|In 1987 Steve Firlotte established Inward Connections, bringing years of experience to the marketplace by designing his own line of audio products aimed at the discriminating professional. His initial offering was the Vac Rac TM modular tube audio system which set the pace for products to come, including the DMS Discreet Monitoring System which was the first-time that a control room monitor module was redesigned to fit into a 19" rack unit. The Vac Rac modular system was the result of collaboration by Firlotte and renowned audio designers Steve Barker and John Hall. Hall is the 2006 recipient of the AES Silver Medal Award for his outstanding achievement in the field of audio engineering and his SPA690 Discreet Class A Amp Block is used exclusively in Inward Connections products.
In addition to products for Inward Connections, Firlotte also creates an array of custom items such as mic pre's, equalizers, rack mixers and mixing consoles for musicians and recording, mixing and mastering engineers.
In the late 1990s, Steve Firlotte and Ian Gardiner of Boutique Audio and Design began working together. They soon discovered Steve's expertise in electronic design complemented Ian's mechanical design and fabrication skills. Their first major recording console project was the F & G Dymaxion 24X24X8 Tube/Discreet Mixing Console with 8-Channel Tube Side Car built for Danny White of Sixteen Ton Recording in Nashville, Tennessee (see photo below). This hybrid tube/transistor console was such a success they then built other custom consoles for clients such as Flea of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Weezer, Daniel Lanois and other major artists.
Late in 2007, the two began Tree Audio as division of Inward Connections. In Mid-2008, Tree Audio released the "Tree 500 Console", the world's first fully customizable "500 Series" console.