Tomorrow's studio today
London's The Limehouse is a recording, mixing and mastering facility that's one of the finest examples of the next generation of recording studios. They take what they call an "unashamedly in-the-box" approach, with a DAW system forming the central heart of the studio.
Focusrite preamps make up the entire front end to the 24-channel system, with five ISA428s and a Liquid 4 Pre providing high-quality inputs into the recording rig. The studio's founder Rupert Pfaff explains why he chose Focusrite gear to occupy his racks.
"We wanted very high-quality mic preamps, and we wanted a lot of them. We definitely didn't want to go the analogue console route, because we felt that, by sticking to an essentially in-the-box approach, (other than the mic preamps), we could spend good money on preamps and get good results. We were originally going to get six ISA428, but the Liquid 4 Pre came along and we thought 'that's the perfect addition'. With the 4Pre, we have four special channels that we mostly use for vocals, but also for other things like drum overheads or on piano or an ensemble. It lets you try out a whole bunch of different preamps very quickly, to suit the preamp to the source."
Another reason for choosing Focusrite preamps was because of their impressive sonic accuracy and transparency. "The sound quality is of course a big factor, and they sound great. We didn't want to go with big, ballsy-sounding preamps: once you've done a whole drum kit and four guitar parts, everything can't be big!"
Also taking pride of place in The Limehouse's control room is a Focusrite Liquid Mix, upgraded to support 96kHz at full channel count. Rupert Pfaff: "Not only does it sound great but it gives you so much more DSP when it comes to mixdown. We're looking forward to getting started with Liquid Mix HD, which will mean we can actually track with the stuff."
To hear for yourself the Focusrite sound that can be experienced at The Limehouse, the ISA range should be your first port of call. For a taste of the Liquid 4Pre, check out the Liquid Saffire 56 interface, with two 4Pre-inspired Liquid preamps on-board.
Mid-session with Limehouse engineer, James Aparicio.