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Adventures In Audio with Audio Masterclass
Recording SoftWare for Blind people. Can anybody Please help?

Allen & Heath GS3000 8-Bus Recording Console – with tubes (valves)! (part 3)

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The Channel

Reassuringly normal. That’s what many users, and virtually all analogue
enthusiasts will want me to say. And it is. The GS3000 displays classic design
and incorporates the best thinking of the last thirty years to provide a channel
strip which is as straightforward yet effective as it possibly could be in its
price range. Let me point out some of the interesting features, starting from
the top. I was pleasurably surprised to see the gain of the line input ranging
from -10dB to 40dB. The negative figure is actually of more interest because
it helps when something is coming in to the console quite hot yet needs to be
mixed at a low but accurate level. Setting the gain to a negative value allows
the fader to be higher up in its travel where it has better resolution. Unfortunately
this doesn’t extend to the tape input which is merely switchable between
+4dBu/-10dBV. The insert point is pre-EQ. On a console such as this – as I have
commented elsewhere – it should have been post-EQ, but I can live with it.

EQ, as you might see from the brochure, is of the ‘British’ variety.
Fair enough, Cornwall has been a part of Britain for as long as I can remember
so I suppose it has to be true. This term, ‘British EQ’ really goes
back a long way to the days when some Americans thought that some British consoles
had better EQ than their home grown product. Every competent console manufacturer
now knows everything there is about equalisation in a technical sense and it
is an artistic decision on what facilities, frequencies and slopes are provided.
Consoles still stand or fall by their EQ and the GS3000 can stand tall, at least
in the project studio bracket. Two mid frequency sections are offered with full
parametric control. This means that each band has controls for frequency, gain
and Q – and it’s a rotary control for Q, not a switch. Q ranges from 0.6
to 2, which still isn’t quite as low on the low side as I would like (0.3
please) but apart from that this is a good feature. Oddly enough I find that
Q is puzzling to many engineers who are otherwise very technically competent
but still on the learning curve of their career. The Q setting changes the range
of frequencies over which the other mid band controls work. A low Q means a
wide range of frequencies. I find the best way to use the Q control is to set
it as standard to a lowish value when I am zeroing the console. Then if I need
to change it, I’ll change it, but quite often I won’t need to. High
values of Q are more appropriate when drastic action of some sort is called
for, either correctively or creatively. On this console, a Q of 1 is in the
centre position of the control and it is detented, which I think is good. The
other EQ facilities include basic HF and LF controls. Here unfortunately you
don’t get a choice of frequencies, not even a switch. This is a shame,
but you can’t have everything and a reasonable price tag as well. There
is also a 100Hz low cut filter and the all-important EQ Out switch, for reducing
circuit noise (by a very slight but useful amount) when EQ isn’t needed,
and for making comparisons with the flat signal.

David Mellor

Producing Lauren Balthrop

Producing Lauren Balthrop

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David Mellor

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