Machine Head sound engineer Steve Lagudi is power hungry — but not in the traditional sense. Lagudi’s thirst for power is all about delivering unwavering sound, clarity and punch, for the bands he does the sound engineering for, both live and in the studio.
“Power is everything, especially during the live show work I do,” Lagudi said. “The Furman P-1800 AR line conditioner is at the top of my rack as the one product that’s out there that is going to take care of my power every time – and that’s everything in this business.”
Lagudi has 20-years as a sound engineer working with artists such as Exodus, Testament, God Forbid, Shadows Fall, Ill Nino as well as the band he’s currently on tour with in Europe, Machine Head. That’s an impressive list of power-driven rock bands, all with a very guitar heavy blend.
“People don’t realize how much the equipment sound engineers work with rely on proper voltage, and that’s particularly true with guitar amplifiers,” Lagudi explained. “And to get them delivering the sound I need, whether live or in the studio, the head has to be running optimally. You can do whatever you want to the actual amp but if you don’t have the proper power that it needs to run at, that amp will sound awful."
The Furman P-1800 accepts input voltages over a wide AC voltage range and transforms it to a constant output of 120V, + 5V.
“The P-1800 is so valuable to have on tour as I’m working with very guitar-driven music, and now that I’m on tour in Europe with Machine Head, we’re seeing different power requirements – voltages from 210 to 250 volts,” he said. “That’s a huge swing in variance from country to country and venue to venue and that will affect guitar amplifiers dramatically and how they respond and the P-1800 handles all this with no problems.”
Laugudi uses a step-down transformer when the band tours overseas to cut the voltage in half but the voltage still fluctuates - 210vac=105vac - and the P-1800 can handle 90vac to 140vac.
The P-1800 AR is a full-featured power conditioner that filters and purifies AC power, reducing line noise and ensuring optimum performance. Using Furman’s Linear Filtering Technology (LiFT) that is designed to counter electrical noise that distorts low-frequency information, the P-1800 helps significantly lower the noise floor, thereby uncovering this important low-level information.
It has been five years since a 2013 North American tour introduced Machine Head to what Furman and their power equipment are all about. As Lagudi explained it, “We were using a generator to supply power to the PA and backline and when the band was playing I could see the voltage going down and all the memory in our custom MIDI switching systems would dump causing us to lose all the settings every show.”
Lagudi made an emergency call to Furman and six P-1800 AR’s were immediately shipped out and. Lagudi and Machine Head have been using Furman ever since.
“The P-1800 is just a great piece of insurance that I can put in my racks with confidence,” he said. “And it doesn’t matter if it’s live or in studio because no matter what, gear has to work as time is money in this business. Granted, when you’re live there’s that extra pressure that the equipment has to work, but when you’re in a studio with a client or even more importantly during the creative process, when ideas are just pouring out, you can’t be worrying that the equipment in your studio might not work.”
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