Audio-Technica NAB 2014 Press Kit

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Neumann Launches Digital Version of its KH 120 Nearfield Studio Monitor

Enhanced Version of KH 120 Features Digital Inputs, Time Delay Compensation

Las Vegas – April 8, 2014 – Premium audio brand Neumann announced the launch of its first digital studio monitor: the KH 120 D. Based on the KH 120 A small format studio monitor launched in 2010, the KH 120 D sets a new standard of sonic quality and price-performance ratio in the compact nearfield monitor segment. The KH 120 D will be on display at the Neumann booth at the 2014 NAB Show [booth C3217] and will be shipping this summer.

The KH 120 D is designed for tracking, mixing and mastering applications in music, broadcast, project and post-production studios. Utilizing the latest in acoustic and electronic simulation technologies, the KH 120 D ensures the most accurate sound reproduction possible. Equipped with an additional BNC input for AES/EBU or S/P-DIF formats (24-bit/192 kHz), the KH 120 D enables seamless digital workflow right up through playback on the studio monitor.

The KH 120 D also features digital delay for both analog and digital inputs, enabling the monitor to be used for demanding tasks requiring time alignment. With a maximum delay of over 400 ms, the KH 120 D is able to seamlessly address audio/video synchronization issues, or simply manage time delay compensation in situations where space constraints preclude equidistant positioning of loudspeakers.

Wolfgang Fraissinet, President of Neumann.Berlin, commented: “Neumann’s studio monitors are built to extremely high tolerances and deliver an ‘honest’ sound. With the KH 120 D, a fully digital workflow can now also benefit from these characteristics. The addition of a built-in delay feature makes the KH 120 D suitable for new applications and represents exceptional value at this price point. It provides an answer to the very latest trends in the field of professional audio.”

The KH 120 D studio monitor is designed for use as a near-field loudspeaker or as a rear loudspeaker in larger multi-channel systems. It features a Mathematically Modeled Dispersion waveguide (MMD), flexible acoustical controls, analog class-AB amplifiers, various input formats (analog and digital) and an extensive range of mounting hardware. All of this provides the user with the maximum versatility over a wide variety of acoustic conditions, source equipment, and physical locations.

For further information please visit www.neumann.com.

About Neumann:

Georg Neumann GmbH, with its headquarters in Berlin, Germany, is well-known as one of the world’s leading manufacturers of microphones. The company, which was established in 1928, has a long track record of world-leading product designs and has been recognized with a string of international awards for its technology innovations. From 2010, Neumann offers this expertise in electro-acoustic transducer technologies to the studio monitoring market, and will provide optimum solutions to its customers in the areas of TV and radio broadcasting, recording, and audio productions. Neumann is now the perfect partner for both the input and the output of the audio signal path. Neumann has manufacturing facilities in Germany (microphones) and Ireland (loudspeakers), and is represented in over 50 countries worldwide by Sennheiser subsidiaries, as well as by long-term trading partners. Georg Neumann GmbH is a Sennheiser Group company.

About Sennheiser:

Sennheiser is a world-leading manufacturer of microphones, headphones and wireless transmission systems. Established in 1945 in Wedemark, Germany, Sennheiser is now a global brand represented in 60 countries around the world with U.S. headquarters in Old Lyme, Conn. Sennheiser’s pioneering excellence in technology has rewarded the company with numerous awards and accolades including an Emmy, a Grammy, and the Scientific and Engineering Award of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

You can find all the latest information on Sennheiser by visiting our website at www.sennheiserusa.com.

Photo captions:
1) Front and rear of the Neumann KH 120 D studio monitor.
2) Rear of the KH 120 D studio monitor.

Sennheiser Updates Customers on Pending Spectrum Reallocation While Encourages Microphone Owners to Support of its Petition to FCC

Company Predicts Wireless Microphone Operation in the 600 MHz Range Will Remain Status Quo Through 2016

Old Lyme, Conn., April 8, 2014 – Audio specialist Sennheiser, which continues to file comments with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in light of the pending spectrum auction scheduled to take place in 2015, has launched a website to keep its customers informed on recent developments concerning the future of wireless microphones and the UHF spectrum. The website [http://sennheiser.com/spectrum] also contains a sample support letter that microphone owners can download and use to express their own views to the FCC concerning equipment replacement costs they will incur as a result of spectrum reallocation.

In the middle of 2015, the FCC plans to hold an ‘incentive auction” with the intent of transferring spectrum currently allocated for over-the-air (OTA) TV service to mobile broadband. The auction offers TV broadcasters the opportunity to relinquish or share their spectrum license in exchange for a portion of the proceeds generated by the auction. The broadcasters that operate on channels in the 600 MHz range that choose to stay on the air will be moved to a different TV channel during the subsequent repacking process, which is expected to take at least two years to complete. Therefore Sennheiser expects wireless microphone operation in the 600 MHz range to remain status quo through 2016.

While it is uncertain whether the incentive auction will be successful, Sennheiser is preparing for the possibility of a 600 MHz reallocation and is recommending that microphone operators start preparing for this transition as well. If the auction is successful, the degree of impact after UHF packing remains unclear for the following reasons:

• Wireless mics may still be able to operate in some pockets of the 600 MHz, following FCC approval, in the planned guard band and the mid-band gap. The majority of the re-purposed spectrum will be segmented into two separate blocks for up-link and down-link. Between them will be a mid-band gap. Below the downlink block will be a guard band. In repacking scenarios that affect the radio astronomy channel (TV channel 37), one or two small additional guard bands may be created. The mid-band gap and the guard band(s) are intended to be buffers, but their functionality for mics is yet to be defined.

• Reallocation may vary by market. The FCC plans to pursue the “down from 51″ plan where a range will be reallocated, starting from TV channel 51 (698 MHz) on downwards. It is unclear how far down from 698 MHz will be reallocated, in large part to the voluntary nature of the auction, but it could be as far as 578 MHz. The FCC wants the allocation between TV and mobile broadband to vary by market, but faces strong opposition from those who want the divisions to be uniform nationwide.

• Currently, there are two TV channels in each market that are reserved for wireless mic/monitor use, available to any mic/monitor operator. It is unclear whether this will still be the case after the repacking process.

Sennheiser expects to have better visibility on these details later this year.

Regardless of the outcome of the spectrum auction, Sennheiser continues to design and manufacture innovative products. Its newest wireless systems, such as the Digital 9000, are more spectrally efficient and easier to operate than ever before, despite an increasingly challenging RF environment. However, without adequate spectrum, even the most advanced equipment will not be able to operate. Therefore Sennheiser will continue to advocate and pursue political activities in the interest of its customers.

“While it is still unclear as to how the spectrum repacking will impact many thousands of audio professionals by forcing them to reinvest in compliant equipment, Sennheiser will continue to inform and support its customers wherever possible,” commented Joe Ciaudelli, Spectrum Affairs, Sennheiser. “With Sennheiser, you are not only purchasing premium products but service and support from people who care.”

Sennheiser encourages its customers to support its petition for compensation for microphone owners in light of the pending spectrum auction, and to communicate any potential equipment loss directly to the FCC. To learn more, and download a sample support letter, visit the Sennheiser website.

About Sennheiser:

Sennheiser is a world-leading manufacturer of microphones, headphones and wireless transmission systems. Established in 1945 in Wedemark, Germany, Sennheiser is now a global brand represented in 60 countries around the world with U.S. headquarters in Old Lyme, Connecticut. Sennheiser’s pioneering excellence in technology has rewarded the company with numerous awards and accolades including an Emmy, a Grammy, and the Scientific and Engineering Award of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

You can find all the latest information on Sennheiser by visiting our website at http://www.sennheiserusa.com.

LECTROSONICS ANNOUNCES THE DIGITAL SECURE WIRELESS SYSTEM

** Photo: Lectrosonics Digital Secure Wireless system **

Rio Rancho, NM – April 2014… Lectrosonics, recognized the world over as a leading manufacturer of wireless microphone systems and audio processing products, is pleased to announce the introduction of the Digital Secure Wireless system. Featuring AES-256-CTR (Advanced Encryption Standard) encryption technology, the new Digital Secure Wireless system is ideal for use in environments where privacy is of paramount concern, such as corporate boardrooms, shareholder meetings, and government facilities. As a rugged and high-quality wireless microphone system, the new products will also find a home in theaters, film making, touring and other demanding applications. more…

Sennheiser supports Dante™

Las Vegas, NV, April 7, 2014 – At NAB 2014, audio specialist Sennheiser has announced its support for the Dante™ multi-channel audio networking standard. “By joining this standard, we will be able to optimally cater to our customers in the broadcasting and live sound worlds,” explained Claus Menke, Head of Portfolio Management Pro for Sennheiser’s Professional Division. The first product to make use of the network technology will be the company’s Digital 9000 wireless microphone system. A Dante-enabled expansion card for the receiver will be launched in summer 2014.

Sennheiser electronic GmbH & Co. KG signed the Dante License Agreement with Audinate Pty Ltd at the end of March, just ahead of NAB. In 2013, Sennheiser had signed the RAVENNA Partnership Agreement with ALC NetworX GmbH, following in the footsteps of its subsidiary Georg Neumann GmbH. Sennheiser has also been a member of the AVnu Alliance since 2010.

“The future belongs to digital networking. We see the digital distribution of audio and control signals becoming more and more widespread in all areas of production,” said Claus Menke. “The flexibility and modularity of our Digital 9000 wireless system allows the seamless integration of networking technologies, making this and subsequent microphone systems a future-proof investment.”

“Sennheiser is recognised globally for its uncompromised performance,” stated Lee Ellison, CEO of Audinate. “The Sennheiser Digital 9000 microphone receiver combined with Audinate’s Dante networking further enriches the broad suite of Dante products available for audio over IP networks in broadcast, live sound, theatre, and professional audio markets.”

About Audinate and Dante™:

Dante™ is the digital audio networking solution of choice for over 140 professional audio manufacturers in the broadcast, live sound, commercial installed and conferencing markets. Audinate’s Dante solution builds on existing Internet (IP) and Ethernet networking standards and offers a migration path to emerging standards like AES67. Dante networking replaces point-to-point cabling and matrix switching solutions offering hundreds of channels of high-performance audio, control and monitoring across existing network infrastructure. Installation and management is simplified through a unique combination of plug and play technologies, saving enormous installation and long-term ownership costs. Audio sources attached to any network port are available everywhere throughout the network with signal routing defined by software, not physical cabling. Audinate also offers a comprehensive set of interfacing options for PC and Mac equipment (Dante Virtual Soundcard and Dante PCIe card) enabling simple integration of existing software applications with the audio network.

About Sennheiser:

The Sennheiser Group, with its headquarters in Wedemark near Hanover, Germany, is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of microphones, headphones and wireless transmission systems. In 2012 the family company, which was founded in 1945, achieved a turnover of around 584 million euros. Sennheiser employs more than 2,300 people worldwide, and has manufacturing plants in Germany, Ireland and the USA. The company is represented worldwide by subsidiaries in France, Great Britain, Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Liechtenstein, Germany, Denmark (Nordic), Russia, Hong Kong, India, Singapore, Japan, China, Australia and New Zealand, Canada, Mexico and the USA, as well as by long-term trading partners in many other countries. Also part of the Sennheiser Group are Georg Neumann GmbH, Berlin (studio microphones and monitor loudspeakers), and the joint venture Sennheiser Communications A/S (headsets for PCs, offices and call centres).

You can find all the latest information on Sennheiser by visiting our website at www.sennheiserusa.com.

Caption:
Claus Menke, Head of Portfolio Management Pro for Sennheiser’s Professional Division (Photo credit: Rita Kruse)

Refinement, redefined: Sennheiser expands studio microphone range with the MK 8

Las Vegas, April 7, 2014: At NAB Show, the world’s largest annual conference and expo for professionals who create, manage and distribute entertainment across all platforms, audio specialist Sennheiser [booth C3217] will unveil the MK 8 large-diaphragm, multi-pattern condenser studio microphone.

The new microphone features five selectable polar patterns (omni-directional, wide cardioid, cardioid, super-cardioid, figure-of-eight), a low cut/roll-off filter and selectable pad. “The MK 8 expands Sennheiser’s successful series of large-diaphragm condensers, and professional users will appreciate its versatility,” said Sebastian Schmitz, microphone product manager. “Its sound is direct and harmonious, characterized by a defined bass, beautifully rounded mids and an open treble. Overall, it has a very musical sound.”

Designed and manufactured in Germany, the MK 8 echoes the sleek design of the MK 4 studio microphone. Where the fixed cardioid MK 4 was designed for plug-and-play simplicity, the multi-pattern MK 8 offers additional control for the refined recording engineer. The new microphone features a one-inch, dual-diaphragm capsule, precisely spattered with 24-carat gold and elastically mounted to reduce structure-borne noise. In addition, a three-position filter allows the user to either eliminate low-frequency noise below 60 Hz (-18 dB/octave, low-cut position) or introduce a softer roll-off effect from 100 Hz down to compensate for the proximity effect in close miking (-6 dB/octave, roll-off position).

The MK 8 is also fitted with a switchable pad (off, -10 dB, -20 dB). A -10 dB reduction in the capsule protects against excessively loud audio sources, while an additional -10 dB reduction in the microphone electronics avoids overloads in connected mic pre-amps and subsequent recording equipment.

The five switchable pick-up patterns exhibit relatively constant characteristics, especially in the low end. This ensures better, more defined sound, as the selected pattern is maintained over frequency. For example, the super-cardioid pattern will not “blur” but remain precise, providing the same high attenuation of lateral sound sources regardless of frequency.

Encased in a sturdy metal housing, the MK 8 has relatively low sensitivity to humidity as the impedance conversion is done within the capsule. It is packaged with a microphone clip and a protective pouch, and optional accessories include an elastic suspension, a foam windshield, a pop filter and a hard case. The new MK 8 microphone will be available in late summer.

Technical data of the MK 8:

Transducer principle externally polarised condenser microphone
Diaphragm diameter 1” (25.4 mm)
Pick-up patterns omni-directional, wide cardioid, cardioid,
super-cardioid, figure-of-eight
Frequency response 20 to 20,000 Hz
Sensitivity 17.4 mV/Pa (–35 dBV)
Maximum sound pressure level 140 dB (pad: 0 dB)
Equivalent noise level 10 dBA, 16 dB CCIR
Dynamic range 130 dB
Nominal impedance 50 ohms
Min. terminating impedance 1 kohm
Power supply 48 V phantom power (P48)
Low-cut/roll-off filter, switchable roll-off: -6 dB/oct. from 100 Hz
low-cut: -18 dB/oct. from 60 Hz
Switchable pad 0 db, -10 dB, -20 dB
Current consumption 4.1 mA
Diameter approx. 57 mm
Length approx. 160 mm
Weight approx. 485 g
Operating temperature 0° to +40°C
Storage temperature -10° to +60°C

Optional accessories:

MKW 4 Windshield
MZP 40 Pop filter
MKS 40 Elastic suspension
MKC 4 Hard case

About Sennheiser:

Sennheiser is a world-leading manufacturer of microphones, headsets and wireless transmission systems. Established in 1945 in Wedemark, Germany, Sennheiser is now a global brand represented in 60 countries around the world with U.S. headquarters in Old Lyme, Conn. Sennheiser’s pioneering excellence in technology has rewarded the company with numerous awards and accolades including an Emmy, a Grammy, and the Scientific and Engineering Award of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

You can find all the latest information on Sennheiser by visiting our website at http://www.sennheiserusa.com.

Captions:
1) The MK 8 recording microphone
2) The MK 8 offers the recording engineer a full set of control options

Middle Atlantic Unveils New Customer-Focused Website

Fairfield, NJ––Middle Atlantic Products has launched a new, totally re-imagined website to improve the user experience and help its customers find the exact information they need from the company’s extensive product offering.

Exceptionally useful, middleatlantic.com features an elegant new look, easy to navigate design and a wealth of downloadable information including Revit®, CAD and Visio™ drawings, Designer™ and Racktools® free design software, white papers, and easy to reference A&E specifications.

The new website includes a separate page for every rack model offered by Middle Atlantic with dynamic specification information and complementary products for that specific model. For example, a customer can simply click to a specific rack to see a variety of appropriately sized vertical power strips for that model.

A unique Market Solutions section demonstrates how Middle Atlantic products are used to build systems for Commercial A/V, Broadcast, Residential A/V, Security, Structured Cabling and Education applications.

New videos are constantly being loaded onto the website as an easy and effective way of helping customers find and evaluate the right product with tips and tricks to facilitate and improve their installation and use.

A Live Chat feature demonstrates Middle Atlantic’s commitment to its customers by providing a new means to communicate directly with the company’s support team during support hours.

Interactive, wide-ranging and entirely dedicated to the customer, middleatlantic.com marks a significant evolutionary step for the company.

For technical specifications and in-depth information about Middle Atlantic Products, please click to www.middleatlantic.com, or call 1.800.266.7225.

Middle Atlantic Products has been part of the Legrand group since its acquisition in 2011.

Legrand is the global specialist in electrical and digital building infrastructures. Its comprehensive offering of solutions for use in commercial, industrial and residential markets makes it a benchmark for customers worldwide. Innovation for a steady flow of new products with high added value and acquisitions are prime vectors for growth. Legrand reported sales of close to $5.8 billion in 2012. Legrand has a strong presence in the North American market, with a portfolio of well-known product lines that include Cablofil, Electrorack, Middle Atlantic, NuVo, On-Q, Ortronics, Pass & Seymour, Vantage, Watt Stopper and Wiremold. The company is listed on NYSE Euronext and is a component stock of indexes including the CAC40, FTSE4Good, MSCI World, ASPI and DJSI (ISIN code FR0010307819). www.legrand.us

EASTWEST Launches Educational Program

Industry Leader Launches Aggressive Educational Program for Budding Composers and Music Professionals

Hollywood, CA (April 2, 2014) – EASTWEST has been the market leader in virtual instruments and sound libraries for the past 25 years and their products have been used by leading composers for countless scores in blockbuster movies, video games, TV shows, and music production. Hollywood’s elite composers like Danny Elfman, James Newton Howard, David Newmann, JJ Abrams, and more, rely on EASTWEST/Quantum Leap instruments for their realism, depth and accessibility in scoring today’s biggest films, while musicians look for the same quality in their own productions. A high percentage of the music produced for all media today is produced using EASTWEST/Quantum Leap Virtual Instruments.

Musical instrument collections of this caliber come at a price that reflects their quality. They are often unattainable for the next generation but in order to compete with the world’s top composers, today’s young musicians need the same composing tools. For this reason, EASTWEST is launching an educational program with special pricing for active students and educators, starting with the Complete Composers Collection 2. This bundle, already discounted 70%, is now available for students at an additional 50% off. Qualifying students and music educators can choose any 7 or more collections from a total of 20, including:

Hollywood Strings Gold
Hollywood Brass Gold
Hollywood Orchestral Woodwinds Gold
Ministry of Rock 2
The Dark Side
Solo Violin
Spaces
Fab Four
Goliath
Gypsy
Ministry of Rock
Pianos Gold
Ra
Silk
Stormdrum 2
Stormdrum 2 Pro Bundle
Symphonic Choirs Platinum Bundle
Symphonic Choirs Platinum
Symphonic Orchestra Gold
Voices of Passion
If students were to choose the default set with the first 7 collections listed above, they would pay only $399.50 for this selection while the combined retail value of the individual collections is $2,685. The educational price represents an 85% savings! Students may customize their CCC2EDU by choosing any 7 or more of the 20 collections listed. While customization may change the CCC2EDU price, the discount will be at 85% off, regardless of which and how many products are selected.

Pricing & Availability
All of these EASTWEST collections are available for download athttp://www.soundsonline.com/Educational-Program. The price varies depending on the products selected and will be discounted by 85% off MSRP. The CCC2EDU may also be ordered pre-installed on a USB3 Pocket HD for an additional $99.
iLok is required. First time customers may purchase an iLok for 50% off: $20.

This limited time offer is valid for active students and educators enrolled in an accredited educational facility. Educational pricing for EASTWEST products is available exclusively at http://www.soundsonline.com/Educational-Program. EDU discounts of 50% on single collections will be available here as well throughout the year.

About EASTWEST
EASTWEST (www.soundsonline.com) has been dedicated to perpetual innovation and uncompromising quality of Sample Libraries and Virtual Instruments for 25 years, setting the industry standard as the most critically acclaimed soundware developer. More about EASTWEST at soundsonline.com and soundsonline-europe.com.

Sound Devices Hosts Lineup of Renowned Industry Professionals at Its Booth During NAB 2014

Hear from the Pros as They Discuss Today’s World of Audio and Video Production

LAS VEGAS, APRIL 4, 2014 – Sound Devices, specialists in audio and video products for production, will host several presentations from leading industry professionals at its booth throughout the 2014 NAB Show (Booth C2546).

“Sound Devices is thrilled to welcome Alex Lindsay, Eliot Mack, Dave Ruddick and Drew Taylor to provide their expert insight and experience in various aspects of audio and video production,” says Paul Isaacs, vice president of marketing for Sound Devices. “I encourage all of those in attendance at NAB to come be a part of these informative sessions.”

These leading industry influencers will share their first-hand production experience with multimedia workflows, extreme location audio and video capture, and other challenging scenarios, providing their insights into the real world of production from both the audio and video perspective. The NAB seminar lineup includes:

Monday, April 7, 2014 – 2:00 p.m.
Alex Lindsay – Founder, Pixel Corp.

Alex Lindsay has been working in computer graphics and video production for over 25 years. Starting in programming and computer aided drafting, Lindsay has worked in radio, print, games, interactive, broadcast and film. He spent three years working at Lucasfilm and Industrial Light and Magic on Star Wars: Episode 1 before starting his own companies, dvGarage, which builds tools for the visual effects community, and Pixel Corps, a world leader in live interactive streaming events — producing over 300 events per year around the world. Lindsay will discuss the audio and video challenges of multi-site live stream productions.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014 – 2:00 p.m.
Eliot Mack – CEO, Lightcraft Technology

Lightcraft Technology was founded in 2004 by mechanical engineer and MIT/University of Michigan graduate Eliot Mack. Mack has worked at Walt Disney Imagineering, where he led the mechanical engineering effort on the iRobot Roomba before applying his skills and dedication to the development of the Previzion virtual studio system. In this presentation, he will walk through the details and benefits of how Lightcraft’s Previzion virtual studio system embeds tracking data into Apple ProRes Quicktime files captured by the Sound Devices PIX 240i, which can then be transferred into traditional post-production tools or played back in real time from the PIX 240i into Previzion.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014 – 4:00 p.m.
Dave Ruddick – Location Sound Mixer

Dave Ruddick records audio in some of the most beautiful, treacherous and remote locations in the world. An accomplished mountain climber and outdoorsman, Ruddick is in demand when the conditions are the most challenging, including productions taking place on the summit of Mount Everest, following the Iditarod in Alaska and scaling glaciers in Greenland. His customers include National Geographic, Discovery Channel, PBS Nova, WGBH Boston, History Channel and Skywalker Sound. Dave will discuss the challenges of audio production in extreme locations, far from mains, technical support and hot showers.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014 – 11:00 a.m.
Drew Taylor – Business Development, HRS Control

HRS Control is a four-year-old company with a deep background in corporate rental, staging, live event production and concert touring that has also expanded into broadcast and commercial system integration. The company develops its own products for AV system control. Taylor will talk about how HRS Control products control and automate the PIX 260i, taking advantage of the frame synchronous playback and record.

Sound Devices, LLC designs and manufactures portable audio mixers, digital audio recorders, and digital video recorders and related equipment for feature film, episodic television, documentary, news-gathering, and acoustical test and measurement applications. Founded in 1998, the company designs and manufactures from their Reedsburg, Wisconsin headquarters with additional offices in Madison, WI and Highland Park, IL. For more information, visit the Sound Devices website, www.sounddevices.com.

Guitar Center Announces Improved Capital Structure, Now Poised to Accelerate Growth

Announcement Highlights:

Guitar Center improves capital structure through debt-to-equity exchange between Bain Capital & new partner Ares Management
Transactions reduce debt by approximately $500 million and reduces annual cash interest expense by over $70 million
Guitar Center now positioned to make substantial investments in people, stores and products to scale operations in 2014 and beyond

Guitar Center, the world’s largest retailer of musical instruments and recording equipment, today announced the successful completion of financial transactions that greatly improve the company’s financial position. As a result of these transactions, Guitar Center’s total debt has been reduced by approximately $500 million and annual cash interest expense has been reduced by over $70 million. The improved financial position of the company will enable Guitar Center’s management team to further invest in its people, store base and brands to accelerate growth.

As part of the transactions, affiliates of the Private Equity Group of Ares Management exchanged a portion of their holdings of Guitar Center’s debt into preferred stock and assumed a controlling interest in the company. Affiliates of Bain Capital retained partial ownership of the company, along with representation on the Board of Directors.

Concurrently with the partial debt-to-equity exchange, Guitar Center completed a refinancing of its remaining indebtedness with proceeds from new senior secured notes, senior unsecured notes, and a new revolving credit facility. Aside from carrying a lower interest burden, the company’s new debt structure provides for substantially more flexibility and improved credit terms over the next five years.

“This new capital structure is the culmination of a lot of hard work over the last year. Further, it marks a significant moment for Guitar Center as we strengthen our company and welcome Ares Management and its retail expertise alongside that of Bain Capital. We now have the necessary resources to expand our footprint and to invest in our people, stores and product assortment. Guitar Center is well positioned to expand our multi-channel offering nationally and to significantly accelerate growth through new services and a strong focus on improving our customer experience. We believe that 2014 is going to be a landmark year of exciting change for Guitar Center and our valued vendor partners.” – Mike Pratt – CEO, Guitar Center

“These transactions significantly enhance Guitar Center’s financial position. On a cash flow basis, we expect to save more than $70 million a year in cash interest expense. In addition, the removal of the restrictive term loan covenant and extension of the maturity dates of our facilities provides us with financial flexibility to execute our strategic plan and to grow the business.” – Tim Martin, Chief Financial Officer, Guitar Center

Proskauer Rose LLP acted as legal advisor to Ares. Kirkland & Ellis LLP acted as legal advisor to Bain Capital and to Guitar Center. BofA Merrill Lynch, Deutsche Bank Securities, J.P. Morgan and RBC Capital Markets acted as joint bookrunners on the new Secured and Unsecured Notes. Wells Fargo Capital Finance and Bank of America Merrill Lynch acted as joint lead arrangers on the new revolving credit facility.

About Guitar Center

Guitar Center is the largest retailer of musical instruments and related products. We operate Guitar Center and Music & Arts retail stores across the United States. We also are the largest direct response retailer of musical instruments and related products through our subsidiaries Musician’s Friend, Inc., Music123, Inc., Woodwind & Brasswind, Inc., and their catalogs and websites. This year marks the 50th anniversary of Guitar Center’s historic first-steps to helping people make music. Guitar Center is all about enabling musicians and non-musicians alike to experience the almost indescribable joy that comes from playing an instrument. All we sell is the greatest feeling on earth.

About Ares Management

Ares Management LLC is a leading global alternative asset manager with approximately $74 billion of assets under management and approximately 700 employees in over 15 offices in the United States, Europe and Asia. Ares Management’s Private Equity Group has approximately $10 billion of assets under management, targeting investments in high-quality franchises across multiple industries, including current retail and consumer investments in 99¢ Only Stores LLC, Floor and Decor Outlets of America, Inc., National Bedding Company LLC (Serta), The Neiman Marcus Group LLC, Simmons Bedding Company and Smart & Final Holdings, Inc. For more information visit: www.aresmgmt.com

About Bain Capital Private Equity

Founded in 1984, Bain Capital one of the world’s foremost privately-held alternative investment firms, with more than $70 billion of assets under management. With deep experience investing in and building businesses around the world, the firm has made private equity, growth, and venture capital investments in more than 450 companies, across a variety of industries including consumer/retail, financial services and institutions, healthcare, industrials, and technology, media and telecommunications. Bain Capital has offices in Boston, New York, Chicago, Palo Alto, London, Munich, Tokyo, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Mumbai and Sydney. For more information please visit http://www.baincapitalprivateequity.com/.

For more information about Guitar Center, please visit http://gc.guitarcenter.com/pressroom/

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