Studio Interviews: Serge Poulin

It’s another cool studio in a basement and this one is quite a space, with Serge Poulin managing to cram both an electronic and acoustic drum kit in, on top of his impressive main collection of production equipment…

serge poulin

Interviewee Serge Poulin
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  • Neumann monitors
  • Loads of microphones
  • M-Audio and NI controllers
  • Steinberg Cubase
  • Drum kits!

Tell us more about your studio…

My actual studio is in the basement of my home, which is in Lévis, near Quebec City in Canada.

Tell us about the gear in the studio. You’ve managed to cram a lot of stuff in there…

I have an Apple MacBook Pro, mid 2012 model with a 2.3 GHz Intel processor, 16GB of RAM, and running El Capitan; an M-Audio ProFire 2626 soundcard; a Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 interface; sets of Neumann KH120 and M-Audio BX8a monitors; a pair of Sony MDR-7506 headphones; M-Audio Radium 49 keyboard controller and a Native Instruments Maschine MK1 MIDI controller; a set of Roland SPD-SX drum pads; a Yamaha DTXtreme electronic drum kit; many Shure SM57, 421, Audix, M-Audio, Sennheiser microphones; a Focusrite ISA 430 channel strip; many plug-ins and samples libraries from East West, Native Instruments, Slate Digital, Steinberg, Waves Audio; and finally drums, percussion, guitars, and bass.

Which DAW do you use and why?


I use Steinberg’s Cubase 9.5 and I’ve used it since 2003 and it has always been my main DAW of choice. I really like it and I am so used to using it, but I have also used Apple’s Logic Pro and Ableton Live too.

What would you say is your favourite piece of studio gear?

I would say my Neumann KH 120 studio monitors simply because they sound really good and are transparent and that helps me a lot with my mixes.

How much time do you tend to spend in the studio?

A minimum of 20 hours a week.

How do you mainly use the studio? For fun, professionally or recording bands?

I make a lot of backing tracks for singers and choirs. I also record drums and various instruments in here. I compose music for royalty free libraries too.

What is the next piece of gear on your studio shopping list?

I’d really like to get a new soundcard, something like a Universal Audio UAD Apollo, which would improve the quality of my preamps and converters.

Is there anything that annoys you about your set-up?

I would like to have a better type of sound treatment in my main room.

What is your dream piece of gear?

I’d say an API Lunchbox and various 500 series modules, because I like the possibility of loading it with various types of preamps, compressors and other modules.

What is your top production advice?

I think that you should always use reference tracks when you mix your music. And also listen your mix in different places and on different systems like your car, boombox, iPhone and so on.

What advice do you have for people building a studio?

Expensive gear is not always the solution! Use your ears.