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Cello Studios Installs API Legacy Plus ConsoleAll discrete mixing console recently installed in Western Studio 3 (November 10, 2004)
An 80-channel API Legacy Plus all discrete mixing console outfitted with moving fader automation was recently installed in Western Studio 3 at Cello Studios in Hollywood. The facility, located at 6000 Sunset Boulevard, was once a part of the United Western Recorders complex, established by industry legend Bill Putnam at the beginning of the 1960s that is said to have produced more hit records than any other studio in the United States.
Chief engineer and director of technical operations, Gary Myerberg, is very happy with the new 24-bus API Legacy Plus, which, as the name suggests, builds on the long-established track record of one of the country's top discrete analog mixing console manufacturers. "I think APIs always lean into the wind," he considers. "They're very aggressive, they're very punchy and forward. This desk is laid back and wonderfully clean and punchy, but if you want that API angst you just kick it in. It's modern retro."
The installation in Studio 3, where Brian Wilson's' "Pet Sounds" was produced, as well as all the Beach Boys Recordings, offers the best of both worlds, Myerberg believes, combining the latest API technology with some of the company's classic outboard components, including a rack of 550A mic pres. "It's a wonderful desk, with 32 of their API 212 mic preamps, 12 compressors, and six gates. And we're adding another API 500 rack of compressors and EQs." Six DIs and six filters are also being added to the console center section.
But this is a great new API, he continues. "This desk is certainly cleaner and more transparent. These EQs aren't designed to be taken out and put in lunchboxes, so they don't need a transformer. There are less transformers in the signal path, and that's a good thing."
Installed by Myerberg, Dave Hecht, and the studio's engineering staff, the new Legacy Plus fits perfectly into the tiki-themed room, decorated in honor of Brian Wilson. Myerberg, who has built studios for Bruce Springsteen and Bob Clearmountain and played a key technical role at A&M Studios for nearly 15 years, favors a minimal signal path. "The mic lines and the patchbay wiring are very, very short. The two-track run is six feet and the multi-track runs are even shorter. It's a very tight sounding room, very punchy."
"America's Abbey Road," as Myerberg refers to it, expects to be announcing a new owner at the beginning of 2005 and will be changing its name to Western Recorders to better reflect its rich legacy. The studio, once a home-from-home for legendary session drummer Hal Blaine and the Wrecking Crew, has hosted an industry who's who on both sides of the glass, including staff engineers Chuck Britz, Bones Howe, Wally Heider, and Lee Hirschberg. Mamas and the Papas "California Dreaming," Frank Sinatra "Strangers in the Night," and Bing Crosby, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Nat King Cole, and Johnny Mercer Lou Adler all recorded hits at the venerable facility.
More recently, Longwave have been recording a full-length with John Leckie producing and staffer Stephen Rhodes as first engineer. Audioslave are recording a new project, Bob Rock has been working in Studio 1 with the original Mötley Crüe and the Red Hot Chili Peppers will shortly be in with producer Rick Rubin to finish their next album. Myerberg is also excited about a Larry Carlton project that is being produced at the studio with engineers Csaba Petocz and Joe Chicarelli. "It's really exciting, a terrifying rock 'n' roll record. He hasn't done anything like that since the 1970s."
API remains the leader in analog recording gear, such as the groundbreaking API Vision Surround Mixing Console, the famed Legacy consoles, the TEC Award-winning 7600 Input Module, and award-winning 2500 Stereo Bus Compressor. The ATI Group is the parent company of Audio Toys Incorporated, API Audio and Uptown Automation. Audio Toys manufactures the industry leading Paragon II monitor console, the Paragon II production console and associated rack mount gear.
For more information visit www.apiaudio.com.
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