The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 Search This Thread  Search This Forum  Search Reviews  Search Gear Database  Search Gear for sale  Search Gearslutz Go Advanced
Decca WSW Console Restauration Consoles
Old 29th April 2015
  #1
Gear Nut
 
Ostrong Audio's Avatar
 

Decca WSW Console Restoration

I´m starting a project which I want to share with all the "vintage-gearslutz" out there.
The restauration of this console:



Youtube Video with the Decca WSW Console


The only ever built Decca WSW console.

Short history: The record company Decca recorded Richard Wagner "Das Rheingold" in 1958 and "Siegfried" in 1962 in the vienna Sophien Saal. This was the best sounding recording hall Decca was able to locate after a search throughout Europe (sadly the hall burnt down in 2001). The recording of "Götterdämmerung" was planned for 1964 but the Decca engineers Gordon Parry & Jimmy Brown wanted to have a new console that was able of all the recording techniques they used in a fast workflow. For the first two recordings they used some kind of provisionally wired small mixer/s. Now they wanted a professional console and they wanted it to be built in vienna and they wanted to be the designers of the signalflow. WSW (Wiener Schwachstromwerke) was the company to build this desk, the contract was signed in 1963 and the building began. The Decca engineer wanted to have all channels fitted with the Decca-EQs from the highly respected Decca-Mastering-Consoles so WSW built 28 Decca Mastering EQs in the console! In April 1964 the console was installed in the new Decca Control Room in the Sofien Saal vienna.
Somewere in the early 70-ies it was sold to an austrian recording studio and was used till about 1980, since this it was stored. Some months ago we brought it into my workshop and the restauration can begin.

Short Technical Infos:
20 Inputchannels with WSW tube micpreamps and Decca mastering-EQ in each channel
8 Inputs for the reverbrooms/EMT plates also with Decca Mastering-EQ in each channels
4 Masterchannels

If there is any interest I will report the restauration of the console here.

Last edited by Ostrong Audio; 2nd May 2015 at 10:27 AM..
Old 29th April 2015
  #2
Lives for gear
 

Subscribed
Old 29th April 2015
  #3
Lives for gear
 
vincentvangogo's Avatar
 

Couldn't get video to work nor find it on youtube. Looks beautiful though.
Old 29th April 2015
  #4
Gear Addict
 
Pred80r's Avatar
 

Technological advances in the 60's

It is almost as hard to believe this console and the EMI TG12345 and REDD valve consoles came out in the early 60's as the fact that the SR-71 was put into service in 1968!

All of these units have only been matched and not really surpassed since then...That is a whopping 50 years.

Much like landing on the moon...oh wait, that never really happened....
Old 29th April 2015
  #5
Oh wow !

You'll have something really really special when it's all fixed up.

Are all the parts you need still available ?
Old 29th April 2015
  #6
Gear Nut
 
Ostrong Audio's Avatar
 

I really dont know why the video-link is not working, a other videolink I have tested was working. But when posting the link of the Decca WSW console the system is always automatically making *** in the link and the link is not working with the 3 stars. Maybe somebody here knows a solution.

For now this should help: Go to youtube and enter: Vintage Recording Equipment Excerpt - Georg Solti - The Golden Ring (Original BBC Mono - 1965)


About 1970




Begin of 2015


The sound and building quality of the WSW desks is really out of this world, they are the most sturdy, reliable and best sounding consoles I have ever seen/heared.

The console has about 1000kg (incl. PSU´s) and exists of more than 260! modules.

All parts that I need are still available or I have them in stock. The tubes are all standard models like: E88CC, E83CC, EL34,.....

Last edited by Ostrong Audio; 29th April 2015 at 10:12 PM..
Old 29th April 2015
  #7
Oh wow this monster is huge !

I've seen some 50's broadcast stuff and the level of craftmanship on this stuff is totaly amazing.

I won't talk about $$$, are you doing this alone ? .. how much time do you think you need ?

Awesome that you want to share this with us
Old 30th April 2015
  #8
Here for the gear
 

Wow, great to see this console survives. Thank for sharing the progress. I'd love to have the opportunity to take on such a project!
Old 30th April 2015
  #9
Gear Addict
 
c1ferrari's Avatar
 

Looking forward to your progress!
Old 30th April 2015
  #10
Gear Nut
 
Ostrong Audio's Avatar
 

Yes, I´m doing the restauration alone. I think I will need about 6 month were the Decca WSW console will be my mainwork, but its hard to tell the exact needed timeamount.
At the moment I´m making lists of the needed parts, lists of the modules, a schematic map, buying the spareparts,....

...and I have built this measure/align/test-station

which allows me to test/service/align nearly all germanium modules (except the f-generator) on my workbench. A teststation for the tube preamps and tube summing modules is also in work. The PSUs, Faders and EQs will get testcables because they dont need any external switches or special supplys. The plan is to make a complete service of all modules as first step.
Old 30th April 2015
  #11
Wow what a cool project!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ostrong Audio View Post
Short history: The record company Decca recorded Richard Wagner "Das Rheingold" in 1958 and "Siegfried" in 1962 in the vienna Sophien Saal. This was the best sounding recording hall Decca was able to locate after a search throughout Europe (sadly the hall burnt down in 2001).
It was restored and reopened in December 2013.

https://vimeo.com/114116743

u47u67u87
Old 30th April 2015
  #12
Gear Maniac
 

what a great console! makes my deutsche grammophon console look like a toy. :-)

looking forward to many more pics. good luck with the project!
Old 30th April 2015
  #13
Lives for gear
owow

Last edited by alkor; 30th April 2015 at 10:21 AM..
Old 30th April 2015
  #14
Lives for gear
 
ruffrecords's Avatar
Absolutely fabulous. Do you have schematics of the tube end of the console?

Cheers

Ian
Old 30th April 2015
  #15
Gear Nut
 
Ostrong Audio's Avatar
 

I have the schematics for all tube and all germanium modules/PSU´s which are used in and out of the console. I also have the wiring-diagram of the frame. At the moment I only miss the input-stepped-pad schematic because this was not the WSW standard circuit. It was a special made for Decca with other dB-steps and more attenuation, but this is only some resistor so its easy to re-draw it. And for the passiv EQ-stage I have to start a schematic search or also re-draw it.


Frame landing
Old 30th April 2015
  #16
subscibed
Old 30th April 2015
  #17
Old 30th April 2015
  #18
Lives for gear
 
Joao B.'s Avatar
 

Stunning!

Subscribed.
Old 30th April 2015
  #19
Quote:
Originally Posted by vincentvangogo View Post
Couldn't get video to work nor find it on youtube. Looks beautiful though.
the video URL is scrambled by the GS spamchecker
try searching for "Vintage Recording Equipment Excerpt - Georg Solti - The Golden Ring (Original BBC Mono - 1965)"
Old 30th April 2015
  #20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joao B. View Post
Stunning!

Subscribed.
Ditto!
Old 30th April 2015
  #21
Gear Nut
 
Ostrong Audio's Avatar
 

This WSW treasures are finding me on fortune.

- The Casino Baumgarten WSW desk was told me buy a client for whom I made most of the technical design of his new studiobuilding. The client made a live concert in the Casino Baumgarten hall so he get into knowledge of the studio/console.
- The second desk-owner I met at a studio-opening-party but he absolutely dont want to sell his console, it is still in parts in his cellar.
- The third WSW desk (a small mono tape-transfer desk) pre-owner I meet at a meeting for a classical recording in Baumgarten.
- The Decca WSW console pre-owner was a guest at a studio-visit at Casino Baumgarten.

All this was fortune and my many years lasting specializing on WSW gear. If you are extremely into on piece/brand of gear the gear will come to you but you have to be patiently for many many years.

The pick up of the Decca WSW console is a other story which I will write here the next days/weeks. What I can say is, such a big console is not that easy to move,........
Old 30th April 2015
  #22
Lives for gear
 
vincentvangogo's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Reptil View Post
the video URL is scrambled by the GS spamchecker
try searching for "Vintage Recording Equipment Excerpt - Georg Solti - The Golden Ring (Original BBC Mono - 1965)"
Thanks, I will check it.
Old 30th April 2015
  #23
Gear Head
 

great to see gear like this restored , all the best
Old 30th April 2015
  #24
Deleted User
Guest
There's a console later (Germanium i guess), similar looking to this one on ebay at the moment.

Decca WSW Console RestaurationVintage Recording Console Philips MD 12 (1968) | eBay

just sayin'..
Old 30th April 2015
  #25
Gear Nut
 
Ostrong Audio's Avatar
 

I know the Philips MD 12 consoles also because a client from me has one. Depending on the building age its germanium or germanium and silicon mixed. The MD 12 is a quite simple desk with a preamp, a fader, 4 routing knobs and one aux per channel. Some even have no Pan, and maximum 4 channels with EQ.
The sound of the desk is good but the flexibility and possibilitys are minimal.
Old 30th April 2015
  #26
subscribed! Best of luck in your restoration!
Old 1st May 2015
  #27
Gear Addict
 
c1ferrari's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ostrong Audio View Post
I´m starting a project which I want to share with all the "vintage-gearslutz" out there.
The restauration of this console:




If video is not working enter Decca WSW at youtube.

The only ever built Decca WSW console.

Short history: The record company Decca recorded Richard Wagner "Das Rheingold" in 1958 and "Siegfried" in 1962 in the vienna Sophien Saal. This was the best sounding recording hall Decca was able to locate after a search throughout Europe (sadly the hall burnt down in 2001). The recording of "Götterdämmerung" was planned for 1964 but the Decca engineers Gordon Parry & Jimmy Brown wanted to have a new console that was able of all the recording techniques they used in a fast workflow. For the first two recordings they used some kind of provisionally wired small mixer/s. Now they wanted a professional console and they wanted it to be built in vienna and they wanted to be the designers of the signalflow. WSW (Wiener Schwachstromwerke) was the company to build this desk, the contract was signed in 1963 and the building began. The Decca engineer wanted to have all channels fitted with the Decca-EQs from the highly respected Decca-Mastering-Consoles so WSW built 28 Decca Mastering EQs in the console! In April 1964 the console was installed in the new Decca Control Room in the Sofien Saal vienna.
Somewere in the early 70-ies it was sold to an austrian recording studio and was used till about 1980, since this it was stored. Some months ago we brought it into my workshop and the restauration can begin.

Short Technical Infos:
20 Inputchannels with WSW tube micpreamps and Decca mastering-EQ in each channel
8 Inputs for the reverbrooms/EMT plates also with Decca Mastering-EQ in each channels
4 Masterchannels

If there is any interest I will report the restauration of the console here.
Amazing...I have this recording on CD and just listened to it last night
Old 1st May 2015
  #28
Gear Nut
 
Ostrong Audio's Avatar
 

For everybody who is deeper intersted about the console here you can find an articel about the Decca Sofiensaal Studio and the Decca WSW desk printed in a db Mag from 1970:

db Mag January 1970


Old 1st May 2015
  #29
Lives for gear
 
ruffrecords's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ostrong Audio View Post
I have the schematics for all tube and all germanium modules/PSU´s which are used in and out of the console. I also have the wiring-diagram of the frame. At the moment I only miss the input-stepped-pad schematic because this was not the WSW standard circuit. It was a special made for Decca with other dB-steps and more attenuation, but this is only some resistor so its easy to re-draw it. And for the passiv EQ-stage I have to start a schematic search or also re-draw it.
As you may know, I am something of a student of vintage tube mic pre designs. I would be very grateful if you were able to post the schematic of the tube front end to this console.

Cheers

Ian
Old 1st May 2015
  #30
Lives for gear
 
dlmorley's Avatar
OMG - a dream desk.
Good luck with the restoration. I think it will be an amazing desk when sorted.
Topic:
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Forum Jump
Forum Jump