909? Check. DJ setup? Check. Winnie The Pooh keyboard? Check. Italian techno don Markantonio Picone shows us around his studio.
Markantonio – My Studio
My first studio was at home. Then, since 2009 I’ve been working in a professional studio in Naples. It is placed in a modern business building on the second floor, and it is inside a big space which also has two other studios and a booking agency. My studio room is situated in the centre of the warehouse. It doesn’t have such a lot of acoustic treatment, but with four kinds of monitors I can obtain what I need in terms of acoustic perception.
This classic drum machine from Roland has been in my studio since the beginning, as one of my first tools. Actually I use it to make drum loops with the internal step sequencer, then I record into my DAW to process them with plugins and other gear. The fun thing is to keep the manual skill of using this drum machine, treating the original analogue sound in a modern way.
Genelec 1032 A
I’ve used this pair of monitors since 2001, and this is the reason why I left my home studio, at the ‘suggestion’ of my neighbour…
It was impossible to use these speakers in an apartment without super expensive soundproofing. The largesse, the transparency and the frequency response of these high-level monitors are the reasons why I love them.
Yamaha NS-10s & Logitech Z623
The NS-10 monitors from Yamaha represent a standard in recording studios all over the world. The particularity of the paper woofer gives precise harmonic frequencies. I use the NS-10s to obtain a correct listening in flat mode. That allows me to cut possible errors in the mid-high frequencies and tonalities.
The Logitech Z623 is used as a final reference, to test the tracks as in normal home hi-fi listening.
U-He is a famous software house, really known for the quality of its virtual synths, such as Diva, whose warm synths and leads I use a lot in my tracks. You can find an example of what I mean in my track ‘Muzica’, included in the EP Nasty, which has a particular lead riff that is typical of this virtual synthesiser.
Creamware A16 Ultra – RME Fireface 802 – SPL Mixdream 2384
The way I use to route the audio signal is a little bit different, because all my DAW audio signal goes through my RME soundcard to the A16 converter in optical ADAT, and then the signal goes out in analogue way to the MixDream. In this way I can take advantage of the power of the digital to analogue conversion using the A16, and then I can mix all the sixteen analogue channels into a warmer stereo summing as the SPL is.
The most amusing part of my studio is certainly my console. In this corner my DJ side takes form. I still have lots of fun doing long DJ sessions in my studio, while I’m testing new tracks to play during the weekend. I also use it to test my productions in a DJ way, and how they sound with other tracks.
Bontempi Winnie The Pooh
This is the first instrument I gave to my daughter when she was three. Since she’s not using it anymore I decided to ‘adopt’ it in my studio. Looking at it makes me feel like she’s in the studio with me.