NAMM 2023: Top 10 Launches

This year’s NAMM show was short, but it packed a big punch. Here are our ten hottest launches of NAMM 2023 from in-ears packed with dozens of drivers, an audio interface fit for a U87, to a plug-in that promises to free up all your CPU, by Andrea Smith.

It was the best of NAMMs, it was the worst of NAMMs – depending on who you ask. Major brands including Fender, Roland and Akai were absent in Anaheim, California this year, and product launches seemed to take a backseat for many.

But this meant more room for smaller companies and space for attendees to really get hands on with new gear.

Here are ten NAMM 2023 launches that made the April show one for the books.

1. Ultimate Ears

UE Premier IEMs

The biggest standout was Ultimate Ears UE Premier in-ear monitors which feature a jaw-dropping 21 drivers per ear. The previous flagship, UE Live, had a mere eight per ear in comparison. And there is no comparison.

While both have five-way crossover and a 5Hz to 40kHz frequency range, the power, clarity and richness of UE Premier’s driver arsenal made listening on them an almost religious experience.

Crispy detailed highs soared over tons of mid-range nuance, and the two dual sub-low drivers meant bass you could feel.

UE had a massive footprint at the show where attendees auditioned their full range and even Stevie Wonder stopped by to try UE Premier. A UE Pro tech said, “The highlight of my show has been the smiles on people’s faces when they first experience UE Premier.” However, the $3,000 price tag soon brought many back down to reality – or a pair of UE 11 Pros.

2. Neumann

MT48 Audio Interface

NAMM 2023 saw Neumann leap into digital with its first ever audio interface, the MT48.

Pros were excited to see the storied microphone manufacturer incorporate Merging Technologies esteemed AD/DA conversion into it.

MT48 has two premium mic/line preamps, two line inputs, two balanced XLR main outputs, two balanced line outputs, and two headphone outputs with capability for four separate stereo output mixes.

Onboard DSP includes parametric EQ, dynamics processing and reverb. Neumann’s Dual Output Technology lets you record with or without effects or both options simultaneously.

It has MIDI I/O, built in talkback, and is expandable through ADAT and AES67.

A dynamic range of 136dB and mic preamps with up to 78 dB gain mean it can capture the full potential of Neumann microphones without bottlenecks.

MT48 is available for $1,850 USD from Neumann dealers later this month.

3. Trinnov

Nova Room Calibration System

French innovators Trinnov debuted their first step into the home studio space, Nova – a monitoring processor and 3D room calibration microphone.

Equipped with ‘Optimizer’ tech that’s used by the world’s most advanced studios, Nova promises to take room compensation completely out of the mixing equation.

Trinnov’s iconic microphone is designed specifically for Nova with phantom power and integrated memory for a more user-friendly calibration process.

Nova comes with two channels of Optimizer processing including bass management (can be upgraded to six) and is also a monitoring controller and Dante interface.

Nova + updated 3D Monitoring Microphone ships from June at $4,190 USD.


4. RealTime Audio

RealTime Portal

Texas-based RealTime Audio unveiled the RealTime Portal – an ethernet device and app that allows users to perform or record together remotely within a 1,000 mile radius with an undetectable latency of 8ms to 55ms.

This is big news for music educators as well as songwriters and producers.

Victor Wooten dropped by the RealTime booth on Friday for a Portal jam session with musicians scattered around California.

Portal is available for $299 USD and includes a free one-year subscription to the RealTime Audio app ($9.99 USD per month thereafter).


5. GPU Audio + Vienna Symphonic Library

Vienna MIR Pro 3D

Established developers Vienna Symphonic Library and audio processing trailblazers GPU Audio showed off their groundbreaking collaboration at NAMM.

LA-based GPU Audio is democratizing high end audio processing – like VSL’s 3D immersive virtual stage simulator – by unlocking the massive power of a computer’s Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) for audio applications.

Jonathan Rowden, Chief Business Officer of GPU Audio said, “We’ve developed what can be described as an ‘engine’ that allows audio algorithms to be processed in parallel, spread across thousands of GPU cores, with real-time/instant rendering, and at extremely low latencies (less than 1ms).”

With further third party GPU compatibility, musicians can bypass prohibitively expensive hardware for sophisticated processing in both studio and live situations.

GPU Audio’s Beta Suite of effects plugins is available now for free and Vienna MIR Pro 3D will ship from May priced at $823.75 USD.

6. Amphion

One25A 3-way Active Studio Monitor

Finnish speaker manufacturers Amphion unveiled the One25A at the show – a compact yet powerful full range monitor that expands their reach into post-production studios, and television and film composition.

The One25A’s innovative sealed dual cabinet with isolated bass and midrange chambers was designed with the help of bass guitar maker, Tom Stenback, to control resonance and minimise acoustic cross-coupling for incredible resolution and clarity.

The One25A is available for $14,900 USD per pair and will ship from August.

7. Zynaptiq

Orange Vocoder IV

Zynaptiq’s Orange Vocoder IV was another plug-in attendees raved about.

Originally developed by Prosoniq in 1998, it’s widely regarded as the most transparent vocoder plug-in ever made.

Zynaptiq brings it into 2023 with 22 vocoding algorithms, pitch manipulation, and a robust synth section.

Originally announced at NAMM 2018, this powerful vocoder plug-in will finally be available this May for $249 USD.

8. Pioneer DJ


Pioneer announced the DDJ-FLX10 a few weeks before the NAMM show.

The 4-channel DJ controller for Rekordbox and Serato DJ Pro has a host of new features with the most exciting being ‘track separation’ and lighting control.

DJs can now instantly create ‘stems’ from audio tracks by isolating vocals, drums, and the instrumental with one touch.

The DDJ-FLX10 is the first controller made with a DMX output to control lighting.

Rekordbox can synch lighting effects to tracks or they can be programmed ahead of time.

The DDJ-FLX10 is available now for $1599 USD.


9. Soundtoys

SuperPlate Plug-in

Popular developers Soundtoys demoed their eagerly awaited new SuperPlate plugin.

A sizeable crowd gathered at their booth Saturday afternoon to sample the classic plate reverb emulator and a few classic cocktails to close the show.

SuperPlate is built on meticulous models of the EMT 140, EMT 240, Audicon, EcoPlate III and Stocktronics RX4000 plate reverb units.

With three different flavours of analog colouration, infinite decay time, built-in pre-delay, enhanced modulation, and parametric EQ, SuperPlate is an powerful step up from Soundtoys’ famous Little Plate.

10. Headliner

R2 Mixer

Los Angeles firm Headliner showcased their new 2 channel rotary mixer, the R2 among Mixware’s offerings at NAMM.

Its stained wooden side panels and solid metal enclosure give the mixer a classic look that matches its warm vintage sound.

Headliner also had a custom, fully functional Star Wars-themed version of the R2 on display that channeled everyone’s favourite droid of the same name – though it might cost a bit more than the very competitively priced standard version at $399 USD.



Welcome to issue 7 of Audio Media International