‘Late Show’ Snags World’s Largest SSL C200

The new 96-fader console, which will handle all of the music production requirements for the show, will be installed in the legendary Ed Sullivan Theater this summer, replacing the SSL analog SL 4000 G Series console that has served the show for 15 years.
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CBS staple “The Late Show with David Letterman” will soon be heard through a Solid State Logic C296 digital production console, the largest C200 Series console manufactured to date.

The new 96-fader console, which will handle all of the music production requirements for the show, will be installed in the legendary Ed Sullivan Theater this summer, replacing the SSL analog SL 4000 G Series console that has served the show for 15 years.

“With our new format of shooting in HD and mixing in 5.1 surround, the clear choice for a new console was the SSL C296,” says Harvey Goldberg, who has been music mixer for “Late Show” for eight years. “Another reason why we purchased the console was that it delivers the resources necessary for us to mix different music acts during the show, or if not multiple acts, the different songs performed by one act. Working on an analog console isn’t the fastest way to switch between different kinds of set-ups. When we start working with the C296, switching between set-ups will be a push of a button.”

The key to understanding the console purchase lies in Goldberg’s work style. According to Goldberg, where many other manufacturers have made the leap to digital by redesigning how a console operates, Goldberg prefers the ergonomic consistency of SSL consoles.

“SSL has always presented consoles with an industry standard work surface familiar to the top engineers in the world and the C200 Series carries on that tradition,” Goldberg explains. “Right now I am training on the C200 and I have developed a plan to take advantage of its power. I will use 40 of the input channels right off the top for Paul Shaffer and the CBS Orchestra.

“The average guest band comes in using between 30 and 40 inputs. Perhaps a rock band will only take up 24,” he said. “Sometimes we are talking about shooting two or three shows in a day and that represents a lot of setup. The advantage of the C200 is that I can work in the traditional analog mode of one channel strip per instrument or vocal, but when I need to see a channel at the other end of the board, I can push a button and it is in front of me. This feature will make mixing easier, better, faster.”