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hybrid audio - what analog console with my DAW?

Discussion in 'Recording' started by jimbo_baby84, May 12, 2005.

  1. jimbo_baby84

    jimbo_baby84 Guest

    well here's the biggest question for my DAW studio so far...after deciding that to be taken seriously as a commercial studio i would need an analog desk, i realised i don't know that much about them. i've only worked in two studios, one with an mci 500 series (which i liked but was constantly in need of maintenance), and one with a soundworkshop series 34 (which needed no maintenance, but which looked and sounded gay).

    my question is, what kind of desks around $15k should i be considering, which won't force me into several expensive tech days per month, but which will give me that beautiful sound, and will suitibly impress the clients? can it be done on this sort of money? one other problem i have is living in australia. those mixing desks sure are costly to ship...but just for now, what sort of desks would you recommend i look into? the sound of the pre's are very important to me, as i'll have to start without any outboard pre's.

    thanks
     
  2. bradb

    bradb Member

    I'm curious what "gay" sounds or looks like. Sorry, I've been out of elementary school for awhile.
     
    audiokid likes this.
  3. Reggie

    Reggie Well-Known Member

    I think it is some kind of rainbow thing.
     
  4. I like Midas.
     
  5. frob

    frob Well-Known Member

    gay i think to have a high sssilibance.
     
  6. RAIN0707

    RAIN0707 Guest

    I would have to second that Midas mention by Brian. They make great boards. I have used a few live and in the studio and I really wish I could afford one for myself. But I get by with my Mackie 24-8. It's in use pretty much as a monitor mixer only anyways so no point in upgrading unless I want a lot more decent pre's to use.
     
  7. LOL!!!
     
  8. Mumbles

    Mumbles Active Member

    Hi,
    I'm sorry, but if you're looking in the $15,000 range.. don't get a Midas.
    For that kind of money, you owe it to yourself to check out some boards that are more suited for the studio.
    Now, it depends what you need/want.
    New vs. old?
    How many channels?
    Also, the whole "wow factor" thing is tricky. In the $15k range, name recognition will get you a nice Trident, but not a Neve, SSL or API... which are the names that 90% of garden variety musicians know.
    You have to wiegh the "wow factor" with the "get them in the door with amazing results" factor... the later is usually cheaper.

    Just my 2 pesos.
    Seamus
     
  9. jimbo_baby84

    jimbo_baby84 Guest

    well, all talk of the word "gay" used in a derogatory sense aside, what i'm looking for is 24 to 32 channels, something which (subjectively) will be an improvement over in the box mixing, and which contains great mic pres. basically i'm asking if i can get something good enough to justify the money, rather than mixing in the box and spending the $15k on these outboard pres:

    api 3124+ x3
    chandler tg2
    gordon model 5
    dw fearn vt2

    it should also look like a solid bit of kit to the average musician who has seen a couple of studios, but wouldn't know the name neve from behringer, as i think 90% of them don't know anything about pro audio whatsoever, at least in my experience. as long as it leans towards the neve in the looks department rather than looking like an oversized mackie, i'll be happy. actually, i'd be happier keeping it digital rather than buying a cheap compromise of a desk, but i'm not financing the studio, someone else is, and they want the looks to impress and don't have a neve budget. anyone have an mci that isn't a maintenance hog?
     
  10. radioliver

    radioliver Guest

    looks looks looks looks.....???
    Why?
    Sounds like a gay idea for a gay studio with a gay engineer recording gay music.
    but seriously...go for sound quality...isn't that what a recording studio is about??!!
     
  11. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    15K isn't going to get you too far .... At that price you are best off thinking about a decent digital console .. like the Sony DMX 100.

    As far as a "gay" console, I'm not sure what that meant? .... Would ia "gay sounding" console be purple with a permenantly engaged de esser on every channel so everything passed through it sounded as if it had a "lisp"?
     
  12. Please don't tell me you are calling analog a "cheap compromise"...
     
  13. Midlandmorgan

    Midlandmorgan Active Member

    Kurt,

    This is just not true...

    Here's the results of a two minutes search I did for used consoles...many of them are absolutely KILLER (others aren't)...but as you can see, 15K will take you very far down the road...

    From Blevins

    11CAE AMEK MOZART 40 INPUT(MZ11)/12 STEREO RTNS/ SUPERT 28,000
    11ABJ AMEK LANGLY BIG 28 SEE BEST CONSOLES 8000
    11CAA CAD MAXICONII 32 INPUT, BUILTIN PB, MANUAL 3900
    11CAB HARRISON * 3624 36 INPUT/3 BD EQ/4SNDZ/LIGHTMETR/PATCH 5000
    11CAG MACKIE * 32x8x2 32in w/meter bridge, custom cabinet 2,300
    11ABF MCI JH652-52-L 52 INPUTS/JH50 AUTOMATION/LIGHT MTR 10,000
    11BAV MCI * JH636-36AF 36 INPUTS - SEE BEST CONSOLES SOLD
    11ABN MCI * JH636-32 32 INPUTS - SEE BEST CONSOLES 7200
    11BAF MCI * JH636 VU/AF 36 INPUTS, 8 PARA EQ, 10 RETURNS PENDING
    11CAJ MCI JH400 32 IN, 24 BUS CUSTOM, CIRCA 76' JUST LISTED
    11CAM MCI JH500 "d" V DETAILS COMING PENDING
    11CAL MCI JH528D AF 28 IN, LIGHT MTRS, JH50 AUTOMATION JUST LISTED
    11BAL NEVE 8232 32 IN w/ OPTIFILE AUTO, LOCATED SE JUST LISTED
    11CAO SONY MXP-3036 36 INPUT-DETAILS COMING IN JUNE JUST LISTED
    11BAW SONY MXP-3056 93" 56 input, LM, no automation 18,500
    11CAF SOUNDCRAFT TS24 32FR-28INPUTS/4 BD EQ/6 SNDS/PB/LED MAKE OFFER
    11CAI SOUNDCRAFT 2400 DETAILS AVAILABLE JUST LISTED
    11BAK SOUNDTRACS CM4400 DETAILS AVAILABLE JUST LISTED
    11CAC TAC * SCORPION I 28INPUT, 12 SPLITBUS, 24 MON w/PB 2500
    11CAH TAC SCORPION I 32 INPUTS LOCATED IN CHICAGO MAKE OFFER
    11CAP TRIDENT 90 SERIES DETAILS AVAILABLE JUST LISTED
    11BAZ TRIDENT 80B 32X24X24 NO EQ ON MONITORS, CABLES SOLD

    CONSOLES WITH 24-32 INPUTS
    12BAK AMEK ANGELA 28 INPUT CONSOLE W/PATCHBAY 7000
    12ABB MACKIE 32x8x2 32 INPUT w/METER BRIDGE 2500
    12BAI MCI JH-528B 28 INPUT 1977 DETAILS COMING JUST LISTED
    12BAB MCI * JH416 A/B 24 FRAME w/24 IN SEE BEST CONSOLES SOLD
    12BAF MCI JH528D 28 INPUTS, DETAILS COMING, IN CALIF JUST LISTED
    12BAH SOUNDCRAFT TS-12 70 INPUTS IN REMIX, DETAILS AVAILABLE JUST LISTED
    12AAI SNDWKSHOP * 1600/ARMS 28 IN/3 DIFF EQ'S/ARMS AUTOMATION 3500
    12BAD TAC * SCORPION I 24 INPUTS, 16 BUS, 16MON, EQ SOLD
    12AAK TRIDENT MODEL 24 28 INPUTS, 24 OUTPUTS, TT PATCH 7000
    12BAG TRIDENT SERIES 65 24x8x16 RECAPPED, BUTT BROWNS JUST LISTED

    From Odyssey

    Model Quantity Unit Price

    24 track Package: Teac M15 console & Digi ProTools LE 001 system! 1 $1,795
    Allen & Heath Saber 32x16, patchbay, sidecar, excellent condition 1 $7,500
    Amek Angela (blue)28x24 with patch bay 1 $5,000
    Amek Big 28x12, w/custom flight cases and 6x96 pt patchbays 1 $12,000
    Amek M2002A 28x16x24, RH bay, poor man's NEVE! Warm & punchy! 1 $10,000
    Amek Media 51 28 frame with Supertrue & Dynamics, excellent cond. 1 $28,000
    Amek Mozart 56x24 ALL NEVES!! SuperTrue, Dynamics, Recapped 1 $49,500
    Amek Mozart 24x24x24, (16)Neves, SuperTrue Automation 1 $25,000
    Amek Rembrandt 56x24 (24)RN's, SuperTrue, Dynamics, TR, 1997 1 $75,000
    Amek TAC Scorpion 40x8x2 with matrix, 2 power supplys.flight case 1 $3,400
    DDA DMR12 56x12 excellent condition, TT patch bay, just serviced! 1 $7,500
    Harrison Series 12, 48 Channel/192 Input Digital Series, 2 years old 1 $135,000
    Harrison Series-12, 80 input post production console-1994-One Owner 1 $58,000
    Helios 32 frame, 30x24x24 - click for details 1 $129,500
    Mackie SR-24.4 with road case, manual, very good condition 1 $650
    MTA Series 980 32x24x24 with Uptown moving fader automation, 1996 1 $45,000
    Neve 5316 24x8, 33115 pre/eq's, Uptown 990 auto, patch & cabling 1 $39,500
    Neve 8048 (32)1081's, (4)2254 compressors, remote 1/4" patch 1 $145,000
    Neve 8048 32(1095 eq's)x16x24, GML(Mac) - pristine condition 1 $275,000
    Neve VR48 GML auto with MAC, needs recapping 1 $45,000
    Neve VR72 w/FF, Recall, remote patch, and Musgrave modules 1 $75,000
    Otrai CHANNEL STRIP from Concept I with VCA automation 6 $250
    Otari Concept I 32 frame, 24 channels(48 inputs) VCA auto, excellent 1 $8,880
    Rane MLM82 8x2, 1u rackmount mixer, works perfectly, quiet! 1 $250
    Ramsa WRT-820 20x8 1 $900
    Sony MXP3036 (12) pre's, good condition, spares 1 $7,800
    Sony Oxford OXF-R3 24 channels, 96 inputs - MINT!--click for details 1 $137,500
    Sony MXP-2016 12x2, (4)comp/limiters, patch bays - great front end! 1 $3,300
    Soundcraft 600 24x8x16 with Factory Patch Bay 1 $6,000
    Soundcraft DLX-8 8x4 rackmount, all stereo inputs - new/never used 1 $1,250
    Soundcraft Ghost LE 32x8 one owner, 1998, good condition 1 $3,000
    Soundcraft Ghost 24x8 w/MB, auto, stand, custom PS 50ft cable 1 $5,000
    Soundcraft Series 5 48 mono and 8 stereo, 5 yrs old, Mint condition 1 $38,500
    Soundcraft Spirit LX7 32 channel with original box, manual, 2 yrs old 1 $1,350
    Soundcraft TS24 40x24, Recapped in 2/04, excellent condition 1 $12,000
    Soundtracs Jade 48x24 Automation, Dynamics, home studio, 1998 1 $24,000
    SSL 4072G, G+ center, TR, RH patch, Plasma meters - in service 1 $125,000
    SSL 4100 G+ Series 100 inputs, with Ultimation, Vu's, used for 3 yrs 1 $179,000
    SSL 6056E 56E mono, E242 EQ's, TR, LH patch, fully serviced!! 1 $65,000
    SSL 9072-J loaded 72, 1998, remote patch 1 $265,000
    SSL 9080-J loaded 80, 1997, remote patch, wired for surround 1 $300,000
    Studiomaster Mixdown Gold 16x8x16, one owner, excellent condition 1 $1,200
    Teac Model 15 24x8x16, patch bay, 1986 - excellent condition 1 $1,295
    Trident Vector 432 58x32, (40)moving faders, (16)dynamics, patch, Vu's 1 $24,000
    Yamaha 02R with (2) extra CD8AD cards for 40 analog inputs! 1 $1,995
    Yamaha 02R ver2 (3)AES, (1)Unity, (2)ADAT & (1)TDIF card, meters 1 $2,150
    Yamaha PM4000-40, 2 power supplies & 4 replacement modules, MINT 1 $28,000
    ZAP Fred Hill custom 16x4x16, 1/4" patch, excellent condition 1 $11,900



    Gotta wonder how many hundreds of thousands of GREAT recordings have been made using the non-API/Neve boards listed above.
     
  14. jimbo_baby84

    jimbo_baby84 Guest

    looks looks looks? why? cos that's what the guy who's coming up with the money for this studio wants. i really don't want a digital desk, i'm not saying all analog desks are cheap compromises obviously, i'm asking whether desks at the $15k price point are cheap compromises and will do me no better than in the box mixing. the guy with the cash wants an impressive looking desk, i want an impressive sounding studio. even though if it was my investment, i'd personally stay digital unless i could afford a neve/ssl/api, it's not my investment, so i'm looking for a desk that will keep us both happy. thanks Midlandmorgan, that info is very helpful.

    in what order would you guys rate the following brands (if you want to be model specific, so much the better!)

    neve, ssl, api, mci, amek, otari, trident, mta, harrison, tac, soundcraft, soundworkshop, allen & heath, anything else

    thanks everyone!

    (by the way, get over the gay thing)
     
  15. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Yes, I know Randy Blevins ... I have done a load of business with him.

    The TAC Scorpion, Mackies, CADs, AMEK Mozart, Harrisons (more for film and TV), and Langleys are either crappy sounding or antiques (arms auto? com'mon) ... the MCIs sound wonderful but are maintenance hogs, (I know, I owned a 636 and the 500 and 400's are even worse). I have never been very fond of the Soundcraft mixers .... even the large framed ones. The Sound Workshops are ok but have limited features and service is an issue ... The Tridents mentioned would be worth a look. The rest on that list are semi pro and not what he's looking for except for the old Sony 3036's ... those sound pretty good but like the Tridents, still are outdated in terms of automation and system control.

    Blevins has more consoles in stock now than ever and why do you think all those consoles are up for sale? Because they are outdated ....

    I love analog sound as much as the next guy ... and I do lament it's passing. But sometimes ya' gotta look up and read the writing on the wall.
     
    audiokid likes this.
  16. frob

    frob Well-Known Member

    there are ways to get as analouge mixdown summer with a digital desk (which would be cheaper) so get thouse pres and a big shiny digital desk or controler with a bunch of knobs, faders and blinking lights, and dont forget that long strip of vu meters. top run your DAW then you will have sound and the clients.

    the first time client will come in and say "wow, look at all thoughs knobs and meters, i bet he uses them all, all the time."
     
  17. Midlandmorgan

    Midlandmorgan Active Member

    OK Kurt, we can agree on a few things after all...the era of the big desk is nearly over, and most remnants are fossilizing pretty quickly...

    I will argue regarding Harrisons...used a few and they were IMO non-intrusive, meaning they did not force a certain character on everything...whether that's a good or bad thing is up to the individual user...Mackies are usually as bad as people want them to be...etc...

    That was not the point of my post, though...my post was to show that there are good units out there for far less than what you quoted....it took me two seconds to come up with that list...I'm sure that if someone invested a couple of hours, they would find a KILLER board at a KILLER price...
     
  18. Yes, my clients love the 24 VU meters on my Otari. And I use them too. I still might want to get a DAW in the future sometime... maybe when my clients quit asking for tape...
     
  19. jimbo_baby84

    jimbo_baby84 Guest

    frob, i find your analog mixdown summer with a digital desk idea interesting, how does this work exactly? that would mean no analog eq right? so kurt are you saying i can't get a decent desk at this price? Midlandmorgan are you saying i can? god this is confusing!
     
  20. jimbo_baby84

    jimbo_baby84 Guest

    i just found out there's a soundtracs solitaire just around the corner for under $5000. how is this desked, compared to an mci for instance?
     

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