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Darrell Thorp on Monitor Stands

Darrell Thorp discusses whether monitor stands make a difference.

Los Angeles, CA (September 18, 2018)—Seven-time Grammy Award-winning producer, mixer and engineer Darrell Thorp first used IsoAcoustics ISO Series stands to put his monitors at the right height, before realizing they could also improve the performance of his speakers.

Thorp’s first experience with IsoAcoustics ISO Series speaker stands came when he needed to raise the reference monitors at his Los Angeles facility, 101 Recording, to ear height. “I remember thinking how clear and punchy my speakers sounded,” says Thorp.

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On that occasion, Thorp, who has been recognized with Grammy Awards for his work with artists such as Paul McCartney, Foo Fighters, Radiohead, Switchfoot, Molotov and Beck, never had the opportunity to compare his speakers’ performance on and off the ISO Series stands. “I didn’t think too much about it,” he says. “It wasn’t until I was in another recording studio and I was working on my Acoustic Energy AE1 monitors that I remembered the IsoAcoustics stands. I set them up on the mixing console meter bridge and set my speakers on top.”

The improvement was immediately obvious to Thorp. “I had to look at my assistant and say, I’m not crazy here, right? He said, ‘No, you’re not crazy.’”

Starting out on his engineering career at the Conservatory of Recording Arts and Sciences in Arizona, his home state, Thorp worked his way up from runner to assistant engineer at some of the top studios in Los Angeles, including Track Record, Conway and, finally, Ocean Way (now United) Recording, before becoming a full-time independent engineer. Over more than two decades he has added numerous multi-platinum records to his discography, including Beck’s Morning Phase, for which he received three Grammy Awards, Radiohead’s Hail to The Thief and Paul McCartney’s Chaos and Creation in the Backyard.

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“In a lot of situations, in your favorite studio, in your favorite control room, there’s some issue going on sonically, especially in the low end. But because the IsoAcoustics ISO Series stands help decouple the low end and it feels like, suddenly, the speaker is functioning properly. The sound is automatically tight and responsive—which is music to my ears,” he says.

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