Hollywood, CA – July 2008… In what may well prove to be the biggest movie of summer 2008, the forthcoming August 1st Universal Pictures release of Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor marks the third film in the Mummy franchise. Staring Brendan Fraser, who reprises his role as explorer Rick O'Connell, the film’s soundtrack was composed by Randy Edelman, winner of 10 BMI Film Music Awards and was mixed and engineered by music scoring mixer Elton Ahi. Collectively, Edelman and Ahi have created a dazzling soundtrack to director Rob Cohen’s breath-taking onscreen visuals—and it was accomplished using Q10 reference monitors from Equator Audio Research.
Ahi, a well-known figure in Hollywood’s film sound community, has recorded and mixed over 100 major film projects. In addition to the Mummy, Ahi ‘s credits include Fox 2000 Pictures’ recently released 27 Dresses, XXX, and the classic film Last of the Mohicans, which won an Oscar for sound. The Mummy soundtrack was mixed in 5.1 surround sound at Rusk Sound Studios in Hollywood and recorded at Abbey Road Studios and AIR Studios is London. Throughout this long and involved process, Ahi’s Q10 studio monitors accompanied him at all locations.
“I’ve become extremely dependent upon these monitors,” states Ahi. “I used my Q10’s to mix and engineer the entire soundtrack and most of the film score for this project. “I find the Equator monitors to be very transparent and true to the sound. With the Q10’s, whatever I was working with in the control room was exactly what I ended up with on the screen. There’s no coloration of the sound at all and they’re very true to the source. Randy and I worked very closely on this project. We both use the Q10’s—to ensure that we’re both hearing the same thing—and we both love them.”
While at Abbey Road Studios, Ahi reports that pre-records, a choir, some female vocal tracks, and a Chinese ensemble were recorded. Additionally, a collection of London’s finest percussionists was assembled for some of the film’s spectacular percussion tracks, and these parts were recorded at both Abbey Road and AIR Studios.
In anticipation of moving between studios, Ahi made it a point of learning Equator Audio’s control and room optimization software. The Equator Control software application enables a mix engineer to manually compensate for acoustic anomalies, and it also provides extraordinary control over the monitors—including equalization, mute, solo, and phase. The Automated Room Analyzer software addresses issues created by speaker placement, boundary conditions, standing waves, and secondary reflections by examining a chosen position with a calibrated microphone. Together, they enable one to fine tune the monitors to the room for the best possible monitoring reference. Ahi’s time was well spent and the process is considerably easier than he initially expected.
“With the Equator room optimization software,” said Ahi, “I was able to set the monitors for the characteristics of my room and feel very confident about what I was hearing in no time at all. This software is a tremendous asset, as it enables you to tune the environment so you’re not hampered by reflections and other acoustic anomalies. Every room is slightly different and this is where the software really excels. It enables you to level the playing field between room discrepancies so that what you hear remains consistent from one room to another. It’s easy to use and is extremely user friendly. I feel the software is just brilliant.”
Ahi continued, “I suspect that many Equator monitors will find a home in project and home studios that aren’t acoustically treated to the level of the big commercial studios. In these instances, the Equator software will, unquestionably, be an invaluable aid in helping audio professionals achieve better results.”
With a track record like his, Ahi can work with any studio monitor of his choosing. So why did he select the Equator Q10’s? “I’ve used monitors from a number of the leading names in the industry,” said Ahi. "Prior to selecting my Q10’s, I auditioned several other brands and spent a lot of time evaluating those systems. I can say without the slightest reservation that, for me, the Equator Q10’s were the right choice. They deliver a very natural, accurate sound that never gets harsh or fatiguing, and that’s really important since I spend lot of time sitting in front of them. These monitors enable me to mix confidently—knowing that what I do in the studio will sound the way it’s supposed to when played back on other systems. For me, that’s says it all.”
About Equator Audio Research
Equator Audio Research is committed to delivering studio reference monitor solutions that overcome the myriad of challenges faced in today’s audio production. Whether the challenge is on the production line or in the studio control room, Equator is dedicated to identifying and addressing it. Our products are used daily in mission-critical applications at many of the world’s finest recording studios. For additional information on the Q10 and all Equator Audio products, visit the company online at www.equatoraudio.com.