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Duality In A Commercial Facility... Would It Work?
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msrecprod
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22nd March 2007
Old 22nd March 2007
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Duality In A Commercial Facility... Would It Work?

How many of you guys/gals out there would really like to use an SSL Duality over say an SSL 9000J installed in a commercial facility. I can see how a Duality could be great for the private sudio owner, but for a commercial facility, is it really a viable option? Especially with 9000J costing around 200K now, what advantage would the Duality offer to the commercial facility owner?
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22nd March 2007
Old 22nd March 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by msrecprod View Post
what advantage would the Duality offer to the commercial facility owner?
The money saved in electric bills and repairs alone would make it attractive.

I also feel nowadays what board you used to mix what isn't as big of a deal as it used to be.

So if its a 9J,9K,4000E,4000G,4000G+,6K,Duality its not as crucial anymore.

Its a project to project basis based more on funds than sound.
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22nd March 2007
Old 22nd March 2007
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Thrill, I agree with you that people would take a Duality room over a 9K room if the price on the Duailty room was better, but could a Duality studio justfy pricing itself for less? I'm not sure of the exact numbers, but I just saw an 80 CH 9000J offered for 180K, which is less then a new Duality that has the same amount of ch's. I understand that the 9K will have a higher overhead as far as upkeep, electricity, etc. Still though, the overhead on the two consoles might become pretty similar for a new Duality verse a used 9K. And that's really my question. Would a new studio be better off purchasing a used 9K or a new Duality?
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22nd March 2007
Old 22nd March 2007
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I think it's too early to tell if it will be as successful with commercial studios as the 9k.
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22nd March 2007
Old 22nd March 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by msrecprod View Post
Thrill, I agree with you that people would take a Duality room over a 9K room if the price on the Duailty room was better, but could a Duality studio justfy pricing itself for less? I'm not sure of the exact numbers, but I just saw an 80 CH 9000J offered for 180K, which is less then a new Duality that has the same amount of ch's. I understand that the 9K will have a higher overhead as far as upkeep, electricity, etc. Still though, the overhead on the two consoles might become pretty similar for a new Duality verse a used 9K. And that's really my question. Would a new studio be better off purchasing a used 9K or a new Duality?
In Manhattan your average electric bill if you have a studio running 24 hours a day in the Winter time is around $600-800 a month. In the summer time it doubles. Add an SSL on 24 hours a day and your electric bill in the summertime is on the bleeding edge of $2200.

If your average monthly rental for a nice size studio is around $4k-$5K you will be paying close to $6K in rent and electric alone. Not to mention you have to pray you have business in the summertime and winter time(dec) when the studio business slows down. Also you can get SSL rooms pretty cheap nowadays($500 aday).

If this makes sense to you than you do what you have to. If it doesn't than you know the answer.

Again its not a matter of anymore of what you purchase. People don't book mix rooms anymore based on the consoles because the same guys mix most of the major label stuff and they have their own setups somewhere. One of the most popular SSL rooms in LA is the 4000E room at Paramount. Why? Because its cheap and it gets the job done. The studio business now is a different animal. Its not the 80's anymore. The days of large advances to cut records are over. If you make a large console purchase its seen more as a personal luxury purchase. You know like if you bought a Ferrari,Lamborghini or Rolls Royce. No one really cares what you drive except you so if you can afford to drive in style you do it. Sure the world may think you are nuts or you are going through a midlife crisis but it makes you happy. Same with a big mix console. Nowadays records are mixed on anything.
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23rd March 2007
Old 23rd March 2007
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Well, here in LA at least a lot of records are still being mixed on a console. There seems to be a line were the studios on one side are all dying and the other side are all doing pretty well. That is why I'm asking this question, it really comes down to having a room people WANT to use, because like you sad, they dont HAVE to use a big SSL room. It's true, you don't need an SSL to mix records anymore, but it still sounds better, and people are still using them. If it's just some random room with an SSL and a couple of 1176's then your probabley not going to last vey long. This is really why I ask this question, I'd like to know if a Duality belongs in a commercial room.
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23rd March 2007
Old 23rd March 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by msrecprod View Post
I'd like to know if a Duality belongs in a commercial room.
I think the format was developed with a "modern producer" in mind, I think it belongs to private rooms, it's more personal, I don't know if "free lance" ssl mixer, could be able to operate Duality intuitively with out some training, they have to spend some time reading the manual, etc, etc,
With classic consoles they already know how to operate them with their eyes closed.
As someone said, it's to soon too suppose or judge something like Duality, let's see what happens...

Best regards.

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23rd March 2007
Old 23rd March 2007
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Psychological...

Yes, the music biz has changed, but there is still money to mix for the right projects. BUT, there is a sort of psychological barrier.

One level is, get the project done efficiently (code for cheap)

The other is, "Yeah, go mix it on an SSL with great outboard."

The key is, that barrier (once you're over it) doesn't distinguish between 9000J, Duality or a classic SSL 4000... to most people it's just the prestige and sound of an "SSL mixed album."

Soooo, you have to ask yourself what the key purpose is. You can get that mixed in a major studio status, but what kind of SSL is not the factor, just an SSL is... sorry, but to people other than us, that's the harsh truth.

CONTEXT: I'm not saying this as a studio owner or an advocate, but rather from that other side, so I've been in and seen that kind of thinking up close and personal.

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23rd March 2007
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What I miss on the commercial studio market is smaller mixing suites.

Yes, a smaller mix-only studio. As long as there's good planning and serious acoustic design going in to it, it doesn't have to be big. Especially in major cities where high rents are a problem it would make a lot of sense. I hate paying for 1000 sq feet of tracking room if all I'm gonna do is mix.

I think the modern commercial studio might be better off focusing on separate tracking and mixing studios so those mixing doesn't have to pay for a live room, mics and instruments and those tracking doesn't have to pay for a ton of outboard they're not using.

Sorry for going left of topic.
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23rd March 2007
Old 23rd March 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thethrillfactor View Post
Its a project to project basis based more on funds than sound.

What an incredibly sad statement.
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23rd March 2007
Old 23rd March 2007
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So what can a SSL 9000J offer you what a SSL Duality can't? Sonic preferences of individuals aside.

I asume the major routing options are basicly the same aswell as the philosophy behind it. I would think a Duality is going to be an advantage in the future over an older SSL desk because it offers DAW controll in combination with endless analog mixing capabilities. Don't you guys think SSl designed the desk with commercial studio's in mind?

Am i missing something here?
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23rd March 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tommylicious View Post
So what can a SSL 9000J offer you what a SSL Duality can't? Sonic preferences of individuals aside.

I asume the major routing options are basicly the same aswell as the philosophy behind it. I would think a Duality is going to be an advantage in the future over an older SSL desk because it offers DAW controll in combination with endless analog mixing capabilities. Don't you guys think SSl designed the desk with commercial studio's in mind?

Am i missing something here?
Think back a long LOOONG time ago (like a few years ago), when you were using that thing just prior to that other out-dated paper-weigt type thing called a Control-24...

THAT is the DAW part of a Duality.

Now, how many of us still think an SSL 4000 G series still holds value to you, clients, artists, labels... not to mention, still sounds great.

Food for thought.

-a
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23rd March 2007
Old 23rd March 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dirty Halo View Post
THAT is the DAW part of a Duality.

Now, how many of us still think an SSL 4000 G series still holds value to you, clients, artists, labels... not to mention, still sounds great.

Food for thought.

-a
I agree, but producers who already have a "name" and doesn't need to impress anyone with a big SSL 4000, 9000j or K, get's a lot of advantge with a Duality over any of those consoles, not only for it's DAW control, but it's impresive sound with tons of definition, also Duality brings you a lot of alternatives to shape your sound. So I strongly believe that Duality consoles are for Producers, They are an expensive investment but it worth every penny, mostly because you have a powerfull company behind supporting you at any time.

All the best.

delcosmos
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23rd March 2007
Old 23rd March 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dirty Halo View Post
Food for thought.
Ok, so i gave it some thought...

I understand the DAW control capabilities of a Duality aren't all that spectacular, but the folks who desire that probably prefer go to a studio with an Icon anyway.

So of course a good room with a SSl 4000 G and some great outboard will always be in demand, no doubt. Same goes for tracking studio's with a Neve and a Studer for example.

But i personally love the idea that there will be a comercial room somewhere in the future where i can walk in with my Logic session, open it up and do some mixing or recording on a Duality! The fact that there's atleast some DAW control there is just a little bonus of course to the soundshaping options the board has.

So this comercial facility perhaps shouldn't be aiming for the hardcore PT guys out there or the diehard vintage freaks, but i think there is going to be a lot of interest and demand for the Duality from exploring new producers and engineers for both recording and mixing.
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23rd March 2007
Old 23rd March 2007
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The Symphony concept could have some influence with increasing the validation of the 'Duality'. But, in my mind the 'Duality' is already established as the current 'benchmark' for analog consoles. I also am looking for deeper, & deeper integration with DAW's as this area of production continues to evolve.

To address the original question. I'd analyze the current, & potential market. Establish a ratio of potential hybrid vs. 'in the box' clients. If the ratio is 1 to 3 then opening a facility with 1-SSL Duality, & 3-Digidesign Icon's may work. Or if the ratio is 4 to 1 then open a facility with 4-SSL Duality's, & 1 Digidesign Icon. In your research I'd investigate how much film, televsion, commercial campaign, music, & multimdia game/etc. work there is, & be prepared to diversify. Proper acoustic design, facility ergonomics, & good 'old fashioned' excellent service catering to clients particular whim's, & fancies will play a factor as well.

Bottom line. A 'Duality' room alone may not cut it. But, I do believe it can work with the right research, & implementation of a solid plan with built in flexibility to adjust to what the present, & long term markets can bear.

Rob G..
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23rd March 2007
Old 23rd March 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fletcher View Post
What an incredibly sad statement.
But alas incredibly true.
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23rd March 2007
Old 23rd March 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by msrecprod View Post
Well, here in LA at least a lot of records are still being mixed on a console.
Again its the same handful of guys.

If you can get one of these guys to setup shop at your new place for lets say 5 years than paying off the lease and the interest payments may not be as bad. Only drawback is if top mixer cat is really busy you won't get to use or rent the facility out as much.


Quote:
Originally Posted by msrecprod View Post
There seems to be a line were the studios on one side are all dying and the other side are all doing pretty well. That is why I'm asking this question, it really comes down to having a room people WANT to use, because like you sad, they dont HAVE to use a big SSL room. It's true, you don't need an SSL to mix records anymore, but it still sounds better, and people are still using them. If it's just some random room with an SSL and a couple of 1176's then your probabley not going to last vey long.

The line is drawn where some guys were smart and lucky enough in buying the consoles out right and not stuck making outrageous lease payments/interest while trying to make the studio competitive. Its a big albatross to get stuck paying $5000 a month for the console alone when in 5 years your business may not be around.

Look at where the sound motel business is going. In CA basically the mini conglomerates are buying out in chunks the major studios. They have the backing needed to do it and will probably run these places corporate style. I believe in the future owning a true hi end studio will go the way of the race horse business. Right now the best 20 horses are all owned by the richest guys in the world. They are all trained and managed by maybe 2 guys. It used to be around this time(Kentucky Derby time) you always had a chance or hope for some small unknown horse from a moderately rich owner to sneak up and have a chance. Sorry but these days are no more. The racing Triple Crown has become a race basically for the super elite rich. Its like their own private race. I see the elite studio business going this way as well where the same guys will own most of them and some specialized management company will run it because it will be too expensive to compete.


Quote:
Originally Posted by msrecprod View Post

This is really why I ask this question, I'd like to know if a Duality belongs in a commercial room.
Well i could throw the question back at you and ask can a PT only setup carry a commercial studio?

Why the question? Well everyone and their cousin has some kind of PT setup. And some home studios looking by the pictures you see here are more equipped than some all PT commercial studios i've been to. But these studios do still exist and continue to do business.

Why?
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23rd March 2007
Old 23rd March 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thethrillfactor View Post
I believe in the future owning a true hi end studio will go the way of the race horse business. Right now the best 20 horses are all owned by the richest guys in the world. They are all trained and managed by maybe 2 guys. It used to be around this time(Kentucky Derby time) you always had a chance or hope for some small unknown horse from a moderately rich owner to sneak up and have a chance. Sorry but these days are no more. The racing Triple Crown has become a race basically for the super elite rich. Its like their own private race.
this happened in large part because the laws changed making horse racing related stuff NOT tax deductible. i remember seeing a yearling go for 13 million at keeneled once. there were 747s with onboard stables parked in the airport waiting to take bloodstock back to wherever. the year laws changed top yearlings fetched 3 or 4 mill. the following years prices fell alot further.

when the IRS decides to make artist development and recording studios 100% deductible you'll see multiple million dollar facilities go up like starbucks franchises.

as to Duality i believe they'll mostly be going to private studios. if i already had a K i doubt i'd change it for a Duality. for a brand new place i'd go for a Duality, but i doubt new high end analog studios are likely to be popping up too frequently.
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23rd March 2007
Old 23rd March 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raal View Post
this happened in large part because the laws changed, making horse racing related stuff NOT tax deductible.
Do you think so?

The biggest owners are the Saudi's and Dubai guys. Taxes or not i doubt they care. From what i heard they just want to win at any costs(very competitive).

And this being America there will be someone to supply this demand even if it means screwing everyone else.


Quote:
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as to Duality, i believe they'll be going primarily to private or semi-private studios.
Hey man if i had the dough right now it would be in mine.

But things being the way they are in the music business i just don't see it anytime soon.

I would rather take the $250K and invest it some where(these days i am looking into nanotechnologies and electric cars).
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23rd March 2007
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Quote:
The biggest owners are the Saudi's and Dubai guys.
don't forget the Indian guys.

Quote:
Taxes or not i doubt they care. From what i heard they just want to win at any costs(very competitive).
correct, but now they only have to pay 1/10 the price they used to for the same quality. they might not care about tax deductions but the people that drove the prices up did. US corporations could breed/race thoroughbreds and amortize 100% of the cost! no more. so as you say, the same insanely rich guys buy the best year after year, but now it costs them less, and less guys are in the game.

sorry for being OT.
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23rd March 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raal View Post
don't forget he Indian guys.
Very true.

India is quickly becoming a financial super power.



Quote:
Originally Posted by raal View Post
correct, but now they only have to pay 1/10 the price they used to for the same quality. they might not care about tax deductions but the people that drove the prices up did. US corporations could breed/race thoroughbreds and amortize 100% of the cost! no more. so as you say, the same insanely rich guys buy the best, year after year. now it costs them less.

sorry for being OT.
Gotcha.

Makes total sense.



Quote:
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sorry for being OT.
Same here.

(Got any picks for this years Derby?)
#22
23rd March 2007
Old 23rd March 2007
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Quote:
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(Got any picks for this years Derby?)
Arcata. kidding. but it would be cool. isn't there a horse called Duality, so we can be on topic?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tommylicious View Post
So this comercial facility perhaps shouldn't be aiming for the hardcore PT guys out there or the diehard vintage freaks, but i think there is going to be a lot of interest and demand for the Duality from exploring new producers and engineers for both recording and mixing.
good point. Duality is a pretty impressive controller for DAWs that aren't limited to HUI. again the reason why i think Dualities will live in private facilities more than in 'commercial' studios.
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23rd March 2007
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Arcata. kidding. but it would be cool. isn't there a horse called Duality, so we can be on topic?
Hey you never know...if we hit a Superfecta Derby day that could pay for the Duality itself.
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24th March 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thethrillfactor View Post
But alas incredibly true.
Metallica wrote a song about it..

"Sad but true".




I think the better question is, "can a commercial studio survive these days?"
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