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Entertaining Daniel Lanois interview
Old 23rd April 2005
Gear Head

Thread Starter
Entertaining Daniel Lanois interview

Perhaps likely to cause a little controversy here:

"I find that the tape recorder, or the recording device, is almost the link of the chain with the least personality," he shrugs. [...] "You know, there's twenty different really great recording devices out there, and they all sound good to me. I did some recording recently on a 8-track little digital TASCAM, and it sounds great. I record on my 24-track with Dolby A, at 15 i.p.s., and it sounds amazing.

"So that link in the chain is not nearly as important as all the other links. If you start at the front, the front would be the instrument or the voice -- talk about acoustic recording -- the instrument or the voice; microphones are next on the chain. If you were to put a Cole's mic against an AKG 414, the sound difference would be astronomical. You're going to hear like a 700 percent sound shift. Whereas if you were A-B, the difference between an 8-track digital TASCAM and a 24-track Studer with Dolby A at 15, you might hear a 2% personality shift.


"Shall I name the three most important ingredients to a successful recording? In a recording room, you have to have about 300 power outlets evenly spread out. You require power outlets that accommodate the new generation of power supplies, and you need them all over the room, because the first thing that happens when a musician walks in is they open their case, sit down, and wonder `Where's the power?' So you usually end up scrambling around looking for power. You want to have power everywhere. "The next thing you need is about 200 really excellent 15-footer guitar cords. There's always a shortage of guitar cords, and they're often broken. So you need some brand new ones.

"Then you need about 400 25-footer high quality microphone cables. Microphone cables get used for all the effects and for microphones. They become the lines for all the interfacing.

"The last thing that is really important is the device my brother and I invented. It's called the Neudorff Box, after somebody who used to work with me named Bill Neudorff. The Neudorff Box allows you's kind of like a Y jack, but with every possible connector on it.

"So let's say you walked in and you said, `Dan, I've got a little cassette here that has a mini output, and I need to go to this DAT machine that only has an XLR input.' Normally, somebody would say, `Well, you're going to have to go to Radio Shack and buy an adapter.' But if you have one of these boxes, it has a mini-connector on it and an XLR, and an RCA, and a Bennett, and a banana.

"Every connector is on this box, so you can go from anything to anything. That's going to solve and prevent a lot of running around. In my experience, those are the things that will cause slow-ups in studios."
Old 26th June 2005
Lives for gear
Renie's Avatar

Old 27th June 2005
Gear Addict
BrianK's Avatar
The OLD Neudorff boxes sounded warmer...
Old 27th June 2005
Gear Head

After being in the studio a few weeks ago with my band, the second half of this article couldn't be more true. We must have lost 8-9 hours with technical stuff, e.g. trying to figure out why an amp sounded like garbage only to find the guitar cable was a piece of crap.

The room sounded great, the studio had amazing outboard, but if you can't get around to f&*%ing using it then what's the use.
Old 27th June 2005
Lives for gear
C/G's Avatar

I think Daniel lanois could make a great sounding album with a ghetto blaster and a fisher price microphone. That guy is awesome.
Old 27th June 2005
Lives for gear
audioez's Avatar

Originally Posted by Colin Gaucher
I think Daniel lanois could make a great sounding album with a ghetto blaster and a fisher price microphone. That guy is awesome.
So true, the music is within' him, you can hear it in his voice and musicianship.
Old 27th June 2005
Lives for gear
PlugHead's Avatar


While I was east a couple of weeks ago, I visited his original studio in Hamilton (Grant Ave.), now owned and operated by another great fellow: what an awesome place!

Fortunately, he's playing here in a couple of weeks - I expect to rap with him b/stage, and brush up with this incredible guy...
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