Archer Records, an indie label based in Memphis, Tenn., recently bought an existing Memphis studio that is much larger than its former space. It also purchased a 48-channel API Vision console for the new studio.
"We like to record with live musicians with real instruments, and the more we do that, the more I'm drawn back to the sound of all-discrete circuitry," says label owner Ward Archer. "The API Vision is one of the very few all-discrete consoles that you can still buy new, and it's the only one that's designed from the ground up for surround work. I had considered 'used' all-discrete consoles, without surround of course, but I don't have the budget for a full-time tech to keep an old console up and running. The five-year warranty on the Vision is very appealing to me. In addition, I really like the fact that, for all its versatility, it's still compact. The full automation on both upper and lower faders will be especially handy, giving us over 100 inputs at mix if we need them."
Surround sound capability was also important to Archer. "There's a burgeoning film industry here in Memphis, and within the last year we have licensed three songs for use in movies. The film/TV industry is a significant consumer of music, and the producers I've talked with say they like having an option for surround mixes, rather than adapting stereo mixes. I'm looking forward to helping make that possible in Memphis. Besides that, I personally think surround offers a greatly enhanced listening experience. Most of our mixes will remain in stereo, but the 5.1 option makes sense for us going forward."