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Archive by Heather Davis

LEGENDARY GUITARIST ERIC JOHNSON RELIES ON LEGENDARY ATC REFERENCE MONITORS

Eric JohnsonAUSTIN, TEXAS – NOVEMBER 2014: “Legendary guitarist” is justifiably the most common two-word description given of Eric Johnson, whose six-string prowess has earned him a Grammy win, several Grammy nominations, a Platinum album, and residency on practically every “Top X Guitarists of All Time” list ever made. He’s regularly played and recorded with fellow guitar greats Chet Atkins, Steve Vai, and Joe Satriani, and Eric Clapton selected Johnson for his 2004 Crossroads Guitar Festival. Most recently, Johnson collaborated with jazz guitar great Mike Stern on the album Eclectic, which the two recorded and mixed at Johnson’s Austin-based studio with the help of Johnson’s accomplished recording and mix engineer Kelly Donnelly. Although Johnson is known mainly for his prodigious talent as a guitarist, he is also comfortable playing numerous other instruments, including piano, lap steel, bass, and voice. He is an accomplished songwriter and, in more recent years, has plied his skills over the years as a producer and assisting his recording engineers. The common frustration of mixing a song to seeming perfection, only to find obvious mistakes when he played it on other systems, drove Johnson to find the perfect near-field monitors. He found them in a pair of ATC SCM25As, which deliver the undecorated truth so that Johnson’s mixes sound beautiful and balanced on any system, from wee computer speakers to the biggest home theaters.

Years in the making, Johnson slowly constructed the ideal project studio in his Austin, Texas home, and he only declared it finished six years ago. “I always wanted a great rehearsal space, and it seemed natural to make it a recording studio as well,” he said. “I took my time because I wanted to do it right. I like to think about the tools I use the same way I think about guitars. When I find the right guitar, it facilitates my playing. It’s like I can feel the push of the polarity, the wind’s at my back, and soon I’m not paying any attention to the guitar itself… I’m just making music. It’s the same with the studio and all the equipment and processes in the studio. At their best, they fall away and I’m just making music.”

Most of the engineering duties at Johnson’s project studio fall to Donnelly. “Kelly and I often found ourselves second-guessing our mixes,” said Johnson. “We’d take a mix that sounded perfect in the studio and notice huge bumps or holes when we played it other places. It’d be like, ‘we must have overlooked that in the studio!’ But then we’d go back to the studio and those bumps or holes wouldn’t be there. So there was a lot of back and forth, which wasted time, energy, and inspiration. I became very interested in finding a near field system that would ensure our mixes translated outside of the studio, especially as we drew close to working on Eclectic. People with ears I trust told me that ATC is the way to go.”

After performing due diligence with trials of numerous top-end reference monitor manufacturers, Johnson arrived at the same conclusion. He purchased a pair of ATC SCM25As, which feature a three-way active design starting with a seven-inch low-frequency driver. “The ATCs have a great vibe and they’re fun to mix on,” said Johnson. “The imaging is solid and in-phase, and the top end is natural – not glitchy or peaky or spikey. They’re pleasant at whisper volume or blaring, and the response seems pretty linear across that range. I’ve also noticed that we can monitor at high volumes on the ATCs as long as we like and they never become fatiguing. So the in-studio experience on the ATCs is great. Beyond that however, the mixes we’ve done on the ATCs translate beautifully, and we don’t have to second-guess ourselves anymore.”

Part of the Concord Music Group, instrumental music label Heads Up International released Eclectic, and thus sent it to Concord’s multiple Grammy Award-winning mastering engineer Paul Blakemore. For years now, Blakemore has been mastering on ATC SCM150ASL monitors. “The ATC monitors are the most accurate loudspeakers I have ever heard, and I can’t imagine using anything else,” he said. “They work equally well on any genre of music, which is very unusual and particularly important for Eclectic. As the name promises, Eclectic is eclectic! It runs from rock, to jazz, to blues, to R&B, and to everything in between. The ATCs were critical for getting the high end correct and consistent across all those styles. Similarly, the ATCs were critical for making sure the low end was true and in the pocket from song to song. Once I get things right on the ATCs, I’m confident that the final product will translate to any other system in the world.”

In November 2014 and January and February 2015, Johnson and Stern are taking their otherworldly chops on the road for an extended U.S. engagement.

ABOUT TRANSAUDIO GROUP TransAudio Group, founded by industry veteran Brad Lunde, has quickly become the premier U.S. importer/distributor and/or U.S. sales and marketing representative for high-end audio. Success hinges on TransAudio providing dealers and end users with a higher standard of product expertise and support far beyond the norm.

www.transaudiogroup.com

(PHOTO CREDIT: © 2014 Max Crace)

METRIC HALO LAUNCHES VERSION 2 OF PRODUCTION BUNDLE PLUG-INS – ADDS VST AND WINDOWS SUPPORT

MH_ProductionBundle_v2SAFETY HARBOR, FLORIDA – NOVEMBER 2014: Metric Halo is pleased to announce the immediate availability of version 2 of its Production Bundle plug-ins. The new plug-ins provide a comprehensive set of tools offering Metric Halo’s signature sound quality at a compelling price.

The full Production Bundle includes eight fantastic plug-ins that provide engineers, producers, musicians and sound designers with the tools they need to create world-class mixes and productions. Starting with the world-renowned ChannelStrip, the Production Bundle adds TransientControl, Character, HaloVerb, Dirty Delay, Multiband Dynamics, Multiband Expander, and the Precision DeEsser.

NEW PLUG-IN
The v.2 of Production Bundle introduces a brand new plug-in – MH Dirty Delay. Dirty Delay is a visceral, gritty, fantastic-sounding musical feedback delay processor with integrated Character and filters in the delay path. It can create awesome vintage echo and tape-delay style sounds as well as lush and subtle spaces in a mix. New users are already finding that it is more “real” sounding than alternative in-the-box delay processors.

NEW PLATFORM SUPPORT
The v.2 of Production Bundle adds exciting new features and platform support. With this release, Metric Halo is providing VST versions of the plug-ins for both Mac and Windows, in addition to the previously supported Pro Tools AAX on Mac and Windows, and Audio Units on Mac. All of the plug-ins support 32-bit and 64-bit hosts on all platforms. Version 2 supports both computer-based licensing and optional iLok dongle-based licensing.

NEW FEATURES
In v.2, Multiband Dynamics and Expander add comprehensive band linking controls to allow the user to adjust the overall processing as easily as they can adjust the per-band processing. Character adds selectable Auto-Drive to the processing. Character is a subtle processor that adds the essential Character of a wide variety of analog devices to the signal. With Auto-Drive enabled, Character is transformed into an effects processor that can add grit and color to tracks – regardless of the input level. Finally, TransientControl adds selectable Auto-Sensitivity making it a much more versatile transient processor and easier to use. With Auto-Sensitivity, regardless of the signal level TransientControl can pull out transients and modify the sustain and tail of sounds.

ONE LICENSE, ALL FORMATS
The license for all Metric Halo plug-ins covers the Native and DSP accelerated versions on Pro Tools AAX and Native versions for VST and AU on both Mac and Windows. The plug-ins are each available individually or as part of the Production Bundle.

A LOT OF PERFORMANCE, NOT A LOT OF PRICE
Metric Halo products are available from dealers or directly from http://mhlabs.com. New software licenses for individual plug-ins are available for a MSRP of $179 each, and are currently on sale for only $75 each (until 10/31/2014). New Production Bundle licenses are available with a MSRP of $699, and are currently on sale for only $299 (until 10/31/2014). Version 2 is a free update for existing v.1 users.

Free 30-day trials for the Production Bundle are available from http://mhsecure.com/DemoCentral.

ABOUT METRIC HALO Based on the Gulf Coast of Florida, Metric Halo provides the world with award-winning software and hardware recording, processing, metering and analysis solutions.

www.mhlabs.com

IT’S METRIC HALO FOR LEGENDARY MASTERING ENGINEER HERB POWERS, JR.

Herb_PowersNEW YORK, NEW YORK – NOVEMBER 2014: “We’re in the business of correctly preserving a musical vision that occurred at a moment in time,” says legendary mastering engineer Herb Powers, Jr. “Sure, we make it commercial and tweak it up a bit, but really we’re preserving that picture as best we can.” Powers’ philosophy – which is about the soul of the music and not its technicalities – has clearly worked for him: the veteran mastering engineer has earned numerous Grammy Awards and nominations and innumerable Platinum- and Gold-certified albums. His list of clients includes Mariah Carey, Alicia Keys, Justin Timberlake, Usher, Nelly, Missy Elliott, Lauryn Hill, Salt-N-Pepa, Run DMC, Afrika Bambaataa, Outkast, Toni Braxton, Babyface, Puff Daddy, Jennifer Lopez, Pink, and countless others. Among Powers’ trusted tools are Metric Halo SpectraFoo sound analysis software, a Metric Halo ULN-2 A/D/A interface, and, more recently, Metric Halo plug-ins.

For decades, his father, Herb Powers, Sr., worked for CBS as a quality control engineer in the company’s Manhattan studios, which gave the younger Powers an insider’s view of the business. Indeed, Powers remembers attending a session with his father for Sly and the Family Stone. Apart from a signed record, Powers came away with rare insight into the production of recorded music. When he was DJ’ing years later, Powers tapped that insight to give shape to the dissatisfaction he felt: “Most of the records I spun didn’t sound that good,” he said. “I was inspired to do something about it!” Following his father’s advice, Powers secured a position at NYC’s famous Frankford/Wayne in 1977… literally in the mailroom. True to the cliché, he worked his way up to eventually command his own mastering room. When Frankford/Wayne folded, he moved to The Hit Factory. Since it closed its doors in 2005, Powers has been working under his own flag, Powers Mastering Studio.

“I have Metric Halo SpectraFoo in front of me every minute of my work day,” said Powers. “I used to have a nice hardware metering system, but it eventually died. I looked into replacing it with another hardware system, but I also explored my software options. SpectraFoo looked good, and when I realized I could get SpectraFoo along with a dedicated 11-inch Apple MacBook Air for less than the cost of another hardware system, I went for it. Of course, I still ultimately rely on my ears, but I constantly reference SpectraFoo’s RTA and stereoscope. I have my tools selected and organized, and the MacBook Air’s only function is to run SpectraFoo. For less than the price of a hardware analyzer, I got better tools, better real estate, and a perfectly customized experience.”

Powers’ setup is an amalgam of workflows that reflects his decades in the business. Apart from a Studer tape machine, a DAT player, and other now-seldom-used playback devices, he maintains a playback computer loaded with every conceivable music production software. Signal from that computer enters the analog domain via a dedicated Apogee DA, where it then winds its way through Powers’ trusted collection of analog equalizers, filters, and dynamics processors. He uses his Metric Halo ULN-2 to capture signal in front of the processing for comparison in SpectraFoo and, more critically, as the AD converter in front of his dedicated record computer, which runs Sonic Studio SoundBlade mastering software. “I have a lot of nice analog gear, and I’m super comfortable using it,” he said. “As soon as I hear something in the music, I know which knob to turn. Because I always go analog, good conversion is important, and the Metric Halo ULN-2 sounds totally transparent. It works solidly even at 24bit/96kHz.”

Despite Powers’ reliance on analog gear, he’s happy to incorporate more plug-ins, and sound quality and well-constructed factory presets have made Metric Halo’s line of plug-ins a growing favorite. “A lot of times I’ll hear an issue that stands apart from the usual balancing that I use my analog gear for,” he said. “I use Metric Halo TransientControl, ChannelStrip, and Multiband Dynamics to correct it in the playback machine. Then I can go out of the playback machine and make the usual sorts of corrections I make with the hardware. The Metric Halo plug-ins sound great and they’re very fast to use. I can always pull up a factory preset that gets me most of the way there. I just have to adjust a ratio or a threshold and it’s good. Since everything these days is on a tight deadline, that speed is important!”

As a professional who has spent nearly four decades making music sound fantastic, Powers laments the industry shift towards compressed audio formats and its growing tolerance of clipping and distortion in the pursuit of volume. Nevertheless, he holds out hope that bandwidth will eventually allow consumers to enjoy the full fidelity of his work as he hears it in his studio.

ABOUT METRIC HALO Based on the Gulf Coast of Florida, Metric Halo provides the world with award-winning software and hardware recording, processing, metering and analysis solutions.

www.mhlabs.com

NEW HOPE BAPTIST CHURCH BELIEVES IN ASHLY

New_Hope_Baptist_InteriorGRAND RAPIDS, MICHIGAN – NOVEMBER 2014: Founded in 1934 by a small collection of the faithful who opened up their living rooms every Sunday in the bustling Michigan town of Grand Rapids, New Hope Baptist Church has grown to a congregation of over 800 active members. To better accommodate its members, the church recently underwent a comprehensive renovation of its 750-seat sanctuary and associated overflow and ancillary use rooms. A new sound system centered on Ashly Audio processing, amplification, and user control is a centerpiece of the project and gives New Hope congregants exceptional intelligibility for spoken word, along with musical transcendence for the New Hope band and praise choir. Critically, the Ashly gear came in at a price point that allowed the church to meet its needs reliably, without breaking the project’s budget. Pro Audio Inc., of nearby Grandville, Michigan designed and installed the system for New Hope Baptist Church.

“The performance of Ashly gear is top-notch and yet its cost is very reasonable,” said Ken Reinecke, owner of Pro Audio Inc. “That’s a rare combination. In terms of sound quality, Ashly’s processing and amplification is transparent. What goes in is what comes out, plus whatever dynamics or equalization I’ve dialed in. And the gear can run at 96kHz for super critical situations. Programming Ashly’s Protea DSP platform is straightforward. I just drag and drop whatever processing I need, and drag appropriate inputs to appropriate outputs. Linking groups is also handy. Ashly gear is also tremendously reliable – it basically never breaks or fails.” Because space at New Hope Baptist Church was at a premium, it also helped that Reinecke could fit all of the system’s processing and amplification in just six rack spaces.

A new Soundcraft Si Performer 3 console serves as the user interface in the sanctuary itself. From there, an Ashly ne8800 8×8 Network DSP Protea™ Processor handles all of the loudspeaker settings for the sanctuary’s new JBL VRX928LA eight-inch, two-way line array system with JBL 915S subs. The stereo line array is powered by a single Ashly nXe 3.04 network four-channel amplifier rated at 3,000W per channel, providing ample power to the main sanctuary system. Additionally, output from the console feeds an Ashly Pema 8250 combination 8×8 Matrix Protea processor and eight-channel 250-Watt amplifier. The Pema 8250 takes additional inputs, such as wall jacks for microphones or music players that are located in the narthex and other out rooms. The versatile eight-channel Pema 8250 handles all of the audio routing, signal processing, and amplification for New Hope Baptist’s two nurseries, its nursing room, the bathrooms, and the narthex.

Four Ashly WR-5 programmable wall-mounted remote controls located strategically around the out rooms provide customized, intuitive control of those inputs, as well as of the sound from the sanctuary. “The nice thing about that arrangement is that folks can make changes in all those rooms without bothering the sound tech,” said Reinecke. “While the main system is controlled entirely from the Soundcraft console, the church staff can use the mic inputs and the Ashly WR-5 remote controls to play music or have a standalone PA for meetings and small events in those out rooms.”

ABOUT ASHLY AUDIO Ashly Audio Inc. is recognized as a world leader in the design and manufacturing of high quality & high performance signal processing equipment and power amplification for use in the commercial sound contracting and professional audio markets. The 40-year old company is headquartered in Webster, New York U.S.A.

www.ashly.com

HARTER MUSIC PULLS THINGS TOGETHER WITH API 1608

www.joshhuskin.comSAN ANTONIO, TEXAS – NOVEMBER 2014: In San Antonio, Texas, Harter Music has been working on a 32-channel 1608 for almost a year now – and they are hard-pressed to choose their favorite part about it. Keith Harter owns the studio, and along with his team Jonathan Harter (producer and engineer), Jorge Infante (sound engineer) and Joshua Harter (Composer) Harter Music has carved itself a permanent place in the “diverse culture involved with Texas music.” Keith explains, “We work on all kinds of music. There’s a lot of country, blues, rock, gospel, a good deal of hip-hop and R&B as well. Tejano music is particularly unique to our area, so we work with lots of artists in that genre.”

In addition to recording other artists’ work, Keith and Joshua work together as in-house composers, which they consider an equally diverse role. “We write everything from stripped down ukulele tunes to full-on orchestral film score pieces. A lot of our favorite work is scoring to picture.” In fact, the music that the Harters produce for on-camera work had a lot to do with their decision to purchase and install a 1608. “Writing and recording music for commercials, television and movies is a large part of our business, and now the 1608 gets used for all our commercial music.” Reliability was essential when choosing equipment that Harter Music would use so frequently, and that made their choice simple. “We felt very comfortable selecting the 1608 because we’ve always received great service from API. When it comes time to maintain or repair something, we know API is going to be very easy to work with.” The Harters were already familiar with the API brand because, before the 1608 arrived, the studio was well stocked with API gear, but they wanted one cohesive unit.

Keith got in contact with Darrin Fendley at Vintage King for a solution. “We ordered the 1608 unloaded because we already had a lot of API EQs. That was a huge part of what made the console affordable for us.” Harter Music didn’t want to move away from the gear they already had because “The pre-amps and the EQs sound so good! The console format just makes it easier to record and mix now that the gear is in the chain. It’s also super easy to route things in a bunch of different ways to accommodate any set up we’re using.” There was one other element that Keith says impressed him about his API gear and especially his 1608: “We like the sound, most importantly. It’s equally as great sounding as our other gear, solidly built, but way bigger! It’s a great feeling when you’re sitting behind that much API.” Before the 1608 made its debut, the studio also boasted a 2500 stereo compressor, a 3124 mic pre, and a six-slot Lunchbox®. Having everything in one place, however, is one of the things that has changed their work the most. “We couldn’t efficiently run all analog sessions before. Now we can record and mix all on tape if we want.”

Another bragging point for Harter Music is the celebrity artists who have recorded in the studio in the last year. George Strait and Cheyenne Jackson are mentioned particularly by Keith, who is very proud of how busy Harter Music continues to be. The studio just wrapped on an upcoming movie The One I Wrote for You. “It was an intensely musical project where lots of actors sang songs in the film. We spent over a year recording and mixing everything – it was such a blast.” The studio shows no signs of slowing down. If you want to keep up, or are interested in a project of your own, check hartermusic.com or facebook.com/hartermusic for updates.

ABOUT API (AUTOMATED PROCESSES, INC.)
Established 45 years ago, Automated Processes, Inc. is the leader in analog recording gear with the Vision, Legacy Series, 1608, and the BOX recording consoles, as well as its classic line of modular signal processing equipment.

www.apiaudio.com

API’s BOX USHERS IN BIG CHANGES FOR MIXER SCOTT ROSSER

Scott_RosserLONDON, UNITED KINGDOM – NOVEMBER 2014: Source Distribution continues meeting success for API’s BOX console in the U.K. with a sale to popular mixer/engineer Scott Rosser. Rosser, who has “remixed many of the biggest pop names in the industry including Rihanna, Lady Gaga, and Mariah Carey,” has been working from the spare room in his home for almost two years now. Although he wants to return to a permanent studio, he knew he needed the right gear before finding a new space. A solution arrived in April when Rosser ordered the BOX after just one demo session with Andy Bensley of Source Distribution. “Source kindly set up a demo unit at their London office for me to try out. I liked the look of the BOX straight away, and ran a stem session through the summing section. It sounded great!” Following the demo, Rosser immediately met with Mark Cooke at Tyrell London, one of Source’s dealers, and soon had a BOX of his own.

It’s not just Rosser’s location that is in flux; his main focus in the music industry has also shifted from “mainly commercial dance” to “more pop and urban stuff due to the success and expansion of 3 Beat as a label.” Rosser started working with 3 Beat Productions several years ago, and also works under the name ‘Cahill’, which is the title he uses most often when remixing for bigger-name artists. However, his success did not happen overnight. Rosser has worked in the recording world since 1989, when he was studying at Salford University in Manchester. The trends in music at the time helped form Rosser’s career, as he explains: “The city was at the forefront of the UK club culture and the Acid House revolution, so I was always interested in the electronic side of things.” Rosser and another “like-minded producer” then formed the band ‘Dario G’, which was so successful through the ‘90s that they sold 4.5 million records. “We had a few hits across Europe, and went on to release a host of underground house/rave tunes. It was a great experience.”

Now Rosser is expanding his studio’s power without taking up more space. “The BOX had everything I was looking for in one unit whereas the other options I was considering were all separate pieces. My small workspace made having everything to hand on one desk appealing.” Before the BOX, Rosser had considered API consoles out of his reach. But in the early 2000s feeling all dance music was starting to sound alike, Rosser knew he could solve the problem with analog recording equipment. “I wanted to apply a new approach which would help my mixes stand out amongst the competition. I noticed a press release for API’s new project console, and the BOX caught my attention immediately. I’ve only scratched the surface with mine, and it’s already made a big difference to my work.” This success has encouraged Rosser to look ahead to even more changes in his career.

“I’m putting some time aside in the new year to move to a purpose-built studio. I’m sure there’ll be other API units added soon. The 2500 compressor especially looks good…I know The BOX is going to serve me well for years. The build quality is excellent, it’s versatile, and I can now expand the rest of my system around it.” Since April, Rosser’s BOX has been as busy as he is. The BOX was used to mix an album by Fuse ODG, singles for Lethal Bizzle and Stylo G, and official remixes for Cheryl Cole, Ellie Goulding, Nicole Scherzinger, Olly Murs, and the boy band Rixton. Compared to mixing before the BOX, Rosser says his work has changed dramatically for the better. When asked what he likes best about The BOX, Rosser replied “Quite simply, the sound! That’s what I bought it for and it has delivered. It immediately added stereo width and a deep, warm feel that I’d been missing in previous mixes.”

ABOUT API (AUTOMATED PROCESSES, INC.) Established 45 years ago, Automated Processes, Inc. is the leader in analog recording gear with the Vision, Legacy Series, 1608, and the BOX recording consoles, as well as its classic line of modular signal processing equipment.

www.apiaudio.com

ASHLY AUDIO MULTI-CHANNEL 25-VOLT AMPLIFIERS PROVIDE A COST-EFFECTIVE ALTERNATIVE TO A 70-VOLT SYSTEM WITH CONDUIT AT DENISON HIGH SCHOOL

Denison_High_SchoolDENISON, TEXAS: Denison High School in Denison, Texas recently completed a new 300,000 square-foot building to accommodate its 1,250-plus students. Although packed with the latest in academic technology and the sort of architectural features that both provide comfort and encourage learning, the new building faced cost overruns and a budgeting challenge that required creative thinking on the part of its subcontractors. Among them was a plan put forward by local A/V integrator Batts Audio, Video & Lighting to jettison a 70-volt announcement/bell system (and all the expensive conduit it would require!) for a distributed amplifier system running a 25-volt announcement/bell system. Based around eight 8-channel Ashly Audio ne8250.25pe Network Amplifiers with built-in Protea™ DSP processing, Batts AV&L gave Denison a reliable, high-quality system for a fraction of the cost of the proposed 70-volt system.

“The issue was that the new school was coming in way over budget,” explained Jeremy Pilcher, vice president of operations at Batts AVL. “It was recommended to them by the construction manager at risk, as well as by a third-party construction manager, that many items be brought back under the umbrella of the district’s responsibility, such as classroom projectors, cafeteria/gym/video room projectors, auditorium technology, and the announcement system. We have an established relationship with the district, and we became responsible for all of it.”

The most vexing problem was the announcement/bell system, which called for a 70-volt system run through conduit throughout the building. “We ran the costs/benefits on using 25-volt amps distributed throughout the building that could power loudspeakers without necessitating conduit,” Pilcher said. “Sure, we needed more amps, but even after accounting for that, the cost savings was substantial. Ashly Audio is the industry leader in multi-channel 25-volt amplifiers. They are extremely cost-effective, especially with optional on-board processing, and are well-known for their reliability.”

The system begins with a dedicated paging system with analog outputs to trigger different zones. Those triggers and the voice signal travel to the eight Ashly ne8250.25pe amplifiers, which are placed strategically throughout the school. Each amplifier’s eight channels powers delivers 250 watts output to multiple zones of 25-volt Quam-Nichols loudspeakers, and each separate channel can constitute a separate selectable paging zone. The Ashly ne8250.25pe amplifiers also provide modest equalization, delay and limiting using the optional on-board Ashly Protea processing. “All together, using Ashly’s 25-volt amplifiers provided a functionally and cost-effective solution,” said Pilcher.

ABOUT ASHLY AUDIO Ashly Audio Inc. is recognized as a world leader in the design and manufacturing of high quality & high performance signal processing equipment and power amplification for use in the commercial sound contracting and professional audio markets. The 40-year old company is headquartered in Webster, New York U.S.A.

www.ashly.com

GRAMMY AWARD-WINNING PASTOR OPTS FOR DANLEY AT VICTORY CATHEDRAL WORSHIP CENTER

Victory_Cathedral_Worship_Center_1BOLINGBROOK, ILLINOIS: Pastor Smokie Norful founded Victory Cathedral Worship Center in Bolingbrook, Illinois in 2005, the same year he won a Grammy Award for Contemporary Soul Gospel Album of the Year for Nothing Without You. He is one of the country’s top gospel artists, and his credits include several gold and platinum albums, dozens of awards and nominations, and numerous high-profile performances, including a performance at the White House in celebration of Black Music Month. When Victory raised funds for its first permanent sound system, Norful scrutinized the options, using his unique perspective to articulate exacting requirements. The Chicago branch of Advanced Systems & Technologies (AST) designed and installed the new system, which centers on Danley Sound Labs loudspeakers and subwoofers for the main house system, the delay system, and on-stage monitoring.

“Victory Cathedral Worship Center seats 1,500, and Pastor Norful fills it to capacity for two services every Sunday,” said Terry McCarthy, systems specialist with AST. “Due to cost overruns with the building’s original construction, the church had to put a new sound system on hold. They leased for many years, and when they were ready to install a permanent sound system, they wanted to do it right. Pastor Norful was very particular and we made it a priority to team up with his staff to insure that every detail was covered. We took the staff around to various installations in the Chicago area. They hadn’t recognized the name Danley Sound Labs at the outset, but when they heard it, they knew that Danley was their obvious favorite. “The first thing our customers notice when they hear Danley is great sound, plain and simple. And then, as they walk the room, they experience great coverage to every seat.”

The main system is comprised of two clusters of three Danley SH-46 full-range loudspeakers per side for true stereo coverage. Two massive coupled Danley DBH-218 subwoofers hang from the ceiling just in front of the stage. Three Danley SH-69 full-range loudspeakers provide LCR delays, two-thirds back from the stage, which give excellent representation at the mix position. Finally, four molded-horn Danley SM-80s provide incredible stage monitoring and two, flown, molded-horn Danley SM-96s cover the choir.

“AST started working with Danley Sound Labs based on Danley’s excellent sound quality, deep bass, minimal necessary processing, and unparalleled pattern control,” said McCarthy. “Taking clients on tours of our Danley installations is the best way to demonstrate the quality that we can deliver.” Moreover, Danley offers excellent service and product support – including design assistance – which is essential. As we focus on a broader class of technologies these days – sound, video, lighting and acoustics – our clients greatly benefit from this high level partnership.”

The system includes 64 channels of digital audio distribution, with Allen & Heath and Dante, including consoles at front-of-house, a complete audio suite, and a customized personal monitor mixing system. Powersoft K Series amplifiers provide power and processing for the mains. QSC PLX Series amplifiers and a Danley DSLP48 System Processor power and distribute to the stage monitors and delay fills. In addition, AST designed and installed full HD-SDI video production and presentation systems. The system includes three large video screens, six camera locations, independent IMAG control at FOH and a complete video suite and control room.

Pastor Norful and the rest of Victory’s staff and congregation are very pleased with the new system. “Smokie said it was a ‘home run’ and that it met and exceeded their every expectation,” said McCarthy.” The greatest feeling in the world when you finish a project is in the knowledge that you’ve delivered an outstanding product and that your research and hard work has paid off. They’re very happy and we are extremely proud to have served them in this capacity.” AST also provided extensive training for the staff and volunteers and the church is currently planning a new children and youth center that will utilize Danley Sound Labs loudspeakers and subwoofers as well.

ABOUT DANLEY SOUND LABS Danley Sound Labs is the exclusive home of Tom Danley, one of the most innovative loudspeaker designers in the industry today and recognized worldwide as a pioneer for “outside the box” thinking in professional audio technology.

www.danleysoundlabs.com

Advanced Systems and Technologies, AST • www.soundvideolighting.com
Dallas/Ed Butler: ed@soundvideolighting.com • Chicago/Terry McCarthy: terry@soundvideolighting.com

ROLL TIDE! ALABAMA’S 100,000+ BRYANT-DENNY STADIUM CONVERTS FROM LINE ARRAYS TO DANLEY

DCIM100GOPROTUSCALOOSA, ALABAMA – NOVEMBER 2014: The University of Alabama’s Crimson Tide – among the most storied and winningest college football teams in the nation – plays all of its home games at 100,000-plus seat Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa. Pleased with the authoritative performance of its on-field sound reinforcement system – a single Danley GH-60 Genesis Horn paired with a single Danley TH-212 subwoofer – the university agreed with design and installation firm Baker Audio Visual (Norcross, Georgia) that Danley Sound Labs loudspeakers and subwoofers should replace the existing sound system to cover the entire stadium. Constrained by an aggressive timeline that necessitated reusing existing hang points, Baker AV installed Danley’s new weatherproof OS-80 loudspeakers and OS-115 subwoofers in the upper bowl and Danley’s seasoned SH-96HO loudspeakers (with additional OS-80 loudspeakers for down fill) in the lower bowl.

“We only had a short window to complete the design and installation once the athletics department gave us the go-ahead,” said Joe Schuch, vice president of Baker AV. “We had a similarly short window at Turner Field, home of the Atlanta Braves, where Danley Sound Labs delivered over four hundred custom loudspeakers within six weeks to make that job a success. At Bryant-Denny, we worked with Mike Hedden, Danley president, on a solution that would work within the constraints of the existing infrastructure. There was not enough time to engineer new solutions or to modify loudspeaker locations. We worked through Danley’s catalog of form factors to build an appropriate solution.” In part because Danley builds all of its loudspeakers and subwoofers in the USA, it was able to meet the deadlines at Bryant-Denny while simultaneously meeting deadlines at the Kentucky Derby’s Churchill Downs. Hedden reported that, between the two, the company produced between four and five hundred loudspeakers in just four weeks.

Alabama_Stands_SpeakersThe upper bowl now gets coverage from forty distributed Danley OS-80 weatherproof loudspeakers (two at each of twenty locations), which will remain impervious to the elements for decades to come. Every other OS-80 cluster is paired with a Danley OS-115LF weatherproof subwoofer for low-end support. The lower bowl uses twenty-four clusters, each comprised of a Danley SH-96HO for main coverage and a Danley OS-80 for downfill directly below the main loudspeakers. The OS-80 is rolled off at 250Hz and thus primarily aids in spoken word intelligibility. Similar to the end zones, all of the Danley products in the upper and lower bowls deliver better coverage with substantially fewer and/or lighter boxes, making it possible for Baker AV to install the system without taking valuable time to recertify the hangs.

After a few days tuning the system, Baker AV and Danley specialists fired up the system for the university. “The Athletics Department thinks it is a night and day improvement,” said Schuch. “The Danley system is more musical and has better intelligibility. The low-end output throughout the stadium blew them away.” Hedden added, “With the Danley system, Bryant-Denny gets better coverage, higher output, greater fidelity, and deeper bass all with a fraction of the cabinets, (38 Danley Synergy Horns replaced 128 line array cabinets) weight was reduced by several tons, and our system required 52 less amplifiers and signal processing than the old system. Our company offers the highest efficiencies, which translate into fewer devices required, making us the greenest manufacturer on the market. To me, it’s a huge affirmation that we’re doing the right thing and building a better mousetrap. With Danley systems in many of the biggest stadiums in the country – Green Bay Packers’ Lambeau Field, Buffalo Bills’ Ralph Wilson Stadium, LSU’s Tiger Stadium, Penn State’s Beaver Field, MSU’s Spartan Stadium, and now Alabama’s Bryant-Denny Stadium – we hope the tide is turning on the industry’s line array funk. Roll Tide!”

ABOUT DANLEY SOUND LABS Danley Sound Labs is the exclusive home of Tom Danley, one of the most innovative loudspeaker designers in the industry today and recognized worldwide as a pioneer for “outside the box” thinking in professional audio technology.

www.danleysoundlabs.com

API’s BOX BRINGS BIG CONSOLE SOUND INTO SMALL SPACES

John_FishellMUNCIE, INDIANA – OCTOBER 2014: Assistant Professor John Fishell teaches music media and production at Ball State University in Indiana, but enjoys recording from his home. In order to get a large format sound in the small space, Fishell turned to Vintage King and the BOX console from API. The BOX was the perfect size for Fishell’s small footprint requirement, considering his entire studio is located in the second bedroom of his apartment. However, the footprint of the console is the only thing he finds small about it. When asked what advice he would give to others considering a BOX of their own, Fishell responded: “Brace yourself, you are playing with the big boys now. With API, there should be no such thing as puny-sounding tracks. The built-in compressor is powerful, yet easy to use and makes a difference.”

In addition to the BOX, Fishell has accumulated quite the API collection, including six API 550b EQs, four JDK V14 EQs, and twelve API 225L compressors. He says his first experience with API gear was when he was a student himself at Omega recording studios in Rockville, Maryland. There he got to work with a 2488 in the B room, and he’s been a fan ever since. When he decided on the BOX himself, no other company would do. “I was very happy with my modular API DSM system, and I knew I wanted to stay with their summing. The features like the built-in 550A made me lust after the BOX. I was able to seamlessly integrate API outboard gear that I already owned through inserts and patch points.” Fishell has worked as independent engineer, producer, and musician since 1993. He has also worked full-time at James Madison University, Middle Tennessee State, University of Colorado at Denver, American University, and now Ball State.

At home, Fishell primarily focuses on rock and jazz, occasionally working on classical music as well. Even though he has only had the BOX installed for a few months, it has already recorded almost a dozen different artists such as Dave Liebman and Mike Stern. When he compares it to other consoles, Fishell will argue that the BOX holds its own: “The BOX has the same ‘mojo’ and coloration of API’s bigger consoles, so I can compete with other pro mix facilities in the comfort of my small apartment. It does a great job – better than mixes that stay in the ‘digital box’. Even classical and jazz projects benefit from the ‘muscle’ that API gear provides.”

ABOUT API (AUTOMATED PROCESSES, INC.) Established 45 years ago, Automated Processes, Inc. is the leader in analog recording gear with the Vision, Legacy Series, 1608, and the BOX recording consoles, as well as its classic line of modular signal processing equipment.

www.apiaudio.com

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