Drawmer has unveiled the HQ, a combined precision high-quality monitor pre-amp/volume controller and DAC aimed at devotees to high-fidelity audio everywhere. Bringing together Drawmer's respected expertise for precision design in both the analogue and digital domains, the HQ is a critical listening device incorporating a highly accurate pre-amp and offering finely balanced volume control over a variety of analogue and digital input sources, with extremely low inter-channel crosstalk. The HQ also boasts a state-of-the-art DAC for clean conversion of digital sources to analogue for reference monitoring.
“There are three components to the accurate evaluation of audio,”
explains Drawmer Sales Director Ken Giles. “Audio professionals pay a great deal of attention to both the choice of microphone and speakers.
However the third component, the monitor pre-amp and analogue-to-digital conversion used to reference this material, is crucial and often overlooked. The Drawmer HQ is specifically designed to do that job — and to a highly accurate, precision-engineered standard.”
Volume adjustment and source selection could not be more intuitive, taking place via the clearly labelled pair of rotary controls on the front panel. A third, smaller front-panel rotary control allows you to switch instantly between two different sets of speakers for quick A/B comparisons, or allows the HQ to drive both sets of outputs simultaneously. The HQ’s volume control incorporates new exclusive Drawmer technology, SRVC™ or Seamless Relay Volume Control, and thus offers the smooth, continuous and quiet operation of a potentiometer combined with the accuracy of a precision relay volume control — the HQ's output channels are balanced to within 0.05dB across the entire volume range.
Designed to act as a central hub in a studio, mastering room, reference library or any high-end listening environment, Drawmer’s HQ facilitates fast switching between sources and outputs in multi-speaker setups.
Analogue inputs accept audio on balanced XLRs and unbalanced phonos. In addition, separate stereo RIAA-corrected phono inputs are provided, so that turntables may be directly connected for restoration work or reference without the need for a separate phono pre-amp. The HQ also permits the connection of digital sources at up to 192kHz in AES format (via XLRs), TOSlink (on an RCA jack) or AES3id (on a BNC connector), and a standard USB 'B'-type connector allows audio to be streamed at lower rates from a laptop.
Each input source, whether in the analogue or digital domain, may be given its own input gain settings for optimum level-matching of the connected devices. Audio from mixing desks, turntables, digital audio workstations and DVD, Blu-ray or CD players may all be united within the HQ and sent to the balanced and unbalanced analogue outputs simultaneously. Digital sources at their original sample rate and bit depth can also be routed to a dedicated S/PDIF output.
Bringing together the functions of a high-quality audio switcher, monitor level controller and DAC in a precision-engineered package, the Drawmer HQ is the perfect solution for audio engineers, producers and hi-fi enthusiasts alike.