Apr 05, 2007

Music Venues

The Biggest Little Club In Brooklyn Adds Urei To The Mix

--Located in the south side of Brooklyn’s artistic Williamsburg neighborhood is a small club with a very big sound. Partners Jason Radich, Dave Rosen and James Tadic opened the doors to Savalas (think “who loves ya, baby?”) in 2004 and its loyal and eclectic clientele have made it the area’s benchmark ever since.

More than just a bar, but less pretentious than a big city club, Savalas has an edgy, inviting lounge feel. Patrons cite plenty of reasons for the club’s success, be it the diverse crowd, the cool and comfy décor, the friendly and attentive staff, unique cocktails featuring homemade infused vodka, or conversation and people-watching from the awning-covered front porch, but the real draw of Savalas is the sound.

There is no official dance floor per se, but the uninhibited crowd fills the club’s open floor space nightly, energized by the area’s hippest DJs spinning organic tracks from a fusion of any number of musical styles. Widely regarded as one of the best places for New York DJs, Savalas has an independent, progressive sound where the DJs freely rule.

Last summer, a Urei 1603 club mixer was installed as part of the Savalas house system. Dave Rosen, who is a DJ himself, has a special appreciation for the mixer, “As a club owner I really appreciate the fact that this unit is so solidly built and can handle a lot of abuse, and as a DJ I think it has a really intelligent design. It’s a simple mixer without the onboard effects and other controls, which I think are unnecessary and ultimately complicate some mixers. The knobs and controls for the booth monitoring system are laid out well, and I also really like the effects routing.”

Another design feature that impressed Rosen was the location of the effects input on the front panel instead of the back. “Urei really took into consideration the needs of the DJ, not only from a sound perspective but from a practical usability and layout perspective,” he says. “Allowing DJs to plug in to the front without having to touch any of the house lines saves a lot of headaches.” Also adding to its versatility is the fact that the 1603 has a rear connector that can be rotated to allow for tabletop or rack mount installation.

“In my opinion,” Rosen offers, “one of the best and most unique features of the 1603 is the layout of the EQ knobs. The zero position for EQ is at 2:00 on the knob, whereas most mixers have it at 12:00, which isn’t practical because the curve for minus dB level is from zero to -80 while the plus is from zero to six. Urei has laid it out so you have much more room for the minus section of your turn. They really put a lot of thought into it and we get a lot of positive feedback from our DJs on that feature.”

In addition to the Urei 1603, the Savalas house system includes four Technics 1200 turntables, a Rane Empath mixer, equalizers and crossovers, four Crown amps and a variety of custom handmade speakers.

Rosen sums it up well, “Of course in the end it all comes down to the sound and I think that the sound of our system is enormous and we are very proud of it. Urei is known worldwide for its great sound quality and they certainly live up to it in this mixer.”

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