Your browser is out-of-date!

Update your browser to view this website correctly. Update my browser now


Downtown Studios Achieves Ultimate Flexibility with SSL Duality and AWS Consoles

“Our clients have been blown away by the remarkable clarity and depth provided by the SSLs”


– The legendary

Downtown Studios

, a world-class facility in Johannesburg, has recently undergone a major upgrade, incorporating Solid State Logic




consoles. Throughout its 36-year history, Downtown has hosted many of the industry’s leading recording artists including U2, Simon Lebon from Duran Duran, Manfred Mann and Mick Hucknell, amongst many others. The arrival of the new SSL consoles has allowed the studio to provide the highest levels of recording and mixing services to both South African and international artists.

Renamed in 1992, Downtown Studios’ story dates back to 1978 when the facility was built under the name RPM Studios. Today, the studio is an integral part of the Downtown Music Hub an entity established by the South African Department of Arts and Culture and run under the leadership of its chairperson Don Laka, a legendary South African Musician and its CEO, Chola Makgamathe. The Downtown Music Hub also provides rehearsal spaces and access to a music museum which showcases the history of South African music. Being longtime SSL users, when time came for Downtown to select two new consoles, SSL, once again, came out on top.

“The decision to upgrade Studios 1 and 3 was fuelled by the board’s desire to stand out as the number one state-of-the-art recording facility in Africa,” says Darryl Heilbrunn, General Manager of Downtown Studios. “While we considered other options, SSL’s international legacy and reputation lead us to Duality and AWS.”

The Duality’s 72 channels of dual SuperAnalogueTM and VHD microphone preamps in Studio 1 give Downtown the flexibility to record groups of any size or genre. While the more intimate Studio 3, largely used for electronic music production, takes advantage of AWS as a hybrid console/controller, catering to clients with a variety of styles of workflow.

“SSL has allowed us to fulfill our musical mandate in a big way,” continues Heilbrunn. “The Duality studio appeals to international recording artists; and the sonic consistency between the two consoles enables us to achieve the same results for electronic music on the AWS. Additionally, the sonic quality of both consoles is superb, crisp and warm. Our clients have been blown away by the remarkable clarity and depth provided by the SSLs.”

Solid State Logic is the world’s leading manufacturer of analogue and digital audio consoles and provider of creative tools for music, broadcast, live and post production professionals. For more information about our award-winning products, please visit:

Featured Articles