Texas, USA - Firefly Sound Studios is located in the beautiful Hill Country region of Texas, equidistant between Austin and San Antonio. Part of the growing Studios At Fischer media development, Firefly is a purpose-built facility, with acoustics by Steven Durr Designs, designed to service the large local music and media economy. "Austin is sometimes referred to as the 'Third Coast' and the live music capital of the world," explains Lisa Damuth Snow, Production and Marketing Director for Studios at Fischer. "There is an expanding pool of accomplished producers, engineers and production companies - supporting both the music and film industries.
"This facility was built from the ground up as a recording and soundstage studio, not a renovated warehouse or home. It is literally built into the side of a limestone hill which gives control and seclusion."
The main live room is an 800 square foot space with 24 foot ceilings, loft area, and a vintage Yamaha C7 concert piano with an impressive celebrity provenance. Steve Hennig, Studio Manager, comments: "It’s a really good size room; you've got five different areas and because of the treatments they all sound different... It's a very clever design. We could probably track at least 10 to 12 musicians in there."
This approach to studio design means that even the architecture of Firefly encourages creativity - a foundation built upon with an equally discerning attitude to technology.
As part of the development of Firefly, Hennig spent a lot of time specifying a wide range of both vintage and state-of-the-art equipment for the two control rooms, each with a view on to the main live area. Control A has a vintage Rupert Neve A-1033 console, while Control B has a new 48 channel SSL Duality δelta Pro-Station console with both Stereo and 5.1 monitoring from ATC and Steve Durr Designs.
According to Hennig, the Duality perfectly complements the no-compromise studio design, the wide range of equipment, and the broader Studios at Fischer facilities. Flexibility is key, so a SuperAnalogueTM console with surround sound support, DAW control, Total Recall, and - with δelta-Control - two distinct approaches to automation, fits in well. "It's fast, it's quiet, it's just perfect," Hennig notes. "The automation on that system just gets better and better."
Combined with the sound stage, motion capture and video production facilities, and a new performing arts center planned for the near future, Firefly Sound Studio is in a unique position "We want to bring some of that Nashville business out here - the major labels," continues Hennig. "But we also want to create a brand of our own content - hopefully a TV show at some point, and music videos for artists that we are going to be producing... It's a new adventure."