— Equipment purchase and installation was carried out by GC Pro Affiliate Program member Malvicino Design Group —
WESTLAKE VILLAGE, CA, August 26, 2015 — Guitar Center Professional (GC Pro), the outside sales division of Guitar Center that focuses on the needs of professional users, recently collaborated with GC Pro Affiliate Program member Horacio Malvicino of the New York-based Malvicino Design Group, on the design, outfitting and commissioning of the private production facility for Mexican regional music star Espinoza Paz. The vast majority of the multi-room facility’s audio equipment was sourced for the Malvicino Group through Javier Willis, Account Manager at the San Diego, California GC Pro office. The facility, named ESPI 10.29 Studios, is located in the Marina neighborhood of Mazatlán in the Mexican state of Sinaloa. The new three-story construction houses Paz’s private offices, a lounge and a large kitchen and dining room seating two dozen on the ground floor; two control rooms and a large tracking space with three isolation rooms on the second floor; and guest accommodations on the top floor.
The main control room is outfitted with a 48-input Solid State Logic Duality mixing console, a 48-track Avid Pro Tools|HDX3 system and a Studer A827 Gold Edition 24-track analog tape machine, Ocean Way Audio HR2 main monitors and racks of outboard processing. The second control room houses a 24-fader AMS Neve Genesys mixing console and another Pro Tools rig.
“My idea was to come up with a studio on par with anything in the U.S. I think it’s some of my best work,” says Malvicino, who has more than two decades of experience providing acoustical, architectural and technical systems design to recording studios and other production facilities around the world. Malvicino says that he was given carte blanche by the artist regarding equipment choices as well as room layout and technical, acoustic and interior design.
“I’ve been in the Latin music business for many years and I’m connected with a lot of producers,” Javier Willis reports. “In 2013 one of my producer friends brought me to Espinoza’s manager, who was in the process of shopping around. We hit it off and started ordering the equipment. We then brought Horacio in for the studio design and the equipment integration and installation.”
Malvicino notes, “Banda music requires a lot of people playing live, so I wanted to build a room that allowed a lot of people to record together, with variable acoustics. The panels on the side wall swivel; they have absorption on one side and reflection on the other side. You can change the RT [reverberation time] in the room by about 25 percent.” TADI, the Mexico City-based exclusive manufacturer of acoustic treatments for Malvicino’s projects worldwide, supplied the acoustic treatment at this new facility and additionally acted as the general contractor and interior designer. “The live room ceiling is 21 feet high, so we outfitted it with condenser mics hanging in specific locations so that they can not only use close miking but also the room. And they can bring in a couple of large format P.A. speakers, feed them the mix, crank up the listen mics and use the studio as a live chamber,” he said.
Malvicino elected to install Ocean Way Audio HR2 monitors, driven by Lab.gruppen and QSC Audio amplification, in the main control room. He consulted with Ocean Way founder Allen Sides to ensure optimum performance in the space, which is 32 feet deep with a 21-foot ceiling. “That’s the first time I’ve done soffit-mounted Ocean Way monitors,” says Malvicino. “They sound incredible—so good that the engineers are having a hard time working on the near fields.” Both control rooms feature Neumann KH 310 near field monitors with KH 810 subwoofers; ADAM and Yamaha NS10 speakers are alternatively available.
“The outboard gear is what you would expect,” he continues, including rack units from Empirical Labs, GML, TubeTech and Universal Audio. “They like a warm sound so I included a bunch of Chandler EMI compressors and mic preamps. There’s Bricasti and Lexicon reverbs, and a lot of 500 Series modules—API, Burl Audio, Grace Audio, Little Labs and SSL.”