Owner of Studio Bohemo, Wes Chapmon, in New Hampshire, USA, says he finally realised what had been lacking in the studio after running a mix on his new ASP4816 that he’d been working on with his digital system.

“The sound is alive, revealing and much easier to work with,’ he says. This “intangible’ difference was offered by the console from British manufacturer, Audient. “The ASP4816 was a big shift for us,’ he admits, having used a digital desk previously, running 4 96k I/O cards to 2-Lynx AES16 cards on the computer side. “We normally set this up in two layers for 24-24bit/96k ins and 24-24bit/96k outs. Before, we were locked in at 24bit/96k and we usually worked at 24/48 for higher track counts and resources. Now we are not limited by the console and are running everything to and from two Lynx Aurora16 converters that are capable of much higher sample rates and fidelity.’

The time to revert to his “analog roots’ had been approaching for some time, confesses Chapmon, the son of an engineer and a classical pianist. “I was always surrounded by music: two pianos going and a healthy diet of microphones and recording gear. I grew up listening to works created on analog equipment; creating and mixing music on analog equipment,’ he says. The final straw came when re-listening to a couple of tracks he’d recorded years ago on an analog desk that ’planted the seeds of discontent with our digital set up.’

Audient’s compact ASP4816 desk, which with the key features of a larger desk and fully-featured inline architecture, certainly fulfilled his desire for his studio to have an analog heart. “I want a clear and audible shift in the sound so I can make clear and artistic decisions without second guessing or wasting valuable time with “maybe this plug-in or maybe that emulation’. What makes a great EQ is one that with a well-recorded sound can twist it through all the bands and frequencies and shapes, make it sound radically different – yet musical – and potentially useful in every permutation.’

Kramer adds that Audient is one of the few companies to understand the importance of having dynamics processing between the preamp and AD converters and get it right, as seen through the product line, especially the iD22 and ASP880. In true Bohemian style, he is content living “in the now’ and is hugely driven by his latest endeavours with his new console.

“I’m always proud of the artists that put themselves in that personally vulnerable place behind a microphone because of some compulsion to bring art and beauty into the world, whatever the outcome, that always blows me away.’