audioEngine Studio E
Photo: Philip Jensen-Carter (www.jensencarter.com)
The Walters-Storyk Design Group has just completed design and construction of Studio E at audioEngine, a leading TV commercial audio post-production complex in New York City. The studio was custom built for mix engineer Hilary Kew Martell, who specializes in theatrical 5.1 mixing.
Dolby approved rooms are critically important for 5.1 theatrical sound mixes of advertising messages that are viewed in movie theaters. Tests by Dolby engineer Tom Kodros found Studio E’s design, technology and wiring to meet Dolby standards on virtually every level. Dolby is recognized for maintaining one of the industry’s most stringent acoustical installation testing programs. The approval process requires that Dolby staff technicians complete a comprehensive sequence of tests designed to measure demanding listening/performance capabilities.
Illustrated by RTA graphs, the Dolby report states (in part) that “each main speaker’s final response falls nicely on the curve with +/- 1dB deviation, which is well within specification. The Subwoofer (LFE) response also turned out quite nicely. With some minor EQ applied, we were able to achieve a flat response from 20 Hz to 125 Hz. Simply put, the LFE response is impressive and sounds great in the room.”
TV Globo in Rio de Janeiro
In addition to audioEngine, WSDG has designed Dolby Theatrical Studio-approved facilities for TV Globo, the largest broadcaster in South America (currently under construction in Rio de Janeiro); Sound REC, a first-tier mastering studio in Buenos Aires, Argentina; and efe-x, a leading film mixing studio in Bogotá, Colombia .
efe-x was founded in 2000 as a visual effects house for both TV commercials and feature films, and has evolved into Colombia’s largest post-production facility, with a staff of more than 60 employees. To meet the needs of an increasingly sophisticated audience, efe-x engaged Sergio Molho, head of WSDG’s Latin Office in Buenos Aires, to design a high-end audio post-production suite.
efe-x Dolby mixing/screening room in Bogotá, Colombia
Collaborating with company principal architect/acoustician John Storyk, Molho developed a spacious custom film mixing theater with a 1,200-square-foot mixing/screening room, 200-square-foot sound lock, 600-square-foot office, and related support space. “Our client requested an innovative design solution and world-class acoustics to assure their international clientele of first tier mixing services,” Molho says. “Equipment for this impressive suite includes Dynaudio surround monitoring, ICON console and full Pro Tools and HD visuals. Dolby authorization was a pivotal issue.
“Knowledgeable producers are keenly aware of the value of Dolby Sound as a prerequisite for successful theatrical presentation,” Molho adds. “The efe-x investment in a full-up Dolby Film Mixing Theater is already producing dividends in the number and quality of feature film and theatrical commercial projects booking the facility.”
“Audio mixing for theatrical presentation is an extremely specialized discipline, and only studios designed for this clientele require Dolby approval,” John Storyk concludes. “Meeting these standards requires a combination of technical and design solutions. We perform a rigorous series of tests prior to requesting Dolby approval. We won’t invite them in until we’re confident the room will pass.”