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Manley XXX Anniversary Dual Mono Mic Pre Wins 2020 SOS Readers’ Choice Award!

Manley XXX Anniversary Dual Mono Mic Pre Wins 2020 SOS Readers’ Choice Award

WOW! HUGE THANKS to Sound On Sound readers for honoring our XXX Anniversary Edition Dual Mono Mic Pre with an SOS Readers’ Choice Award!

We are so excited that you appreciate this very special unit – we sure did enjoy building them for you.

The SOS Awards launched in 2010 with a mission to honour and celebrate the finest products in our industry.

The ‘Gear Of The Year’ Awards, Chosen By The Readers Of Sound On Sound

Voting opened on September 19th for the 10th annual SOS Awards and continues throughout October and November 2019. The results will, as usual, be compiled and announced in time for presentation of the awards at the Winter NAMM show in January 2020.

Each category consists of a shortlist of nominations, chosen by the SOS editorial team, and we’d like you to help us identify the outstanding product in each group. You are not required to vote in every category — if you don’t have any strong opinions on some of the product groups, then there’s no need to vote for anything in those categories.

We took the decision back in 2017 to focus the nominations on products that came on sale, or were tested and reviewed by us, in the 12 months prior to the voting cutoff date, thereby placing a greater emphasis on innovation and contemporary design.*

We were delighted to see that the change resulted in even more of our loyal readership letting us have their considered opinions on the year’s new products. The changes we made to the nomination categories at the same time also seem to have been appreciated, helping to keep the nominations appropriately focused and relevant. Markets move and change over time, and it is important that we should be able to move and change with them. Having been well received by nominees and voters alike, we’ll be sticking with the new format for the foreseeable future.

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Have You Tried the World’s Most Popular Modern Tube Vocal Mic?

Have You Tried the World’s Most Popular Modern Tube Vocal Mic?

Manley Reference Cardioid

This is the world’s most popular modern tube vocal mic – heard on countless hits, voiceovers, and movie trailers for the last 30 years.

Have YOU used the Manley Reference Cardioid?

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API Consoles and the Revival of Macon Georgia’s Capricorn Studios

API Consoles and the Revival of Macon Georgia’s Capricorn Studios

The visionaries of Mercer University, under the direction of President William Underwood and with the hands on diligence of Larry Brumley, Mercer’s Vice President tackled an enormous undertaking to save and revitalize one of pop music’s most iconic recording studios.

Among many important decisions that had to be made was a replacement console to the original API console that lived in the studio since the 70’s, and recorded so many legendary records, including most of the Allman Brothers catalog, Marshall Tucker Band, Charlie Daniels band and so many others at the leading edge of the Southern Rock music scene.

The decision was made to acquire a new API 2448 Recording Console to replace the 70’s era API console that lived at Capricorn.

With the choice of 3 different frame sizes, 24, 32 and 40 channels, Capricorn selected the largest 2448 frame built to date, a fully featured 40 channel version. With 40 Mic Pres and 40 API equalizers, each channel features two inputs, both with faders. Combining the Main Fader, the 2nd Fader and the 4 Stereo Returns gives the system an impressive 88 channels feeding the mix buses.

Rounding out the system is API’s ‘Final Touch’ motorized fader automation system, which is now compatible with Vision, Legacy AXS and 1608-II consoles, allowing projects to move seamlessly between facilities equipped with those API consoles.

Steve Ivey, a Mercer graduate and Grammy award winning producer engineer based out of Nashville was a key figure in the planning and revitalization of the studio.

“For 50 years API consoles and Capricorn Studios together have made a worldwide, profound impact in music and recording,” said Ivey. “As a Mercer University music graduate who learned to record on an API console, under the direction of Capricorn producer Paul Hornsby, I am thrilled to be a part of the team taking Capricorn Studios and API into the next era of recording great music.”

Daily management and chief engineer roles are carried by Rob Evans, another Mercer graduate. “Evans says that in 2016, when Gregg Allman was receiving an honorary degree, he told president Underwood, ‘The room is perfect. Don’t change a thing.’ He also said, ‘Get an analog console,’ so we’ve honored Gregg’s request.”

“We were honored to be a part of the Grand Opening festivities in December. It is gratifying to see the original API console from the 70’s being replaced by a new API console, keeping the heritage and legend of this studio alive,” said Larry Droppa, President of API. “We’re excited to have the opportunity to hear the new music that is going to come out of the facility. A huge thank you from the music community to Mercer University for having the vision to move forward and keep this dream alive.”

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Men at Work Commission 48-channel API Legacy AXS console at the University of Tasmania

Men at Work Commission 48-channel API Legacy AXS console at the University of Tasmania

API’s Radovan Maricic and Ben Eckroth are currently in the Land Down Under commissioning this 48-channel Legacy AXS console at the University of Tasmania.
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The Moog Vocoder Returns

The Moog Vocoder Returns

After more than 40 years, Moog Music has resumed production of the highly sought-after Moog 16 Channel Vocoder. To help welcome the instrument’s return, Moses Sumney visited the Moog Sound Lab to perform a new vocoder-centered track from his upcoming album græ.

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Vanguard’s V4s Sparkle For the 2020 Golden Globes

Vanguard’s V4s Sparkle For the 2020 Golden Globes

Engineer Gary Lux Chooses Vanguard Audio Labs V4 for Sparkling Horns

North Hollywood – Veteran LA recording guru Gary Lux (Janet Jackson, Manhattan Transfer, Ben Harper, Usher, Sting, and more) has been recording the music for the Golden Globe Awards broadcast for 27 years. All the music heard during the Golden Globe’s broadcast is prerecorded, there is no live orchestra at the show. This year the music, composed by Music Director Geoff Stradling (The Romanoffs, Mad Men, The Dark Knight Rises…), was recorded in North Hollywood at Sphere Studios. The setting could not have been better: a great sounding big room, first-call LA studio musicians, vintage Neve 8078 console…and Vanguard Audio Labs’ V4 FET condenser LDCs.

“In show music the trumpets are generally the lead instruments, so they need to have a certain sparkle”, explains Lux, “these players are blowing their brains out and the mics need to handle all that SPL without folding…and not hurt me”. Gary continues, “I used the V4s on saxes as well, in fact all the brass and woodwinds were on V4s. I think they sound terrific. They’re open and have great presence”.

The Vanguard V4 is a large-diaphragm multi-pattern FET condenser microphone. It was designed with certain characteristics of classic FET microphones in mind, while also utilizing modern technology and design to meet the demands of the modern recording environment. The ultra-thin 3µm edge-terminated capsule diaphragms are extraordinarily sensitive, and custom-voiced with a proprietary hand-tuning process. The capsule is mounted in an open weave headbasket producing minimal internal reflections.

For the last few years Lux has favored a well- known vintage German FET mic for the application, and, in fact, some A/B’ing of that venerable old mic and the V4s occurred during the session on December 30th. “But after the first take, I knew these were the deal”.

Geoff Stradling concurred, “They sound great!”.

To hear the Vanguard Audio Labs V4 large diaphragm FET condensers in action, on the Golden Globes recording from Sphere Studios, check out this link: Go Globes!

To learn more about the Golden Globes: https://www.goldenglobes.com/hfpa 
To learn more about Sphere Studios: http://www.spherestudios.com
To learn more about Gary Lux: http://www.garyluxmusic.com

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API Consoles and Modules Win TEC Awards

API Consoles and Modules Win TEC Awards

It’s quite an honor these days for a manufacturer to receive even a single nomination for a technical achievement award from the NAMM TEC Awards Committee. It’s even more significant to actually win a TEC Award over the other nominees. At the 2020 NAMM TEC awards, API received an unprecedented 4 nominations and was awarded 2 actual TEC awards.

The Nominations for API included THE BOX Console (Small Format Console Technology); the 2448 Recording Console (Large Format Console Technology); the 312 50th Anniversary Edition Mic Pre (Microphone Preamplifiers); and the 550A 50th Anniversary Edition Equalizer (Signal Processing Hardware, 500 Series).

We’re honored that the API 2448 Recording Console and the API 550A Anniversary Edition Equalizer were announced as the winners.

During one of his acceptance speeches at the award ceremony, API President and Owner, Larry Droppa said “For over 20 years, I’ve had the honor and privilege of being in charge of a terribly dedicated group of audio professionals. The 2448 Console represents years and years of progressive change in the recording system but it’s all based on the core of what API was founded on.”

API’s Director of Engineering Todd Humora noted. “I’m proud that people appreciate the power, functionality and of course, the sound of the new consoles. They’re truly designed for the modern studio workflow.”

In addition to celebrating the Company’s 50th Anniversary, 2019 was a busy year during which API released several new products, including a full line of Anniversary Edition mic pres, equalizers and channel strips. API also introduced the new 2448 Console and 8-Channel BOX Console to the market in 2019, both of which continue to exceed sales projections.

Large Format Console Technology
API – 2448 Console

Signal Processing Hardware (500 Series Modules)
API – 550A 50thAnniversary Edition