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Olive
Old 21st June 2005
  #1
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Olive Console

So not to pollute the Quad Eight thread any more, here are some medium rez scans from my Olive literature pile. Dates on the brochures are from 1970 and 1971, so these were damned high tech for the era.

Bri
Attached Thumbnails
Olive-olive2000.jpg   Olive-olive2010.jpg  
Old 21st June 2005
  #2
I worked on this console for three months..it broke down hourly!!
Old 21st June 2005
  #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stereomixer
I worked on this console for three months..it broke down hourly!!
Heh...well, it looked nice in the photos!

Bri
Old 21st June 2005
  #4
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Seems to have a lot going on in terms of features for 1971 wouldn't you say?

Can you give us some info on the type of circuitry used etc Brian? Was it early ic-based or discrete? Don't tell me it's LM741...

BTW, can someone rotate that 2nd jpg, I think I've pulled a muscle in my neck...

Justin
Old 21st June 2005
  #5
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cool beans, bri..good idea to move it here! It's pretty hip! 2" centers makes for a wide-ass board, indeed. those thumbwheels are usually BCD so it was a BCD to Parallel driven eq switching deal maybe. same with sends too i guess.

Thanks for the archiological dig. thumbsup
Old 22nd June 2005
  #6
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Justin, I have no idea about the internal circuitry. All I have is some sales lit I acquired over the years and kept in my "never throw anything file cabinets" (now up to 20 drawers worth!).

Yes, that Olive was WAAAAY beyond desks made even many years later. The central assign stuff, 11 aux buses, etc. But, Stereomixer tells us it wasn't reliable!

Sorry about the sideways scan, but that's how the page was printed. My file viewers have a rotate function so I didn't worry about it. I just did a test rotation of my scan in Photoshop and it ballooned the file from 200K to 900.

Larr, I'd also like to see the schematics as well!

If this attachment isn't too large, here are three pages from a glossy brochure I scanned into PDF so you can use Acrobat's "rotate" function to avoid neck strain. Page 2 in the PDF has a pic of an input module with the side cover removed. The little sub modules make me think the circuitry was discrete.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf olive brochure 1.pdf (2.04 MB, 207 views)
Old 22nd June 2005
  #7
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It certainly looks as if the people behind "Olive" were ahead of the pack for the day. I can't help wondering that, with all thoses features rammed onto each channel, if it was fully discrete there would be rather a lot of circuitry packed in there...

So were Olive's designers related to Q8? Where did they come from?

How many Olives were made? Was it an expensive console for the day?

I've often wondered if the likes of Gearslutz or PSW should set up a "historical forum" that specialises in these kind of topics... On the other hand, I guess it could dilute some of the content on other fora... Either way, tracing the history of unusual vintage pieces appeals a great deal to me - thanks for sharing the info Brian!

Justin (Nostalgia ain't what it used to be!)
Old 22nd June 2005
  #8
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Olive was a Canadian company based in Montreal. The only additional info I have is that the President was named Wayne Jones, which sounds vaguely familiar. Perhaps he was behind the Amber test gear, also from Canada.

Bri
Old 22nd June 2005
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brianroth
Olive was a Canadian company based in Montreal. The only additional info I have is that the President was named Wayne Jones, which sounds vaguely familiar. Perhaps he was behind the Amber test gear, also from Canada.

Bri
I agree with Thermionic about formalizing (or forumizing) these historical trails we seem to have such a blast going on! (Plus, it's important)

AmBER!! ayiii! we had one of those Amber's at Criteria in the shop. It sat on a high shelf and I was advised to avoid it.
Old 22nd June 2005
  #10
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I have unknown thousands of brochures, spec sheets, service manuals, etc. dating back to the early 70's, and have thrown various scans in the "library" section of my website. I need to post the Olive stuff there, now that I think about it.

Larr, I have an Amber 3500 I bought back in the early 80's and it is still chugging along. I don't know if Wayne Jones was involved with Amber, but I did find he ended up at Audio Precision.

Bri
Old 22nd June 2005
  #11
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the 3500 looks pretty cool, actually. The orange predecessor with all the shadow switches gave mixed results to the Criteria crew, so they passed it by.

Yeah I guess we would need a full time scanner-person to get all that data into web-form Brian. Seems counter-intuative to making a living heh
Old 23rd June 2005
  #12
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They were WAY ahead of their time... but my understanding was that it never really worked.

they were the very first desk I ever saw mention automation...
and they looked totally cool.
Old 23rd June 2005
  #13
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I wonder if any parts of an Olive desk survive now, approx. 35 years after they were made?

Bri
Old 16th July 2005
  #14
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Thanks for the info, Cathode. I would like to see some schematics for that desk!

Glad to know my recollection about Wayne Jones was correct. I guess that's who I spoke with an an AES show back in the early 80's before I bought my Amber 3500.

Bri
Old 23rd May 2006
  #15
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Brian-

Wayne did start Amber Electrodesign, as you suspected. There are currently two known Olive consoles in existence. One is up and running, after having been restored by Clark Hagan and myself (I did a lot of preliminary research and work, but he did most of the nuts and bolts and deserves the credit for the majority of the task), and the other is currently in storage. I'm trying to negotiate with the current owner to allow me to restore it, but that negotiation may literally take years.

People who are interested in the console's history and structure can read more about it here, along with comments from Wayne Jones, Ed Meitner, and others:

http://www.pmerecords.com/olive.cfm

If it's okay with you, I'd love to include anything you have about the Olive. There are also other interesting tidbits about the fire at Caribou Ranch that I'm not allowed to print, so if anyone's interested, they can email me at midigod at aol dot com. I can also get anyone in touch with Clark to ask questions about the circuit topography that I'm not able to answer.

-Craig
Old 24th May 2006
  #16
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OLIVE RULES !!!

It is truley AWESOME how these guys set the STANDARD of what NEVE and SSL eventually went to as well as what our current DAWs have available on each channel. These guys were so a head of the game at that time. Look what came out in 1973. NOTHING LIKE IT!
Old 24th May 2006
  #17
Led
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Did anyone from Olive go on to work for API? Does anyone else see a similarity?
Cool console.
Old 24th May 2006
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Led
Did anyone from Olive go on to work for API? Does anyone else see a similarity?
Cool console.
API at the time was one of the biggest OEM supplier of console parts. VU meters, opamps, transformers, knobs, etc.

Cheers,

elco
Old 24th May 2006
  #19
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The logo was very cool...i believe a pimento was visible atop..for some reason i thought they were made in Colorado
Old 24th May 2006
  #20
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Maybe that was because the one in Colorado was very high-profile.... but other than that, there was no connection.

The guy who currently has the one I'm trying to get, said that about twenty years ago he saw about a dozen Olive EQ modules in a surplus electronics store. He didn't get them. It just pains me to think about where they are now... probably dismantled for the switches.
Old 26th May 2006
  #21
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They certainly had the best looking brochures!
Old 26th May 2006
  #22
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I gotta get my scanner running again (wall wart died...arrgh).

Bri
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