Tag Archives: console

Kim Walker-Smith Returns to the Road

FOH Engineer Daniel Ellis at the DiGiCo SD12 96 desk on Kim Walker-Smith’s tour.
FOH Engineer Daniel Ellis at the DiGiCo SD12 96 desk on Kim Walker-Smith’s tour.

Wichita Falls, TX (March 24, 2021)—CCM artist Kim Walker-Smith has been hitting the road to promote her latest live release, Wild Heart, with a series of “Worship Nights” mini-tours of large churches and Christian universities, all of which have been sold out to half-capacity per COVID protocols. Providing audio for the productions has been Wichita Falls-based Front Porch Productions.

For the tours, Front Porch Productions has been supplying a pair of DiGiCo SD12 96 FOH and monitor consoles sharing an SD-Rack equipped with 32-bit “Ultimate Stadius” mic pres on an Optocore fiber-optic loop, according to Front Porch co-owner Aaron Talley, who has also been serving as the monitor engineer for each of the four-show runs.

The front-of-house mix has been tackled by Daniel Ellis, who notes he’s been using DiGiCo fairly exclusively for a while now: “The SD12 is perfect for what we do with the number of inputs and busses it has, and its compact size helps us easily fit our touring package into one bus trailer. I’ve had a Waves server at front of house for Kim’s latest tours, but I’ve kept most of the processing on the console, which has sounded great. And Aaron and I have both been using DiGiGrid MGB MADI interfaces to get signals into REAPER for recording her shows.”

Baseball-Themed ‘Rigoletto’ Covers Bases, Audience

“Macros on the SD12 are also amazing,” he adds. “I don’t have any special ones that haven’t already been talked about a hundred times, but they’ve been raved about because they are so helpful to have in your workflow. One of my favorites is the one that bypasses all Waves plugins. I’ll do that every now and then during soundcheck just to make sure I’m not going down a plugin rabbit-hole and making the mix worse!” he laughs. “Also, I really love using MIDI to trigger things. It’s such a simple pleasure to fire a snapshot that can play a specific song on my laptop and turn up a fader without touching it.”

At the other end of the fiber loop, Talley, who is manning the monitor SD12 96 console, reports that the tours’ relatively sparse input count of only 36 channels is complemented by an equally modest count of six stereo IEM mixes on stage: two for vocalists, plus keys, electric guitar, bass, and drums. “This has been the lowest number of mixes that I think we’ve ever had, and the console can obviously handle much more thrown at it, but I’ve been really happy with how it’s performed. I’ve only used the desk’s onboard processing on my end—EQ, compression, and reverb—and the sound quality has been top-tier. Daniel and I have also really enjoyed the Con Send and Receive function on our consoles; we use it all the time and it’s an absolute necessity for us.”

Kim Walker-Smith mini-tours • www.transparentproductions.com

Front Porch Productions • www.frontporchpro.com

DiGiCo • www.DiGiCo.biz

Original Resource is ProSoundNetwork.com

Dome Productions Rolls Out Gateway OB Truck

Gateway, a new all-IP SMPTE 2110 OB truck
Gateway, a new all-IP SMPTE 2110 OB truck

Canada (March 24, 2021)—Canada-based Dome Productions has unveiled Gateway, a new all-IP SMPTE 2110 OB truck outfitted with a Calrec Apollo digital audio console that is currently being used for TSN and Rogers SportsNet on their hockey broadcasts.

“We’re excited to take advantage of optimized and new workflows in all formats — HD, 3G and UHD. Now, virtual paths can be dynamically connected to change workflows depending on the show requirements,” said Al Karloff, manager of engineering services, Dome Productions.

Dome has been using Calrec consoles for 20 years and all different generations of the consoles are still active in the company’s fleet. The Apollo was commissioned by Canada-based SC Media.

Bosveld Stereo Installs South Africa’s First Calrec Type R

Jean Daoust, SC Media founder and president, says, “The Apollo was the only console that met Dome’s requirements; no other model could offer a surface with 144 faders, or the mix power of over 1,000 input channels. We’re proud to be partnered with companies such as Calrec and Dome Productions. The newfound addition of Calrec to our AV portfolio has opened new doors for us in the broadcast media vertical, as well as provided incredibly innovative solutions to our already valued customers. The Gateway truck is an incredible project, and we look forward to building upon this success for all parties involved.”

Calrec • www.calrec.com

Original Resource is ProSoundNetwork.com

Mixing X Factor Colombia

Freelance audio engineer Richard Cardenas handled live mixing duties for the show inside RCN Televisión’s studios in Bogotá.
Freelance audio engineer Richard Cardenas handled live mixing duties for X Factor Colombia inside RCN Televisión’s studios in Bogotá. EL_CHAMO

Bogotá, Columbia (March 10, 2021)—Like many TV shows, X Factor Colombia 2020 was interrupted by the pandemic last spring, part way into production. The show resumed after eight months, however, returning last October with strict precautions in place that ran throughout the rest of the season, which wrapped up at the end of the year. Throughout it all, freelance audio engineer Richard Cardenas handled live mixing duties for the show inside RCN Televisión’s studios in Bogotá.

Cardenas opted for an Allen & Heath dLive mixing system on the show, centered around a CDM48 MixRack controlled from a 36-fader S7000 surface. He managed all the contestants’ IEM mixes, plus FOH and monitor mixes for the contestants, judges and audience. The audio configuration in the studio consisted of an LR stereo matrix out, a matrix mono sub out, stereo aux mixes feeding side fills, a mono floor wedge setup and a stereo aux mix for the judges’ side-fill. For the earlier recordings, an audience PA mix was also fed to a stereo matrix. A DX012 12-output expander was employed to provide additional AES feeds to a 96 kHz loudspeaker management system. Cardenas also used a Dante 64×64 card to feed the broadcast desk using dLive’s tie lines feature, plus a superMADI card for backup recording to a Pixel Power system.

Allen & Heath Adds to Expanders’ Dante I/O Capabilities

Cardenas first encountered the system at a festival in 2019, where he mixed multiple Latin Grammy winners a few months before being approached to work on the TV show. “With dLive, I really felt like I was mixing rather than trying to figure out how to operate the desk,” he said, “so when I had the opportunity to work on X Factor Colombia, I asked RCN Television for a dLive system. We only had two weeks between delivery and rehearsals, but I had excellent support from Allen & Heath’s specialist in Colombia, Ivan Sanchez.”

All that allowed Cardenas to streamline his system for the broadcasts: “The DEEP processing emulations are excellent and sound very close to the real thing. The same goes for the FX. The EQs and preamps also sound excellent and dLive’s very low latency and 96kHz processing set it apart from the rest.”

Allen & Heath • www.allen-heath.com

Original Resource is ProSoundNetwork.com

Avid Unveils Venue 7 Update

The latest update to Avid’s Venue line includes three system I/O sharing and Milan network connectivity.
The latest update to Avid’s Venue line includes three system I/O sharing and Milan network connectivity. Bill Schwob

Burlington, MA (February 22, 2021)—Avid has released Avid Venue 7, the latest update for its Venue line of live sound consoles, debuting a number of new features and enhancements in the process.

Avid Venue software now supports I/O sharing across three Avid Venue | S6L systems, providing more workflow flexibility without affecting sound quality. Support for I/O sharing makes it easier to add a broadcast console or second monitor console to a setup or enable fast switchover at festivals and concerts. With I/O sharing, microphone feeds can be split digitally over the network so engineers only have to build one set of I/O racks; meanwhile, all I/O configurations support Avid’s True Gain technology, which automatically manages gain compensation to ensure proper signal levels are maintained for each engineer.

With Venue 7, users can now send and receive up to 128 channels of audio between Avid Venue | S6L systems and Milan (media-integrated local area network) certified devices – including loudspeakers, amplifiers and other pro audio devices – with the new MLN-192 Milan Option Card and latest Avid Venue software. The format’s plug-and-play connectivity lets users distribute audio to Milan-enabled devices over an Ethernet AVB network, with no switch configuration or IT expertise required.

Avid Pro Tools 2020.11’s New Features – A Real-World Review

“As the world’s first live sound console to be certified by the rapidly growing Milan protocol and the only one to offer gain-compensated I/O sharing between three systems, this is more than just a software update – Venue 7 truly takes a giant leap forward,” said Dana Ruzicka, SVP & GM of Audio & Music Solutions at Avid. “Although live performances have been hit hard by the ongoing pandemic, Avid remains fully committed to innovating for the live sound industry. We’re doubling down with the biggest software release since shipping the S6L system, giving engineers and sound designers the power and performance they need to deliver the best possible live sound productions.”

Venue 7 also provides control of delay compensation to help users tackle plug-in-heavy mixes with complex routing requirements. Aligning busses and matrixes is simplified through Automatic Delay Compensation (ADC) settings, while the new Input Delay Alignment command aids aligning selected input channels to compensate for any plug-ins inserted on those inputs. Other new additions include USB recording and playback, new mixing features and a variety of processing and routing options.

Avid • www.avid.com

Original Resource is ProSoundNetwork.com

J.studio Upgrades For a Hybrid Workflow

Audio engineer Zhu Chiao Chen has upgraded his J.studio in the center of Taipei, Taiwan with a Neve 8424 console.
Audio engineer Zhu Chiao Chen has upgraded his J.studio in the center of Taipei, Taiwan with a Neve 8424 console.

Taipei, Taiwan (February 22, 2021)—Audio engineer Zhu Chiao Chen has upgraded his J.studio in the center of Taipei, Taiwan with a Neve 8424 console.

“We especially love working with Taiwanese indie bands as many of the bands we have worked with have had their full creative potential realized in our studio space,” says Zhu Chiao Chen. He opened J.studio in 2019 and is now offering recording, mixing and mastering facilities to all types of musical genres including classical, jazz, EDM and pop.

Rupert Neve, Pro Audio Legend, Dead at 94

“Our approach is to bridge old-school gear and apply modern techniques to achieve sonically unique results. The studio is equipped with Urei 813C main monitors and we love collecting all types of vintage audio gear. The 8424 console is what connects everything together.”

The new 8424 replaces an older console that had reached the end of its working life. “We were starting to encounter a lot of problems because buttons and knobs were slowly wearing out and this was hindering our workflow,” he explains. “As an alternative, the 8424 was an affordable option in this market segment and it allows us to seamlessly use the gear we want to use alongside it. Plus, we are big fans of the iconic Neve sound.”

Zhu Chiao Chen says that he prefers to use a hybrid workflow: “I initially assign all my channels, groups, sums, etc. to the console. We have six Switchcraft 9625 patchbays that are connected to a lot of 500 series gear. This allows us to maximize the space we have in our studio and create a more ergonomic environment to work in. At this point, I’ll be ready to start mixing, and use a combination of outboard gear and software plug-ins to achieve my mix.”

AMS Neve: www.ams-neve.com

Original Resource is ProSoundNetwork.com

Graphic Nature Audio Relocates

Will Putney’s Graphic Nature Audio recording studio is relocating to a rural property in Kinnelon, NJ.
Will Putney’s Graphic Nature Audio recording studio is relocating to a rural property in Kinnelon, NJ.

Kinnelon, NJ (February 19, 2021)—Will Putney’s Graphic Nature Audio recording studio is relocating from its current home in Belleville, NJ to a larger, rural property about 20 miles west in Kinnelon. Putney, a metal/hardcore producer/engineer, mixer and musician has worked with bands such as Every Time I Die, Body Count, Knocked Loose, The Amity Affliction, Stray From The Path, Counterparts, Terror and Northlane

Putney has long mixed using a hybrid setup: “I would mix out into pieces of gear that I’ve collected over the years and sum everything together back into the computer. The setup ended up getting more and more complicated. Over time I was basically building a console piecemeal, with different summing mixers, and creating ways to do parallel sends and analog-style routing to get to my compressors and EQs.

Getting Heavy with Will Putney

As a result, the new facility is centered around a newly installed 32-channel SSL Origin analog in-line mixing console, acquired from Vintage King.“ I decided that if I could find something streamlined enough that would give me the routing functions that I want and without too many components, and that had a small enough footprint, I would probably be better suited to working on something like that,” he said.

Putney's new facility is centered around an SSL Origin  console.
Putney’s new facility is centered around an SSL Origin console.

The transition from his former multi-component workflow to the new setup incorporating the Origin has been seamless, he stated: “It all just feels super musical, and it’s fast and easy for me to get mixes going on. What I do in the computer doesn’t really change at all, so it’s business as usual; I still work how I always did.”

The complement of gear installed with the Origin mimics Putney’s previous setup and includes a pair of Amphion Two18 nearfield monitors, which he switched to several years ago, along with Universal Audio Apollo interfaces for tracking and overdubbing into his Logic Pro DAW. “We still use Pro Tools for editing,” he says, “or if I travel to another studio.”

The Origin desk has been installed in a room at the new location in Kinnelon, where the next stage of construction will begin in the coming months. “I’ve got two control rooms set up here. The goal for the future — we’ll start construction in the spring — is to do an updated version of my old drum tracking room but with a more traditional control room. That will be my A room where I can do everything — recording drums and mixing. I will be able to do an entire record there, start to finish, as opposed to working in the modular rooms in the other facility,” says Putney.

Graphic Nature Audio • www.graphicnatureaudio.com

Solid State Logic • www.solidstatelogic.com

Original Resource is ProSoundNetwork.com

Rupert Neve, Pro Audio Legend, Dead at 94

Rupert Neve
Rupert Neve

Wimberley, TX (February 13, 2021)—Legendary pro-audio equipment designer Rupert Neve died February 12, 2021 due to non COVID-related pneumonia and heart failure. Neve’s passing brought to an end a career of more than 70 years that saw him create some of pro audio’s most revered, imitated and sought-after equipment, created for all corners of the industry, from recording to radio to live sound and more. As much an entrepreneur as he was an inventor, Neve’s legacy includes a slew of companies bearing his name, and it is no exaggeration to say equipment based on his designs will be used in studios around the world for decades to come. He was 94.

Born July 31, 1926 in Newton Abbot, England, Rupert Neve grew up in in Buenos Aires, Argentina; showing an interest in audio early on, he began designing audio amplifiers and radio receivers at 13, soon repairing and selling radios as a business before volunteering at age 17 to join the Royal Signals during World War II, providing communications support to the British Army. Following the war, he settled back in England, where he built a mobile recording studio used to cut operas, speeches, choirs and more on to lacquer discs. Concurrently, he also provided sound reinforcement systems for events involving Princess (later Queen) Elizabeth II and Winston Churchill.

Neve worked for a variety of companies in the 1950s before eventually striking out on his own to found CQ Audio, which produced Hi-Fi speaker systems. This attracted the attention of composer Desmond Leslie, who commissioned Neve to build a mixing console for him in the early 1960s; the console is still in residence in Castle Leslie, Ireland.

The Leslie console led to Neve founding the first of multiple audio companies that would bear his name, Neve Electronics, in 1961, initially operating out of his home before moving into proper facilities later in the Sixties. As the use of transistors gained popularity, Neve developed a transistor-based console for London’s Phillips Recording Studio in 1964, and continued to create new desks, most notably the Neve 80 and 50 series, which are revered for their microphone preamp, equalizer and processing modules, such as the widely cloned and emulated 1073 and 1081. Neve also developed the first moving fader system, NECAM (NEve Computer Assisted Mixdown); after seeing a pre-release demo on a Neve 16/4 console, Beatles producer George Martin’s first words were “How soon can I have one?” and Martin’s AIR Studios in London soon became the first NECAM-enabled facility.

Neve sold the company in the mid-1970s and left to form ARN Consultants, the result of a 10-year non-compete clause in the sales contract. ARN in turn teamed up with Amek Systems, a collaboration that led to Neve developing the Amek 9098 console, as well as outboard gear and his Transformer-Like Amplifier (TLA) design, which featured in numerous Amek desks.

Rupert Neve signing an RND 5088 mixing console, installed in Blue Rock Artist Ranch and Studio in Wimberley, TX, in 2013.
Rupert Neve signing an RND 5088 mixing console, installed in Blue Rock Artist Ranch and Studio in Wimberley, TX, in 2013.

In 1985, ARN founded Focusrite Ltd., primarily producing outboard gear such as dynamic processors and EQs, as well as another large-format console, of which only eight were made before the company was liquidated in 1989; the company’s assets were purchased by a new company, Focusrite Audio Engineering (today Focusrite PLC), with which Neve was not involved. Concurrently, but likewise unrelated directly to Neve himself, the original Neve Electronics was sold to Siemens in 1985, which in turn merged with UK company Advanced Music Systems, resulting in pro-audio manufacturer AMS-Neve, which continues to this day.

Neve and his wife, Evelyn, moved to Wimberley, Texas in late 1994, and in 1997, he became only the third person to receive a Technical Grammy Award. The Neves became U.S. citizens in 2002 and founded Rupert Neve Designs in 2005, which today produces a variety of products, including its 5088 analog mixing console and a range of rackmount and desktop equipment for processing, summing and more. Even so, Neve continued to also create products for other companies, including preamps and pickups for Taylor Guitars, microphones for sE Electronics, plug-ins for Yamaha’s live sound consoles, and more.

Over the course of his career, Rupert Neve was awarded 16 TEC Awards for his Rupert Neve Designs products, and in 2006, received an Audio Engineering Society Fellowship Award. He is survived by his wife of nearly 70 years, Evelyn; five children, Mary, David, John, Stephen, and Ann; nine grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.

Original Resource is ProSoundNetwork.com

Anamorphic Adds Hybrid Workflow

Producer Thomas Statnick has installed a Neve 8424 console in his studio to support his hybrid workflow.
Producer Thomas Statnick has installed a Neve 8424 console in his studio to support his hybrid workflow.

North Carolina (February 10, 2021)—Producer Thomas Statnick, one half of electronic/experimental ambient project Anamorphic, has installed a Neve 8424 console in his North Carolina studio to support his hybrid workflow.

“I chose a Neve 8424 because I like using a large, fully featured console for tracking and mixing,” says Statnick. His studio is mainly used to record, mix and master projects for Anamorphic, which he established in 1996 with Elod Horvath.

Originally established in Lafayette, IN, the studio moved to New York City before finally relocating to the Blue Ridge Mountains in 2015. The studio’s new Neve 8424 was installed at the end of 2020 as a replacement for an in-line analog console that was showing its age.

Mike Smith Builds Out Analog Workflow

“Given the substantial investment I have made over the years in outboard gear, going totally ‘in-the-box’ is not a practical option. What I wanted was a desk that could cope with a hybrid digital environment by delivering a low noise floor, high output levels and a high channel count for mix-down. Recall capability and the build and sound quality of the console were also important. The Neve 8424 meets all these criteria and also allows me to easily integrate my collection of classic analogue outboard gear into my workflow.”

Statnick says, “I perform all of the engineering, mixing, and mastering duties and assist in creating soundscapes and arrangements. As an electronic music studio, we don’t feature a huge microphone or mic preamp collection, so our outboard gear is mostly comprised of compressors, equalizers and effects units. We also have a 32×32 Apogee Symphony DAW interface and standalone A/D and D/A converters from Dangerous Music for mastering and monitoring.”

He adds, “This is my first Neve purchase and although I have heard a lot of really great music produced on Neve consoles, this is the first time I’ve been directly exposed to the Neve sound. I have been an audiophile since my early 20s and use a high-end audiophile system to proof masters and preview mixes. One of my biggest engineering interests in the studio is trying different things during mixing and mastering, and listening to the result on an audiophile system. Sound quality and soundstage/imaging is extremely important to me, and Neve’s reputation for sound quality was definitely a factor in my decision to get an 8424.”

AMS Neve • www.ams-neve.com

Original Resource is ProSoundNetwork.com

Good Shepherd Church Rounds Up New Gear

Good Shepherd Church audio team assistant manager Ji Hyeon-seok (left) and team leader, Kim Hyun-seok, with their new Allen & Heath Avantis console.
Good Shepherd Church audio team assistant manager Ji Hyeon-seok (left) and team leader, Kim Hyun-seok, with their new Allen & Heath Avantis console.

Bokjeong-dong, South Korea (February 10, 2021)—Local house of worship Good Shepherd Church in Bokjeong-dong, South Korea, recently updated the audio system in its secondary chapel, Glory Hall, with the new addition of an Allen & Heath Avantis console, along with a set of ME-1 personal mixers for the praise team. Despite the pandemic, both chapels are still in active use, though services are being held with reduced capacity.

The previous digital console installed in the Glory Hall had begun to show its age and was struggling to accommodate growing channel counts. Working closely with Allen & Heath distributor, Sama Sound, Good Shepherd Church made the upgrade to a 64-channel, 42-buss Avantis mixer, expanded with the dPack processing upgrade and a GX4816 AudioRack for onstage I/O.

Allen & Heath Debuts MADI Option Card for SQ

Concurrent to the arrival of the new console was the implementation of a compact, discreet ME personal mixing system, replacing the praise band’s wedge system. Connected to the Avantis via a ME-U hub, a half-dozen ME-1 units allow the musicians to create their own headphone mixes. “Thanks to the ME-1 personal mixers, the sound on stage is well managed, making mixing easier, and the performers are comfortable because the sound quality is very high and they are easy to operate,” explains Kim Hyun-seok, leader of Good Shepherd Church’s audio team.

They aren’t the church’s first A&H consoles, either, as SQ series mixers were already installed in two spaces, with an SQ-7 console in the 300-seat Vision Hall, a multi-purpose facility used for youth worship, and an SQ-6 mixer installed in the praise team’s rehearsal space in the Church’s basement.

Allen & Heath • www.allen-heath.com

Original Resource is ProSoundNetwork.com

Mike Smith Builds Out Analog Workflow

Mike Smith
Cuban-American recording artist Mike Smith, who is also a co-executive producer and main judge on BET’s One Shot competition series, recently overhauled his studio in Charlotte, NC and installed a Neve 8424 console. Copyright 2021. All rights reserved.

Charlotte, NC (January 27, 2021)—Cuban-American recording artist Mike Smith, who is also a co-executive producer and main judge on BET’s One Shot competition series, recently overhauled his studio in Charlotte, NC and installed a Neve 8424 console.

Smith’s studio is a commercial facility but is primarily used for his own projects. It houses his collection of more than 60 classic guitars, as well as a grand piano, numerous keyboards, drum sets and microphones. Outboard equipment includes two vintage Neve 1073 preamps and a total of eight 2254R and 2264ALB compressor/limiters. Alongside his 8424 purchase, Smith also recently acquired a Neve 1073OPX, which he is using in conjunction with the desk.

“I never used the preamps on my old desk and as time went on, I realized I was barely using the console at all because I was working more and more in the box, with a few outboard pieces for tracking and mixing,” says Smith. As an artist, producer and songwriter, he has over one billion streams and over five million units sold, not to mention numerous No.1 albums and several Top 10 singles. “The 8424 has given me the ability to come back to the analogue world in a huge way by really streamlining the process between in-the-box and outside-the-box.”

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The 8424 was installed at the end of last year. “It is a world-class console in a small footprint and with a workflow that is perfect for someone like me, a singer-songwriter and producer who predominantly tracks themselves or a few other artists,” he says.

“The two 1073 preamps included on the console, along with the 8 channel 1073OPX expansion and integration to the console, are ideally suited to how I work. I now have 48 channels that are easily integrated with my DAW, and instant recall of my settings. However, the biggest surprise is the master section of the console, which is incredible. The inclusion of two 500 series slots, the shelving EQs, width controls, and beautiful-sounding Marinair transformers makes this console a one stop shop for all of my recording needs.”

AMS Neve • www.ams-neve.com

Original Resource is ProSoundNetwork.com