Recording/mix engineer Michalis ‘MsM’ Michael says he is delighted with the flexibility of his new Prism Sound Titan audio interfaces because they can be so easily moved between his own studio and any other studio he chooses to work in.
Based in North London, Michael has built up an eclectic list of clients. His early years were spent working closely with the likes of Boy Better Know and Chip (Chipmunk), which saw him rack up a number one single (Oopsy Daisy) along with several other Top 20 singles and albums. He also worked with Royksopp & Robyn, DJ Fresh, The Saturdays, P.Diddy, Ed Sheeran, Skepta, Wiley, N-Dubz and Wretch 32, as well as spending two years assisting Edward J ‘UK’ Nixon, the chief engineer of the Grammy Award winning J.U.S.T.I.C.E. LEAGUE.
“I spent years recording but now I’m mainly focused on mixing,” he says. “It takes up the majority of my time and it’s what I always wanted to do. I also get involved in some co-production where it’s needed or when I’m asked to.”
His first encounter with Prism Sound interfaces came when he was working with Nixon of The J.U.S.T.I.C.E. LEAGUE. Nixon is a fan of Prism Sound’s Orpheus interface and takes it everywhere he works.
“After some years using Orpheus with Edward, I tried a few other interfaces and just couldn’t get on with them,” Michael says. “The Prism Sound Orpheus had spoiled me and there was no turning back. I ended up buying one for myself as it did everything I wanted feature-wise and sonically it wa the best I’d heard.”
Michael has his own studio in North London, which he uses for mixing, but often uses commercial facilities around the country – travelling with his mobile rig, which includes his monitors and his Prism Sound Titans.
“I love having my own studio because it lets me work 24/7 and sometimes, with mixing, creativity can come at strange hours,” he says. “The room’s been tuned heavily with the help of the guys at GIK. I use a laptop for my mixing, a Slate Raven for my controller, the two Prism Sound Titans and a selection of outboard that I mainly use on my stereo bus. In terms of monitoring I use Amphion Two 18s and an Amp500.”
Michael adds that his set up is simple because he mainly mixes in the box. “I need to be ITB simply because recalls and bouncing between sessions is a necessity nowadays,” he explains. “I’m often working on two or three projects in a week. Plug-ins have got so good nowadays that the sonic differences aren’t as big an issue as they once were, but workflow certainly is. I’m all about acoustics and workflow, I’m not really interested in people’s latest gear and extras; I care about the sound of the room, monitors and conversion. The rest are extras.”
In terms of his Prism Sound Titans, he says the detail in the conversion is what he loves most.
“The image is so deep and accurate it makes things like placement seem easier,” he adds. “It’s hard to explain, but once you mix on a Prism Sound it will make sense. It hasn’t got a sound of its own – it’s just a big, wide clear window to your mix. Feature-wise, I love the clarity in the preamps and the instrument inputs being on the front makes recording guitar and bass very easy on the go. The fact that the I/Os are all on the unit rather than needing a separate breakout cable (dsub) is very well thought out.”
“I’ve no problem with dsub connections, but when travelling from studio to studio it can be a bit of a pain. When I go to Britannia Row or Modern World it’s just a case of plugging in a few standard jack cables and my setup is running. Also, Prism Sound has developed a MDIO slot, which means the unit is futureproof — to me that’s important.”
Recently Michael has used his Prism Sound Orpheus interface on Zak Abel’s new EP Joker Presents Zak Abel, Tom Prior’s debut EP Bad Advice (both mixed ITB using the Orpheus with some stereo outboard on the master bus), a Röyksopp and Robynn remix, Do It Again, as well as some material for ex Pussycat Dolls singer Jessica Sutta. His Titans are only a few weeks old so the material he’s working on with them is not yet finished, but he reports that he’s moved from the Orpheus rig to Titan with no problems.
“I like consistency, quality and reliability,” he says. “Plus having more Prism Sound I/O can’t be a bad thing, can it?”