MTC Mk2 in Professional Audio

“The new MTC Mk2 is a really great analog monitoring controller in established SPL quality. Besides its very transparent, clean and genuine sound, the new headphone amplifiers with Phonitor Matrix, the sophisticated Cue Mix system and the many practical solutions of the rock-solid and excellently processed Monitoring & Talkback Controller are particularly convincing.”

Professional Audio Magazine has published a review of our new SPL MTC Mk2 Monitor & Talkback Controller. The complete review can be found in the 09/2022 edition of the magazine – here we provide a short summary:

“SPL has done well to retain the established basic design – a robust metal housing with an angled front. The MTC has always been a fine piece of equipment in terms of ergonomics and feel. The new model continues this tradition and every sound designer will be happy to place the controller on their desk and lay their hands on the knobs and switches. Their bright white labels stand out perfectly against the black-blue background, making them easy to read even in the dim light of an audio lab. Colored status LEDs serve as additional display elements that are as functional as they are good-looking. With its weight of around three kilograms, the MTC Mk2 is a solid piece of equipment that tells its user: ‘Feel this. Well, that’s solid, isn’t it? You can count on me – as long as you want to.’”

“The MTC Mk2 offers three pairs of outputs for stereo speakers. Two have balanced XLR outputs, the third balanced jack outputs. In addition, there is a mono output for a subwoofer or – this is also easily possible and explicitly intended – a mono speaker.”

“The speaker pairs are selected via instructive labeled switches on the controller front. What’s good: each stereo pair has a dedicated selector switch, so multiple selections are possible. You can switch an additional subwoofer on or off via SUB. The combination with any of the three stereo speakers is possible. The signal sent to the subwoofer is mono summed and has the full frequency range. That’s why it’s also possible to connect a mono monitoring speaker to SUB, because the signal is not trimmed via low-pass filter. We think that’s a good thing.”

“On the input side, there are four stereo inputs. In A to C each offer two balanced jack inputs, while In D offers two unbalanced RCA/ RCA inputs.”

“All inputs can be used simultaneously – there is no either/or, so the MTC Mk2 actually has the capability of mixing in the true meaning of the word.”

“The mix can be monitored in stereo as usual, if the MONO switch is pressed and the red status LED lights up, the mono compatibility of the mix can be checked. With ‘Ø’ the phase of the signal can be reversed and the third mode ‘LR SWAP’ packs a punch. It’s a channel swap function. So LR SWAP reverses the stereo image so that left becomes right and right becomes left. That works great.”

“The MTC Mk2 operates with an internal operating voltage of +/- 18 volts for the analog output sections. The MTC Mk2 can now handle levels of up to +22 dBu, and offers about 1.5 dBu more headroom than conventional pro audio devices, which operate with an internal operating voltage of +/- 15 volts. The headroom is not the only benefit of the higher operating voltage: the dynamic range, signal-to-noise ratio and distortion factor also benefit from it. Simply put, the impulse response promises to be even better than the MTC with the least amount of noise, so we can expect accurate and very clean sound even with impulsive sound events.”

The headphone amplifier:

“As already mentioned, the MTC Mk2 has two headphone amplifiers with 6.3 mm jacks, which have an output impedance of 20 Ω. While in the Mk1 version the volume control was still coupled to the master volume, the two new amplifiers are now equipped with separate, precision detented potentiometers. SPL differentiates the two outputs with the labels “Producer” and “Artist” because, if desired, the cue mix signal can only be heard by the musician at the push of a button. This is an extremely handy feature, especially when both people are in the same room during a recording session. For example, a separate, individual headphone mix from the DAW can easily be switched to the second headphone output, detached from the actual monitoring signal.”

“SPL has taken the topology of the headphone amplifiers from the Marc One and Control One models, using a Class A/B circuit. Likewise, the now famous Phonitor Matrix has been integrated, which has already proven itself in older products such as the Phonitor 2, Crimson 3, 2Control or even the entire Series One.”

Sound:

“Within a short time, we are pleased to discover that the SPL controller is a champion in terms of clarity and cleanliness. Everything sounds pristine, finely resolved and crisp, and just as the recordings/productions and monitoring speakers suggest.”

“Thus, we are dealing with a controller that does nothing but good to the ears and the mind. Analog and audiophile indeed.”

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