Jul 05, 2005



--RSA Audio Services, metro New York’s premier pro audio equipment rental house, recently augmented its inventory with the purchase of a new pair of 48-mono-/four-stereo-channel Soundcraft MH3 desks. According to Leon Esker, RSA founder and president, the two MH3s are simply the first in what will eventually be a total of six identical consoles purchased to replace aging desks from several other manufacturers.

“We’ve chosen to standardize on the second largest configuration of the MH3 because it basically offers everything we need in a board of that size – VCAs, muting capabilities, user-friendliness, client acceptability, and an economical price tag,” says Esker. “Also, the fact that these boards can do monitors and house sound equally well is a big plus inventory-wise.

“Everyone seems to really like the MH3, including a lot of engineers who have never previously mixed on it because it’s still a relatively new console. I’m not at all surprised by the positive response, though, because it really has a big board feel to it. When we first saw the MH3 on a demo, we felt that it really rose above a lot of the other desks we were considering at the time, and, so far, it’s worked out very well for us.”

Esker reflects on his earlier experiences with Soundcraft, “Years ago, we used to own quite a few Soundcrafts,” he recalls, “including the original 800 and 800B and 500s. We paid more for those boards back in 1985 than we’re paying for this board now, and this one has twice the features of the 800B, which had no VCAs, mute groups, or anything like that. Those were features that were found only on our Series 4s that we paid $50,000 for. It’s just amazing. Obviously, Soundcraft is not the only one taking advantage of economies of scale and the technology to be able to do this, but they seem to be the ones that are leading the pack. Over the years, Soundcraft has, in my opinion, learned to incorporate the best features and functionality for the price.”

Among the new MH3s shows so far have been Supper Club gigs for Faith Evans. Psychedelic Furs, Bright Eyes and Jet, Town Hall performances by Marianne Faithful and Blind Boys of Alabama, Keith Sweat and Atlantic Star at the Beacon Theatre, and miscellaneous shows by Jefferson Starship, Fountains of Wayne, Guided by Voices and many others.

A short list of RSA’s regular clients include the Hammerstein Ballroom, Roseland Ballroom, Beacon Theatre, Radio City Music Hall, Madison Square Garden, Continental Airlines Arena, Nassau Coliseum, and a variety of sheds and theaters booked by Clear Channel.

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