We are hugely excited to announce a massive expansion to our award-winning Avid VENUE™ | S6L live sound family, with three new control surfaces, a new engine, and two new I/O racks—built on a unified technology platform.
Offering unmatched modularity, scalability, and flexibility to meet any size production, space, or budget requirement, VENUE | S6L is the industry’s only live sound platform with 100% software, hardware, and show file compatibility across all system components.
Avid VENUE | S6L is a modular live sound mixing system that delivers best-in-class functionality for a range of applications, including front-of-house and monitor mixing for concert tours, festivals, clubs, theater, broadcast, house of worship, and corporate events.
VENUE | S6L has been hugely successful for Avid, being adopted across the world for the highest-profile tours, houses of worship and theatre performances (link to Live Sound Gallery), even outselling the industry-standard Avid VENUE Profile and VENUE SC48 systems. This is due to the differentiating feature set and unique capabilities of S6L that make it stand out against other consoles in its class. We call these the hallmarks of S6L and it is now time to apply these hallmarks to a range of new products.
Since S6L launched in 2015, we as a product development team, have been focused on ensuring that S6L is the most powerful, most robust, and most fully-featured live audio mixing system in the world. This has been realized by fifteen software releases and five hardware releases, each delivering the capabilities that you have been asking us for. As you can imagine, the engineering effort has been significant and we are hugely proud of where S6L is today.
When considering future systems, we approach our design methodology with care. VENUE | S6L was developed with a modular architecture—what if we could take this modular architecture and scale it to design new products, at new price-points, with the same build quality, stability, audio quality, software, workflow and features of the premium-level S6L? This would mean that new consoles would benefit from the years of engineering investment in S6L, straight out of the door.
This concept is the heart of our design methodology for Live Sound at Avid. We call it the Unified Platform Strategy.
The concept is to expand the S6L family of products into new price tiers by introducing new surfaces, engines, and I/O racks built with 100% reuse from S6L, so that all new products benefit from a single hardware and software architecture.
The result is a coherent, unified portfolio of products on a single platform where all devices are compatible and interoperate with each other. Solutions scale proportionately in price and capability, ranging from mid-level systems ($40K) to enterprise-level ($150K+).
So, what are we launching? At Avid Connect, NAB, and Pro Light + Sound 2018, we are announcing the following six new devices that expand the S6L platform into new price tiers and capabilities.
VENUE | S6L-24C
VENUE | S6L-24C is a 24-fader control surface designed as a replacement for, or more accurately an upgrade to, our hugely successful VENUE | Profile console. This is your festival desk. When coupled with the E6L-144 engine and Stage 64, it has the exact price-point of the Profile system. Complete reuse of S6L control surface modules supports the workflows designed for the larger S6L-32D and 24D surfaces. S6L-24C is supported with every E6L engine and I/O rack.
VENUE | S6L-16C
VENUE | S6L-16C takes the 24C and scales it down into an ultra-compact footprint. This console comes into its own when space is at a premium but you do not want to compromise on audio quality or processing power. Again, all the same modules designed for the larger consoles are used here, providing S6L workflows on 16 faders and 32 encoders. Remember, even though this is a small format console, it can be connected to any E6L engine and leverage the full capacity of that engine.
VENUE | S6L-48D
The VENUE | S6L-48D is our new flagship S6L control surface. This enterprise-level console is designed for high-end theatre, music broadcasts and large houses of worship. 48 faders, 160 encoders and six integrated touch screens give you unmatched visual feedback and control, ideal for supporting two operators at once.
VENUE | E6L-112
VENUE | E6L-112 is a powerful processing engine at the heart of our mid-level systems. With 112 input channels, 48 busses and 100 simultaneous plug-ins, its price-point should not deceive you into thinking it’s anything less than the most powerful live sound processing engine in its class. When coupled with the S6L-24C or S6L-16C control surface, it should prove a great solution for current Profile or Mix Rack users wanting to move up to VENUE | S6L.
Stage 32 is the most flexible remote I/O rack we have ever designed. A modular design with four I/O option slots, it accepts any of the I/O option cards designed for Stage 64 (link to options), but here’s the cool bit… Any of the slots can accept an input card or an output card, meaning you can configure it exactly how you like, up to a total of 32 channels total. We will provide an empty rack option to allow total customization. Audio quality is identical to Stage 64 since it uses all the same option cards.
Local 16 is a non-modular I/O rack that expands the local I/O of your console. With 8 analog I/O, 8 digital I/O, it provides identical audio specifications as the S6L console I/O, including the same mic-pres as Stage 64 and Stage 32. You can see that all the connections are on the back of the unit. This is so the rack can live with your outboard gear and all the cabling is on one side down the back of the flight case, leaving just two Ethernet cables to connect to the back of your console.
Take all six products and add them to the existing S6L products, and this is the result: a unified family of live sound solutions on a single hardware and software platform with 100% compatibility between them.
VENUE | S6L is the industry’s only live sound platform with 100% hardware, software and show file compatibility, delivering unprecedented performance, coherent workflows and exceptional sound quality across the entire family.
Five control surfaces, three engines, and four I/O racks scale in price and capability to allow you to scale the system to meet the needs of any application you will face. With 100% interoperability between devices, the surfaces, engines and stage racks can connect to form a full range of systems.
With each system, there is no reduction in quality. S6L-16C systems have the same audio quality, user interface, I/O connectivity and build quality as the biggest S6L-48D system, and Show files are compatible across the entire product line.
We are hugely excited about this massive expansion to our award-winning S6L family. These new products will begin shipping later this year, but stay tuned for events that will be happening across the globe—starting with the NAB and Prolight + Sound shows. The Avid Live Sound team will be taking the prototype systems on the road to visit as many partners as possible in the lead-up to availability. Call your Avid dealer to see if you can get a chance to see these new systems in person before they ship.
Finally, I want to thank all of our tremendous customers who have not only turned to Avid the S6L system for their tours, events, and installations, but have fed back critical insights, requests, and feature suggestions over the past 2+ years. Your engagement is highly valued by the product team as we work to develop the most powerful, best-sounding, easiest-to-use live sound system in the world. Stay tuned —the best is yet to come!