Our recording room is based around an Apple Macintosh Mac Pro 8 core, running at 2.8Ghz and fitted with 22Gb of RAM and 8Tb of hard disc recording. For easy editing we use 2 cinema displays and we’ve added two UAD Quad PCIe cards, seeing as we like their plug-ins so much! There’s a full complement of UAD plug-ins, an essential selection from companies such as Waves, D16, SoundToys etc, as well as a collection of weird and wonderful quirky stuff for more experimental clients.
For DAW’s there is a choice of Pro Tools, Digital Performer and Logic. Our operation is totally ‘in the box’ – we dumped the big old maintenance-hungry, space-hogging mixing desk years ago and our elbows and ears have never looked back. For returning clients, working in the box means a fast-loading and precise ‘total recall’ of your last session – whether it’s from last week or 3 years ago, crucially allowing all time spent to be on improvements and changes to your music, rather than spending hours getting back to where you left off.
Our recording chain is comprised of high-end vintage and state-of-the-art analog gear, bringing character and depth to your recordings, which are then processed internally in the DAW for maximum quality and punch on bounces and mixes. Control is via a variety of keyboards, each with unique characteristics, including the Roland RD700 (has a great built-in arpeggiator), Roland A800 pro (control surface), Roland A88 mother keyboard, Kurzweil K2500X (unique ribbon controller) or a Kensington Trackball. Sound cards are a MOTU 2408 mkII and an 828 modified by Chicago’s award-winning Black Lion Audio** and clocked externally (via word clock) from their Micro Clock. For some projects we choose external summing via the MOTU’s stereo out into the legendary SSL FX 384 bus compressor, which we print back into the DAW.
The recording chain is typically a TL Audio Ivory 5051 (with 9 valve stages) through an original Urei 1176 or the SSL. A choice of microphones is available, including Neumans, AKG’s, Sony, Audio Technica and of course Shure. There is a choice of amps for guitars, keyboards & basses and our friendly guys at Portobello Music are just across the road and always on hand for the reasonable hire (or sale) of more esoteric gear. We also have a 50% discounted rate at FX Rentals, which we pass directly on to clients hiring equipment as part of their session when booked here at Sun Productions.
For external processing we have a collection of high-end and stock outboard to help realise the sounds you’re hearing in your head, with familiar names like Urei, SSL, Lexicon, Klark Teknik, BBE, Drawmer, SPL and many others, each piece bringing it’s own distinct sonic weight and character to your recording session.
** Black Lion Audio perform high-end modifications to a selection of industry standard sound cards and are being increasingly cited by grammy-winning engineers such as George Massenberg and Chris Lord Alge. These guys are among a growing number of top producers who believe that this company has brought a game-changing quality to the digital recording world. Alison Krauss’s highly acclaimed album with Union Station ‘Paper Airplane’ was recorded entirely on BLA’s FM 192 unit and considered to be a new industry standard for the warm and open natural sound it brought to the digital domain. Interestingly, Alison won’t record her vocals any other way now. Sun Productions, not un-typically, was ahead of George, Chris AND Alison, performing our BLA modifications back in 2006!