LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – FEBRUARY 2010: UK-based microphone manufacturer SoundField has supplied further copies of the SPS200 Surround Zone plug-in to Plymouth audio and music technology college Deep Blue Sound (DBS), where their SPS200 Software Controlled Microphone has been proving popular with students since last autumn. Deep Blue Sound underwent an extensive refit last summer, installing new Pro Tools recording workstations and upgrading studio equipment to make the facility ready for the introduction of its new BA Honors degree in Sound and Music Production, which is delivered in association with the University of Plymouth. As part of the upgrade and overhaul, a new advanced microphone technique module was added to the syllabus covering techniques for location and orchestral recording in surround sound for the first time. So during the summer break, DBS staff began looking for microphones capable of capturing and delivering surround sound.
Matt Bernard, DBS studio and
technical manager explains, “We began by borrowing an older SoundField ST250 to try it out, some time before we carried out our Pro Tools upgrades. We were very pleased with what it seemed capable of doing, so we progressed to buying the new SPS200 Software Controlled microphone from music technology dealers KMR. It was the right price point for us, and it proved very popular with the students in the autumn for location and orchestral recording. We bought another surround mic at the same time as the SPS200, but they seem to like the flexibility of the SoundField. That’s the mic that they all want to use.”
As with SoundField’s other multi-capsule microphones, the information from the SPS200’s capsule array can be decoded to a variety of audio formats, including mono, stereo, 5.1 surround and other surround formats, allowing the capture of surround sound performances with a single microphone, if required. The necessary decoding is carried out using the SPS200 Surround Zone software, which may be run as a plug-in under Pro Tools and is supplied with the SPS200 free of charge.
“After we got our new Pro Tools HD rigs in the summer, we realized we didn’t have enough instances of the SPS200 Surround Zone plug-in for all of our systems,” continues Bernard. “Although we only have one SPS200, once our students had made their four-channel recordings, they could work on them later while someone else was using the microphone, as long as the software wasn’t already being used. What we really wanted were enough copies of the SPS200 Surround Zone to run one on each of our five Pro Tools HD rigs. And SoundField was kind enough to provide these.”
“We were happy to help Deep Blue Sound with extra copies of the SPS200 Surround Zone,” explains Ken Giles, managing director of SoundField. “The SPS200 has been very successful in the educational market, and as a result of our experiences with Deep Blue Sound and other academic establishments, we now provide further copies of the plug-in free of charge, in order that the plug-ins can be used in a multi-workstation environment.”
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PHOTO CAPTIONS PHOTO ONE Matt Bernard (foreground) of Deep Blue Sound. PHOTO TWO Students recording at the college.