MasterSounds is a British company founded by Ryan Shaw, a veteran DJ with a passion for sound in a home and club environment. His company manufactures and distributes all sorts of audio accessories, from isolation systems and all sorts of products for turntables, to power accessories and DJ mixers, all manufactured in the UK.
Building on the success of its flagship Radius 4V DJ mixer (with four channels), boutique mixer brand MasterSounds has now added the compact and affordable (in high end terms) Radius Two Valve to its range. The new 2 channel DJ mixer is manufactured using the highest quality components. At the heart of Two Valve and its unique sound quality are two dual triodes, which form part of the input buffer stage to the VCAs.
“The valves’ high input impedance minimizes loading on the preceding stages but provides low output impedance to drive the VCAs, whilst natural compression smooths and warms harsh transients. Careful circuit design around the valves minimizes noise and distortion,” explains leading DJ mixer designer, Andy Rigby-Jones, from MasterSounds’ technology partner, Union Audio.
Those who follow the pro audio industry, will recognize Andy Rigby-Jones as the former design manager for Allen & Heath and the creator of the multi award winning Xone series of pro DJ mixers, a position he held for fourteen years. His company Union Audio specializes in analog audio design, from classic tube or discrete circuitry, through to the latest high performance integrated circuits.
The Two Valve comprises 2 fully-featured channel strips with Aux send (switchable pre or post fader), input level trim, illuminated input select switch, a super smooth 3-band asymmetric EQ, large illuminated Cue switch and high quality ALPS rotary faders.
To the right of the channel strip we can find a 3-band Master EQ/Isolator, Master and Booth level controls, and headphone monitor with split and Cue/add mix control. Below the master section is a high-quality Penny & Giles crossfader, with contour control to adjust the curve from smooth mix to fast cut.
Two 36mm illuminated analog VU meters provide accurate signal level monitoring of the mix buss, which automatically switch to monitoring the Cue level when a channel Cue is activated. If the signal level is excessive, the VU meter illumination will change from warm white to bright red.
A new split composite/passive RIAA stage featuring Vishay 2% Polypropylene capacitors, close tolerance thin film resistors and JFET pre-amplifiers provide outstanding fidelity from the turntable inputs. All circuit coupling is through bypassed Panasonic electrolytics to preserve this fidelity throughout the entire signal chain. The icing on the cake is a pair of MUSES operational amplifiers providing world class summing for the fully balanced main mix buss.
Each mixer is supplied with a compact switch mode universal power supply (90V–265V AC 50/60Hz) for use anywhere in the world and MasterSounds supplies the correct IEC lead for each country. Finally, MasterSounds mixers are hand built at Union Audio in Cornwall, UK, ensuring the finest build quality and attention to detail. They sell their products directly online. Price for the Two Valve is £1,245.83 plus taxes (which amounts to approximately $1,500 USD).
“Two Valve has been designed for clubs and DJs requiring a conventional DJ toolkit with ‘no compromise’ audio fidelity. It is the ideal companion for DJ purists who only require 2 audio channels in a premium package. The open, dynamic and transparent sound stage, portable size for carrying between venues, and intuitive feature set gives users an optimal DJ experience, be it at home or in the club,” concludes MasterSounds founder, Ryan Shaw.