A watershed day for pro-audio?

WORLD: Friday January 30th witnessed an extraordinary number of high-profile personnel changes, writes David Davies. Jed Allen and Joseph Lemmer departed Digidesign and Universal Audio, respectively, while Andy Brown (pictured) was promoted to head of digital console strategy for Soundcraft Studer.
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WORLD: Friday January 30th witnessed an extraordinary number of high-profile personnel changes, writes David Davies. Jed Allen and Joseph Lemmer departed Digidesign and Universal Audio, respectively, while Andy Brown (pictured) was promoted to head of digital console strategy for Soundcraft Studer.

The departure of Jed Allen from the role of European sales director of Digidesign took many by surprise. As part of Digi's core team these past few years, he is widely perceived to have played a pivotal role in bolstering the company's presence in both studio and live markets, not least with regard to the VENUE live sound production environment.

Meanwhile, Joseph Lemmer exited Universal Audio after seven and a half years. The company's senior manager marketing communications is joining Apple in an as-yet undisclosed role. "I have accepted a contract with Apple, which is probably the one place that could tear me away from my family here at UA," he said.

News also broke on Friday that Meyer Sound's marketing director - Europe, David Wiggins, had been made redundant as part of a restructuring initiative. Sources close to the company suggested that approximately 20 people were expected to lose their jobs.

As revealed in last week's PSN-e, Martin Audio's Rob Lingfield made the surprise revelation on the eventful afternoon that he was leaving. See full story.

On a considerably more lighthearted note, Focusrite/Novation sales director Chris Gooddie announced his resignation "in order to pursue his interest in birdwatching". In fact, 'interest' may be under-selling his preoccupation - for the next year, Gooddie will be attempting to spot all the species of the rare Pittas family of birds. A website tracking the project is already up and running, and Gooddie is intending to publish a book about the adventure in 2010.

"After ten great years at Focusrite I feel the time has come to move on in pursuit of the dream which I have been planning for the last few years," he said. "I won't be abandoning pro-audio pursuits altogether, however; since Pittas are elusive and much more often heard than seen, finding them involves use of a shotgun microphone, digital recorder and playback speaker to record the birds and then play back their calls. Male Pittas hear the playback and come in to chase off what they assume to be a rival on their territory."

In response to Gooddie's departure, Damian Hawley has been promoted to the newly created position of global sales manager for Focusrite/Novation. Nick Venables will continue his role in the north of the UK, as well as supporting international efforts within the European market. Among other recent personnel developments, the company has also take on an extra UK sales executive, Neil Johnston.

Finally, this busy Friday brought some extremely good news for Andy Brown, who was promoted to the role of head of digital console strategy for Soundcraft Studer with immediate effect. A Soundcraft veteran of more than 20 years, Brown has specialised in product management for the last dozen, helping to deliver console ranges including MH and Vi.

"The advent of digital audio processing has provided us with so many new opportunities and we have extremely aggressive plans to deliver new models and extend our platforms," said Brown, who will also continue to serve as product manager for the Vi Series. "My role will be to pull together the customers' requirements and the expertise and technologies from all parts of our business to provide more winning products for both our brands."

» www.digidesign.com
» www.focusrite.com
» www.meyersound.com
» www.soundcraft.com
» www.studer.ch
» www.uaudio.com


Pro-audio in full flow at ISE

HOLLAND: Soundcraft was among the many manufacturers launching new products at this year's show, writes David Davies. The Harman Pro company unveiled a new addition to the Si Series of digital consoles: the Si2. Lab.gruppen and Klein+Hummel also showcased new products at the show, which attracted 24,912 visitors (subject to finalisation) - 11% more than the 2008 edition.

Harman Pro UK announces two new training initiatives

UK: Harman Pro UK had announced details of another training day for live sound engineers wishing to find out more about the Soundcraft Vi6 digital live sound console (pictured). The event will be held a week this Friday (March 7th) at the head office of SSE Audio in Redditch. Also on an educative tip, Harman Pro UK has announced that it is to begin a regular series of free industry training sessions aimed at improving PA-related knowledge amongst retailers, with the first event to take place at the company's headquarters in Potters Bar on April 16th, writes David Davies.

A. C. Lighting audio division tapped by Powersoft for UK distribution

UK: The audio division of A.C. Lighting has been appointed as an authorised UK distributor for the Powersoft pro-audio power amplifier range. A.C. Audio was selected as one of only four distribution partners in collaboration with Sennheiser UK, based on criteria including distribution capability, stock holding facility and reputation for providing "elite products" and customer support, reports David Davies.

MPG Awards: 3 days left to vote!

UK: The nomination process for the inaugural MPG Awards closes this Friday (November 28th), writes David Davies. Intended to highlight and reward the creative talent and technical ability of the UK's music producers, engineers, remixers and programmers, the 2009 Music Producers Guild Awards will feature a grand total of 13 categories, including Producer of the Year, Recording Engineer of the Year, Best Mixer, Best Mastering Engineer and the Joe Meek Award for Innovation in Production.

A Coventry calling for Soundcraft, as analogue sales stay firm

UK: Three Soundcraft consoles have been installed at City College Coventry's new creative/IT school, reports David Davies. Three identically-specified broadcast studios in the Creative Technologies section at the new Swanswell Centre have been equipped with Soundcraft Series 10 mixing consoles, which will be used for training sessions and the production of the college's Synergy FM radio station.

Major pro-audio presence at LIMS SRT

UK: The 2009 edition of the London International Music Show will take place from June 11 to 14, writes David Davies. The LIMS incorporates four exhibitions, among them Sound Recording Technology (SRT), and is set to feature exhibitors including Allen & Heath, Alchemea College, Focusrite, Korg, Notion Music, Proel International, Shure Distribution UK, Studio Spares, Sennheiser, Yamaha and Avid Technology Europe.

Obama: that day of change in full

US: There was no denying the remarkable variety of audio technology in use on inauguration day, writes David Davies. As previously reported on PSN-e, numerous manufacturers' equipment was deployed at events during the long electoral campaign, but now the full extent of the pro-audio technology employed on inauguration day has become clear.

M-Audio and Digidesign bring Benelux operations under one roof

NETHERLANDS: In a move that reflects "growing crossover between Digidesign and M-Audio customers", the sister companies' operations in the Benelux region have been brought together at Digidesign's existing offices in Hilversum. The change in set-up sees M-Audio selling directly to resellers and customers, meaning that its previous distributor in the region, Mafico, has left the picture as of September 1st, writes David Davies.