Producer Max Gilkes has upgraded his Brighton, England-based mastering and post production facility 1 Sonic with SADiE 6 software for mastering and a Prism Sound Orpheus FireWire audio interface.
Gilkes, who founded 1 Sonic eight years ago, says the support offered by Prism Sound was a key factor in his decision to invest in the company’s products.
“I was previously using Peak as a playlist editor and doing most other things on Pro Tools,” he explains. “But as it was time for an upgrade I decided to go with a company that I knew I could have a good working relationship with, and one that was also based in the UK.”
With a client list that includes Ninja Tune, Big Dada, Sony (France), Smart Move Productions, Mr. Bongo, Keep Up, Silverland and Mission, Gilkes is rarely out of the studio. His recent credits have included Fink, Dobie, Roots Manuva, The Skints, Deco Child, Raffertie, Eliza Carthy and Prince Fatty.
The facility itself is mainly used for mastering and mixing, but it also has a live room with eight tie-lines that is large enough to record drums.
“The outboard in the studio is primarily for tracking, so there are some nice pres and compressors,” Gilkes says. “I also have a master section by Audient, PMC and Yamaha monitors, Pro Tools, various classic guitar and bass amps and a range of microphones – not to mention an over-used tea pot!”
Moving from one software platform to another can be intimidating, but Gilkes says he has found the transition to SADiE 6 far less painful than he anticipated.
“It’s always hard work making the transition from one system that you are particularly well versed with to a whole new environment, but SADiE 6 is very intuitive and easy to use,” he says. “I’m really enjoying the facilities it provides. The editing facilities, in particular, are great and I like the PQ and DDP tools. However, the sound quality is the most outstanding feature and I am really impressed by that.”
Sound quality also played a part in Gilkes’ decision to buy a Prism Sound Orpheus FireWire audio interface.
“It was a no brainer, really,” he says. “The studio needed to make a significant step up in convertor quality and Orpheus delivered the transparency and clarity I was looking for, both as an A/D and a D/A converter. It has great sounding pre’s and I like the interface features for multi-tracking in Pro Tools.”
Gilkes is now using SADiE 6 and Orpheus on a variety of projects, including mastering an album for French artist Mayra Andrade on Sony (France), recording tracks for Congo Natty, completing a debut album for Chevron, recording drums for the next Grasscut (Ninja Tune) album, finishing backline tracking for a band called Bentcousin, which is releasing a three-track single through Team-Love NY and completing an album for a local brighton band called the Meow Meows.
And if that work schedule isn’t intensive enough, Gilkes is also producing and co-writing with the legendary Russell Stone of R&J Stone fame.
“The Russell Stone project is very interesting as all tracks are vocal/non-verbal and based on free improvisations,” he says. “The album, which is called HUMU, is very nearly finished and should be out in September.”