Studio A is built around a unique, vintage Raindirk Series III mixing console, from the late 1970's. Formerly owned by Olympic studios in London where it played a part in many great classic albums from the likes of Queen, Pink Floyd and David Bowie. Comparable to a vintage Neve in terms of quality, but with it's own unique sonic signature, this is one great sounding board. The mic pre's are transparent, open and detailed, the eq's powerful, smooth and musical. The stereo imaging superb! We also have an amazing Glensound console, built like a tank for the BBC in the 70's and previously owned by Babyshambles guitarist, Mick Whitnall, it has unusual 'stereo-width' controls which can add lots of space and depth to a mix, pre's which sound much like vintage API's, and a telephone which provides a hotline to Jimi Hendrix and Kurt Cobain!
Our live room boasts a nice high oak beamed ceiling and plenty of room to get everyone comfortable. We have stations around the room which make setting up a painless exercise. We have a corner which sounds great for drums, behind a plexi-glass drum screen (so you can look at your drummer in his little den!) a stunning vintage Gretsch kit is available for use on request, a keyboards station with F Mulbach baby grand piano, Elka Hammond copy, Wurlitzer 200A electric piano, Korg MS2000 synth, Korg Wavestation, Fatar 88 note weighted keyboard and a harmonium. The guitar area houses a custom built Barnet-Davis valve combo which is a really great little amp and a Fender Princeton. We have a few very nice Yamaha electrics and a vintage Fylde Arial parlour guitar (great for fingerpicking), a vintage 'Mountain' which is a lovely jumbo martin copy from the 70's (great for strumming!), plus a 'High string' guitar, also known as 'Nashville tuning'. Also, we have an Ozark resonator, a twelve string, various mandolins, bazoukies, a cuatro and a bunch other fun instruments. The Bass area has a simple McGregor bass combo which doesn't look like much but records very well indeed, and a Vintage electric bass and an acoustic bass.
Each station in the live room has a custom-built 8 channel headphone mixer, allowing each musician in the room to set up their own unique headphone balance.
Oh, and we also have remote controlled colour lighting to tune the mood of the room to your tastes, and video link between the live room and the control room.
Sticking with our ethos of marrying the best of vintage equipment to the latest in cutting edge digital technology, click on the images to the right for details of some of our favourite stuff!
We love ribbon mics, so we have a nice selection:
2 x RCA 77DX
2 x RCA 74B
Rare British made RCA Variacoustic
2 x BK11
RM7 stereo ribbon
Octava MA52, M5202, 504
2 x T-Bone ribbons (sound better thank you might think!)
Neumann TLM193, 2 x KM85
Sennheiser MD409 (the best on guitar cabs)
2 x Sennheiser MD421(Toms!)
Sennheiser MD403 & MD441
Shure Beta 58, SM58's, SM57's, 545, SM7
2 x AKG D12E
We have a pair of Sony C37A's from the '50s which were Sony's answer to the Neumann U47. They sound absolutely gorgeous and are used extensively by producer Daniel Lanois, among others. It is also rumoured that this is the only microphone Frank Sinatra would record with!
We also have a Mojave MA200 which is very nice on acoustic guitar
We also have a range of very strange and unique sounding vintage mic's which can be fun for special effects etc!×
There's no point having a cupboard full of great mic's if your mic pre's aren't up to the job, so we have a superb selection:
Raindirk Series III console houses 28 stunning mic pre's & eq's
Glensound consoles house 8 punchy mic pre's and eq's
4 channels Neve/Tweed C514 with eq's
5 channels Telefunken V76 pre's & eq's
2 channels Focusrite ISA 430 (pre's, eq's, compressors)
8 channels custom built RCA valve pre's
2x RCA BA44's
2 channels AEA TRP
1 channel GA Pre-73
Universal Audio 1176LN (classic and essential!)
Anthony Demaria Labs C/L 1500 stereo valve comp (similar to LA2A) - silky smooth vocals, super punchy drums! Delicious.
2 x McMartin LR-1004c (favoured by Tom Waites for their aggressive sound)
1 channel GA Comp-54
2 channels Focusrite Platinum compounder
2 channels Focusrite ISA 430 compressors & eq's etc
Then, in the virtual world, we have almost all of the UAD plug-ins running on UAD DUO and SOLO cards. Plus a host of others from Soundtoys to Waves etc.×
Effects and other Outboard
Eventide H3000-D/SX fully loaded classic effects. Beautiful!
AMS DMX 15-80S with harmoniser cards and 1.63 seconds of delay. Gorgeous echoes, octaves and harmonies plus many other unique effects from the dawn of the digital era.
AMS DMX 15T "timeflex" similar to the above but with a different approach to sound bending!
Vintage Bel BD-80 and BD-320 delays (similar to the AMS)
Lexicon Jam Man
2 x Boss RPH-10 Phasers
Boss RBF-10 Flanger
TC electronic M-One
TC electronic finalizer 96K
Sansui spring reverb
Many rare and vintage guitar pedals from Kay Orange fuzz to Big Muff Pi!
PMC IB1S Midfield monitors powered by Bryston amps, found in the worlds top studios.
PMC TB2As with flying mole active amps
Original (and best) Mackie HR-824's
ADAM Sub 8
All of our headphones are professional Sony studio headphones.
Revox B77 MkII (¼vccccc inch stereo machine)
Tascam DA-30 mk II (DAT recorder)
Yes, we still keep a few cassette players and record turntables handy too!
Our analogue wonderland is connected to the world of digital via a motu 24i/o and 2408 for extra signals and digital transfers, using the PCI 424 system. We then run Logic pro, izotope RX2 advanced etc on our 8-core 3Ghz mac pro tower which has 12GB ram and around 8TB external storage including a RAID set for added security of your important files. Mixes are recorded at 24-bit, 96kHz via TC electronic A/D converters.×