The Class of 2009

Jun 1, 2009 12:00 PM, By Mix Editors

MIX PRESENTS THIS YEAR'S COOLEST NEW STUDIOS

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Mix Regional

The Mix Regional section for Mix's May 2014 issue focuses on Nashville. Send us your studio news: updates, sessions, new rooms, club performances and installations. Let the Mix audience know what is going on! Send photos and descriptions to mixeditorial@nbmedia.com.

On the Cover: L.A. Sound Gallery BURBANK, CALIF.

L.A. Sound Gallery

Producer/composer Matt Salazar's projects had outgrown his small SSL G+-equipped production studio, and he was looking to acquire a facility big enough to fit a new SSL Duality console. “I demo'ed the Duality and really liked its open sound and the workflow, but there was nowhere to put it,” he says.

He found plenty of room all right. As of September '08, Salazar has relocated to the former Evergreen Studios space, which includes a 4,000-square-foot scoring stage that received its last major building redesign in 1998. For several years, the studio had been barely touched, and according to Lee Bartolomei, who handled the technical redesign in '97/'98, it was rarely ever used for its intended purpose. Salazar and his partner and brother, Jason Salazar, opened up the walls and completely replaced the studio's wiring/infrastructure. “There had always been a studio going on here since the late '70s, and improvements had been made gradually since that time, but the wiring was very disorganized. We replaced it with Mogami 110-ohm digital cabling, and the studio now operates at a much higher spec,” Matt Salazar says.

The new owners retained much of the late-'90s design — including the unique, diamond-shaped diffusers, George Augspurger 5.1 monitoring setup and all of the control room treatments — but judiciously employed additional baffling in the live room to “soften” the acoustics. “The shape of the room is conducive to having a big cathedral-esque sound,” Salazar explains. “We tuned the high end and the decay for clarity because we didn't want to lose the depth of the room. We just tried to soften the upper-midrange frequencies so that, if you have a 30-piece string section, for example, and then you bring brass in, the brass won't ring within the room and overpower what the strings are doing. It's very balanced.”

Salazar, whose own projects have included original music for the Hannah Montana show and artist development for Warner Bros. and Interscope, consulted with veteran film sound mixers Dan Wallin and Armin Steiner on the implementation of the redesign, and the reworked studio has been booked solid with film and TV gigs. Recent projects have included music for Fox-TV series Fringe, The Simpsons, Family Guy and King of the Hill; live source Source Connect sessions with composer Mark Isham and producer Mutt Lange; and the featured title for the upcoming Tim Allen/Alisha Cuthbert film My Dad's Six Wives, arranged and produced by Salazar.

However, now that L.A. Sound Gallery is running full-speed, it's not always easy for Salazar to get time in his own studio. So, he's adding a B room with a Digidesign ICON console. “Even when I work on film soundtracks, it's more in the pop genre,” Salazar says. “The B room will have eight channels of everything that's on our SSL Duality, in X Racks, along with a healthy amount of outboard inspired by our A room's selection. This will suit most of my production needs, and we'll be able to bounce back and forth seamlessly.”

Alvernia

Alvernia Studios ALVERNIA, POLAND

Andy Munro of Munro Acoustics (London) designed Poland's first full-scale film production facility. This fantastical, futuristic-looking complex features a scoring stage large enough to accommodate a 100-piece orchestra, and a flown “pine cone” that opens out for variable absorptive/reflective acoustics. The scoring studio offers a 72-fader Neve 88R console; Munro Acoustics M4+P, Westlake and Yamaha monitoring; Pro Tools systems; a Studer 2-inch 24-track machine; and more. The post-production studios employ two AMS-Neve MMC 300 boards, as well as Genelec stereo and Dynaudio 5.1 monitoring. Alvernia also has a dubbing theater equipped with a 96-fader Neve DFC console.

Downtown Music

Downtown Music NEW YORK CITY

The studios at Downtown Music are part of a larger one-stop business that includes music production, as well a record label, music publishing and licensing. Pilchner Schoustal International (Toronto, Ontario) designed the 3,500-square-foot studio facilities. Pictured here is the live room connected to Studio A, which is centered around a Digidesign D-Command linking Pro Tools HD and Logic 8, and Tannoy DMT-215 main monitors powered by mono-bridged Bryston 4Bs. Acoustical treatments in the A room include custom Canadian maple diffusers and fabric-covered flutter-free panels. Studio B — which employs D-Command, a Pro Tools HD3 rig and 16 channels of Apogee conversion — was designed with a Balinese motif featuring a custom ceiling-mounted rosewood diffuser and hand-carved reflective woodwork.






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