Shane Simpson of Express AV / Steele Creek Studios on the Whole PreSonus Enchilada
[This just in from Shane Simpson of Express AV / Steele Creek Studios! These guys are using just about every product we make. I, for one, am impressed!]
In my opinion, PreSonus is the most forward-thinking company in the industry! They care not only about functionality, but also about workflow, ease of use, and cost! If you run a live production company or a recording studio, PreSonus offers many cost-effective solutions to our every-day needs. When it comes to signal flow, pre-amps, user-friendly layout, EQs, versatility, and price, the StudioLive mixers are some of the best desks on the planet.
The StudioLive package stands out for me for many reasons:
- They ship with a complete (free) software package for recording, mixing, and controlling the mixer! You won’t see other companies doing that!
- They include a version of Smaart in their Universal Control software! Smaart is one of the best Real Time Analyzers (RTAs) in the business. Smaart software is usually very expensive by itself, but comes free as part of Universal Control Software with every StudioLive desk! Allowing you to visually monitor your house and monitor mixes! Smaart also comes with a great setup tool that allows you to calibrate your speakers.
- The Studio One Digital Audio Workstation software (a version of which is also included free with every StudioLive desk) is fast becoming the industry standard DAW! Other DAWs are dropping like flies while engineers are discovering the great sound and workflow features of Studio One. Studio One is lightweight (meaning it uses less computer hardware resources) and it’s very fast! That would make it worth switching for me, but Studio One just sounds better. Clean, clear, and awesome! I now prefer it over the other majors.
- The Capture software is the easiest multi-track recording software you will ever use! Enable the tracks you want to record and press the record button, it’s that simple.
- One of the things that really floored me was that the new AI-series Studiolive mixers have an “A/B” button on every channel on the desk! That means two separate Fat Channel settings for every channel on the board! Let’s say you are mixing a live show and one band member plays acoustic guitar and mandolin. You can have two seperate EQ and compression settings for the guitar and the mandolin, by just A/B switching between the two.
We received a pair of PreSonus Sceptre studio monitors a few weeks ago—Wow! I never thought a co-axial monitor would even work, let-alone be some of the best sounding I have ever heard! They sound like monitors several times their cost, clean and powerful! That is not to discount the Eris series monitors, as they are awesome as well. Our local PreSonus rep demoed a set of Eris for us, and although we wound up with the Sceptres, the Eris blew us away for sounding so good at that price.
We have also been using the PreSonus Monitor Station; man is this thing cool! It makes switching between adjustable audio sources and monitor sets a breeze—we have our subs on one of the outputs, so we can bring them in or out with the touch of a button. The built-in talk-back mic is awesome, and the adjustable Dim feature is really cool as well.
Using the Presonus HP60 headphone amp has been very helpful to us as well. We were using a diffferent brand before we got the HP60, and we were not very happy with it. The HP60 is very clean with lots of headroom.
We also use the AudioBox 22vsl, which has been a great portable interface. We look forward to acquiring an ADL-series preamp (or two), some new A.I. series mixers, a set of Eris near-field monitors, a Temblor T10 Subwoofer, PreSonus StudioLive speaker cabs for our live production, and all the other goodies PreSonus has to offer. PreSonus is a great company that cares about its customers. Our PreSonus rep came to our shop and spent two days with us educating us on PreSonus products and getting to know our needs and our business so he could better serve us and help us grow. He offered invaluable information and insight and showed us how PreSonus products can help us succeed as a business.
Thanks, PreSonus. We appreciate a company that cares enough to spend time with a small company like us—keep on doing what you are doing: Providing us with useful, innovative products, and the help and know-how to implement them.
Senior Audio Engineer
Steele Creek Studios / Express AV