Nashville, TN (January 21, 2010)–Engineer Mick Conley turned to a Tube-Tech SSA2B summing amplifier as the final stage in an otherwise in-the-box Cubase 5 mix on Marty Stuart’s forthcoming album, Ghost Train.
Stuart and longtime engineer Conley went into Nashville’s legendary RCA Studio B, which is now literally a museum, to cut the tracks in the very first room that Stuart ever recorded in, back in the early 1970s, when he was playing with Lester Flatt. Conley had access to a wealth of Studio B’s vintage analog gear, including a centerpiece API console.
“It’s getting harder for a lot of studios to justify spending thousands of dollars on a good analog console,” Conley said. “Even when I have access to one, I only use a portion of its capabilities. But Marty and I both like tubes and transformers. We need some iron in our diet, right? So we asked the good folks at TransAudio Group [Tube-Tech’s U.S. distributor] to send us a demo Tube-Tech SSA2B summing amp. I should have known it would be like bringing a puppy home for a ‘demo.’ There was no way we could send it back!”
He continued, “The first time Marty heard an A/B comparison between a fully-in-the-box mix and one that had gone through the Tube-Tech, his one-word comment, full of depth and emotion, was simply, ‘Wow!’ The difference is obvious. Every piece of gear can go left and right, but with the summing amp, I get front-to-back – true depth of field. I can place instruments in three-dimensional space. I can hear full reverb tails. The vocal sits there like magic, with everything else positioned around it. Marty says that you ‘can hear down in the mix,’ which I think is a good description of what the SSA2B can do.”
Stuart and Conley also produce a weekly half-hour show aptly titled The Marty Stuart Show, on the RFD network, on which they also use their new Tube-Tech SSA2B summing amp.