I’ve recently done something completely new in my home studio configuration.
Slowly but surely over the course of the past eight years, it’s been all about an upgrade to my sound, whether it’s my equipment, room treatment, or voiceover training. Along the way, I’ve purchased the best equipment that I could afford at the time and I won’t stop. However, I think I will definitely take a break after this last go-round.
Santa Was Good To Me
The big change started late last year when Santa brought me a Neumann U87i. It was a big change in sound quality from my Neumann TLM 193. (which I’ve just sold on ebay.)
I essentially had two separate systems: One mic input went through my mixer to link with my Telos Zephyr, for ISDN work, the other was as follows; The chain couldn’t be more simple at the time: mic to the Centrance MicPort Pro (mpp) into the USB to the laptop. But there was a problem. The Mpp ran hot. It started making noise, a static like white noise sound that actually could not only be heard, but seen in the wav file. The techs at Centrance were very cool, and sent me a replacement . All was fine, but it still ran hot. The reason why I believe is because of the large amount of phantom power needed to truly drive the mic.
Enter The New Preamp
After about a year, the replacement Mic Port headphone input started shorting out in one ear. I was talking shop one day this summer with a studio engineer friend, and he suggested in order to get the full impact of the U87i, I needed a real preamp. So I made the plunge and got an Avalon M5. I was also informed that I really should have a better (real) interface. The Mpp is great for on the road, but I went with VOStudio Tech George Whittam’s idea to get into the Lexicon Alpha, which our friend Beau Weaver also raved to me about. I’m glad I listened.
Enter the VO Studio Tech
The object was to configure the chain and integrate into a single system that would accommodate the ISDN with my interface, using one set of headphones, and no more switching mic cables Knowing I was out of my league, I hired George Whittam, the VO Studio Tech. He told me what to get, connectors, signal splitter, etc. The new Mackie mixer was my choice. I decided to totally go for it!
I booked an hour with George, which was totally worth it. He sent me a schematic drawing which very clearly indicated exactly what connector went where, and we had two phone conversations, and it was virtually done!
Honorable mention must go to Uncle Roy Yokelson, who’s assisting with George’s overflow, who helped me with some fine tuning.
The end result is sweet! The studio sounds good, I’ve learned a lot by going outside of my comfort zone, technologically… I’m busy and booking and happy as hell!