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SSL C200 Meets Surround Challenge

As the technical demands on remote trucks are changing with HD video production and surround sound, implementing a new design presents a challenge. Recently, we installed a 48-channel, 96-input Solid State Logic (SSL) C200 digital console in a 32-foot audio remote truck. We use the console along with two 48-input SSL C-SB Stageboxes. Simply put, the console has greatly improved the way we manage, record and mix the complex programs we are hired to capture.

(L-R) Livewire audio assistant Ken Friesen, Livewire president and recording engineer; Doug McClement; and Robbie Lackritz, front of house engineer for Leslie Feist, one of Canada's best new artists are seen here in the Livewire remote truck at the SSL C200 console.CONSOLE STAYS BUSY

We've put the console through its paces on a variety of programs, including "Queens of the Stone Age" at the legendary El Mocambo club here, Bran Van 3000 outdoors at the Montreal Jazz Festival and several episodes of "Triple Sensation," an Idol-style competition show for Broadway wannabes, where contestants have to be able to sing, dance and act. These episodes will soon be airing nationally on the CBC. There's a judging panel that includes Broadway composer Marvin Hamlisch and Jersey Boys' choreographer Sergio Trujillo. Each program brought a different challenge to the table and each time the C200 brought our capabilities to a higher level, especially when mixing in 5.1 surround.

As a case in point, we did the 5.1 broadcast mix this past June of the main stage at the MuchMusic Video Awards, Canada's equivalent to the MTV Video Awards. The physical setup of the C200 system benefited us in several ways. Having the mic preamps at the stage running through a fiber-optic connection back to the console provided pristine clarity, even with very long cable runs. We also found that the dynamics processing available on each channel was equal to or better than the outboard gear we'd been using. This allowed the engineer to focus his attention completely on the console and the mix.

The network people were immediately blown away by the sound quality.


With SSL's snapshot recall and automation, we were able to select the mix generated in rehearsals for each band with just the push of a button. Once again, the engineer's focus was in perfecting the mix and not struggling against the clock to reset 800 knobs and switches in a live setting. As the C200 is built for multiple format mixing, we were able to deliver the 5.1 surround mix and still provide stereo with SSL's internal stereo fold-down feature. It is rare that an equipment purchase can so profoundly change the way you work that it sets a new paradigm altogether. The SSL C200 is that equipment.

For additional information, contact Solid State Logic at 212-315-1111 or visit