On the Cover: Vintage King Los Angeles

Mar 1, 2013 9:00 AM, Mix, By Tom Kenny

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But the VKLA team has found equal and increasing interest in their microphone vocal booth, with all associated mic pre combinations available at the flick of a switch through a complex distribution system based around the Manley MicMaid. The other stations were developed around a design by VK tech Tim Mead, who designed and built custom distribution amplifiers that take one input, and cleanly mult it out to 48 channels. The output from a high-grade D/A converter feeds the distro, then an entire rack of gear simultaneously.

Just imagine how long that would take to hook up in a working studio to audition as many mic/mic pre possibilities for a new female vocalist, or to compare summing mixers. That ability to instantly compare is repeated at each of seven stations in the main showroom: mono/stereo compressors; EQs; DAWS; post-production tools; channel strips; plug-ins; mic pre’s.

The popular mic booth with every vintage and modern model you could think of.

The popular mic booth with every vintage and modern model you could think of.

“Our vast mic collection is where many people start,” says Tom Menrath, a retail veteran and now VK head of strategic development. “The fact that they are all patched to a huge selection of the finest mic pres and channel strips available makes it very easy to select the perfect vocal chain for a particular singer. Over 120 500 Series modules are also in this station; that’s a very popular category for us. The key word is ‘instantly.’ Being able to quickly switch between different pieces of gear, in a controlled setting, allows our clients to make informed decisions very efficiently. They leave with confidence that they made the best choice.”

That’s what it boils down to: Choice. Vintage is in the company name, but they sell a ton of plugs and a ton of Pro Tools. But so do a lot of companies. The level of customer service and gear knowledge, combined with the widest array of new, used and vintage is what makes VKLA unique. A complete hands-on experience.

“We’ve found that even with the continual progress of amazing digital hardware and software, good old analog gear has a charm that users feverishly support,” Nehra says. “Whether it’s great vintage gear from decades past or some of the new high-quality re-creations of classic designs, to new inventive creations, users are in love with the sound and the ability to ‘touch and feel’ what they are using, beyond just a mouse, touch screen or keyboard. Real faders, real knobs, transformers, transistors, Class A, A/B, tube, or some great IC circuits…there is a love affair with it all that’s real and undeniable. Simply put, it sounds great. It may not all be recallable, but who cares, that’s not the point in every facet of making music. Let’s write some great songs and record a brilliant performance by musicians as the backbone of music.”

Just outside the mic booth is the wall of mic pre’s and more than 120 500 Series modules. The channel strip and plug-in stations are to the rear.

Just outside the mic booth is the wall of mic pre’s and more than 120 500 Series modules. The channel strip and plug-in stations are to the rear.

“We’ve learned that the recording community greatly appreciates what we have done,” concludes Ehrenberg. “Not only the demonstration space but also the community building events we’re putting together, like ‘Meet the Maker,’ where the recording community has a chance to meet industry icons such as Rupert Neve. We’re constantly improving, tweaking and massaging the place to be the best pro audio showroom in the world.”

vintageking.com/vkla






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