— Savvy studio owner/engineer Michael Kolar chooses Carl Tatz Design’s (CTD) acclaimed PhantomFocus™ System monitor tuning protocol above all other possible control room upgrades —
Nashville, TN: "When you can mix from instinct and taste as opposed to compensating for playback anomalies, the sky is the limit," contends Michael Kolar, owner/engineer of one of Chicago's leading recording facilities, Soundscape Recording, describing his Phantom Focus™ System (PFS) experience.
“At the start of spring I was looking at ways I could invest in myself to take my mixes to the next level,” notes studio owner/engineer Michael Kolar. “At first, I was thinking about getting a variety of high-end stereo bus compressors and EQ’s to strap across my entire mix to give it a more polished sound. Then I was thinking about getting a small-format Rupert Neve Design or Tonelux console. While all these items undoubtedly would help my mixes, it would not fix the problem of having to make three or four mix revisions to get a sound that translated well from iPod to car to nightclub. That’s when it dawned on me that if I get the best possible playback system, the gear I already have will work way better, as I won’t have to second-guess myself.”
He continues: “This is when I reached out to Carl. From the jump, I was impressed by all the questions he asked. He approached my control room like I approach a mix – we both wanted no surprises. Not only did Carl determine that the room acoustics need improving, but he also improved the feng shui of my control room. I think I have the only mix room with a 55-inch LED on a hydraulic lift! All I can say is that it is a true joy working in my new control room. When it's right on the Phantom Focus™ System, it's right everywhere."
Here is Michael Kolar’s description of Soundscape’s other recent upgrades:
In addition to implementing Carl's suggestions for modifying the acoustic treatment of the control room featuring a custom version of his CTD Acoustic Lens™ Modules, we also installed LED wall sconces for no-heat lighting/minimal electrical lighting, French wall paper, cedar wood trim and red velvet acoustic fabric, and a 55 inch LED-on a hydraulic lift with 8- and 16-bit Nintendo game consoles.
Gear-wise, we installed the new Mac Pro tower with an Avid HDX card running ProTools 10 HD. We also upgraded the I/O to the brand new AVID 16 in/out convertors feeding a SPL MixDream Class A summing amp. We also added a Dramastic Audio Obsidian bus compressor and an Inward Connections “The Brute” optical limiter.