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Radial Introduces Headlight-Pro Direct Box Designed To Handle Multiple Instruments

Designed to make juggling multiple instruments on stage easier for front of house and monitor engineers

By PSW Staff April 7, 2016

The new Radial Engineering Headlight-Pro direct box.

Radial Engineering has announced the Headlight-Pro, a unique direct box designed to handle multiple instruments on stage.

The Headlight-Pro begins with a standard 1/4-inch input for acoustic guitar, mandolin, fiddle or bass. (It will also work well with many other instruments.) 

A muting footswitch is provided to silence the switcher when connecting or disconnecting an instrument. The signal is then routed to a selector footswitch that sequences across four outputs allowing each instrument to have its own dedicated channel on the PA.

Simply mute the Headlight-Pro, connect the desired instrument, and then use the footswitch to select the output. High visibility LED indicators provide clear visual feedback on which output is active.

Radial tech team associate Mike Bauer explains: °When you are on a busy stage, switching instruments can pose several challenges. When sharing the same direct box, switching between an acoustic guitar and mandolin requires both the FOH engineer and monitor engineer to mute the active mixer channel in order to avoid damaging plug-in transients and painful pops for the audience.

“You then need to alter the EQ and adjust the level to adapt it for each instrument. Alternatively, when using separate DI boxes, you end up with a bunch of wires connected to each instrument which often get tangled. Ask any stage tech and they will tell you that the preferred approach would be to use a single cable and manually switch between instruments and ideally, do so without need for concurrent action from the audio engineer team.

“WIth the Headlight-Pro the artist can mute the instrument on stage and avoid having to flag down the FOH and monitor engineers between each changeover. Since each instrument is now connected to a dedicated channel, the signal level, EQ and effects can be predetermined and optimized without having to make radical changes every time an instrument is changed. With so many auxiliary musicians onstage these days, there has never been a more appropriate time for this type of solution.”

The Headlight-Pro has four active balanced outputs, each of which is equipped with a ground lift switch to help eliminate hum and buzz caused by ground loops and a 180-degree polarity reverse switch to either help time-align the PA with the stage amp, or help eliminate acoustic hot-spots on stage that can cause certain frequencies to combine and create feedback.

All of the connectors are made from glass-filled nylon for exceptional durability and isolation, and have nickel-silver contacts that will not tarnish over time. Two “set and forget” switches allow the user to limit the range of the selector footswitch to two, three or four active outputs. There is also a dedicated tuner out that is always on for on-the-fly adjustments.

The Headlight-Pro is made from 14-gauge steel for added rigidity and greater immunity against stray magnetic fields. It employs a standard Boss-style 9-volt power supply (not included) and is equipped with a cable lock to prevent accidental disconnection.

The Headlight-Pro will be released soon with an estimated MAP price of $279.99 USD.

Radial Engineering

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