GSTV: Sound Devices Scorpio First Look

Nick Huston does a brief overview of the upcoming Scorpio recorder.

More information and order here.



Hi, Nick Huston here for Gotham Sound and Communications, with a new product announcement from Sound Devices. It is a new recorder called the Scorpio. We don't have one in-house; they've just been announced. We're going to do a quick walkthrough of some of the main features to tell you about it and then we will tell you more as we know more.

Main features: we've got the 16-channel mic preamps, 32 record channels, 12 available buses, and 36 record tracks available. There's 32 channels of Dante in and out, two AES3/AES42 inputs, twelve analog outputs, a 256 GB internal SSD drive, and two SD card slots.

You can record to three different medias at a time. If we take a look at the left panel, we see our 16 analog inputs. We've got six full-size XLR inputs, two on a TA3, and then the remainder are on TA5 stereo inputs. The other thing you'll see here is a couple of interesting things for the comms. There's a headset port, so you can have headphones and a microphone going straight in.

X9 and X10 are coming out on this side and there's your comm return. The other thing to know is that they've got completely new microphone preamps for the Scorpio that feature analog limiters. Sound Devices is saying that this is their best sounding preamp yet. We will see, as soon as we get our ears on it.

If we take a look at the right panel, you see we've got this antenna here for Bluetooth. That is going to be used for a brand new app that's coming out, and we'll talk more about that later. You've got your 2 SD card slots, a ton of analog I/O. X1-6 over here on TA3, X7 and 8 on a mini, and then you've got your 10-pins for camera A and camera C complete with returns.

You've got another return here that can also be used for comms. Time code, headphone jack, full-size XLR's that can output AES, USB for interfacing with a control surface (and also for interfacing with either a computer for file transfer or to plug an Android tablet directly in). One interesting thing is that now instead of Hirose, Sound Devices has switched this device over to using a TA4 connector, so you will need new power input connectors for this.

If we look at the back, here's one interesting thing: there is a secondary TA4 power input so you can actually provide power externally from 2 different sources. In addition to that, it's got a slot for two Sony Series-L batteries and then you've got your Dante port in the back.

So if we take a look at the front panel of the Scorpio, you'll see a lot more knobs than on some of the previous mixers. What's exciting about this is you've got 12 mixing pots; you've got the six big ones here and then you've got six small ones here. Very similar to the ones on the 6-Series, but then you also have 12 trim pots. You've got your six on the top row that go 1-6, and then you've got six on the bottom row that go 7-12.

The great thing about that is instead of having to go into the menu to adjust the input gain on your 7-12, now you can do it live with your hands on a knob. Another interesting thing about the trim pots is they're using the same kind of technology as the MixPre series or on the 788, where they've got that channel ring indicator that can tell you what your channel is up to: if it's getting signal, if it's overloading, if it's hitting the limiters, if it's solo.

And then we go all the way over to the right and we see the standard mic tone switch. You've got 2 programmable switches here, you've got the return switch, and then your favorite switch, which is also programmable. And then the interface is very similar to what you would see on the Sound Devices 6-Series.

You've got your multifunction transport knob here, and then you've got your different menu controls over here: power switch, etc.

Another interesting feature is it does have 3-band EQ. It will be implimented for each channel. This works a little bit differently; it used to be you had an output channel and you would route everything to a bus. You can create up to 10 different buses and then route those buses into your outputs. That way, it gives you a lot more flexibility and a lot more speed and you don't have to take up and output making the actual bus mix.

Compatibility and accessories: this will work with the Sound Devices SL-6. There is an additional riser required just to make it fit correctly. This does not work with the Sound Devices CL-12. This will work with a new app- not the Wingman app - what's being called the SD Remote app, and you'll get all the standard stuff: transport control, metadata, time code, meters. The initial release is only planned for Android, but iOS will be supported in the future via that USB port.

We talked about control surfaces. Right now, they're only supporting one control surface. More are planned. But the control surface that is being supported on the initial release is the Icon Platform M+, which you can see is an 8 channel control surface. There are layers, so you can get to all the different inputs and outputs using the layers.

Pricing and availability: so the price of this beautiful machine is $8,995 USD and it includes an AC power supply. The first shipment is expected in the second quarter of 2019, so any time between now and the end of June. We hope to get more information as the date becomes closer and pre-orders are available at

If you want to get your name on a list, please visit us there and check out the website. The other thing is that we will be doing live demos of this product and other products at NAB this year, which is coming up next week on April 8th at 1pm EST, 10am PST.

Check our Facebook page for updates and if you have any questions, anything you're interested in that you want to ask Sound Devices or you want us to answer you on, please email us questions at [email protected] or post it on our Facebook page.

And that is the first look at the Scorpio, the new 36 track recorder from Sound Devices. We're looking forward to getting our hands on that soon. In other news, coming up (if you can't make it to NAB) is the Gotham Sound Expo Saturday, May the 4th... and may the Force be with you.

We'll have a lot of people there, including Sound Devices with the Scorpio. You can watch this video and others in our archives at, you can follow us on Facebook/Twitter/Instagram, and if you have any ideas or questions, again, please email us at [email protected]. Thanks so much for watching.

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