California Jazz Conservatory Teaches ‘Proper Signal Flow’ with Audient
California Jazz Conservatory Teaches ‘Proper Signal Flow’ with Audient
August 29, 2023 | CJC in the News

California Jazz Conservatory Teaches ‘Proper Signal Flow’ with Audient

Head of the California Jazz Conservatory’s Audio Production Dept, Reto Peter is keen to encourage more students to “catch the recording bug and take recording classes”.  A new studio, operational since last semester is helping him realise this vision. With an Audient ASP4816 mixing console at its heart, Reto is confident that this new setup will kickstart a new era for his department.

“professional layout, good sounding preamps and compact design”

“The CJC is a small school and while the Audio Production Department has been around for some years, it has been slow to grow and establish itself,” he says. Generous funding from the Klezmer family and WordPress enabled the California Jazz Conservatory to transform its existing classrooms into a fully-equipped recording studio ideal for visiting artists, faculty and students alike.

 

Head shot of Reto Peter, 'audio guy' smiling whislt sitting in a studio setting
Reto Peter, Head of the California Jazz Conservatory’s Audio Production Dept                                         Photo by Ed Clare

Primarily used for teaching and school projects, the CJC recording studio consists of a control room that also serves as an audio lab. There are eight DAW stations, a live room (also used as an ensemble room) and two rehearsal booths that are used as ISO rooms.

“I ran all the instruments through the Audient and the tones we got were fantastic”

Chosen because of its “compact and inline layout” the Audient ASP4816 has already been working out well for CJC. Reto explains, “To teach the students proper signal flow, we opted for the ASP4816, an analogue console, to take advantage of its professional layout, good sounding preamps and compact design to be our centrepiece. We have another eight outboard preamps to make the studio a 24 input/output configuration.

“The clear layout of the channel strips helps visualise and demonstrate signal flow and routing much better,” he says.

Some lecture notes lying nonchalantly on the ASP4816 mixing console by Audient
The Audient ASP4816 mixing console at California Jazz Conservatory

Reto himself is a Grammy® and TEC Award-winning producer/mixer and has been making records for over 25 years in Europe, NYC and the San Francisco Bay Area. He is credited on Gold and Platinum albums by Green Day, Modest Mouse, The Counting Crows, Flipsyde and many chart-topping artists from his native Switzerland.

“The quality of the recordings has been great!”

Using the new studios at CJC he has done a VO project for a Planetarium film for the Berkeley Lawrence Lab, as well as recording various student projects outside class. Most recently he has been working on a student ensemble recording of drums, bass, piano & tenor saxophone. “We will be mixing the recordings next month. I ran all the instruments through the Audient and the tones we got were fantastic.”

Feedback from the students and other staff since its installation has been very positive, too: “The quality of the recordings has been great!”

 

Shot of a student working at ASP4816 mixing console at CJC taken from the side showing a big ol' roll of masking tape in the foreground
Student working at ASP4816 mixing console at California Jazz Conservatory

Reto has big plans for the future. “For the fall semester we will continue to integrate the studio offerings into class curriculums to make sure students can take full advantage of our facilities. We hope to record many student projects, arrangements and final projects in the coming semesters.”

Recommendation for the British desk came from adjunct faculty member, Dan Feiszli and the Women’s Audio Mission. With two ASP8024s now installed at the nearby San Francisco facility (the first way back in 2015) they too are very pleased with their choice. WAM Executive Director Terri Winston said, “Having these two amazing consoles has made WAM’s studio complex in San Francisco a world-class recording destination.”

 

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