Studio Ponders SSL Preamps

PonderRosa Studios, a 2,600-sq.-ft. studio located an hour outside of New York, recently upgraded its control room with the addition of an SSL XL desk.
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Lafayette, NJ (August 18, 2015)—PonderRosa Studios, a 2,600-sq.-ft. studio located an hour outside of New York, recently upgraded its control room with the addition of an SSL XL desk.

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Studio manager, producer and engineer Tom Askin cut his first record in the facility in the mid-1990s before it was PonderRosa Studios. The space lay unoccupied for several years until Askin had the opportunity to make it his new home.

“While we were gearing up toward getting an analogue console, we were working ‘in-the-box,’” says Askin. “That’s why we arranged the control room desk the way we did, with a variety of outboard mic preamps as the front end, and then we were mixing in-the-box at the back end. We found immediately how great using the XL Desk for tracking is: the built-in mic preamps on channels one through eight are remarkable—especially for a lot of the work that we’re doing for rock and jazz. We’ve got a wide pallet to choose from, depending upon the genre of music that’s coming through—but even if it’s one of our engineers who specializes in speed metal—we found we’re using the XL Desk preamps. I was thrilled to see that and to hear the outcome as well.”

Engineer Dave Mombert, whose specialty is alt and indie rock, explains, “It’s a genre where less is more. The focus is to get really good sounds on the way in so that you don’t have to do too much when it comes time to mix. Before the SSL arrived, we were working only through the outboard pres and then into Pro Tools. The XL Desk turned a lot of our workflow on its head. Some of the preamps that were used as standards for certain instruments like piano have now shifted over to the preamps in the console.”

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