Matt Dever is an Australian sound engineer who specializes in recording entire tours for instant 2-CD sets released at the end of each show; clients have ranged from Blondie and Simple Minds to Devo and The Church. When he’s not on the road, he also has his own facility, D4 Studio, and while it’s small, there’s something that really makes it stand out: It was custom-built inside a shipping container.
Shipping containers are becoming an interesting—and surprisingly viable—form of alternative shelter. Costing $1,500-2,000 to purchase, a container is cheaper than a comparable-sized garden shed if you’re looking to put a stand-alone studio in your backyard. Kitting it out, of course, will cost more and take some doing, but as you can see from Dever’s video, it’s not impossible, particularly if you’re handy with tools.
In school, they always said to remember that it is what’s on the inside counts—and that goes for studios as well as people. Dever’s shipping container contains Avid Pro Tools, a JoeCo Blackbox recorder, outboard gear from Universal Audio, dbx, PreSonus, dbx and the like; and a slew of Neumann, Rode, Audio-Technica, Shure, Sennheiser and AKG mics. A shipping container studio might not work for everyone, but it looks like it suits him just fine.