LIPA Installs Audient Desk Into New Foley Studio

11th mars 2024


The latest recording room to be refitted at the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts (LIPA) has an ASP4816 Heritage Edition console at its heart. More compact than the rooms in the main studio block, this studio has been designed to meet several different needs. Providing extra space for students during LIPA’S busier periods was a must, as was growing the synthesiser inventory. This latest refit also includes the upgrade of the facility’s Foley capabilities.



ASP4816: “students can be up to speed with it in no time”



LIPA’s Head of Sound Technology, Jon Thornton explains the educational facility’s history with Audient. “Our two entry level studios are both based around ASP8024-HE consoles. We’ve had ASP8024s in those rooms since the console was first released – we’re now on our third consecutive pair!




ASP4816 mixing console in the new Foley room at LIPA



“Those rooms are used not only by our students studying Sound Technology, but also by Music students taking a specialism in production. As a result, they can get incredibly busy at certain times of year, so we needed an overflow. So building the studio around the ASP4816-HE was an obvious choice.”



“building the studio around the ASP4816-HE was an obvious choice”



An in-line, fully analogue recording and mixing console, the Audient ASP4816-HE provides everything expected of a large format console but in a space-friendly format. “The control room space wasn’t really large enough to house another ASP8024, but the ASP4816 is so similar in layout and signal flow, that students can be up to speed with it in no time.”






Most recently, this was home to the 5.1 post production studio, after the main post space was upgraded to Atmos. “Taking the monitoring back to stereo only, improving the acoustic treatment and equipping it with a subset of the same outboard in the main studios means that it can be used for overdubs and mixing during those extremely busy periods.”



Jon continues, “There was also clear demand from some students for a facility where they really explore synthesis and sound design beyond software synths. So the control room is now synth heaven, with a range of analogue and digital hardware synths from Sequential, Moog, Korg and Roland and all of the associated MIDI control and patching.”




LIPA’s new Foley room; also housing what is described as ‘synth heaven’



Then of course comes the strong investment in Foley. “We’ve been including Foley work in the curriculum for decades, trying to give students a very broad experience of post-production workflows. Indeed some have gone on to forge very successful careers as Foley recordists and editors for feature films, episodic television and computer games.



“the preamps on the Audient HE consoles really shine”



“We’ve never had a dedicated Foley floor with dedicated pits for different surfaces for footsteps, though. Up until now that’s all been very improvised. We took the opportunity in the refit to build such a floor. It has six pits with different surfaces (concrete, wood floor boards, solid wood, gravel / stone etc.), all of which can be covered with removable lids to give a flat floor when the room is used for other functions – (instrumental overdubs, ADR etc.).”




Audient iD44 audio interface ensures continuity of mic pres at LIPA



The new console has already proved an excellent choice according to Jon – thanks in no small part to the high-grade hybrid discrete and op amp design of the preamps. “Recording Foley needs two things. The first is a really quiet signal path and room – you’re often dealing with relatively quiet sounds that need a lot of gain. The preamps on the Audient HE consoles really shine here, adding tons of very clean gain.



“the simplicity of operation of the ASP4816-HE really helps”



“The second is speed – you need to move quickly and be ready to record almost anything in an instant. The simplicity of operation of the ASP4816-HE really helps here too.”




Audient mixing console looking bijou in the new Foley room at LIPA
ASP4816 in the latest recording room to be refitted at LIPA



Overall he’s delighted with the new room, which has housed quite a few different setups over the years since it opened in 1996 – “including Kenny Everett’s home studio at one point!” Happily, the students are just as excited about the recent refit. Speaking ahead of the studio’s debut student booking this month, Jon told us “the anticipation amongst them is palpable.”



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