Counterpoint Studios Installs Analog Rupert Neve Console
Jan 30, 2009 2:01 PM
Giancarlo Skolnick with the 32-input
Rupert Neve Designs 5088 discrete
analog mixing console at Counterpoint
Studios in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Giancarlo Skolnick (pictured), CEO and engineer at Counterpoint Studios in Salt Lake City, Utah, has replaced an
all-digital system in Studio A with a 32-input Rupert Neve Designs 5088 discrete analog mixing console. The
facility, which features architectural and acoustic design by studio bau:ton, primarily focuses on music production
for local area musicians.
The console purchase was made in order to realize the studio's true potential, according to Skolnick. "We were
mixing 'in the box' and I really wanted—as an engineer, and from the standpoint of making the studio what I
thought it always needed to be—to move back toward an analog mixing situation. We have all this incredible
outboard gear and no one was really using any of it. It didn't seem to make any sense. Even something simple like
running your reverbs and delays outboard through an analog circuit just seems to sound better to me."
The 5088, which was purchased from David Lyons at recording equipment specialists Sonic Circus, won out
over the competition following careful evaluation and a trip to the Rupert Neve Designs facility, which is located in
the Texas Hill Country between Austin and San Antonio. "One of the main reasons I picked this console was
because of the sonic quality," Skolnick says. "That was a huge priority for me when I was looking at the different
console options. That's the thing I love about this console: it's extremely clean. It was amazing—as soon as we put
it in everything sounded better: the monitoring, the CD player, the headphone system."
According to Skolnick, an analog console provides a different way of working and actually makes the production
process easier, when compared with mixing in the box. "I'm still getting used to it but my initial impressions are
that it's almost like cheating, because mixing is so much easier now," he says. "You just put the faders up, add a
little bit of reverb and maybe some EQ, and wow, that's it! Whereas before, in Pro Tools, I felt I had to constantly
finesse plug-ins and try tons and tons of different things to get it to work."
The 5088 was installed in the 28x20-foot control room at the end of 2008. "Right away, everybody was really
enjoying going back to working that way," Skolnick says. "There was some debate about whether to go with
something that is essentially pretty old school. It really is a throwback, but it's great because of that. When you're
working on it, it feels like a real desk. I don't know how else to say it. It feels substantial; it's not like working on a
Skolnick also believes that going back to using an analog console has had a positive impact on the engineer's
creative process. "The tool affects the end result, to a certain extent. When I'm making EQ or level adjustments, I'm
not staring at a screen and fiddling with a mouse. My head is facing forward and I make EQ decisions based on
what I'm hearing rather than what the graph looks like."
Studio A's 30x20-foot live tracking space features two iso booths and a Fazioli F278 concert grand piano. "We're
mostly doing music production—although we do everything, including voice-overs—but it primarily revolves
around the local band scene. Salt Lake City is growing pretty quickly so it's getting better and better. And we have
a beautiful piano, so we do a lot of classical music."
For more information, visit www.rupertneve.com and www.counterpointstudios.com Find this article at: