Recording and Production in the News
Prism Sound and SADiE help producer Tony Platt complete a vital mixCambridge, UK: Prism Sound's Orpheus multichannel Firewire audio interface is being hailed as a 'saviour' by producer Tony Platt after he employed the device to rescue a vital mix session for SellaBand artist Daniel Ward-Murphy.
Orpheus FireWire interface
Platt, who is a director of the Music Producers Guild, was working on the mix in his project studio, The Shop, located within the Strongroom complex in London. At a critical point in the session the A/D converter he had planned to use suddenly became unavailable - and to add to his problems his own audio Interface box began misbehaving.
A quick call to Prism Sound brought an instant solution when the company agreed to loan him an Orpheus unit so that he could complete the mix.
"Prism Sound was fantastic," Platt says. "Not only did they agree to lend me an Orpheus but Chris Allen delivered it in person to make sure everything went smoothly. In fact he needn't have worried because this unit really defines 'plug and play'. The software loaded very easily and the graphical interface is perfect for the usual professional male technique of only reading the manual when you absolutely need to - it is logical and easy to navigate."
Platt mixed from Pro Tools via his Mackie console into the Orpheus and then back into Pro Tools via AES. Safety monitoring was achieved via an AES loop back to the Orpheus patched into the 2 track return. The session was at 96Khz/24bit with the clocking centrally achieved with an A&D ProBox 12.
"There were a couple of initial clocking issues but when we applied the AES DI to clock the Orpheus everything stabilised," he explains. "From that point on the rest of the session went very smoothly and the unit behaved impeccably."
Platt particularly liked the fact that Orpheus gave him the ability to A/B the audio and demonstrate to his client the value of high quality conversion.
"Much to my delight I detected slight but definite warmth in the low end after going through the Orpheus," he says. "I know Prism Sound prides itself on total transparency, but I actually prefer equipment to have character and personality and I firmly believe this very slight enhancement is highly beneficial. Most importantly, though, the clarity was maintained with all the transient detail - certainly the artist was impressed!"
Prism Sound's involvement in the project continued beyond the mix and into mastering when Tony Platt used a Dream DA-2 conversion system to provide a high-quality audio stream. He also used digital audio workstations from SADiE, now part of the Prism Sound group, which are the de facto standard at Fluid Mastering in London, where the mastering session took place.
Daniel Ward-Murphy's melodic and powerful debut album Until The Morning Light features a repertoire that he has spent the last couple of years honing and perfecting in venues around London, where he regularly performs. Initial reviews have been very favourable with reviewers picking up on the exceptional production values that bring out the best out of Daniel and his band.
The album is now available on the SellaBand label (www.sellaband.com) - itself an unusual venture as it challenges the traditional music industry by encouraging artists and music lovers to go into business together. Anyone can invest in a SellaBand artist or band and once they have achieved the required amount of investment, investors receive a limited edition copy of their album. On top of that, the artists and their fans share equally in the revenues of the album. To date 29 artists from 12 different countries have raised the full $50,000 and over $2,200,000 has been invested in unsigned acts.
One key factor in SellaBand's success is its strong network of producers. Its artist have the opportunity to work with world class producers, such as Greg Haver (Super Furry Animal, The Manic Street Preachers), Tony Platt (AC/DC, Bob Marley) and Steve Bush (Stereophonics).
"SellaBand is a fantastic concept and one that is already helping to unlock talent that might not otherwise have been heard," Tony Platt explains. "As a producer I'm delighted to be part of it because I believe all artists, whether established or just starting out in their careers, deserve access to the best technology and the highest production values possible. Prism Sound's Orpheus unit fits this philosophy perfectly because it offers such exceptional sound quality. As soon as I can raise the cash it is going straight on my shopping list!"
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