2003 NYC Highlights
AES 2003 is history and a great show it was! Attendance was high,
and a general feeling of optimism was in the air. Our aisle,
which was coordinated by Brad Lundee at Transamerica (Brad -
thanks for the great location!), included Mercenary Audio, Crane
Song, Fearn, Daking, Great River, Soundelux, Manley, GML, Chandler,
AEA, Royer, and many others. People told me it was THE cool place
to hang out, and it certainly was crowded all four days. For
those of you who weren't there, here's what the booth looked
new product for the show was the Quartet II Mercenary Edition,
and it certainly created a buzz. In fact, we won the 2003 PAR
Excellence award for it! Here's me receiving the award from Brett
Moss, editor of Pro Audio Review magazine, with Russ Long, who
reviewed our Quartet and 6386 for the magazine (and is a great
producer and engineer) looking on. Needless to say, I'm very
pleased and honored!
Comments most frequently heard about
the new Quartet II:
"The mic pre has TWO different input
transformers? It sounds like two completely different mic pres!"
"Why didn't someone think of putting
together the best features of the EQP-1 and MEQ before?"
"The Aggressive mode on the EQ is
stunning! It's like the image takes one big step forward!"
"The new 'Faster' mode of the delta-mu
compressor is awesome!" Just like the EMI-modded Fairchild
660 at Abbey Road!"
What's up with the peak limiter? I see
the LEDS flashing like crazy, but I can't hear it working!
"You mean all four elements are completely
separate? I can patch out the mic pre, EQ, compressor and peak
limiter individually? You've got to be kidding."
"Can I get one TODAY?" (No, they
won't be shipping until the first quarter of 2004.)
to the winner of the Quartet II Mercenary Edition as Grand Prize
in Fletcher's rolling poker game at the Mercenary Audio booth.
I can't thank Fletcher, Jay and Samara enough for their support
and friendship this past year. They've done great things for
us, and I'm honored that the Quartet II bears the Mercenary Edition
logo. By the way, the Mercenary party at the Lakeside Lounge
on Sunday was amazing! Here's a bunch of us enjoying dinner at
Umberto's Clam House Friday night.
you look closely, you'll recognize Wade Goetke of Chandler Ltd.,
Fletcher, Dan Kennedy of Great River, Samara Krugman of Mercenary,
Lynn Fuston of 3D Audio, guitarist Jay Scott, and me.
favorite part of the show is getting to talk with all the folks
who use our gear to make records, some of whom I was unaware
were Pendulum devotees. Producer/Engineer Bob Power has been
using the 6386 and ES-8 on every mix for some time now, and his
favorite compressor for tracking vocals is the ES-8. John Klett
has been using the OCL-2 for mastering since April and raves
about its pristine sound and overall versatility. So much for
the notion of not being able to use an opto on a mix! Mastering
engineer extroardinaire Dave Collins has been using his own 6386
Limiter for several months with great results. He says "There's
nothing else that does that special thing that the Fairchild
tube does so well". Joe Laney, who has been working with
Lauryn Hill (who has an 6386), stopped by to say nice things
about it and relay praise from Jason Goldstein and Tony Maserati.
Tim Gilles and Sal Villanueva at Big Blue Meanie raved about
their 6386, ES-8 and Quartet. Brad Blackwood of Euphonic Masters,
after resisting for a few years, will be receiving an OCL-2 in
a few weeks for his analog mastering chain. Here's Brad admiring
Michael Brauer stopped by to say the ES-8 is now an indispensable
part of his elaborate mix setup. See this month's Tape-Op article
by Mike Caffrey for all the details. He has also used producer
David Kahne's 6386, (which David got specifically for cutting
Paul McCartney's 'Driving Rain' CD), for McCartney's live tour
and DVD. My old buddy Alan Douches of West Westside Music, who
has one of the first 6386 Limiters, still uses it and the OCL-2
every day in mastering. Julie Last, who recorded one of my favorite
records of all time (Rikki Lee Jones' "Traffic From Paradise")
has been using the Quartet and loving the results. Live sound
mixer Dave Lawler, who has been using the OCL-2 as the main FOH
compressor for Joni Mitchell, Tony Bennett and kd laing, had
one installed as the main compressor for the Kodak Center in
LA, and the new Texas Arts Center in Fort Worth.
Farber (James Taylor's "Never Die Young", another of
my all-time favorites) brought Neil Dorfsman by to audition everything,
and both raved about what they heard. Neil has used the ES-8,
and is putting together a new room and had his eye on just about
everything in the booth. Here we are:
people using the MDP-1 and Quartet were kind enough to stop by
and say very nice things about them. I can't remember all of
you, but a heartfelt thank you for your kind words and support.
I got the chance to meet Rupert Neve for the first time. Fletcher
introduced us and we had a nice chat. Although I'm not big on
the fan/worship thing, I couldn't resist pestering him for a
photo. He graciously agreed, and Fletcher did the honors:
you all again for your support - especially my friends Pete Becker
and Richard Dobson for their help at the booth. I hope to see
you again at TapeOpCon2003 in New Orleans, and/or AES 2004 in
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