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Harrison 32-series console... sound? Consoles
Old 26th November 2009
  #31
Quote:
Originally Posted by dualflip View Post
A little bit off-topic here, but does this also applies to the summing bus on a JH-500 which also uses the 5534?
Yes it does. Those bipolar electrolytic coupling caps should also go, you won't need them anymore.

I remember back in the day we would try anything under the sun to get a better or new sound. Curiousity was the ruling factor. Stevie Wonder first hired me in the 1970's to discover and break new sounds. Same with Frank Zappa and many others. You can hear those developments on those classic recordings. It was a "no stone left unturned" mentality that gave us some of the best and most innovative popular music of the 20th century.

That mentality is now diminished. The "stay safe with what you know" mentality is stagnating and is retro de-evolution. That mentality is what kept many Europeans from immigrating to the USA 100 years ago. Those that saw opprotunity and a chance to make something of themselves came here and developed the greatest country the world has ever seen, dispite the grumblings from those who's asses we have saved in the past.

The can do mentality I find lacking in the current modern recording scene. No, you can't sing, use Autotune. No, you can't tune or intonate your guitar. No, you must use current production fashion, no you can't skip the compressors. Innovation has taken a back seat to audio fashion.

Innovation involves risk. Those that sit on the sidelines reminising about how repeating the past is such great thing are missing out on things Stevie Wonder and Frank Zappa found and incorporated.

We are not done with audio yet. Some of us are still looking for more stones to overturn. That should be celebrated and not discouraged.

No matter, it won't stop us anyway. We are on a mission from God.

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
Old 26th November 2009
  #32
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As I recall....there was a Harrison 32 at the old Soundworks in NY...under Studio 54. That place was all or party ownered by Steely Dan. A lot of their stuff was done there.
Old 26th November 2009
  #33
Lives for gear
Now that I'm thinking, there was also one at Alpha International in Philly.

I worked on a project recording the Philly Pops with Tug MacGraw reading Casey At the Bat. Back when the Phillies won the Series in the 80's. Great fun.

Gene Leone was the engineer at the time.....suoer talent.
Old 27th November 2009
  #34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Williams View Post
That mentality is now diminished. The "stay safe with what you know" mentality is stagnating and is retro de-evolution. That mentality is what kept many Europeans from immigrating to the USA 100 years ago. Those that saw opprotunity and a chance to make something of themselves came here and developed the greatest country the world has ever seen, dispite the grumblings from those who's asses we have saved in the past.

When we eventually bail you out of your national debt, can we call it even?

Or maybe you would owe us, seeing as the horrible plague Lady Gaga is American.




Im joking of course!
Old 27th November 2009
  #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Williams View Post
That's what the sockets are for. You can always drop back in the old 07x and 553x opamps to "recover the losses".

However, there is little to be gained sticking with the stock summing sections as they show so much loss. Just dropping 5 bucks for a pair of National LME49710NA opamps for the sum amps is not a big deal. It's stupid simple. If you want a bit more color a BB OPA1611 is another good sub. So is an AD8597.

Drop those in and report back the changes to us. It will only cost 5 bucks and it's reversable. You can always go back to the 1970's with a couple of chip swaps.

Are you curious enough to try it? That is a determining factor in whether you are still searching for audio bliss or if you're a stick in the mud.

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
I don't use my 4032A any more, been de commissioned and am considering making some 8 channel side cars. I agree though that the upgrade to the summing sections were a must.
Old 27th November 2009
  #36
teo
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bruce Swedien View Post
I would strongly suggest you take a listen to Michael Jackson's album "Thriller"....

Alot of folks seem to like the way it sounds. I recorded and mixed the entire album on a Harrison 32 series...

Personally I don't think the sound of recorded music gets any better than the Harrison 32 series....

Bruce Swedien
I did a gig yesterday in a studio where I never worked before...the owner was I little surprised when I put on Thriller as my reference CD, then a smile appeared on his face when Billy Jean came out of his (pretty expensive) boutique mains...
Old 27th November 2009
  #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fletcher View Post
Your history is a bit off. Harrison worked at MCI and designed what was MCI's best selling console ever... the 600 Series. The 500 series was a Grover "Jeep" Harned's design. Harrison left MCI and started Harrison [a logical progression] but those designs had more in common with MCI 600 Series designs than MCI 500 Series designs.

Sony's destruction of MCI was entirely market related and not anything to do with quality. When Sony first purchased MCI in late 1983 they actually stepped up the reliability of the machines. Though during this transition period [mostly 1984 and a bit into 1985] quality was often sketchy as the employees who built MCI machines seemed to fear that Sony was going to shut them down.

What happened was quite the opposite... Sony built up MCI... they built more machines with better reliability [gold sockets for IC's being just one of the reliability improvements] and began to produce 600 series consoles at a feverish pace. They opened up distribution from what had been a small circle of "MCI Dealers" to include music store chains and dropped the prices of their equipment dramatically.

This led to the initial wave of "studios that shouldn't exist" in the late 80's as anyone with $40,000- and a dream could own a JH-24 and 636 [36 input 600 series console]... before that time it would cost double or triple that amount to become a 24 track studio with a decent console.

Many thought this was Sony's way of "devaluing" analog recording to help entice upper end studios and rental companies to purchase their 3324 digital multi-track machines [which ran well over $100k a piece]. Though nobody knows if this was indeed the plan, it was certainly the result... which if you look at it in many ways started the backslide of audio quality and professionalism we now enjoy to the fullest here on Gearslutz!!

Happy Thanksgiving to the Americans... happy Thursday to the rest of the world.

Peace.
Sorry to tell you this Fletcher but its your history thats a little bit off.

Taken from the MCI Recording site you can check the entire article here MCI - Designer and Manufacturer of the Professional Audio Recording Equipment, quoting Jeep Harned:


"1972 also was the year when we started building our first "production" console series, JH-400's. This design evolved from some of Dave Harrison's ideas. I had known Dave from the days when he had worked at Criteria, and he also played in Wayne Cochran's band in Miami. Then he did studio maintenance for Sid Nathan at King Records, and worked his way up to become studio engineer and manager. Sid also owned part of a recording operation in Nashville and transferred Dave there. When Sid died, the studio was wound down and went out of business, leaving Dave to start his own company, The Studio Supply Company.

"At this time our dealer in Nashville was Dan Flickinger, but we dissolved our relationship after his accident. I then made Harrison's Studio Supply Company the Nashville dealer for MCI tape machines and he did quite well at it. Shortly thereafter Dave approached me about designing a new kind of console. He had some ideas, and I told him that if he design it, MCI would build it. Dave came down to Florida and started drawing and laying tape, and we built a run of six consoles. These boards were quite unusual for their time - the track assigns were in-line with the monitor and main channel fader. The console was similar to Flickinger's earlier concept except that his boards had the track assignments off to the right of the channel area. After the first run of six, I decided to do some additional work on the design - changing some of the metal work and adding other circuitry. We also incorporated the Harris 911 IC op-amps which lowered costs and made the product more manufacturable. All in all, I think we built about two hundred of those 'Series 400' consoles between 1972 and 1977, at which time we brought out the JH-500 Series.
Old 24th November 2010
  #38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Williams View Post
The "stay safe with what you know" mentality is stagnating and is retro de-evolution. That mentality is what kept many Europeans from immigrating to the USA 100 years ago. Those that saw opprotunity and a chance to make something of themselves came here and developed the greatest country the world has ever seen, dispite the grumblings from those who's asses we have saved in the past.
wow.
Old 25th November 2010
  #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Williams View Post

No matter, it won't stop us anyway. We are on a mission from God.

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
Oh yeah...And double wow..
Old 25th November 2010
  #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeremyglover View Post
wow.
Solder fumes is nasty stuff LOL
Old 25th November 2010
  #41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steffmo View Post
As I recall....there was a Harrison 32 at the old Soundworks in NY...under Studio 54. That place was all or party ownered by Steely Dan. A lot of their stuff was done there.
I seem to recall they had River Sound with either a 8068 or 8078.
Old 25th November 2010
  #42
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lets not get political, its a bad idea tutt
Old 27th February 2012
  #43
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cost of a new 32C console

Hi all,

I was reading a lot of stuff here on GS and it seems like these Harrison consoles (especially the C version) of the 32 series get's a lot of really good feedback's.

Just read this article and starting to dream about this console at night :-)

harrisonconsoles.com - Bruce Swedien

I was wondering if anyone could give me an indications what these consoles cost when they came out back in the days?

Anyone here that can help me?

Thanks a bunch,

The Swiss guy,
Oliver
Old 2nd March 2012
  #44
Gear Maniac
Wow sounds like me two and 1/2 years ago. I bought one, ended up being a total refurb situation. I knew nothing of electronics or how to solder. Now I do, at least a little, not that I ever wanted to. I think the one I have went for over $100,000 in the 70's. I got it for three grand in 2010. I have put about another $4,000 to $5,000 in repairs as of now, and I probably have another $3,000 to get it to new from the factory condition. It is finally at the point of usable, and I really do like the way it sounds. The console I have has been highly modified, and at times has proven tricky to the techs working on it due to some missing documentation and schematics.

Although they never get any love, I am way into the mic pre's. Mine are all transformer, and just give that silky sheen to everything, cant explain it any other way.

That said if i had it to do over again, I would have saved up more money and waited to get a console I knew was fully functioning. I found an old MCI for a buddy that was well maintained and on day one he was two years ahead of me, and he knows even less than I did when I started down this path.
Old 2nd March 2012
  #45
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Paul Gold's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Williams View Post
Those are standard 2 pole 12 db/octave butterworth filter slopes,

I thought they were under damped. The ones from the MR4 that were done up over at group DIY are.
Old 31st March 2012
  #46
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re message #44.

The mic pres vary in quality. Any still using the HA3500 (MCI 2001/ HA-911) Yuk. Far too much distortion.
The later versions using a 5534 are better, but a long time ago I rebuilt a 3232 and a 3624 to circuits closer to the Jensen suggested for the transformer which was even better.
Of choice now I would use the LME49710, but there is very little wrong with the bog standard 5534.
Old 1st April 2012
  #47
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I tracked a record this week through a heavily modified Harrison 32C and an MCI JH24. Spotty reliability? Yes, but the sound is definitely worth it. Fantastic tracking EQ's.

A really easy console to push hard when coming off a high-output tape like 996 or 499 - fat is a word that I would probably use...
Old 2nd April 2012
  #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NickNagurka View Post
I tracked a record this week through a heavily modified Harrison 32C and an MCI JH24. Spotty reliability? Yes, but the sound is definitely worth it. Fantastic tracking EQ's.

A really easy console to push hard when coming off a high-output tape like 996 or 499 - fat is a word that I would probably use...
That is so true, nothing slack with the eq section.
Old 6th April 2012
  #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AllAboutTone View Post
That is so true, nothing slack with the eq section.
Now....maybe once I pay back my student loans, I can take out another for one of these?

Oh wait, things will probably change a lot 20 years from now. *facepalm*
Old 6th April 2012
  #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NickNagurka View Post

Oh wait, things will probably change a lot 20 years from now. *facepalm*
you mean like, people play and record music and others listen to it?
Old 6th April 2012
  #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dualflip View Post
Sorry to tell you this Fletcher but its your history thats a little bit off.

Taken from the MCI Recording site you can check the entire article here MCI - Designer and Manufacturer of the Professional Audio Recording Equipment, quoting Jeep Harned:


"1972 also was the year when we started building our first "production" console series, JH-400's. This design evolved from some of Dave Harrison's ideas. I had known Dave from the days when he had worked at Criteria, and he also played in Wayne Cochran's band in Miami. Then he did studio maintenance for Sid Nathan at King Records, and worked his way up to become studio engineer and manager. Sid also owned part of a recording operation in Nashville and transferred Dave there. When Sid died, the studio was wound down and went out of business, leaving Dave to start his own company, The Studio Supply Company.

"At this time our dealer in Nashville was Dan Flickinger, but we dissolved our relationship after his accident. I then made Harrison's Studio Supply Company the Nashville dealer for MCI tape machines and he did quite well at it. Shortly thereafter Dave approached me about designing a new kind of console. He had some ideas, and I told him that if he design it, MCI would build it. Dave came down to Florida and started drawing and laying tape, and we built a run of six consoles. These boards were quite unusual for their time - the track assigns were in-line with the monitor and main channel fader. The console was similar to Flickinger's earlier concept except that his boards had the track assignments off to the right of the channel area. After the first run of six, I decided to do some additional work on the design - changing some of the metal work and adding other circuitry. We also incorporated the Harris 911 IC op-amps which lowered costs and made the product more manufacturable. All in all, I think we built about two hundred of those 'Series 400' consoles between 1972 and 1977, at which time we brought out the JH-500 Series.
While I don't know history, not really interested in it all that much either, at least not any more than I could ever read on a website, I'd honestly be more inclined to trust Fletcher's say so over anything on just about any website my friend...just saying...
Old 6th April 2012
  #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slikjmuzik View Post
While I don't know history, not really interested in it all that much either, at least not any more than I could ever read on a website, I'd honestly be more inclined to trust Fletcher's say so over anything on just about any website my friend...just saying...
That quote is directly from an interview of Jeep Harned, the owner of the MCI at the time.

Besides, it states correctly that Harrison designed the 400 series and 500 was based on it, to some degree.

But D. Harrison had absolutely nothing to with the 600 series. By that time he had already had his own company for years.
Old 6th April 2012
  #53
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Telefunk View Post
That quote is directly from an interview of Jeep Harned, the owner of the MCI at the time.

Besides, it states correctly that Harrison designed the 400 series and 500 was based on it, to some degree.

But D. Harrison had absolutely nothing to with the 600 series. By that time he had already had his own company for years.
This is absolutely correct. I worked side by side with Dave Harrison for many years and heard the telling many times first hand.

Gary
Harrison Consoles
Old 6th April 2012
  #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slikjmuzik View Post
While I don't know history, not really interested in it all that much either, at least not any more than I could ever read on a website, I'd honestly be more inclined to trust Fletcher's say so over anything on just about any website my friend...just saying...

Yeah my friend, you are just saying, because its not just any website, its the website owned by the Harned family (Jeep Harned was the owner of MCI) so it is the offiicial website, managed by Larry Lamorray who happened to be one of the engineers on the design team in MCI, a website in which i am the administrator of the forum. So yes, you are just talking with out knowing. So go ahead and "incline" to Fletcher's story, it amazes me how many people just argue with out any basis to do it, just for the sake of arguing..
Old 6th April 2012
  #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary Thielman View Post
This is absolutely correct. I worked side by side with Dave Harrison for many years and heard the telling many times first hand.

Gary
Harrison Consoles
Thanks Gary!

I have to admit I feel like Alvy Singer in Woody Allen's film Annie Hall when he disagrees about Marshall McLuhan's theories with a guy in the queue to the cinema and finally gets the real Marshall McLuhan to testify as he just happeden to be waiting there behind the plant.

"Boy, if life were only like this!" Alvy says.
Old 8th April 2012
  #56
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RE message #47.
That would be my combination too. On its day, the JH24 blows everything away (outside of the Ampex ATR 24-track) and the Harrison is a better console than the JH500. (Other than the mute/soloing on the Harrison, which is a dog!)
Old 9th April 2012
  #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ampex185 View Post
RE message #47.
That would be my combination too. On its day, the JH24 blows everything away (outside of the Ampex ATR 24-track) and the Harrison is a better console than the JH500. (Other than the mute/soloing on the Harrison, which is a dog!)
Oh, the on/off switches? That really threw me for a loop the first time I got in front of the board. Funny though, I found myself using the solo less, which is a good thing! Going back to an API has been a totally different game.
Old 9th April 2012
  #58
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I had reason to install/commission a 3232B recently, and I'd forgotten about this main fader soloing. The pain is when you come out of the "solo" mode and find that all your channels are now muted and you have to turn them back on again. ie because "in-place solo" is the opposite of mute, ie it turns the other channels off.
For those of you who are not familiar with the 32/24 series "in-place" soloing, the fader mute was either a mute OR a solo button, (ie there was only one) and you changed global mode on the master section. So you initiate global solo, thus turning OFF all of your channels allowing you to "solo". Come out of global solo, and all your channels are still OFF. Mmmm.......
The MCI JH600 had a similar mute/solo system but it a) remembered what was on/off but b) only allowed you to solo the channels that were ON before you changed modes. Their view was "Why would you want to solo something that was muted anyway?!"
Old 9th April 2012
  #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Williams View Post
Crank up 20k hz and it's like a thousand ants crawling all over your body.
favorite comment on this thread.
Old 18th April 2012
  #60
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While Harrison is on the brain, you guys that used them over the years, what 2 buss did you like best with the consoles? mainly rock and roll ?

Thanks
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