MTSU Department of Recording Industry Becomes First All-PhantomFocus™-Equipped University Program

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- Seven Carl Tatz Design PhantomFocus™ Systems (PFS™) have been installed in Middle Tennessee State University's College of Media and Entertainment -

- Recording school educators are realizing that after their highly qualified staff of professors, the single most important element in their programs is providing students with the most accurate monitoring possible. The evolution of technology has made it affordable for students to provide enormous amounts of production power for themselves. MTSU’s Department of Recording Industry recognizes that the one thing that students are initially less likely to provide for themselves is highly accurate monitoring. -

Nashville, TN: The PhantomFocus™ System (PFS™) as educational tool continues to be embraced by academic institutions, as evidenced by its latest extensive installation in Middle Tennessee State University's (MTSU) Department of Recording Industry studios. Five new PhantomFocus Systems were added to greatly improve the facilities that support the department’s B.S. in Audio Production and M.F.A in Recording Arts and Technologies programs. The systems were added to build on the overwhelming success of the PFSs installed in the award-winning Studios D and E CTD MixRooms™ in 2013, bringing the total to seven systems campus-wide.

Bill Crabtree, MTSU Recording Industry Professor and Director of the M.F.A. program in Recording Arts and Technologies, comments, “When it comes to facilities and technology, high-quality studio monitoring is probably the most important thing we can do for our students. Installing the PhantomFocus System in all of our studios has been a fundamentally transformative experience for our students and has improved all of our studio courses. Our masters degree students are especially impacted by the precise imaging and spectral balance of the systems. This is a real game-changer for us.”

The installations include a Dual PFS™ 5.1 main and 5.1 near-field in Studio A, a Dual PFS of mains and near-field in Studio B, a PFS and the new Carl Tatz Edition™ Dual 15-DR800 Workstation by Argosy in the new Mix Lab and the existing PFSs in Studios D and E CTD MixRooms. Monitors enhanced with the PFS are Boxer T4 mains, Genelec 1037C and Event Opal near-fields.   

Carl Tatz, TEC Award-winning studio designer and creator of the PhantomFocus System, comments, “This was our most ambitious PFS implementation to date and required a great deal of customization due to the necessity of having to traverse the existing wire trough locations relative to PFS speaker stand mounting protocols and the need to make the system ‘student-proof,’ so-to-speak, so that the systems could never be bumped out of their LaserQuad™ positioning.”

MTSU associate professor and multi-award-winning engineer John Merchant, who also enjoys a Dual PFS in his personal home mix room RedDoor, observes, “Monitoring is the window to your work, and that window must be clear, open and true to make the best choices professionally. With all of our primary studios equipped with PhantomFocus Systems, MTSU now offers students the ability to truly hear what they are doing in high resolution. Even in a short time, the results have been striking: students’ mixes sound significantly better, and they translate beautifully to the outside world. This is a major upgrade for our studios, and we are the only collegiate recording program to offer this to students.”

Celebrating 40 years of excellence, Middle Tennessee State University's Department of Recording Industry offers undergraduate programs in Audio Production, Commercial Songwriting and Music Business. The department also offers a Master of Fine Arts in Recording Arts and Technologies – one of the only programs of its kind (cited from Facebook). The department and facilities are housed in the University's College of Media and Entertainment located in Murfreesboro near Nashville, TN.

Photo caption 1: PhantomFocus System (PFS™) LaserQuad™ alignment of MTSU Department of Recording Industry Studio A's Dual 5.1 PhantomFocus Systems