UK: Acoustic and technical design company White Mark celebrated its 10th anniversary recently with the completion of its 100th audio post-production control room in the Soho area of London. Envy Studio D - the sixth audio room at the White Mark-designed complex - is due to open by the end of this month and has been configured to work in surround sound, with a separate booth for voice-over contributions, writes David Davies.
Founded in 1997 by David Bell, John Dunnill, Derek Buckingham and Alan Cundell, White Mark specialises in production facilities for music recording and the film and TV industries. Its 170-plus audio production suite credits include studios at Strongroom in London and Hit Factory in New York. The company has also designed private studios for producers and musicians including William Orbit and Damon Albarn, while more recent projects have included the design of new facilities such as Kore and Blast.
Nick Cowan, owner of Tetbury's Modern World Studios - designed by White Mark earlier this year and incorporating an SSL Duality console and large Pro-Tools system - is among those to have acknowledged the company's technical expertise. Noting that the facility now has bookings far into 2008, Cowan describes the White Mark team as "good guys who know their stuff acoustically, technically and aesthetically, and get the job done."
It is, however, the area of audio post-production in which White Mark has arguably most excelled. Indeed, the company has worked for more than 40 companies in Soho alone, among them such prominent industry names as Grand Central, Hackenbacker and Ascent Media.
As White Mark prepares to embark upon its second decade, co-founder David Bell tells PSN-e that the company continues to be highly active in developing new recording facilities. "The producer/composer set-up in a dedicated working environment, often in an extension to the owner's home, is now a significant area of work for us with studios being completed for many composers and producers, including William Orbit and Ian Curnow," he says. "An increasing number of people are seeing that the correct application of acoustic principles to room design will create an accurate monitoring environment, and increase both the quality of the output and the efficiency with which it can be produced."
Bell is also encouraged by the current wave of commercial studio developments. "Facilities such as Kore, Modern World and Blast are offering large acoustic spaces coupled with accurate control rooms equipped to both take advantage of the live spaces and offer facilities compatible with the smaller composition studios that often feed them with projects," he says.
Current White Mark projects include a two-studio, SSL Duality-based facility equipped with Exigy monitors for Germano Studios in New York.
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