We got together with Krzysztof Wawszczyk, owner of the gorgeous Loud Room Studios based in Dublin, Ireland. Check out their enviable space…
Tell us a little about the studio?
The studio is run by two Polish lads, Krzysztof, owner/technician and Maciej, sound engineer/mixer. Our place is based on the southside of Dublin, Ireland. We have been here for about five years now, but it is only since a year ago that we have been working together as a professional team.
Since that time, we have been constantly expanding in terms of equipment to make recordings even better, better than ever. The facilities comprise two live rooms and two control rooms so we have various options to choose from, depending on the needs.
In the past we recorded many types of artists including singers/songwriters, bands, rappers, and voiceovers. We dream big, and we would like our place to grow to meet the real top class of recording studios in Europe.
What kit are you using?
First, I would like to mention the heart of the studio, which is Midas M-32. We are in possession of great sounding preamplifiers like Universal Audio LA 610 Mk2 or 4-710 d. At the top of the mic list, there will be Telefunken AR-51, a pair of Neumann TLM 103, AKG D12 or Sennheiser MD 441. Urei 1176 LN and Distressor make recordings sound very professional and we use them a lot.
I could not skip our studio monitors. The Yamaha NS-10’s as well as the Adam A7X sound pretty great. The full list of our equipment you can find on our website www.loudroomstudios.ie, which we cordially invite you to visit.
Which DAW do you use and why?
For many years of my studio activity I was using Nuendo/Cubase. A few years ago however, I came across Pro Tools and its workflow in one of the Irish colleges. Since the software conquered my heart I have been a big fan of it and cannot imagine my work without it.
Its solutions and layout are so close to an analogue desk. Getting around Pro Tools is so intuitive and natural for me as I would use a traditional board. That is why the aforenamed DAW is in operation in our studio.
What is your favourite piece of gear and why?
That will be definitely vintage Urei 1176 LN, which makes vocals sound absolutely gorgeous. I find it useful also on kick drums. Tracks put through Urei sound warm and crisp. I would recommend this peace of gear to anyone who is taking their recordings seriously.
How often would you say do you spend in your studio per week?
As quite a lot of our activities are live sound, I’d say we spend no more than 20 hours a week. This time is really enjoyable and we have good fun with it.
How do you use your studio?
Just like every sound engineer, we would love to enjoy recording sessions. This is quite tough but we are trying to make a mixture out of these two components: being professional and having good fun. Then we are fully satisfied. However, some of our customers expect us to be professional, sometimes we have to forget about having fun. It all depends on the personality of a given artist.
What is next on your shopping list studio wise and why?
In 2018, we are planning to do some upgrades such as: Urei 1178 peak limiter to give our records even more depth and clarity. As we go, we have realised that we really need to invest some money in a top-class drum kit, such as DW Collectors or Pearl Masters. It would also be great to get decent, clear sounding preamps. By that, I mean two Focusrite ISA 428 Mk1 units.
Anything annoy you about your set-up and why?
At the moment there is not much to change in the set up as it is satisfying. What is annoying for us is the fact that the place that we are settled in is not the final spot. We will definitely need new facilities with proper acoustic treatment and more impressive design. This is one of the most important steps to improve Loud Room sound.
What is your dream piece of gear and why?
That’s easy. It’d be a 40-channel SSL 4000 G analogue console plus analogue-to-digital converter (Protools HD). That could make me forget about using plugins during doing my mixes. Plugins like UAD are not bad, but the feel and sound of the real gear is irreplaceable.
What is your top piece of production advice?
First and foremost, it is crucial to focus on the composition of a song. It is so important to pay attention to details such as what instruments (in terms of frequencies) are doing at the same time in the song, how to build up some emotions. And the most important – how to tell the story. Then picking the studio and top quality gear will get you to the point where the actual human is the weakest link in the chain – the most creative though!
What is the one piece of advice you would give someone starting out building a studio?
In my opinion, the most important aspect is knowledge. It is knowing what tools and what techniques you need to produce or record a project from the start to finish. Try to visualise your dream studio, dream atmosphere and equipment and slowly start building your ideal place.
Now, with all the experience we have got, we would start with acoustic treatment. Make sure you measure your room’s acoustics and fix them up. You have got to look cool, and the place has to be nice and clean, always. Pick up the best gear you can afford, it is better to have 8 nice mics than 20 you can’t really work with. When you are ready, do as much work as you can, experience is priceless.