UK: Following the severe flooding in the north of England in late June/early July that affected at least one pro-audio company in the form of Audionics, the latest instalment in the British flooding crisis has impacted upon South London recording facility Sphere Studios. The unwelcome development - which fortunately did not affect any of the main studios - follows a busy period for the Battersea complex that has seen it acquire a number of new consoles and other equipment, writes David Davies.
With the downstairs bar area bearing the brunt, sessions were able to carry on as normal. However, the arrival of the floodwater did necessitate some rapid changes of plan.
"Water was streaming under the front door - we couldn't stop it!" recalled Sphere owner Franco Cameli. "I suppose we were quite lucky as despite the flood of water downstairs, only two of our production rooms were affected. One of the rooms has recently been rented to Andy Wright, who had not fully moved in and was actually working in Studio 1 with Simply Red at the time. We've had to move Ryan Laubsher out of Production Room 5 for the time being, but luckily we've been able to put him into a spare office and give him access to the studios when he needs to do recording work."
With the clean-up now firmly underway, Sphere has also been drawing attention to recently completed extensive studio upgrade work that entailed the installation of an SSL 4072G+ console in Studio Two, and an SSL 4056G+ in Studio Three. Additionally, Studio Two's monitoring facility has been upgraded to a custom Munro M4 5.1 system with control via an Audient ASP510, while the front wall of Studio Three's control room has been rebuilt to incorporate soffit mounted half Munro M4s, giving the bottom-end monitoring a "tighter and punchier" sound.
Sphere has also added a number of Telefunken microphones to its inventory and now has a total of three Pro Tools HD3 Accel rigs in operation.
"I'm really excited about all our recent purchases," said Cameli. "I think the studio is now ideally equipped to offer the best in analogue and digital, and has put Sphere in an ideal position to attract work from all markets."
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