A virtual press conference from Sound & Video Contractor



HOPEWELL JUNCTION, NEW YORK – APRIL 2011: Sterling Winfield gained notoriety and respect early in his career for his contribution to Pantera’s 1994, Grammy-nominated release, Far Beyond Driven. He’s been on the first-call list ever since, and his production and engineering work with Mercyful Fate, King Diamond, Pantera, Damageplan, Hellyeah, and many others has earned his work four Grammy-nominations, two RIAA-certified platinum releases, and five RIAA-certified gold releases. Among his favorite tools is Metric Halo’s ChannelStrip plug-in, both for its decidedly “undigital” sound and for its inspiration-fueling workflow. He used ChannelStrip prodigiously on Hellyeah’s recent Stampede, which debuted at number eight on the Billboard 200 in July of 2010.

Not surprisingly, the vocals of Mudvayne frontman Chad Gray capture the listener’s attention on Stampede, and Winfield was careful to record it to maximal effect. Depending on how melodic or growling a particular lyric was, Winfield used one of two microphones and recording paths. For more melodic lines, he used a Neumann M 149 large diaphragm tube condenser together with a TL Audio preamp and processor. For the edgier parts, Winfield combined a Shure SM7 with a Behringer VX 2000 preamp.

“Metric Halo’s ChannelStrip has become an integral part of how I work,” said Winfield. “Simply put, it’s an easy way to get the right sound.” For the smooth vocals, Winfield focused on subtracting frequencies to minimize conflicts with other instruments. Although there were many idiosyncratic uses that depended on Gray’s delivery in the context of the arrangement at a particular moment, he generally removed energy between 200 and 600 Hz to open up the vocals. Mild compression applied the final polish. For the edgier parts, he leaned radically into ChannelStrip’s EQ to sharpen that edge. Instead of mild compression, he arranged the dynamics section to deliver near-brick-wall limiting.

“I’m not a big tech-head, and I don’t know the math or the algorithms, but I do know what sounds good and what sounds correct,” said Winfield. “A lot of plug-ins sound harsh and artificial, in a way that I’ve come to associate with artless digital technology. Metric Halo’s ChannelStrip is in a different class. It always sounds smooth, no matter what I’m using it on, and it gives things a ‘sheen’ in the same way that great analog gear does.” On Stampede, Winfield marshaled that quality to make several of the guitar leads less strident. Some mild compression and effective EQ removed the painful edge, but retained the aggressive spirit of the leads.

Apart from great sound, Winfield so frequently turns to ChannelStrip because it is quick. “With a lot of other plug-ins, the presets sound terrible, like they’ve been set by a computer engineer who never set foot in a control room,” he said. “In stark contrast, the folks at Metric Halo have designed some really killer presets. They sound awesome as soon as you turn them on, and it’s simple to roll from there and modify the preset to finalize the effect. It keeps things moving so that I stay in the moment. That’s the right way to work.”

A great example is the ‘rack tom’ and ‘floor tom’ presets, which Winfield uses religiously. “I love the way the EQ curve and compression is set on that preset. It’s really aggressive, and the more I dial down the threshold, the more the tom lifts up to the top of the mix. It’s like magic.”

ABOUT METRIC HALO Based in New York’s Hudson Valley, Metric Halo provides the world with high-resolution metering, analysis, recording and processing solutions with award-winning software and future-proof hardware. www.mhlabs.com

Peter Pan Live! Soars with DPA Microphones
CP Holiday Trains Raise Money, Food, and Awareness with Meyer Sound
Concord Pavilion Improves Lawn Coverage with Meyer Sound MICA
Sonnet’s Fusion R400 RAID USB 3.0 Rackmount Storage System Offers Built-in RAID 5 Controller, USB 3.0 Interface
PRO Audio Technology Joins With Elite 3 Pro and Digital Sales Group
University of Utah is Taking Care of Business with Matrox Monarch HD
Clay Paky Fixtures and grandMA2 Join The Eli Young Band for Concert Tour and House Party Shows
Trinity Christian Centre, Singapore Is A New Nighttime Icon with HARMAN’s Martin Professional Lighting
Veracruz, Mexico’s Museum Naval Reopens with Alcorn McBride Equipment Powering New Exhibits
Solotech Increases Yamaha NUAGE Awareness In Canada


Stay up to date on the latest technology news. Select press representatives post company news several times a day. Check back often to get the latest news on product releases, mergers and acquisitions, and product applications. To be included in this virtual press conference, please contact The Wire.


April 2011
« Mar   May »

Your Account


Subscribe to RSS Feed

Subscribe to MyYahoo News Feed

Subscribe to Bloglines

Google Syndication