In line with Andy Hong's list of gear (issue #66) he's reviewed in the past that he still finds amazing, here's a list of stuff I was using this last month that I think deserves special credit for the amount of times I fall back on these pieces and how well they were designed and built. We're also installing a new Rupert Neve Designs 5088 console in November this year. 32 main faders, VU meters and all. We're pretty excited about this. And the day rate stays the same. Here's a list and some quick comments. -LC MCI 1/4" 2 track mixdown deck - more than ever this glues these Pro Tools mixes together. IZotope RX - I find a new way to use this audio restoration software every session. I clean up ribbon mic tracks full of hiss, or room mics with background noise, or piano squeaks, or buzzing bass or electric guitar tracks. Chandler TG1 stereo compressor - the most distinctive compressor I've heard. Unreal distortion when driven hard. Drawmer 1969 stereo compressor/preamp/DI - underrated. Preamp sucks but compressor is clean and works SO GOOD! Studio Electronics C2 stereo compressor - No one knows about this one. Like a faster 1176 and cleaner. Unreal on percussion, xylophone hits or such. EMT 140 Plate Reverb - We had Hamptone build new electronics for the driver and pickups on this. Amazing! Demeter Real Reverb spring reverb - I still like this for some things even though I have a plate reverb. Fulltone Tube tape echo - No mix is done without this. Great River EQ-2NV 2-band EQ - This can fix anything. And in a nice way! Drawmer DS201 dual gate - Always the best way to clean up an analog mix. So tunable. Korg DTR-2000 rackmount digital tuner - More than ever I appreciate a good tuner. Brauner Valvet Voice - How do you record vox? Put this up and 90% of the time yer done. BLUE Dragonfly condenser - Secret weapon: On Toms. Try it. Now. Earthworks TC 30K omni condenser - the best room mics. Royer R-121 ribbon mic - It's rare I record an electric guitar without one of these up. AEA R84 ribbon mic - trumpet, percussion, ac guitar, bass amps, upright bass AEA R92 - just got this. On electric guitar? Amazing! Heil Sound PR30 - guitar cab, snare. Unique sound. Audix D6 - kick, with a crazy scooped out low mid Audix SCX25 - ac guitar's best friend. Awesome as a stereo pair for that. Shure KSM 32 - a better mic than it gets credit for. Great on guitar cabs. Oktava MK-012 Joly-mod matched pair - Sound so much better than stock ones. Piano! Dangerous Audio MONITOR ST - the more I use this the more I'm impressed. It's unreal how much better it sounds than the monitor section of our current console. ADAM S-3A active ribbon speakers - I get a lot of help out of these no matter what John Fischbach says. Avantone MixCubes - Like a bad car stereo always helps your mixes. Tech 21 Comptortion - Makes DI bass work. Chandler Limited Germanium Series preamp/DI - A preamp you can tailor for each sound. Pendulum Audio Quartet record channel - my vocal chain. 'Nuff said. RTZ 9762 dual channel preamp - Why aren't people buying this? Oh, no marketing? Hamptone Silverbox 4-channel tube pre - I appreciate this pre more every time I use it. Subtle qualities come out on this fucker. Pacifica Solid State mic pre - Drum OH, Piano - brings a sort of life to the high end that other pres sometimes lack. Valvotronics DI box - great bass DI. Little Labs IBP phase alignment box - Live AC and vox helper! Furman HP Audio Distribution System HDS-16 - I'm so happy with this setup. Make your own HP mixes, please.

Tape Op is a bi-monthly magazine devoted to the art of record making.

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