News November 1 - 14 (readNovember 15 - 30 news)
Michael Bishop Records 'Romeo & Juliet Suites' inSurround
Grammy-winning Telarc staff engineer Michael Bishop recently recorded,mixed and mastered Prokofiev's Romeo & Juliet Suites withnoted conductor Paavo Jarvi and the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra infull surround sound using a Sonoma digital audio workstation and amatched set of ATC SCM-150 monitors.
"These days, concert halls are built using the most accuratemeasuring devices available," said Bishop. "And there are certainlybenefits to the end sound when you use a modern HVAC system that keepsthe humidity of a hall at a constant level, for example. The oldconcert facilities that I love so much—Boston Symphony Hall,Mechanics Hall in Wooster and the Cincinnati Music Hall where werecorded the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra under the direction of ErichKunzel—sound so much better to my ears, though, and they were allbuilt by designers who were going on instinct! To be fair, I think thatthe materials that were available a century ago were, on the whole,better than what we have today. The old growth forests, in particular,have been depleted to a large extent, and the woods used in modernhalls don't have the same sound."
For this recording, Bishop recalled, "We really had fun on this one.The surround aspect helps convey the lushness of Prokofiev'sorchestration and the dynamics of the orchestra's wonderful performanceof the Suites. It was great to know that we could capture a verywide soundfield, and also that this image would be played back bylisteners as we heard it."
Bishop relied on the Sennheiser MKH 800 microphones during theRomeo and Juliet sessions. "I spread four MKH 800s across thefront of the orchestra and folded in a Neumann KU 100, which was placedin the middle of the soundfield, directly over the conductor. The soundof the binaural head on the KU 100 is gorgeous. Combining this outputwith the MKH 800s—one pair used to create the left and rightcomponents of the stereo mix, and another to help create the left frontand right front aspect of the surround mix—was extremelyeffective. It's very important to use a family of microphones thatyields a uniform sound, and that's why we rely so heavily on Sennheiserfor these kinds of projects. In fact, we also incorporated a double setof MKH 30 and MKH 50 mics in a double mid-side setup into thisrecording. I find that blending in the output of these microphoneshelps me manipulate the imaging, front to back, with greater controlover detail when it comes time to mix. I assign these mics to leftfront, left surround, and right front, right surround. During set up, Iplay around with the positioning of the mid MKH 50s, aiming them togive me the midfield sound I want. These microphones are veryimportant, because it helps me connect the soundfield from the stage tothe house. It also gives the impression of the height of the hall. Doesthis all sound complicated? Come to our next session and it will allmake sense!"
To round out his soundfield, Bishop placed a pair of Sennheiser MKH20 microphones in midway back in the hall. "The 20s complete thefront-to-back image. As I said, you want the whole surround image towork cohesively, and that's only going to happen if you use a family ofmicrophones. I need a complete sonic signature from front to back, andfor me, that means using nothing but Sennheiser microphones."
The ATC SCM-150 monitors traveled to all of the field recordingsthat Bishop tracks for Telarc. "The SCM-150s are extremely revealingand tonally transparent. They're also very easy to set up, which isimportant to us. We use these monitors in our main post-productionroom, and we also take them on location in our own truck. We need thatconsistency of monitoring from recording through post, and it'simportant that we be able to set up monitors quickly when we're out inthe field. Many high-end speakers are extremely room-dependent and takehours to set up just to find the perfect spot to place them. TheSCM-150s are rugged, and their directional characteristics are notoverly dependent on the room sound, which means we can align themquickly and get to work. I find it really hard to work well without ourATCs on session now!"
For more, visit www.sennheiserusa.com.
Neumann Celebrates 75 Years With M 149 JubileeMicrophone
In celebration of its 75th anniversary, Neumann is offering the M 149Jubilee Microphone, an exclusive, platinum-edition microphone. The M149 Jubilee's finish is reminiscent of the U47, the head grille andlower part of microphone sport the high-quality platinum finish and thebody is the traditional Neumann nickel finish. With the company's "75Years" logo engraved on the front, all microphones bear consecutiveserial numbers up to 500.
The microphones are available as a complete mono or stereo set withhigh-polish elastic suspensions and vintage power supply units withhammer finish. They come in a high-quality protective aluminum casethat can be personalized with the owner's name and microphone serialnumber engraved on a special metal plate.
"This unique platinum-edition microphone is a once-in-a-lifetimechance to celebrate the colorful history and heritage of Neumann," saidJeff Alexander, Sennheiser's director of distributed brands. "While theM 149 Jubilee is certainly a museum-quality keepsake, we hope ourcustomers will use it as they would any other Neumann. After all, it'sthe remarkable audio performance of these mics that truly defines whatour company is all about."
For more, visit www.neumannusa.com.
DMT Supplies Super Pro Tools|HD System for 'Looney Tunes'Recording
Music scoring mixer/producer Bruce Botnick called on DMT Rentals tosupply the high-precision recording systems he needed to capture JerryGoldsmith's musical score for Warner Bros.' new movie, Looney Tunes:Back in Action. The score was recorded with a 100-piece orchestra,plus drums, electric bass and guitar at Warner Bros. Eastwood Stage inBurbank, Calif.
Botnick specified two DMT Super Pro Tools|HD system digital audioworkstations, in addition to a pair of Genex Audio GX8500 MO-basedrecorders—one running in 24-bit/48kHz PCM mode and the other insinge-bit Bit Direct Stream Digital for an SACD release—and an iZTechnology RADAR 24 hard disk recorder for backup. The engineer trackedthe output of studio microphones to a large-format DMT Super ProTools|HD System using a sampling frequency of 192 kHz to capture theultraprecision output from an array of Pacific Microsonics Model TwoAD/DA converters connected to his primary Decca Tree Array of vintageNeumann M50 microphones. A smaller DMT Super Pro Tools|HD systemrecorded Botnick's main film mix.
Regarding his choice of DMT Rentals to supply these multiformatrecording systems, Botnick said, "Anybody can have the equipment, butDMT Rentals are fanatics when it comes to making sure that thesecritical systems perform reliably and consistently; they leave no stoneunturned to ensure that nothing lets me down on a critical scoringdate. I use a number of PMI, Genex and dB Technologies AD122 Gold A/Dlconverters supplied by DMT."
For studio monitoring Botnick used his Quested LCR systems and adedicated Quested subwoofer. He also used a rack of DMT Rentals' newAMS Neve Model 1081 Equalizers on his overall orchestral roommicrophones. "The Model 1081 offers EQ curves and settings that aremusically related," the engineer said. "They let me add gentle overallsound 'color' to the room mics."
For more on DMT Rentals, visit www.dmtrentals.com.
Sonalysts Upgrades With Genelec Monitoring
Sonalysts Inc., a New England-based audio and video post-productionfacility, has installed a new state-of-the-art 5.1 surround monitoringsystem in its Studio A. The setup comprises five Genelec 1031Abi-amplified monitors and a Genelec 7070A active subwoofer. The system,purchased from Parsons Audio of Boston, was installed this summer andimmediately put to work on a wide variety of projects, includingtelevision broadcast commercials, special interest video andmultichannel music remixes.
The installation was part of a significant upgrade of Studio A,which also included a transition of all technology platforms to digitaland upgraded acoustical treatments. “"We redid Studio A fromscratch, and the Genelec monitors were key to upgrading the performanceof the room," said Curt Ramm, director of audio post-production atSonalysts. "They're perfect for the size of the room and sound great. Ilike them as much as the Genelec 1031A speakers I've used fornear-field monitoring for years, which are also part of the studiosspeaker array. The 1031As are exceptionally flexible. Since they'vebeen installed, we've used them on 5.1 music remixes, on commercialsfor companies like A.J. Wright and Blue Cross/Blue Shield, onspecial-interest music and video projects for the Mohegan Sun Casino,and on multiple corporate videos. We love the way they sound and howwell they work across a wide spectrum of project types."
Sonalysts consulted with Parsons Audio in the selection of its new5.1 monitoring system. “"They came to us and had a lot ofquestions about what the best components for a 5.1 monitoring systemwould be for their needs," said Les Arnold, Parsons Audio's salesexecutive. "We didn't hesitate to suggest the Genelec 1031A monitoringsystem, and we sent one to the facility for them to check out. It wasexactly what they were looking for: self-powered, reliable andaccurate."
TerraTec Producer Announces PHASE 88
TerraTec Producer's PHASE 88 Audio System is a professional audio andMIDI interface that transforms a PC or Mac into a professionalrecording system without an additional mixer. Eight high-quality analoginput and output converters process audio signals with resolutions upto 24 bits and 96 kHz.
The PHASE 88's converters are housed in a 5 1/4-inch module that canbe installed within and placed outside the computer. PHASE 88 featuresoptimized conversion components, which allow a recordists to cutrecordings on up to eight tracks simultaneously and playbackhigh-resolution 5.1 or 7.1 surround sound. The PHASE 88 is equippedwith an onboard 20-channel hardware mixer with 36-bit internalresolution and 20-in-4 routing. Each input port features a dedicatedanalog stage that can be switched from -10 dBv to +4 dBv, as well as avariable amp with up to 18dB gains. Channel-thru monitoring generates 0latency, and latency introduced by the ASIO 2.0 driver comes to lessthan 3 ms.
Also available is an additional S/PDIF (coaxial) digitalinput/output on the PCI bus card. Up to four PHASE 88 recording systemscan be synchronized and cascaded within a single computer, allowingsystems with up to 40 physical inputs and outputs and 64 MIDI channelsto be configured without adding to the CPU load.
PHASE 88 offers drivers for Windows 98/ME/2000/XP (ASIO 2.0,DirectSound, MME with Multi-Client mode, and ASIO GSIF Multi-Client),and Mac OS 9.1/X (ASIO 2.0).
The PHASE 88 Audio System will be available at the end of Novemberfor a suggested retail price of $349.
For more, visit www.terratec.com.
EAW Launches Spanish-Language Website
Eastern Acoustic Works, a LOUD Technologies Inc. brand, premiered aSpanish version of the EAW Website at www.eaw.com/sp/.
The new Spanish site includes much of the same information that canbe found on EAW's main site (www.eaw.com), including product specifications, 2-Dand 3-D cabinet drawings, processor configurations and contactinformation for dealers and EAW's Application Support Group (ASG).
New Website: Professional Audio Design
Professional Audio Design's newly revamped Website features a newlayout for easy user navigation by the user.
John Songdahl, director of marketing for PAD, said, “"The sitewill be constantly updated with new content and special features, suchas new installation galleries, complete product reviews and companynews." An upcoming feature will allow the customer to view a breakdownof products by category and brand name. "By clicking on one brand, anentire list of that manufacturer's equipment provided by PAD will bedisplayed," added Songdahl.
To see the new site, visit www.ProAudioDesign.com.
PreSonus Announces New Street Price for FIREstation
PreSonus Audio Electronics Inc. announces that its FIREstation!"interface is now available for $499 for a limited time. TheFireWire-compatible unit features eight channels of balanced/unbalancedanalog and ADAT I/O, as well as S/PDIF and MIDI I/O.
Jim Odom, president of PreSonus Audio, said, “"The FIREstationwas already a very popular interface to begin with, but when you lookat everything this unit can offer, along with the power and flexibilitythat it gives the end-user, it becomes a really easy decision whenpurchasing an interface."
With the FIREstation, a user can plug in microphones, instrumentsand external preamps into the analog inputs while monitoring them inreal time with zero latency. Also, any mLAN-compatible keyboard such asthe Yamaha Motif or Korg Triton Studio can be seamlessly patched intothe FireWire ports of the FIREstation to send audio and MIDIinformation to the computer.
The FIREstation can also be used independently in Stand-Alone mode,where all eight channels of analog inputs are directly routed to theFIREstation's ADAT Lightpipe outputs. Similarly, all of theFIREstation's ADAT Lightpipe inputs are routed to the analog outputsand line mixer. In this mode, FIREstation can be used as an 8-channelAD/DA converter.
For users of Macintosh OS X.2.5 and higher, the operating systemcomes equipped with FIREstation drivers already installed in the AudioMIDI Setup menu, so there is no need for installation. Currently,FIREstation is approved for use on OS X with Cubase SX, Nuendo 2.0,Deck, Peak and Logic software; new approved software will be added.
For more, visit www.presonus.com.
Engineer Marv Nonn Works With SADiE System for Studio, LocationRecording
Marv Nonn, a recording engineer who specializes in live classical andjazz projects, acquired a SADiE PCM8 system this past July specificallyto record newly commissioned works by Sole Nero, a classical performingduo of two University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Music professors.The compositions, for piano and percussion, were recently recorded byNonn to the SADiE PCM8.
Nonn, who is senior technical producer at Wisconsin Public Radio,has been a SADiE user for six years and still employs his originalSADiE Classic system. He says the acquisition of the SADiE PCM8 hasincreased the scope of his capabilities. "I can do everything from oneplatform," Nonn said. "I can record across eight tracks, do all myediting and then mix, all without leaving the PCM8. Why use multiplesystems when you can do it all from one?" Nonn also added a second IDEhard drive in a removable carrier for field recordings. "It's no biggerthan the old DA-98 HD systems we used to use for location recordingprojects. At the same time, I now have eight tracks for editing withfull random-access functionality and SADiE reliability. The convertersthat come with the PCM8 are wonderful; I haven't even thought abouthaving to get new outboard converters. All in all, this is a big stepforward for what can be accomplished with live location recording ofdigital audio."
For more information on the SADiE system, visit www.sadie.com.
MPSE Elects New Officers
The Motion Picture Sound Editors (MPSE) has announced the election ofits new officers, which includes four women and the organization'sfirst African-American officer. The new president is DavidBondelevitch, the first music editor to be elected president of theorganization. He is also a lecturer at the USC School ofCinema-Television and a member of the Cinema Audio Society.
After nine years as a board member, Bobbi Banks has been elected VP,and Devon Curry has been elected treasurer. Re-elected members includeLisa Ramirez, secretary; and Solange Schwalbe, sergeant-at-arms.
Newly elected to two-year terms on the board of directors are MidgeCostin, Scott Haler, Glenn T. Morgan, Frank Morrone and Michael Ryan.Re-elected were Jim Corbett, Suhail Kafity, Mark Lanza, Maciek Malish,F. Hudson Miller, Todd Niesen, Marc Perlman and Chris Reeves. They joinexisting members Fred Burke, Gary Friedman, Elliott Koretz, CliffLatimer, Maggie Ostroff, Albert Lord III, Steven Saltzman, MauriceSchell, Robert Sephton and Robert Ulrich.
For more information about the MPSE, visit mpse.org.
Summer NAMM to Leave Nashville, Head to Indianapolis,Austin
NAMM, the International Music Products Association, announced thatIndianapolis, and Austin, Texas, will host the association's futureSummer Session trade shows on a rotating schedule, beginning withIndianapolis in 2005 and Austin in 2006. The 2004 Summer Session willonce again be held in Nashville, the show's location for the past 11years.
NAMM began researching new locations after the city of Nashvilleannounced that it would not be expanding its current convention centeror constructing a new facility in the foreseeable future. NAMM'sdecision followed several years of research including a comprehensiveNAMM Member survey conducted by Precision Reports, a third-partyresearch company, as well as a nationwide evaluation of more than 20potential host cities and convention centers. In the survey,approximately 70% of respondents voted for a location other thanNashville; specifically, 66% of responding 2003 Summer Sessionexhibitors preferred to change the location of the show. More than 84%of responding buyers who have not attended the Summer Session in recentyears chose a different location for future shows, and the majority ofresponding buyers who attended in 2003 (approximately six out of 10)voted to hold the show in a location other than Nashville. The surveyalso showed that the majority of respondents favored rotating theshow's location from year to year. To see more of those results, visitwww.namm.com/summersession/.
“"Over the past few years, our members, both exhibitors andattendees, have clearly told us what makes a successful trade show forthem," said Joe Lamond, president and CEO of NAMM. "We acted on thisinformation and have analyzed virtually every aspect of NAMM's tradeshows in order to improve the experience for everyone attending. Thishas ensured the vitality of the shows in spite of the challengingeconomy. The success of the NAMM shows benefits the industry far beyondthe introduction of new products and the placing of orders, as NAMM isthen able to reinvest the proceeds to represent, educate and promotethe industry and create new music-makers for all of our members."
“"Moving the show to a larger venue will allow NAMM toaccommodate all of our exhibitors in one contiguous exhibit hall thatprovides for future growth as the demand for additional space continuesto increase," said Kevin Johnstone, director of trade shows for NAMM."Both Indianapolis and Austin give us that opportunity, along withexcellent housing options and a demographic profile that will bringgreater numbers of buyers to the Summer Session. And for those buyers,in addition to being able to see more new products from a greatervariety of exhibitors all in one place, changing the location offersmany fun, exciting, after-show-hours activities for individuals andfamilies."
Soundminer Releases Version 3.1 With ReWire
Soundminer announced that the upcoming release of 3.1 will containsupport for Propellerhead's multichannel ReWire for use insideDigidesign Pro Tools and Steinberg Nuendo environments. ReWire allowsthe user to transfer audio data between software applications in realtime. Users will now be able to stream up to eight channels of audiofrom Soundminer through their hardware while their DAW application isrunning.
At the heart of this version is the new Soundminer ReWire Engine.Based on Soundminer 3.0's original playback engine, the new engine willallow for on-the-fly bit depth and sampling rate conversion of up toeight discreet 24-bit/192kHz audio streams.
Regardless of users' Pro Tools session or Nuendo setup, sounds canbe auditioned with their surround placement intact. Moreover, the usershave access to both the VSTRack in the Soundminer Browser, as well asVST plug-ins in Nuendo and RTAS and TDM plug-ins inside Pro Tools. Thisnew feature will let users audition new sounds from Soundminer againstthe existing DAW audio and video tracks with sample-accurate sync.Users will also be able to audition more traditional mono or stereosounds panned "in place" using the DAW's built-in surroundarchitecture.
More details to come. There will be an upgrade cost for existingusers.
For more, visit www.soundminer.com.
AC/DC Surround Mixes Use Aria Electronics
When asked to mix the 5.1 surround soundtrack for a DVD release ofAC/DC's 1991 concert film, Live At Donington, engineer MikeFraser expressed a strong preference to mix to analog. For thisproject, he relied on a Studer A827 transport equipped with AriaReference Series Electronics and a custom 2-inch 8-track headblock,both supplied by ATR Services Inc. of York, Pa.
When asked about Aria's Reference Series, Fraser said, "I wastotally blown away. It had very nice definition, with crisp, clearhighs, while the bottom end didn't get murky as it sometimes does. Whata pleasant surprise!"
The Live At Donington project was mixed at New York's QuadStudios and mastered by Darcy Proper at Sony Studios, also in New York.The same Aria Electronics and headblock used for the mix at Quad werealso used for mastering, although on a different A827 transport.
Al Quaglieri, who supervised the project for Epic Records, wassimilarly pleased by the sound of the much-lauded“"superanalog” surround mixing format. It really sings," hesaid. "It's a sweet-sounding system, and I would not hesitate to use itagain in similar circumstances."
After finishing the project, Fraser said that he would use the Ariasystem on his next round of work. “"After hearing how the mixessounded coming back off the tape, I don't think I'd like using anythingelse. In fact, I'm seriously considering buying a system myself."
Although AC/DC bandmembers specifically asked Fraser to do themixes, they entrusted the veteran Canadian engineer with the selectionof all specific technology.But, according to producer Quaglieri, theAussie power rock masters were quite happy with the results achieved.“"I went to London and took the mixes for the first playback toAngus and Malcolm, and they were delighted," he reported. "It was funwatching their reactions, because I think this was the first time theyhad been mixed to surround. So, mission accomplished!"
For more on ATR Services, visit www.atrservice.com.
Ambient Digital Upgrades Mastering Studio
Ambient Digital (Houston) recently upgraded its mastering studio tofeature Eggleston Works Andra II reference monitors.
Ending a lengthy search, mastering engineer Bob Boyd said, "I wasimmediately impressed with the Andra II's clarity, power and soundstaging. They are a welcome addition to an already busy room." DelHelmer, VP of EW Audio—makers of the Eggleston Worksloudspeakers—was instrumental in optimizing the speakers'performance in the studio. "It was easy to integrate the Andras intoBob's room. He really did his home work and we got great results withminimal tweaking."
Boyd added, “"This is the third upgrade to this studio, butthe first time a speaker manufacturer was personally involved ininstalling their product. EW Audio's support policy made the transitionquick and painless, with an immediate improvement."
Cyclops 1.1 Now Available for Mac OS 9/X
Cycling '74 has released an update to the Cyclops video input-analysissystem for the company's Max/MSP graphical programming environment. Thenew release features compatibility with the Macintosh OS X operatingsystem (in addition to continuing support for Mac OS 9), and addscompatibility with Jitter, Cycling '74's video/matrix/3-D graphicsprocessing extensions to Max/MSP.
Cyclops, a Max/MSP object for multimedia development created forCode Artistry LLC by New York-based artist and programmer Eric Singer,is geared toward artists and performers who want to add video controlto their work without investing in stand-alone hardware or software.The Cyclops object receives input from a QuickTime-compatible videoinput source—such as a video capture card, USB or FireWire videoinput—analyzes the video frames and outputs Max/MSP controlmessages based on the images. The user can specify areas of an inputimage to analyze and the type of analysis to perform. The Cyclopsobjects supports grayscale, threshold, difference (motion) or coloranalysis on the incoming video image. Its control output format allowsfor seamless integration of motion control and object tracking into theMax/MSP multimedia programming environment.
Version 1.1 of Cyclops includes the new jit.cyclops object, whichintegrates with Jitter's matrix-based data-processing environment,providing the same analysis capabilities of Cyclops to Jitterusers.
Cyclops 1.1 is distributed by Cycling '74 and is currentlyavailable. List price is $99, with upgrades for registered users ofCyclops 1.0 available for $29. The Max4/MSP2 programming environment isavailable from Cycling '74 for $495.
Demo versions, purchases and upgrades are available online at www.cycling74.com.
Event Ships Studio Precision 6
The newest model in Event Electronic's Studio Precision Series, StudioPrecision 6 (MSRP: $1,299/pair), is now shipping. The new high-endmodel utilizes a 6.5-inch mineral-impregnated, polypropylene-cone,low-frequency driver with a neodymium magnet, which providesexceptionally low-distortion characteristics, makes it stronger andprovides it with a greater level of output efficiency.
The new LF driver is paired with a 1-inch, soft-dome, high-frequencyradiator (high-frequency driver) that creates a significantly expandedstereo soundstage as compared to the company's previous designs. Italso features a neodymium magnet, and produces a broad, flat radiationpattern that doesn't require corrective equalization, resulting in alarge sweet spot.
Low-frequency response is deep and quite accurate due to its duallarge-diameter linear-flow bass ports. The port design allows forexceptional low-frequency coupling into the room, low distortion andlow-frequency transient response.
The Studio Precision 6 sports a powerful amplifier that delivers 280watts per speaker (200 watts LF driver/80 watts HF driver). Theamplifier circuitry, which is custom-designed for the drivercomponents, features low-noise semiconductors and audio-grade filmcapacitors. A toroidal transformer powers the amp, resulting insignificantly reduced mechanical and electrical noise. The unit alsoincludes continuously variable low- and high-frequency trim controls, acontinuously variable input-sensitivity control and a switchable 80Hzhighpass filter, designed for use as a bass-management tool in surroundsound applications. For connections, both balanced XLR and 1/4-inchinputs are provided.
More details can be found at www.event1.com.
Producer Marchand Uses Neumann Mics on Recent Sarah McLachlanAlbum
Sarah McLachlan's new CD, Afterglow, found her teaming up onceagain with her longtime producer Pierre Marchand, who has produced fouralbums for the artist. The album was recorded at numerous differentproject studios, including Marchand's facility in Morin Heights,Quebec, where several of the songs were mixed, which the majority ofthe album was mixed in McLachlan's home studio in Vancouver.
Marchand has used Neumann microphones to track McLachlan's vocalsexclusively for the last two records they've worked on together. "We'vebeen using the Neumann M 149 on Sarah, and it works beautifully. Whenwe recorded her earlier CDs, I was using an old Telefunken U 47 thatneeded a lot of EQ tweaking to get the sound I wanted. Then when I gotmy hands on the M 149, I found that leaving it flat sounded very closeto perfect! The M 149 is a very sweet-sounding mic. It has lots ofwarmth and presence, and the purist highs. Sarah loves that mic, and Ihaven't tried any other mic on her since we started using it."
Jerry Marotta was asked to contribute his drum and percussion skillsto three songs on the new CD. A resident of Woodstock, N.Y. since 1986,Marotta operates his own studio, Jersville, in that town. All of hisparts for the McLachlan project were recorded at Jersville. "I metSarah while I was working at Le Studio in Morin Heights, producing anartist named Larry Gowan for Sony Records. Sarah was working down theroad with Pierre Marchand. They were recording tracks for theFumbling Towards Ecstasy CD and asked if I would come in andplay on some existing tracks. At the time, I had just discovered thewonders of 'Taos' drums, made in New Mexico by Native Americans. Havingdone the first two Lilith Fair tours with the Indigo Girls, I kept incontact with Sarah and her husband Ash Sood, who is also her drummer.In the spring of this year, I got a call to play on some tracks forSarah's newest record. This time, Pierre brought a hard drive to mystudio, and my close friend and bassist Tony Levin and I did about sixtracks in three days. My engineer, Pete Caigan, and I have reallytailored the studio for drums and percussion. Two rooms almostexclusively dedicated to live drums and perc, can you believe it?!"
Marotta used True Precision 8s on the McLachlan sessions. "The firsttime I experienced the Precision 8s was on a recording for a labelcalled Spotted Pecary in Southern California. Owner/engineer HowardGivens had me doing more Taos drums and perc and I was absolutely blownaway at the sound coming back at me. Howard was using the Precision 8son the drums and the sound was awesome. He was involved with TimSpencer, the designer of the mic pre's, and was doing some refining tothe sound of the unit. I quickly installed two P-8s, 16 channels, intomy setup at Jersville and started using them nonstop. Except for theoccasional Neve EQ or compressor, they are responsible for a major partof the drum sound at Jersville Studios. Everything from cymbals to Taosbass drums, and all the strange percussion instruments I've accumulatedover the years, all translate beautifully through the True gear. I alsofind the two DIs in each unit sound great and come in very handy.
"In addition, I've really gotten to see what the True gear can dothis spring while recording my own band's CD. From fattening up aProphet 5 and Prophet VS to the Chapman Stick, we pretty much raneverything through the P-8s or the newer P-2s. And while I love allthis analog gear, I'm looking forward to using their digital versions,too."
For more on the mics and True Systems, visit Neumann at www.neumannusa.com.
Thwak! Opens Chicago Office
Thwak! Inc., a New York-based music production company, announced thatit has opened a Chicago office, its first satellite office.Producer/creative director Cliff Kennedy will lead Thwak! Chicago'soverall operations, managing day-to-day client relations and leadingthe company's business development efforts in Chicago.
A 20-year veteran of the production industry, Kennedy has workedwith Tony Verderosa, founder and president of Thwak!, on projects forYamaha, Sony Consumer Electronics and Canon U.S.A. Kennedy's pastclient roster also includes 3Com, American Century Investments, GECapital, IBM, Monsanto, the National Association of Manufacturers,Quaker, Transamerica and United Airlines. "Chicago is home to some ofthe most consistently creative agencies, as well as a large number ofmajor brands, so the establishment of a Chicago office is a naturalextension of Thwak!'s business," said Tony Verderosa, founder ofThwak!. "Cliff helps Thwak! better serve our Chicago clients and actsas a conduit between their music needs and our talented composers andproducers."
Thwak! expanded its production artist roster earlier this year,adding DJ Josh Byrnes (aka, Elevator Man), Teddy Kumpel, David Mann andJamie Myerson.
THWAK! Chicago can be contacted at 3759 N. Ravenswood, Ste. 225,Chicago, IL 60613, 773/549-2380, www.thwak.com.
THX Ltd. Teams With Electronic Arts
THX Ltd. announced the creation of a new sound and visual certificationstandard for videogame development environments. Electronic Arts hasincorporated the THX performance standards into its mixing rooms andstudios worldwide. The first THX-certified games will be SSX 3,The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King and Medal ofHonor Rising Sun.
"Working closely with THX to deliver the most stunning and impactfulaudio and visual experience is another example of EA's innovation anddedication to state-of-the-art technology to deliver the best gameexperience to our customer," said David DeMartini, VP and COO ofElectronic Arts' studio. "Providing consistent delivery of high-qualityaudio performance creates an even deeper immersive experience."
THX established specifications for room design, as well as acousticand equipment performance, to make sure sound and visual quality areconsistent in every EA mixing room. EA's creative team can transferprojects between artists, departments and facilities, knowing thatevery bit of visual detail and sonic presentation will be maintainedall the way through to the end-user's experience.
"With sound and image quality becoming such critical elements to thesuccess of videogame titles, the environments that games are created inmust be built to the highest possible technical standards," said JosephVogel, VP of business development at THX. "THX performance standardsprovide the optimal environment for sound recording, mixing and imagetexturizing. They ensure that the vision of EA's art directors, visualartists and audio mixers is captured and faithfully delivered toconsumers and gaming enthusiasts."
Sonic Implants Symphonic Strings Now Shipping In EXS24Format
Sonic Network announced that the full-sized version of the SonicImplants Symphonic Strings Collection is now shipping in Logic Audio'sEXS24 software synthesizer format. Sonic began porting its extensivesound libraries to EXS24 and Kontakt formats earlier this summer.
“"Symphonic Strings is, by far, our largest and mostcritically acclaimed product," explained Jennifer Hruska, president ofSonic Network. "The EXS24 version of the strings is particularlystellar because it uses the full 24-bit samples we recorded with. Youcan really hear the difference."
"This is native programming," added David Fox from Sonic Implants."We don't just convert the samples from one format to another. We workwithin each software synth to create unique programs, using theprogramming of that particular synthesizer to maximum effect."
MP3 demos and more information are available at www.sonicimplants.com.
Flood Relies on Eventide Plug-Ins for Numerous Projects
Eventide's Clockworks Legacy plug-ins and Reverb 2016 have recentlybeen put to use by Flood, a UK-based music producer who has worked onalbums for Nine Inch Nails, Smashing Pumpkins and Depeche Mode, and iscurrently working with Soulwax, a Belgium-based band incorporating DJtechniques into traditional music.
“"There is a certain sound that Eventide has captured with theH949 and H910 for subtle harmonizing that works well," Flood explained"The Eventide Clockworks Legacy plug-ins for Pro Tools are more musicalthan most. Certain other plug-ins often are an awkward fit whenimplemented into a track. With this bundle, I have access to all of myold favorites and can easily plug them in where they belong."
Flood has also been using the new Eventide Reverb 2016 fromPrinceton Digital, a re-creation of the original SP2016 algorithmsfeaturing the three original effects—Stereo Room, Room Reverb andPlate—as well as enhanced versions of the original algorithms. "Ihave had negative experiences with reverbs in the past," Flood said."The new Eventide Reverb 2016 is a fantastic re-creation of theoriginal plate. It smoothed out all of the unwanted characteristics ofthe old plates, and is the first reverb I have come across that I likein a long time."
For more information about the plug-ins, visit www.eventide.com.
Post Logic Studios Works on Audio Finishing for Reality TVShows
Post-production company Post Logic Studios (Hollywood) has completedaudio mixing and finishing for many reality and variety televisionprograms, such as The Bachelor, The Bachelorette, WhoWants to Marry My Dad, Project Greenlight, The JamieKennedy Experiment and many others.
The company's audio division assigns a dedicated audio specialist tosee a project through from beginning to end. Based on the company'shistory with sound for reality and variety programs, mixers ConnorMoore, Fred Howard, Jamie Ledner and Andy Griffith are well-versed intackling the heavy dialog editing, noise reduction, mixing and musiceditorial that is required on these shows, and take advantage of theon-site Avid Symphony and telecine bays.
According to Ledner, "A show like Who Wants to Marry My Dadwill run a six- to eight-episode arc that comes to a closely guardedsurprise ending. Because the producers do not want the finished showslanguishing in post, they are often cut and finished just days prior toair. All of the audio is unscripted, with anywhere from five to 20people miked remotely, so one of the main issues we face is cleaning upnoise and zeroing in on what is important and allowing that to beheard."
The Jamie Kennedy Experiment is a hidden-camera show thatfeatures a combination of actors alongside everyday people who end upas the target(s) of a given gag. In most circumstances, theseindividuals can't be miked, so mixer Howard must rely on creativemethods to elevate the sound of their voices in post. "We frequentlydust things off via sound editing, usually through a balance of editingand mixing. If these traditional techniques prove to be unsatisfactory,we'll go to whatever lengths necessary using plug-ins or outboardprocessing as required. As a result, we are able to restore audio clipsand eliminate the need to use subtitles that may have been insertedprior to the audio edit. Ultimately, because we've done so many yearsof this type of work, there are well-developed solutions andsensibilities to apply to the audio problems we regularly encounter onthese shows."
Moore has been doing the audio mix for The Bachelor andThe Bachelorette since these programs first premiered. He iscurrently working on The Bachelor and High SchoolReunion. "A lot of the shots are captured in unpredictableenvironments, with radical extremes of level and background noise. OnThe Bachelor, there is always the inevitable 'fountain shot,'where people are conversing and the sound of rushing water is as loudas the dialog. These are always tricky sequences that require a lot ofsmoothing."
For more information about Post Logic Studios, visit www.postlogic.com.
B&H Pro Audio Publishes Source Book
Marking the 30th anniversary of B&H Photo-Video-Pro Audio, TheProfessional Audio Sourcebook was compiled by the company's staffand comprises two volumes of 1,580 pages dedicated to the most currenthardware and software products and techniques in professionalaudio.
Volume One starts with “"Introduction to WiredMicrophones," a section that investigates dynamic and condenser mics,reading microphone specifications, and microphone and mikingtechniques. It also includes extensive and up-to-date coverage ofmicrophone accessories, processors, mixers, portable 2-track recorders,desktop/rack 2-track recorders, multitrack recorders, all-in-oneworkstations, power amplifiers, studio/in-ear monitors and headphones.A sound reinforcement/P.A. section reviews the latest in portable soundand speaker systems, loudspeakers and powered mixers. An overview onwireless microphones includes the information about wirelesstechnology, including handheld transmitters, bodypack transmitters,plug-in transmitters, lavalier microphones, receivers, true diversity,multiple system compatibility and frequency agility.
Volume Two is a 790-page compendium devoted to the latest incomputer audio hardware, hardware and software systems, stand-alonesoftware/plug-ins, MIDI equipment, DJ equipment and sample libraries.Also included are studio furniture and accessories, which includesacoustic treatment and construction materials, furniture, racks, standsand power conditioners. Also included are cases, patchbays, meters,distribution amps, converters, switchers, power supplies andcables.
For more about The Professional Audio Sourcebook and B&HPhoto-Video-Pro Audio, visit www.bhphotovideo.com.
Tom Durack Finishes Up Production at Plus XXX
United States-based engineer Tom Durack recently finished mixing a newalbum for Virgin France artist Étienne Daho at Plus XXX in Paris,using the facility's new Solid State Logic 9088 XL K console. Thealbum, entitled Re-evolution, was produced by Daho inconjunction with musician Bertrand "Mako" Blais and will be released inNovember.
Plus XXX's XL console, which was installed last year as part of amajor refit of Studio 2, has been used by Keziah Jones to mix the albumBlack Orpheus with Grammy Award-winning Russell "Dragon"Elevado, and by Susheela Raman, who worked on an album project withproducer Stuart Bruce.
Durack found his experience working on the Daho album to berewarding. “"Studio 2 at Plus XXX is one of my favorite mix roomsin the world," he enthused. "The SSL sound has been an important partof my mixes for 15 years, and the XL K is the best-sounding analogconsole I've ever used, bar none."
For more information about the console, visit www.solid-state-logic.com.
TerraTec Producer Teams Up With Music and More
This month, TerraTec Electronic GmbH's professional audio productionsolutions division, TerraTec Producer, will team up with Music and More(MAM), a Southern German specialist in analog audio technology, toextend the division's product range.
The alliance converges MAM's analog studio equipment and electronicmusical instruments with TerraTec Producer's pro I/O solutions forcomputer-based music production. All of MAM's legacy products will bemarketed worldwide and exclusively as part of the TerraTec Producerline under the new name SINE. In addition, the two companies willcombine their production capacities for digital and analogtechnologies; new products are on the drawing board and will bedeveloped jointly in the near future.
MAM CEO Herbert Lutz said, "In the future, MAM is free to focusexclusively on product design and production. TerraTec Producer willextend production capacities in Asia and Germany and use our productionfacilities in Eastern Europe."
Dirk Cervenka, head of TerraTec Producer, said, "With thehigh-quality SINE products, TerraTec Producer is able to offer tomusicians worldwide an even wider and more affordable range ofend-to-end production solutions."
For more, visit www.terratec.com.
Fullersound Installs Second AudioCube System
Fullersound, a Miami-based mastering facility, recently installed aCube-Tec AudioCube 5 system, which is now networked with the existingAudioCube 4-II system that was installed in 2000.
According to owner Michael Fuller, "We purchased our first AudioCube4-II in 2000. After years of using the industry's standard formastering, it was time to upgrade to a high-resolution system. TheAudioCube met and exceeded our expectations. The VPIs are extremelysmooth, musical and easy to use and there is a tool for every need. Wehad been accustomed to the best audio restorations tools available andthe Cube's VPIs simply blew us away with their speed and accuracy todetail. Now, we have purchased our second system, the AC5-D650. Theability and dedication of the Cube-Tec staff to continue to come upwith new and exciting VPIs that work at even faster speeds is just oneof the many reasons why we chose the AudioCube again. With thisgreatsystem, we look forward to moving into DVD-A and SACD in thefuture."
The AudioCube 5 system includes dual 2.66GHz processors, 36GB systemand audio drives, CD and DVD burners, Mykerinos 24-channel audio card,Wavelab 4 and Nuendo editors, and NetSupport remote help software. TheAC5 is configured with 32 Cube-Tec VPIs, the 24-bit/192kHz masteringand restoration tools exclusive to the AudioCube platform.
Battery Now Supports OS X
Native Instruments announced the Battery 1.3 update, which brings thedrum sampler to Mac OS X and Pro Tools users on OS X; a Windows XPversion will follow soon. Battery 1.3 now supports Audio Units, RTAS,VST, and stand-alone operation with CoreMIDI and CoreAudio.
The update is immediately available to all registered users as a $29direct download. The update is also available on CD for $49.
For more information, visit www.ni-battery.com.
In other company news, Kontakt 1.5 is now available, which bringsnew and improved features, Mac OS X compatibility and new importcapabilities.
Using an advanced peak-detection algorithm, Kontakt 1.5's newlydeveloped Beat Machine divides any percussive loop into individualhits. Drum loops can be synched to the host sequencer without loss insound quality. The individual slices can also be mapped on the keyboardand played as individual hits, while each slice can even have its ownfilter and effect settings. A MIDI file can be imported into the hostsequencer to directly edit or rearrange each loop into breaks, fillsand new grooves. The loop editor shows the individual slice markers inthe loop and allows the markers to be set, deleted and moved. Theautomatic slicing algorithm can be fine tuned with the Sensitivityknob. Kontakt 1.5 also supports the REX-1 and 2 sample formats to loadpresliced loops.
Kontakt 1.5's time-stretching and pitch-shifting engine has beenfurther developed and improved, resulting in the Time Machine II, whichis available in addition to the original Time Machine from KONTAKT 1.2.The integrated "Transient Copy" technology allows for an authenticreproduction of a sample's attack phase. Another feature is the abilityto time-stretch loops to automatically fit the tempo of the hostsequencer.
In addition to the MIDI automation in Version 1.2, KONTAKT 1.5 alsosupports VST automation. Nearly all control element movements can bedrawn as automation curves in the sequencer and be remote controlled.Because Kontakt is semi-modular, a VST automation number can beassigned to any Kontakt control element.
Kontakt 1.5 is available as a special time-limited offer for $29(direct download) and $49 (boxed version) until December 4, 2003, afterwhich it will cost $49 (direct download) and $69 (boxed version).Customers who purchased Kontakt after August 1, 2003, (online or from adealer) can download the update for free if Mac OS X/RTAS support isn'talready included.
More information can be found at www.ni-kontakt.com.
Odds on Recording Purchases SSL Board
Solid State Logic announced at the recent AES Convention that Odds OnRecording, a new facility based in Las Vegas, has purchased a second XL9080 K Series SuperAnalogue console in addition to three XLogic XLchannel strips, three XLogic mic amps, two XLogic mic amp remotes andone XLogic 5.1 compressor.
The facility is being designed by the Russ Berger Design Group.
For more on the products, visit www.solid-state-logic.com.
M-Audio Ships New Keyboards
M-Audio is now shipping three new Evolution keyboards: the MK-461C,MK-449C and MK-425C.
The 61-key MK-461C features 34 assignable controllers including nine35mm Alps faders, 12 rotary knobs, 10 buttons, pitch bend andmodulation wheels, and a sustain pedal input. All controllers can beprogrammed via the numerical keypad to create custom setups. TheMK-461C also includes 10 preconfigured presets that make it usable withplug-ins, virtual instruments and host applications. The keyboard alsooffers features such as assignable velocity curve, fader drawbar modeand expanded support of MIDI messages to include RPN/NRPN and SysExmessages. The Controller Mute feature allows users to alter theposition of any fader or rotary controller without affecting thesettings of the software. The Snapshot feature sends all current frontpanel settings to the receiving MIDI application or device. The MK-461Calso acts as a USB-to-MIDI interface with a standard MIDI Out jack. Aswith all Evolution products, the MK-461C is class-compliant, so nodrivers are required when using Windows XP or Mac OS X. The MK-461C canbe completely bus-powered for total mobility or used with the includedpower supply.
The new Evolution MK-449C offers all of the professionalfunctionality of the MK-461C in a shorter 4-octave keyboard with 49full-size touch-sensitive keys. It offers 30 assignable controllersincluding eight knobs and nine sliders for complete control oversoftware synthesizers and sequencers.
The MK-425C features 25 full-size velocity-sensitive keys and atotal of 21 assignable controllers including eight rotary knobs, pitchbend and modulation wheel. It also boasts a Transpose function, octaveshift, program and bank change, 10 nonvolatile program memory buttons(stored even when power is disconnected) and a sustain pedal input. Thebus-powered MK-425 also gives users the ability to program while theyplay.
All three keyboards ship with an extensive software bundle featuringa dedicated librarian program that gives PC users the ability to save,edit and share keyboard setups. Also included are Sound Studio II, apowerful MIDI and audio sequencer with VST plug-in support; MusicTeacher, a tutorial program that teaches users how to play thekeyboard; MusicPlanet, an array of professionally recorded samples; anda large selection of VST plug-ins and virtual instrument demos.
All three new Evolution products are currently shipping. MSRPs are:MK-461C, $329.95; MK-449C, $259.95; MK-425C, $189.95.
For more, visit www.m-audio.com.
Galaxy Studios Installs Z-Systems Digital Routers,Processors
Belgium-based Galaxy Studio owners Wilfried and Guido Van Baelen haveinstalled a number of Z-Systems digital routers and processors in itssurround-capable production and mastering rooms.
At the heart of the facility's multichannel Reference Masteringroom, Galaxy has installed a Z-Systems z-64.64.r Detangler Pro router,which ties together all of the digital systems in the room, including aZ-Systems z.Q6 digital 6-channel mastering equalizer and a z.CL6digital 6-channel compressor/limiter. To interconnect the digitalprocessing and playback devices in two of the production studios, theyhave chosen smaller Z-Systems Detangler Pro digital routers.
Staff engineer/producer Ronald Prent said, "The z.64.64 router takescare of all the digital routing for four workstations and all the dCSand Meitner converters, and anything that's digital. We all use themwith either PC or Macintosh remote-control software, which is prettyhandy, as you can store all the settings. Anything that is EQ'ddigitally or compressed digitally is done with the Z-Sys units. Andwhen PCM material comes in, we go through the Z-Sys to up-sample it. Sothey're probably in use every day. They are really beautiful boxes,especially because they do 96 kHz."
The Z-Sys processors join the room's unique SPL MMC1, an analogmastering console co-developed by Prent that handles the studio'ssteady DVD and SACD output. The 8-channel console features 150dBdynamic range.
Prent continued, "Buying equipment in the digital domain for amastering facility and being able to do surround, which is a key issuehere in the room, is expensive. We decided to choose one system, andeverybody chose the Z-Sys Q6 equalizer because of its superb high-endtreatment. If you use the EQ on high frequencies, it stays very warmand doesn't 'digitize' the sound, as some people say, like some otherEQs. The second reason is that Z-Sys is the only company that makes asensible equalizer and compressor that is controllable over sixchannels. It's in one unit, so you don't have problems with latency andclocking. I saw the box about two or three years ago at Bob Ludwig'splace. He said, 'Listen to the high end. When you turn it up 6 dB, itchanges but nothing goes wrong!' The compressor is a totally differentconcept than whatever you know in other digital or analog compressors.But if you learn how to work it, it really does its job very well,especially in surround, but also in stereo. I even cascade themsometimes."
Cornelius Bumpus Honored
At the last North American date on Steely Dan's Everything MustGo tour, longtime SD saxman (and former Doobie Brother) CorneliusBumpus (www.corneliusbumpus.com) was honored with theprestigious Bunsen Prize, presented by Dan co-conspirator/guitaristWalter Becker and keyboardist Ted Baker, who was the recipient of thesame honor in 2000.
John Neff Relies on Waves Plug-Ins for ProcessingDuties
Engineer and accomplished musician John Neff is the chief engineer andmanager of David Lynch's Asymmetrical Studio. Among the favored toolshe turns to for his everyday audio processing needs, in addition tospecial projects, is Waves' plug-ins.
Neff uses Waves' Gold Bundle for a wide array of audio processingapplications, along with the Restoration Bundle for sound effects. Neffrecently used Waves products for the recently releasedEraserhead, which is available at www.davidlynch.com. "It was a year-and-a-halfprocess to clean the master," Neff explained. "David had every singleframe done digitally by hand in high-definition. Then I remastered thesoundtrack here from the mag and cleaned it up. The mag had been storedless than perfectly and had some static crackle on it, as well as, ofcourse, analog hiss, splice bumps and all that stuff. The challenge was26-year-old magnetic film that was mixed from eight mono dubbers andhad been sitting in a storage closet all this time, not temperature orhumidity controlled, so I had some real deteriorated elements. We got agood transfer of the mag into Pro Tools, edited out the spliced bumpsand then treated the whole soundtrack with the Waves Restorationpackage. The soundtrack is stunning. David hasn't heard it like thissince they recorded the elements; he's never heard a mix like this. Wecredited Waves in the DVD booklet."
Neff also continually feeds new content to Lynch's site, includingvideo experiments and animation, all of which has original musicalcontent (sometimes 60 to 70 tracks a piece). Neff said that he uses theRenaissance compressors, equalizers and reverbs, as well as MaxxBassfor music production. “"You've got to make sure you've got aspectrally balanced mix before it gets compressed for the Net," Neffsaid. "In producing theatrical-caliber sound for the Internet, we'vehad to learn many, many things and invent many ways to work. I find theWaves PAZ frequency analyzer very valuable for Net preparation."
As far as studio work, Neff said that they are currently producingan artist from Austin, Texas, named Chrystal Bell. For this project,Neff is using the whole Renaissance package in every song. "I've gottena very aggressive drum sound using the Renaissance Compressor ratherhard on the drum overheads; it has that old British classic squasheddrum sound. That's something that we're very happy with lately." Neffis also using Waves audio processing on his new Electric BluesBand album, which is scheduled for release by the end of thisyear.
For more information on the Waves products, visit www.waves.com.
Prairie Sun Recording Adds Sequoia, Pro Tools|HD3
Prairie Sun Recording's (Cotati, Calif.) most recent addition to itsgear rack is the new Magix Sequoia 7.0 Mastering System, which hasalready been used by Sterling Sound and the BBC. It's running on a2.4GHz Pentium 4 processor, with I/O handled by RME's brand-new HDSP9632 audio interface.
Prairie Sound also installed Digidesign's Pro Tools|HD3 system inits Studio A, fully loaded with three 192 interfaces, a Sync Unit andthe capability to interface 24 In and 48 Out. The computer is a new1.42GHz dual-processor Power Mac G4 with a 20-inch Cinema display. AStudio Construction iso box rack has provided a quiet and elegantsolution to noise problems, making the room extremely quiet.
San Francisco Bay Area artist Dan Hicks recently spent a weekrecording vocals in Studio B with Manhattan Transfer's Tim Hauserproducing. The session was engineered by Tony Martin Jr. (the BeachBoys, Harry Nilsson), with assistance by Jason D'Ottavio.
Oz Fritz, Tom Waits' engineer, has been busy at the studio. Whilestaying in Prairie Sun's guest cabin, he's engineered for stuntguitarist Brian Kehoe (Kehoe Nation, Les Claypool's Flying FrogBrigade, M.I.R.V.) in Studio C, as well as taking a week to mix theforthcoming live album from Danny Barnes of Austin, Texas-based BadLivers. New dancehall reggae artist RawSun is currently in the middleof a month-long residency recording and mixing new tracks for his debutalbum. His brother, Don Juan, is producing and Adam Munoz (GeorgeWinston, Bill Frisell, Mr. Bungle) is engineering.
Nashville drummer Owen Hale (Tammy Wynette, David Allen Coe, GeorgeStrait, etc.) contributed his talents to the new Gospel album,tentatively titled You Are, from Commander Cody veteran StevePuleo.
Grammy Award-winning engineer Steve Fontano was at Prairie Sun,taking advantage of the 1,000-square-foot live chamber to recordemerging artist Corry Hanna. Tone (Santana, Green Day) recorded andmixed two songs for Ama Ofosu-Barko, a new Bay Areasinger/songwriter.
For more on the studio, visit www.prairiesun.com.
Wave Distribution Now Representing SRS Labs
SRS Labs Inc. announced that Wave Distribution will exclusivelyrepresent the SRS Circle Surround VST Pro Plug-In.
According to Wave Distribution president Gil Griffith, "SRS Labs hasrevolutionized the way audio professionals create surround soundscapes.The SRS Circle Surround VST Pro plug-in advances surround soundcapabilities in a cost-effective, easy-to-use plug-in suite that puts avast palette of breath-taking surround sound into a wide range ofrecording environments, from the home DAW enthusiast to pro-levelpost-production facilities. As a company that was established toprovide the very best in state-of-the-art signal processing equipment,I am honored that Wave Distribution will be representing thecutting-edge sound technology plug-in products from a leadinginnovative manufacturer such as SRS Labs."
Big 3 Entertainment Installs ATI Paragon MixingConsoles
Big 3 Entertainment (St. Petersburg, Fla.) handling all aspects of itsartists' careers under one company umbrella. Working with topproducers, songwriters, choreographers, wardrobe consultants, publicityand marketing professionals in the entertainment industry. The companyrecently installed a pair of 48-input ATI Paragon II mixingconsoles—one for FOH and one incorporating 10 stereo inputs formonitors—into its rehearsal rooms.
Big 3 front-of-house engineer Howard "Howie" Lindeman, a 29-yearengineering veteran who previously worked at the Record Plant, the HitFactory and RCA before deciding to go freelance, said, "I've workedwith Paragons before. Outside of it being one of the cleanest-soundingconsoles I've ever had the opportunity to work with, the flexibilitywas a real important factor of having it here at Big 3, especially inthe rehearsal halls. That is because of the multitude and diversity ofthe acts that they have, and being able to have a console that will doliterally everything you ask it to do in terms of routing and inputsand outputs."
Big 3 monitor engineer Joe White (Boys II Men, Gladys Knight), said,"Most of our bands use in-ear monitors, and we like to do them instereo. The larger the band, the more outputs you eat up on the desk.So with a large band, to do wedges, effects and everything, we wereconstantly running out of outputs on the desk. We researched into otheranalog desks that we thought might suit us better and the Paragon cameout to be ahead of everybody."
mediaHYPERIUM studios Purchases SSL XLogic 5.1Compressor
Los Angeles-based mediaHYPERIUM studios, a facility primarily creating5.1 SACD re-releases and internal classical and jazz productions, haspurchased the first Solid State Logic XLogic 5.1 Compressor to handlefinal mix signal dynamics. The new outboard XLogic 5.1 provides alinkable approach to surround sound compressing with flexible meteringand level monitoring of compression interaction.
“"We were on the lookout for an integrated compressor that wasbuilt from the ground up to handle 5.1 situations," said Ted White,chief engineer for mediaHYPERIUM. "While other boutique-typemanufacturers have tagged together 5.1 compressors from existing stereoand mono models, SSL has taken their 5.1 compressor from the XL 9000 KSeries console that was specifically designed for surround mixing andHD audio and put it in a rack package. This clearly makes the XLogicthe compressor of choice."
mediaHYPERIUM Studios has formed an alliance with PhilipsElectronics where mediaHYPERIUM is the reference facility for SuperAudio CD releases in the United States. They also completed 32 releasesthis year for Concord Records. “"We have a 56-channel consolethat drives a large multichannel Pyramix DSD workstation," said White."The XLogic 5.1 compressor will add several benefits to our system.First, the degree of control over all six channels is superior. Themetering can tell you where the energy is within the surround field sowe can apply the right amount of compression in the right location toyield maximum levels for a mix before overload. Second, we will gainthe sonic quality and character of the compressor that SSL is so famousfor when we pass our program signals through the unit. And, finally,the compressor has the necessary bandwidth and clarity to match theSACD specification."
mediaHYPERIUM will be using the XLogic 5.1 Compressor on upcomingre-releases on SACD from Vanguard and Sugar Hill, including SineadO'Connor, Rodney Crowell and Buddy Guy, as well as the new Ray Charlesrelease for Concord Records. According to White, B.B. King, Billy Joel,Natalie Cole, Diana Krall and Van Morrison have signed on to performduets with Ray Charles for the 5.1 SACD.