5020 Studios, the latest addition to Florida’s music scene, has officially opened for business with a 32-channel Neve® BCM10/2 Mk2 console as its centrepiece. This exceptional console – the largest of its type in the world – was chosen for its legendary Neve sound and straightforward studio integration.
“The Neve BCM10/2 Mk2 is a thoroughly modern console with a vintage soul,” says Latin GRAMMY Award-winning producer and engineer Adrian Morales-Demori, who heads up the new facility. “It is much more than just a functional console. It is a thing of beauty – the Rolls Royce of consoles. It sounds great, it is amazing for recording and mixing but it is also really straightforward to operate.”
Housed in 15,000 square feet of prime Miami real estate, 5020 Studios has three studios, multiple writing rooms and the first Sony 360RA mixing room in Miami for their new immersive audio format. An open loft area below the studios has also been transformed into a large multi-purpose space for performances, photo and video shoots, meetings, special events, etc. This tie-lined to all of the studios using a dedicated Dante network, so that artists can record and/or stream live performances using all the studio tools.
Spearheaded by Sony Music Latin, under the leadership of Afo Verde (Sony Music Latin Chairman & CEO Latin America, Spain and Portugal) and Rafa Arcaute (Sony Music Vice President, A&R Latin America, Spain and Portugal), the studio represents their continued commitment to their mission statement; to be “La Casa Del Artista” (The Home for the Artists), by creating a space that will become the automatic creative vortex for artists to fulfil all their needs and provide the tools to capture and deliver their vision at the highest quality possible.
Morales-Demori, A&R Studio Operations Manager, says: “5020 Studios is the jewel in Sony Music Latin’s crown – not just because it is one of the biggest facilities the company operates, but also because it is truly state of the art and breaks a lot of new ground in terms of the technology we are deploying, to attract and excite our artists as much as songwriters, producers and engineers alike.”
The fact that 5020 Studios exists at all is a major achievement, given that its design and construction took place during the Covid-19 pandemic. Sony took over the premises in early 2020 and appointed Horacio Malvicino and Fabiola Mena, partners of the Malvicino Design Group, to handle the design, build and systems integration of the studios. But within a week, Covid had forced everyone into lockdown and actual building work couldn’t start until the end of last year.
“We had to plan everything online via endless conference calls and that really made us think outside of the box in terms of design,” Morales-Demori says. “We did plenty of 3D renders and a lot of decisions were made on the back of these, so that when we finally started the construction, we were able to complete the project very quickly because all the guesswork had been removed.”
Malvicino, who was struck down by the virus early on in the pandemic but thankfully made a full recovery, adds: “Once work began, we completed the entire project in just four months. We pre-wired all the patch bays ahead of time and spent 12 days installing them. The desk was installed in January and we spent a few days of testing it. Over the 40 years I’ve been involved in studio design and construction I have installed over 100 Neve consoles, so I know exactly what I am doing. The BCM10/2 Mk2 board is very straightforward and presented no problems. I was able to prewire everything before we even got on site, which certainly made the job faster.”
Neve staff, says Malvicino, were very happy to consult, both before and during the installation. “I’ve known the company for so long that most of the technical team are old friends,” he laughs.
Neve’s BCM10/2 Mk 2 builds upon the design of the classic 1960s BCM10 – the ultimate tracking console for many of the world’s top studios and a desk whose distinctive sound can be heard on countless recording spanning the past five decades.
When designing the modern BCM10/2 Mk2, Neve engineers painstakingly reverse-engineered the classic BCM10, following its Class A topology and sourcing original components to ensure that it delivered the same legendary Neve sound. Modern routing and monitoring options were introduced to bring it bang up to date for use in today’s DAW-focused studios and, of course, 1073N mic preamp and EQ modules were installed on every channel.
“When I proposed to my boss, Rafa Arcaute, a Neve console for the studio, with 32 channels of 1073®, he immediately understood why,” Morales-Demori says. “He’s a multi-GRAMMY Award-winning producer and composer in his own right so he has the musicality and knowledge to appreciate the importance of Neve’s legendary sound. That trust in Neve’s name and reputation is very important to us and this is a relationship that we want to build on in the future.”
Rafa Arcaute adds: “At the studio, nothing is more important than the console; is a fundamental section of the flow for the creative input chain produced around the work. In Argentina, Germany, Spain, Mexico or anywhere in the world, it is a warranty of excellence finding AMS Neve equipment. We are grateful to have the 32 Channel neve BCM10/2 Mk2, the biggest in the world, as our creative hub 5020’s centre, lung and heart.”
The two other rooms at 5020 Studios are set up with 1073 mic preamps and so that the same high quality signal path and sound translates throughout the building, making it easy to move work from one room to another. The facility also has a portable 1073OPX, which makes it easy to maximize the Neve sound on the entire property using its Dante network.
“If you work here, you know you are getting the best in all of our rooms,” Morales-Demori says. “It’s not a question of one room being better than another because they’re all great.”
Since opening the studio, Adrian Morales-Demori says there has been a lot of interest from producers and artists who are keen to book a session and try out the new facilities. He is excited about the future and believes that 5020 Studios will become a game changer for Sony Music, the city of Miami and the music industry in general to become a respected brand in its own right.
About AMS Neve
AMS Neve engineers have pioneered the greatest proportion of the ground-breaking techniques in the professional audio industry. Just a few examples of “world firsts” are moving fader automation, hard disk editing, digital console technology, digital audio for film, microprocessor-controlled effects units and standards such as MADI.
The most discerning artists, producers and facility owners regard AMS Neve products as No. 1 for desirability on their equipment list and have done so for the past fifty years.
Recognised by all the premier bodies in the various fields of music, TV and film, the products and their designers have been honoured by two Scientific and Engineering Academy® Awards, an Emmy™ and a Grammy™ amongst many others.
All AMS Neve products are designed and built in-house at the company’s Headquarters in Burnley, England. For more information please visit: http://www.ams-neve.com