“Unless you are a Tibetan Monk you have heard of Audient!” laughs John Hanna, lawyer, musician, audio engineer, entrepreneur with a voracious appetite for ‘profitable opportunities’ and all round force of nature, describing his journey to finding the ASP8024 Heritage Edition console.
After having “…used or owned a lot of different consoles” over the years, including API, a Trident Londoner, an MCI 636 and a Trident 80B (which he modified the heck out of, until it bore no resemblance to the original board), he decided to look for his dream desk further afield. Across the Atlantic to be precise, where console manufacturer Soundcraft caught his attention. “Having owned several Soundcraft Sapphyres, I followed the designers of that console which led me straight to Audient.”
Taking pride of place at the heart of Ultrasound Production Studios, Massachusetts, the current Heritage replaced his ASP8024 which up until then he was very happy with. “The Heritage has every upgrade I could ever want. This is only the second console I ever bought brand new. I love this console so much that I have told Paul Savasta at Odyssey Pro Sound [local dealer who supplied the Audient Heritage] to get ready for a second order, as I plan to install it in my house!”
“The Heritage has every upgrade I could ever want.”
Before we get to that, let’s find out what it is about this British console that John delights in. “I love the dimensions and the layout. My console is 36 channels yet I don’t have to take a train to get from channel one to 36. Big boards are cool looking, but when you are getting up and down to go from one end to the other, you don’t realise it, but you start compromising and only work in one area of the console. I feel like I am on a big board with your console…yet everything is right in front of me and always in reach.
“I love the layout and signal flow; I like the inline design and really love the colour scheme. The two colours really make things fast and easy. I love the auxes. These days you can spend fortunes on cute systems and you just do not need it with the Audient.
“I love 24 busses. One: it’s a throwback to analogue which to me is classic, but more importantly to me it’s an additional effect send if needed. It also has splittable EQ. I like the Audient EQ – it is so friggin’ flexible! I could live with the board EQ alone without a problem.
“I love the dimensions and the layout. My console is 36 channels yet I don’t have to take a train to get from channel one to 36.”
“Which brings me to the mic pre. I like the mic pre a lot. It’s natural. Pure – I like that. I am very comfortable using the mic pre’s and I have found that other than using my CAPI V28’s and Dakings for certain tones, I am all ITB, meaning …IN THE BOARD!
“Does that mean I am selling all of my other outboard gear? I wish. I don’t have the guts – simply because I am a business and I have to offer whatever a client wants. But for me the Audient is everything I need. The CAPI’s, Dakings, and API’s are icing.
“Let’s not forget the master section. You guys hit a grand slam. You can tell you must have listened to your client base, […] Amazing!”
“Oh, and let’s not forget the master section. You guys hit a grand slam. You can tell you must have listened to your client base, because from the knobs to the added iron features the console is everything you want. On my Trident API I had a mod to add iron to the two buss to do exactly what your console does. On the Sapphyre I would run the two buss into a pair of Capi’s to add that tone. You guys have it on a push of a button. Amazing!”
John kept up the music all through his studies at law school, and today he can be found at Ultrasound Productions – a studio packed with gear, which does in fact make money. “It’s getting very hard these days,” admits John. “Not so much to get clients, people still want to play and record, they just can’t justify spending the money.”
So for now, John has his dream console…or does he? “I would like to add: my next Audient will include a patchbay. I regret not having your factory bay as it is well built and well thought out.”
We’d better get ready for the call from Odyssey Pro Audio then. In the meantime, a big thank you to John Hanna for taking the time to chat to us.