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Huddersfield University hits the right note with music students after “significant” investment

Professional audio manufacturer Audient Heritage equipment used to ensure students "get the best experience” in class

Professional audio manufacturer Audient Heritage equipment used to ensure students “get the best experience” in class

Students at the University of Huddersfield are reaping the benefits of a major investment into its Music Tech Department, with the purchase and installation of a new A 48-channel Audient ASP8024 Heritage Edition professional recording console.

The equipment, worth around £25,000, is designed to provide students of Music Technology & Audio Systems BSc(Hons), Popular Music BSc(Hons) and Popular Music Production BA(Hons) with the “best” digital experience.

Music Technology Technical Team Leader, Ben Evans was part of the team that specified the “supersized desk”, which comes complete with patchbay and producers desk, and appreciated it from the start. “The integrated patchbay took a lot of the hassle out of installation and is really well laid out. This meant we had the desk up and running very quickly after delivery,” – an important factor when the beginning of term looms. “Staff and students have all been impressed when they see the console,” he adds. “It really has the wow factor!

“Students love the work flow of the desk, and have responded well to the learning curve of moving from a digital setup where everything is hidden in menus, to a work flow where everything is in front of them. It has really enthused the students to spend more time in the studios and to get the best out of the desk, experimenting with things like driving the pres and utilising the bus compressor.”

Evans says that the decision to go for the super-sized Heritage, supplied by studio design and build experts Studio People, is part of a longer term plan. “We purchased in time to help promote and launch our new courses starting in September 2018,” citing Sound Engineering & Music Production BSc(Hons) and Audio Engineering BSc(Hons) as examples of the new suite of courses.

The fact that Heritage is an analogue console was of paramount importance. “Analogue consoles are part of the classic work flow in recording studios which is still preferred by the world top producers working in the best studios. Teaching on an analogue desk is very important as it equips the students with industry skills that are transferrable from one console – and studio – to another. To get hands-on experience on a large form analogue desk is something you can’t do easily at home in your bedroom!” says Evans, pleased to report that some 150-200 students will be getting that experience with Audient at the University of Huddersfield this year.

Indeed there are another four highly spec’d analogue recording studios fully stocked with rack gear, as well as a further four surround sound production studios, a foley studio, radio studio and a live music production room with a large FoH PA system. These are the result of significant investment in the music technology department this year, making this “an exciting time for the university as the campus and facilities continue to develop and expand,” according to Evans. “With this new equipment they will get the best experience!”