Portable recording specialists CEntrance have announced the release of the English Channel, a bundle that comprises the company’s SoapBox, BlackCab, and PortCaster devices along with a custom desktop enclosure. When combined, the units provide a microphone preamp, dynamics processing, and three-band parametric equalisation alongside a built-in SD Card recorder and audio interface.
The SoapBox features a microphone preamp capable of providing up to 70dB of gain, with switchable high-pass filter, phantom power, pad, and Hi-Z functions. There are also a range of dynamics processors included, with the device sporting a gate, a VCA-based compressor, and a de-esser. An input is provided by an XLR/TRS combo socket, whilst an output is offered on an XLR connector. A pair of large LED meters placed in the centre of the SoapBox’s top panel provide a visual indication of both the input and output levels.
CEntrance’s BlackCab offers three bands of parametric equalisation, with ±9dB of gain available for each band. A second-order high-pass filter is also provided to combat unwanted low-frequency content, with some enhancement of high-frequency content offered by a switchable Air control. The device’s I/O is available on a pair of XLR connectors.
The PortCaster is based on CEntrance’s award-winning MixerFace, and has been developed with voice recording applications in mind. The English Channel bundle includes a special version of the device, the PortCaster R4S, which removes the battery and accepts power from a USB-C supply. In addition to the line-level I/O which provides integration with the SoapBox and BlackCab, the unit also features an additional two microphone preamps, allowing a total of three microphones to be connected to a British Channel system.
Audio can be captured directly by a built-in MicroSD card recorder, or passed on to a computer or mobile device via a built-in USB-C audio interface. Helpfully, the PortCaster R4S is capable of carrying out both of these tasks simultaneously, allowing users to record their audio whilst live streaming, for example.
A custom enclosure, named the Commander Console, is supplied with each bundle, allowing the three devices to be fixed together in a single desktop enclosure. Power can be chained to each device, allowing all three of the units to be fed from a single USB-C power supply. Seven colour finishes are available for the enclosure, with users able to choose between Black, Grey, Gold, Red, Blue, Lime, and Lemon options.
Pricing & Availability
The English Channel bundle is available to pre-order now, with shipping currently planned for January 2023. CEntrance are currently offering an introductory price of $1199.99, reduced from a full price of $1800.