The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
defining pieces of gear
Old 15th May 2003
  #31
Moderator emeritus
 

Re: still ..........

Quote:
Originally posted by logic
I recently seen an article about some one who makes karaoke CDs, has a fat studio !
Trust me when I say that it's not an easy gig... And it doesn't pay worth a damn when you use real musicians.
Old 16th May 2003
  #32
One with big hooves
 
Jay Kahrs's Avatar
Quote:
Originally posted by covert
So it's not a question of what do I need to compete. Yes I know that N word mics and pro tools are buzz words among some classes of potential client. I also do know that gear doesn't entirely make the recording. I do know that when I see that people have made some substantial investments, I tend to take them more seriously.

There's a pretty general attitude that almost everyone has a mackie and an ADAT or two, or the equivalent. What I'm curious about is when they start taking a place as being two steps above that. I think I'm about one, or maybe only a half step above that, at present.

You mentioned three items. No, I don't own any Neumann mics, or a 414. I do own several of the chinese, and russian mics that have gotten better reviews, from people I have come to trust, and many of the dynamics that are standards. Plus a few things like C535's that aren't as well known. No I don't have that Harmonizer either. I don't do that much pitch shift work. As of yet.
...truncated...
Logic: Yes this about perception.

Here's the rub.

When you open your studio up to the general public you open yourself up to everyone and the possibilitys that come with that.

At that point you need to decide which gear you like and like to own and what the general public wants to see you own. Those aren't always the same things and that's where the **** hit's the fan. You might like your Chinese mics more then a U87 or 414 but your clients won't give a rats ass. They want the buzzwords (musos) or the gear that they've known (freelancers) and used for years.

As a sound hotel you need to be able to do anything or damn near anything they can dream up in their head. That means you need to own the gear that makes that possible. I've said many times that if I didn't own a commercial studio I'd have a HELL of a lot less gear then I do.
Old 16th May 2003
  #33
Here for the gear
 

If I were you , before I opened the door of my personnal studio I'd give it a try with a few "friends" bands. See how you like your space becoming public. Is it worth it to you?.

You keep saying your not getting real answers, I think if you read the threads there's alot of information for you from people who do this all day.

What clientel are your going after?. If it's just to open your doors and go public with no plan that's one thing. If you have an idea of where you want to be in X amount of years that's another.

If your going to record local "up and comers" at a value pack to them then I don't think equipment is a matter. Their just happy to get into a place they can afford and lay down something they can take home and play for their buddies and use as a promo disc to get local gigs. At this level there's no expectation from the client

If your going the next level your going to have to step up to the plate financially and invest in top equipment. Chinese mics ain't going to cut it when they can go down the street and record with Nuemann's. At this level there's a ton of expectations from the client.

I see alot of great rooms around Los Angeles sitting quite willing to give amazing rates to keep the rooms booked. This is with top of the top equipment list.

There is no"list" of manufactures because many like companies make quality stuff. Their is a difference though perceptually between Chinese mics and the real deal...

It also depends on how proficent you are in using the gear.
Old 17th May 2003
  #34
Lives for gear
 
covert's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by dougsthang'
If I were you , before I opened the door of my personnal studio I'd give it a try with a few "friends" bands. See how you like your space becoming public. Is it worth it to you?.
That's what is going on right now.

Quote:
[/B]
You keep saying your not getting real answers, I think if you read the threads there's alot of information for you from people who do this all day.
[/B]
There sure is. Whether that info is an answer to my question, at least as originally asked, is debatable.

Quote:
[/B]
What clientel are your going after?. If it's just to open your doors and go public with no plan that's one thing. If you have an idea of where you want to be in X amount of years that's another. [/B]
Okay, now that's an example of information that doesn't address the question. I keep thinking that I've made clear that such considerations are things I'm well aware of, and that they aren't much the issue here.

Quote:
[/B]
If your going to record local "up and comers" at a value pack to them then I don't think equipment is a matter. Their just happy to get into a place they can afford and lay down something they can take home and play for their buddies and use as a promo disc to get local gigs. At this level there's no expectation from the client
[/B]
Actually I think at that level there are huge and unrealistic expectations.

Quote:
[/B]
If your going the next level your going to have to step up to the plate financially and invest in top equipment. Chinese mics ain't going to cut it when they can go down the street and record with Nuemann's. At this level there's a ton of expectations from the client.[/B]
Thank you for reiterating that particular bit of wisdom. Without going back to count, I think you're about the 4th one to state it.

Quote:
[/B]
I see alot of great rooms around Los Angeles sitting quite willing to give amazing rates to keep the rooms booked. This is with top of the top equipment list.[/B]
Which is one reason I don't plan to move to LA and try to compete in that market. For similar reasons NYC and Nashville are not on the list.

Quote:
[/B]
There is no"list" of manufactures because many like companies make quality stuff. Their is a difference though perceptually between Chinese mics and the real deal...

It also depends on how proficent you are in using the gear. [/B]
Well now, lets see. You've mentioned Nuemann, without reference to any specifics. If you look at my original post, you'll see that I did mention specific pieces of gear, from a variety of makers, and some makers with a comment to the effect that almost amy of their products seem to command some respect. The quality of the user has also come up several times.

I'm not an idiot. I have been making music, and working at various types of recording for most of my life. I've done live sound, theatrical sound design and about all of the garage level music recording that has been possible, from portastudios up through some pretty good 12 track levels. What I'm asking about is a consensus, such as there might be, about what SPECIFIC items make people here take notice.
Old 17th May 2003
  #35
Lives for gear
 
covert's Avatar
 

This seems to be spinning off into weirdness again.

First of all, let's all take it as established that Nuemann mics have cachet.

Now let's all understand that I am smart enough to know that my mics do not have similar cachet. Let's also understand that I have no opinion as to relative quality of my mics vs. Nuemann's. Until I have had a chance to try them side by side, I won't form such an opinion.

It was exactly because I didn't want to get into discussions about my current stuff that I didn't post anything about it, until asked directly about something. Most of what I have is what I could find cheap that did something I thought I needed.

For example, I didn't buy an MXL mic because I thought it would be an equivalent to a U-87, or anything else. I bought it, at the time, because I thought it might be a decent mic, and a good starting point into investigating what made large diaphram condensors a totally different animal than a 57. So far I seem to be correct in that.

So I asked about what other pieces of gear have similar cachet functions. So far 4 things have been mentioned, the C414 and the H3000, SSL boards, and Pro Tools.
Old 17th May 2003
  #36
Lives for gear
 
covert's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by Jay Kahrs
Here's the rub.

When you open your studio up to the general public you open yourself up to everyone and the possibilitys that come with that.

At that point you need to decide which gear you like and like to own and what the general public wants to see you own. Those aren't always the same things and that's where the **** hit's the fan. You might like your Chinese mics more then a U87 or 414 but your clients won't give a rats ass. They want the buzzwords (musos) or the gear that they've known (freelancers) and used for years.

As a sound hotel you need to be able to do anything or damn near anything they can dream up in their head. That means you need to own the gear that makes that possible. I've said many times that if I didn't own a commercial studio I'd have a HELL of a lot less gear then I do.

Bingo!

Sorry about the random nature of some of my posts here. I actually think about this stuff away from the keyboard, and sometimes it takes a while to get the thoughts straight.

What gear do you have that you wouldn't as a private concern, and why did you buy it?
Old 17th May 2003
  #37
One with big hooves
 
Jay Kahrs's Avatar
Now that's a damn good question. I should have a band walking through my door in about 5 minutes and I'm in the middle of aligning the JH-24.

I'll be back.

And the answers might be pretty shocking.
Old 17th May 2003
  #38
Gear Nut
 

Okay, I'll take a crack at this.

You asked if there were particular items of gear that made certain facilities stand out from others and in turn made them more "attractive" to potential clients (I put parantheses because I think we are dealing with appearance rather than substance).

I say, as have others already, that the question has no relevance to real world mechanics.

As an example, there is some nut up in the hills here whose website I came across and got pretty excited by his gear list. With no studio of my own, I was looking for somewhere I could take bands into, as I had been working in mid-range places in London. I went to see him & was disappointed to find that it as just a glorified bedroom studio. No tracking room, no acoustic treatment AT ALL, and an example of his work sucked too, badly. He charged below bottom feeder rates as well & it all seemed kind of desperate to my eyes. His only sales pitch was all the WONDERFUL gear (and it was) that he could offer musicians for super-low prices. I heard from a friend yesterday that he has just blown another £50k on gear but has done absolutely nothing about any other aspect of the studio. (I guess that he must have secret wealthy parents keeping him happy as he's dropped out of high society!).
Not one piece of equipment that he owns will cover up the fact that I would rather work out of my attic with my 001 and a pair of headphones. It isn't even good enough to mix in (in fact I was told that he had a pair of M2's wired out of phase & he didn't spot the lack of bass & zero stereo imaging. Says it all really.)
IF he had spent that £50k on developing the studio acoustics & expanding into adjacent rooms with all the usual studio fittings he might just have a chance.

What you need to do is to offer services that your competitors can't or don't. For me it's a 2" machine in a sea of Mackie/DAW jockeys, a decent sized live room with high ceilings and not a basement, room acoustics by design and not wedge foam scattered randomly over walls & ceilings.
The gear itself is what I feel I NEED to get the sound I'm after. I have a Behringer Tube Comp in the rack which is the first thing most folks point to, even though it's crap compared to the Drawmer which looks dull by comparison.

It's about balance, and all areas of your studio have to be looked at if you are thinking about going up the next rung, and I may say that it's not always that obvious either.
I know for a fact that a studio not far from here gets work from top drawer acts & producers not because of the gear (which is so-so, certainly nothing like the afore mentioned place), but because of the location and standard of recording rooms. Everyone brings in their own racks of stuff, or hires it.

It's the sound, always the sound.
Old 18th May 2003
  #39
One with big hooves
 
Jay Kahrs's Avatar
What have I bought because of commercial concern?

- JH-24
- Trident 65 (rather then an AMR or something else)
- Summit DCL-200 (an RNC or Drawmer 241 does quite nicely on the 2-mix IMHO)
- Mytek ADC
- About 10 channels of outboard preamps
- The second 1176, TLM 103, and other assorted mics
- A pretty freakin' expensive patchbay setup
- Lots of effects. I'm happy with 2 or 3 digital boxes and stompboxes for delays and stuff.
- Lexicon MPX-1 (which was a substitue for a PCM-70/80/90, bad call)
- A few guitar amps and pedals though they are fun to have around anyway
- DAT machine
- Alesis D4 (drum sound module)
- Lots of mic stands & cables
- A nifty cue mix rig with 8 sets of $100 cans
- A drum kit with a half dozen snares and lots of cymbals
- Business insurance
- Headaches grudge
- Sleepness nights worrying because no one wants to record
- Sleepness nights because I have to setup for the next days session and the first one went long and ya gotta do laundry & eat sometime.
- Autotune

I'm 50/50 on the A80 1/4" deck. I would've bought that even if all I had was a home studio because it was pretty damn cheap for what it is, it's cool and it sounds great. But, it's easier to justify it's expense as a commercial studio.

So why did I buy all that stuff? Because people either want to see it on the equipment list and asked for it or I needed it to get the sounds that people want to hear. How many times have you tracked a band and said "I wish I had another ____ here right now" or had a freelancer say "I need more XLR cables or in-line pads"? If you own a commerical studio you need to make that a reality. If your working on your own projects and for friends you don't really need to make those needs a reality unless you want to.
Old 18th May 2003
  #40
Lives for gear
 
covert's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by crispy
Okay, I'll take a crack at this.

You asked if there were particular items of gear that made certain facilities stand out from others and in turn made them more "attractive" to potential clients (I put parantheses because I think we are dealing with appearance rather than substance).

I say, as have others already, that the question has no relevance to real world mechanics.
Story snipped

Crispy,

This axe has already been ground exceedingly fine here, so please drop it. I'd say that there has been established a consensus that:

A) gear alone isn't the point

B) any number of factors affect the appeal of a particular place

Additionally the question that was asked was not, "what things can make my (your) studio more attractive (competetive) than it is." If that had been the question your comments would have been right on track. Instead the question was framed specifically in terms of gear, and all other things being equal was stated several times.

Quote:
What you need to do is to offer services that your competitors can't or don't.
What I need to do is whatever makes my place work better, or sound better in whatever environment I am in. Since I'm not in an environment where I feel that competition is an issue, then I don't need to worry at all about what my "competitors" do at all.

Quote:

The gear itself is what I feel I NEED to get the sound I'm after. I have a Behringer Tube Comp in the rack which is the first thing most folks point to, even though it's crap compared to the Drawmer which looks dull by comparison.
Despite your stance here, we've established that there is gear that makes the place more viable, on a perception basis. Even Jay has tacitly admitted as much.

Quote:

It's about balance,
Now that I agree with, whole heartedly

[/B][/QUOTE]
and all areas of your studio have to be looked at if you are thinking about going up the next rung, and I may say that it's not always that obvious either.[/B][/QUOTE]

And the question was framed specifically in terms of gear, not as a general question. Other items in the balance are at points where they will stay for the time being. If I feel a need to ask about them later, I will. For now I'd like to stick to the question as asked. Got anything to contribute on that line?

[/B][/QUOTE]It's the sound, always the sound. [/B][/QUOTE]

It should be, but obviously it isn't always. Although the original question did allow for the possibility of, "this unit is something I'd consider to be rquired because it does _____ better than anything out there, and there is no substitute." Again, feel free to add comments in that line.
Old 18th May 2003
  #41
Lives for gear
 
covert's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by Jay Kahrs
What have I bought because of commercial concern?

- JH-24
- Trident 65 (rather then an AMR or something else)
Large format analog decks and name consoles are definitely among the items I referred to as defining niches.

Quote:

- Summit DCL-200 (an RNC or Drawmer 241 does quite nicely on the 2-mix IMHO)
- Mytek ADC
- About 10 channels of outboard preamps
- The second 1176, TLM 103, and other assorted mics
- A pretty freakin' expensive patchbay setup
Since I'm facing that last one, and the more assorted mics, I suspect you'd have ended up with them eventually. Then again, I like mics, even crappy ones.

Quote:

- Lots of effects. I'm happy with 2 or 3 digital boxes and stompboxes for delays and stuff.
- Lexicon MPX-1 (which was a substitue for a PCM-70/80/90, bad call)
What's inadaquate about it?

Quote:

- A few guitar amps and pedals though they are fun to have around anyway
- DAT machine
- Alesis D4 (drum sound module)
- Lots of mic stands & cables
- A nifty cue mix rig with 8 sets of $100 cans
- A drum kit with a half dozen snares and lots of cymbals
The stands and cables just seem to be a need that happens, IME. Instruments are things I was accumulating anyway. The cue thing is one I'm holding off on, till the need really makes itself evident. At my level they aren't used to better, so nobody bitches.

Quote:

- Business insurance
- Headaches grudge
- Sleepness nights worrying because no one wants to record
- Sleepness nights because I have to setup for the next days session and the first one went long and ya gotta do laundry & eat sometime.
The first 3 are among the reasons I'm not pushing to open my doors. The last one is a factor of life in the performing arts.

Quote:

So why did I buy all that stuff? Because people either want to see it on the equipment list and asked for it or I needed it to get the sounds that people want to hear. How many times have you tracked a band and said "I wish I had another ____ here right now" or had a freelancer say "I need more XLR cables or in-line pads"? If you own a commerical studio you need to make that a reality. If your working on your own projects and for friends you don't really need to make those needs a reality unless you want to.
So we've come round to things that help define a level on the spectrum, in terms of gear. At my current level, the, "I wish I had another or more ____," is pretty frequent.

Just for kicks, I'm going to propose a hierarchy here.

The Heights: Big label, big budget work gets done here. Months or weeks are common booking lengths


The foothills: Big laels maybe, but not the top level budgets. Higher profile indie label stuff as well.

The trenches: Where Jay, and most people here seem to be. Modest budgets at best, lots of self released or very small indie stuff.

Bottom feeders: No budgets to speak of. all self release or promo stuff. The kind of place where someone say, Hey, you have some recording stuff don't you?" as the beginning of a booking.

Maybe now that we're getting a better focus, this can expand beyond me having dialogs with several people, and we can get a wider discussion going.
Old 19th May 2003
  #42
One with big hooves
 
Jay Kahrs's Avatar
Quote:
Originally posted by covert
Despite your stance here, we've established that there is gear that makes the place more viable, on a perception basis. Even Jay has tacitly admitted as much.

It should be, but obviously it isn't always. Although the original question did allow for the possibility of, "this unit is something I'd consider to be rquired because it does _____ better than anything out there, and there is no substitute." Again, feel free to add comments in that line.
I need to comment on these two points before I get the fudge out of town. I'm leaving at 6am and I'm NOT happy about it.

Yes. Gear will make a place for viable but only for some and basicly one certain type of clients. The freelance engineer/producers. The ONLY reason I'll go to another studio is if they have something I don't that is needed for the project. Usually that's a big room for tracking or the clients mix expectations and desires exceed the sonic capabilitys of my console. In either of those cases the studio has to be equal to or better then the equipment in my room. If the gear isn't equivilant I won't book the place. I've got some pretty good **** IMHO. Enough that if I record anything and it sucks the only thing I can blame is the human factor and not the gear.

http://www.madmooserecording.com/html/equipment.html
(not listed - a 3rd 421, Shure Green Bullet and a Fender Pro Jr.)

Now the second point of "this unit is something I'd consider to be rquired because it does _____ better than anything out there, and there is no substitute." Is a whacky question. That really depends on what you want to accomplish and is best defined on a project by project basis. Personally, there are about 10 different compressors I'd use on a snare drum without complaining. If a studio doesn't have an 1176 or 160VU but has a Red 3 and a Daking, I'm not going to bitch. Again, YMMV.

There are lots of mics I own because I have a commercial place. Do I really need 3 or 4 421's if I'm only working on my own stuff. Nope. I wouldn't have the D112 either, or the MCA mics. The Sennheiser 504's? Never. Do I really need 20 stands at $60 a pop if I have a home studio? No ****ing way. That's $1200 in steel!!! What about the mic cables too? It gets nutty man. I've got all kinds of whacky **** here because the needs do pop up three times a year. For example, I have a 22" kick drum head with a hole cut in it because I had too many guys come in without a hole and want the metal "click" on the attack of their kick drum. Or, their head was torn and rattled and they don't want to spend $40 on a new one. How about the male to male and female to female XLR cables? I also forgot to list the automation system and dbx 160VU's as stuff I bought because I have a commercial studio.

The problem with the MPX-1 is that some people turn their nose at it because "it ain't a pro piece". Kind of like having a Tascam 2" deck (which rock pretty hard) rather then an MCI or Studer. In a certain sense it's wasted money.

Best of luck with it. See ya in a week.
Old 19th May 2003
  #43
Lives for gear
 
covert's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by Jay Kahrs

Now the second point of "this unit is something I'd consider to be required because it does _____ better than anything out there, and there is no substitute." Is a whacky question.
It sure as **** is a whacky question, or it would be if it were a question. I've certainly seen comments from people at this level of intensity. Now I admit that some of those people have a tendency to enjoy extreme expressions.

I kind of think this place is a bunch of people, with some common interests, shooting the **** about stuff. As such extreme positions, either taken to evoke discussion, or as the feeling of the moment are fine.
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