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Lynx Studio Technology is proud to present the Hilo Reference A/D D/A Converter System. With the pristine, open, transparent audio quality for which Lynx is known, Hilo (pronounced HE-low) provides two channels of mastering quality analog to digital conversion, up to six channels of digital to analog conversion, a secondary monitor output, and a world class independent headphone amplifier in a compact half-rack size. A first for the two-channel pro converter market, Hilo’s innovative 480 x 272 touch-screen provides a flexible and intuitive interface that can adapt to a particular application and be easily upgraded with enhancements and new features. Front panel controls support extensive signal routing and mixing, sample rate selection, clock source options, levels, metering and diagnostic features.
Hilo completely redefines and evolves the category of the two channel converter. Of utmost importance is the audio signal quality. The completely new design of the analog stages and converter topology for Hilo break new ground in terms of lowering distortion and noise while maintaining transparency for A/D and D/A conversion. Beyond that, Hilo offers extensive I/O capabilities and utilizes the latest FPGA technology with vast resources for control, routing, and signal processing capabilities. Also in development are diagnostic and analysis tools for Hilo. The LCD screen is a natural interface for these functions.
The digital or analog inputs can be routed to three separate analog outputs, Line Output (with 8 trim settings), Monitor Output, and Headphone Output. Each of these output pairs has its own dedicated DACs, allowing each to offer a unique mix. The Monitor and Headphone Outputs have volume controls, accessible via faders on the touch-screen or the single knob on the front (offering control in ½ dB increments). Another innovation, the Headphone section has its own dedicated D/A converter. This supports the creation of 32-channel headphone mixes independent of the main and monitor outputs, as well as providing specifications that rival those of dedicated headphone amps costing $1500 and more.
The digital section offers a wide range of inputs. AES/EBU inputs and outputs have transformer isolated balanced XLR connectors. S/PDIF input and output are available via transformer-coupled coax or optical (TOSLINK) connections. The Optical ports can also be used for up to eight ADAT channels. The ADAT input and output channels are completely independent from the AES/EBU or S/PDIF coax channels. The Lynx LT-USB (USB 2.0) or LT-TB (Thunderbolt) LSlot accessory is also included, for computer connectivity. The LT-HD for Pro Tools HD connectivity is also enabled. Lynx’s low jitter SynchroLock word clock is included, with Word Clock in and out connections available.
In total, Hilo has 12 total inputs, 16 total outputs plus 32 channels possible via its LSlot port. The unit’s FPGA powers its internal 32-channel mixer, which allows Hilo to offer the most versatile I/O and routing in the two channel converter genre.
In contrast to the concentrated and intricate back panel, Hilo’s front panel is elegant in its simplicity. It has a power switch, headphone jack, multipurpose control and a 480 x 272 pixel high resolution LCD touchscreen. This high-resolution screen does a lot more than simply replace the buttons on the front panel of most other converters. Of course it handles the basic settings and routing functions, clocking and level settings.
A second meter screen shows just two larger bar-graph style stereo bar meters. Any input or output set can be assigned to each meter. In addition to bar-graph meters common on most converters, Hilo’s touchscreen is able to show more traditional metering types, such as old style VU meters. Firmware version 7 added a powerful metering addition, a stereo third octave real time analyzer. As with all other Lynx products, Hilo is FPGA based, meaning new features, capabilities and graphics can be added at any time with a simple download.