Radial Introduces BT-Pro Bluetooth Direct Box

New unit converts wireless Bluetooth data into balanced stereo analog signal, producing up to +4dB at the output.

By PSW Staff November 2, 2015

The BT-Pro Bluetooth Direct Box from Radial Engineering.

Radial Engineering announces the BT-Pro, a Bluetooth direct box designed to capture the wireless transmission from a Bluetooth enabled device and convert the signal to a balanced line for use in a PA system.

According to Radial president Peter Janis: “It seems that today, Bluetooth wireless technology is everywhere. You can connect your phone to your car, your laptop to your house and tablet to your TV. It only makes sense that that Bluetooth wireless technology would hit the stage.”

“In recent months, we have had a number of requests to bring Radial’s legendary build quality to this endeavor and we are pleased to announce the BT-Pro solution. I think most impressive is how our engineering team managed to solve the problem of durability with the need for wireless transmission. The BT-Pro employs a T-shaped access cavity behind which we located the antenna. This is protected by a milled Sintra insert made from rugged closed-cell PVC that allows the wireless transmission signal to pass. This innovation allows reception distances to 20 meters (65’) under normal conditions.”

As with all Radial products, the BT-Pro is made from 14-gauge steel with an I-beam frame that makes it impossible to torque the sensitive PC board, eliminating outside stress and the chance of solder joints going cold. A unique book-end cover creates protective zones at each end that keep the volume knob, switches and connectors out of harm’s way. 

Connecting to the BT-Pro is easy. The BT-Pro is powered by an external supply, either with a USB power adapter or a USB port from a laptop.

Once powered, two top-mounted LEDs will toggle as it awaits paring. Turn on your Bluetooth device and its transceiver sends an initial pairing message to identify the BT-Pro. This will show up as Radial. A connection pass code is then used to initialize the connection. This important safety feature ensures other nearby Bluetooth devices cannot ‘pollute or hijack’ the system. Once paired, the BT-Pro’s red LED will remain illuminated and undulate to let you know the two Bluetooth devices are talking to each other.

The BT-Pro audio signal path itself takes advantage of the latest Bluetooth wireless A2DP interface over 2.0 EDR (Enhanced Data Rate) for higher speed transmission and best audio quality. This employs a 16 bit wireless compressed format with the actual bit rate determined by the source material.

Inside, the BT-Pro converts the data to a stereo analog signal, producing up to +4dB at the output. The signal level is controlled by a front panel potentiometer that is shared with the built-in headphone amp. This features a standard 3.5mm mini TRS and is used for trouble shooting. 

For greater flexibility, a stereo-to-mono switch is provided that sums the input for dual-mono operation to reduce input requirements on the mixer or split the signal to the PA and monitors.  Should noise be encountered, two side-mounted isolation transformers may be inserted into the signal path. This is augmented with a ground lift switch for the XLRs to further help eliminate ground loops. Frequency response is 20hz to 20Khz.

MAP for the BT-Pro:  $229.99 USD. It will begin shipping November 2015.

Radial Engineering

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