 MusicMeter By Eric Price O standards, including EBU R128 (Europe), ITU-R BS.1770-3/1771-1 (international), ATSC A/85 (U.S.), ARIB (Japan), OP-59 (Australia), AGCOM (Italy), and CALM (U.S. Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation) Act. First Impressions Though not much larger than the palm of my hand, it’s rugged and sturdy thanks to its steel construction and weighs in at just over 11 oz. or 320 g. It employs an L-shaped enclosure with the base being incorporated into the unit’s design, making it easy to switch between vertical or horizontal ori- entation, which can be done with a single swipe of the screen. The front of the unit features a 4.3-in., 272 x 480 pixel, capacitive-touch colour screen. On the back, you’ll find four RCA connectors and a Micro-B USB connector. Two of the RCA connectors allow for unbal- anced stereo line input while the other two RCA connectors are for S/PDIF in and out. The A/D converters for the line inputs run at a 48 kHz sampling rate while the S/PDIF input supports anywhere from 28-104 kHz sample rates. There are two trim pots located beside each of the line inputs that are meant for tweaking input levels, though it’s unlikely you’ll need to use them as the unit has already been factory calibrated. The unit is powered via the Micro-B USB connector, either from the provided wall-wart adapter or from the computer. Interesting to note here is that there is no power button. The MM3 allows for several measure- ment types and meter displays. The select- able display offers the choice between PPM (peak program metering) or true peak measurement, a loudness meter using either a bar graph or numerical display, as well as a loudness-over-time chart. It has a stereo vectorscope (Lissajous display) and a real-time analyzer (RTA) boasting a 31-band, 1/3 octave display with an optional “H” band component that displays information above 20 kHz. Finally, there’s also the option of a pair of moving coil meters (graphic VU meters) with over indicators. The measurement types encompass over a half dozen worldwide industry time graph prominently featured while the third swipe shows you solely the loudness- over-time graph. The fourth swipe again returns you to the default screen, but this time with the RTA being the main compo- nent displayed whereas the fifth swipe takes you to a dedicated RTA display. The sixth and final swipe gets you to the level meters by themselves and features a coloured, vir- tual LED to display phase correlations. These level meters can be swapped out for VU meters (moving coil) if you prefer and they are switchable between PPM or VU mode. The coolest use of the MM3, and I think its strongest selling point, is using it in con- junction with its free USB Connect software, downloadable via RTW once you register the product. This is a plug-in designed for use with your DAW via the USB connector. The plug-in allows you to measure and meter at the same time without disabling your regular audio interface, as using the USB connection for the audio input function will hijack your audio stream. Remember, you only get one audio interface per DAW, so choose wisely! Im- portant to note here is that this is the only way you can get a 5.1 audio stream into the meter for monitoring. The plug-in has a remote control interface to stop, start, and clear the measurements and is Mac- and Windows-compatible, supporting VST, AAS, RTS, and AU plug-in standards. In Use On initial start up, you are asked to select your preferred language and input type. Once this is done, you won’t be asked again. If you need access to those or other set- tings, you simply touch and hold your finger on the screen for more than two seconds, taking you to the main menu. As many of the individual meters are configurable, you will gain access to their reference settings here as well as settings for input selection, language, and firmware upgrade options. The default work screen features the vectorscope, a loudness meter, along with its numeric equivalent and a loudness bar graph display. Swiping the screen to the right runs you through the various display types, with the first \H[[[BHY\\X[[YKܙY[HXۙ\H[\H\X]وBY][ܙY[]]HY\[ݙ\Hۘ\[ۂH]YۜX[ۈ[X[ B[]\[\Y]\[[ۜ[\Z[]H[\\ܝ H“SL]\XY]\X[HY\˂\ۘ[KZ[XH^HY\B[HY]\[]]][[Z]X[\ܙY[X[\]HH\\\H[[[]Y&]\]]\۸&]Z[\]X[XXH\XHZ]\]\\Z[HܝHوY\\[\Y][ۂY[H\H[HX\]܈HYZٙ\B[ۘ[]YܙXHY]\[][ۋ^H\\[۝\HSL“]\XY]\H]\Y[X\وH[][Y]\[Z[BHH\X[\[B[ۙY܈Z\ٙ\[ۘ[[YKB\[[[ۚ]ܚ[][ۜˈHSLš\H][KY[[ۈ]Y[YX\\[Y[]Hܘ\X[XܙY[[\XKёTSӐSS\XXK][\Y[H]\Xš[\H܈ݙ\ YX\\]^H[[[\H]\[\[Y\ݙ\ LYX\قܚ][܈ٙ\[ۘ[[[[YX[]\XX[XY^[\