From left: Brian Hood (who handled much of the construction), Jeremy Goody and engineer Gilad Gershoni in Megasonic Sound’s control room
Photo: James Whitehead
Producer/engineer Jeremy Goody worked in and helped build various studios in the San Francisco Bay Area for more than 20 years before finally realizing a dream. In 2007, he collaborated with studio designer Chris Pelonis to transform a single-story office building in Oakland, Calif., into his own full-service studio, Megasonic Sound. Goody opened this facility in 2008, and in 2010 it won an award from local newspaper East Bay Express for Best Studio.
“It’s my personal production space but it’s also open to other engineers,” Goody says. “This whole place is built to be a cost-effective way to get high-quality audio. I think Mega-sonic is a nice bridge between custom-built facilities and project rooms.” Goody’s budget for construction was significantly lower than the budgets that Pelonis typically works with, “so I had to do a hybrid [construction] approach,” Goody says.
Pelonis conceptualized a design and acoustic treatment using his proprietary semi-custom modular system, which is manufactured off-site by RPG Diffusor Systems and delivered to the client. “My design fee on a project like this is a fraction of what it is when I’m designing everything to be built in,” Pelonis says. “But you still have to look at the proportions, room ratios, cubic volume, the HVAC, electrical, wiring, ergonomics, building codes—all that stuff. We do a combination of built-in and geometrical construction and architecture with prefabricated modular systems. I started doing that back in the ’80s, and people are starting to recognize that this [approach] really performs.”
“The construction went quickly and easily,” Goody says. “We only had to build rectangles with good dimensions and isolation. We also built a few rigid Fiberglas panels to complement the other treatments. The acoustic treatments showed up on a flatbed truck and were installed inside of a day.”
Goody sees Megasonic as a “mastering room first with tracking rooms attached to it.” Megasonic comprises a 21.5×18-foot control room, 24×17.5-foot Live Room A, 14×10.5-foot Live Room B and 11×7-foot kitchen/iso booth. Megasonic has no console; instead, an Avid Command 8 controls Pro Tools and Logic Pro software on a dual-core Mac G5 with a Pro Tools HD2 system and 24 channels of Apogee conversion. Mastering equipment includes a Dangerous Music Box EQ and Great River MAQ-2NV EQ. For analog summing, he employs a 16-channel Roll Music Systems RMS216/JCF LEVR combination. Goody monitors with Pelonis Signature Series PSS110Ps based around 10-inch Tannoy dual-concentric drivers, as well as Dynaudio BM s5s and Auratone Sound Cubes.
In 2009, Megasonic hosted sessions for the album La Guerra No by John Santos Y El Coro Folklórico Kindembo, which was nominated for a 2010 Grammy Award as Best Traditional World Music Album. “That stuff’s right up my alley because it’s drums and voices—it’s all about mic technique,” Goody says. “There isn’t much you need to do if you record it well.”