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What are those huge racks in studios?
Last post Mon, Dec 21 2020 by agitato, 5 replies.
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Posted on Fri, Dec 18 2020 20:17
by agitato
Joined on Mon, Jun 22 2015, Posts 444

Some valuable words of wisdom from the master HZ? https://youtu.be/GDJeo67LqWA 

(just trying to get the attention of Errikos :))

Coming to my main question, looking at studios like the one on the video, I've always been (genuinely) curious as to what these racks and racks of equipment are for? I thought all that was needed to make fancy orchestral music these days was a simple sound card and a computer, but then I don't do this for a living so I'm rather naive. Is each one of those 'things'  a server dedicated to each sample library and all of them are networked? audio interfaces and amplifiers? 

But then, when looking at John William' 'studio' I realize we dont even need a computer to make the most memorable film music of our times; https://thelegacyofjohnwilliams.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/jw-office_1997.jpg (I must admit I can stare at this pic for hours, imagining him going back and forth between the piano and the drawing board next to it and hearing those great orchestral scores)

I guess there is not just one way to make music.

Happy and Safe holidays to everyone!


Anand Kumar
Posted on Sat, Dec 19 2020 09:27
by Fabio Biolcati
Joined on Tue, Aug 06 2013, Posts 198

In this case, many are synthesizers.
HZ had its huge modular embedded into furniture in this very room.
I prefer William's office.

Fabio Biolcati
SE1 Bundle, SE2&3 Strings; Notion5; Tannoy Reveal 501a
Posted on Sat, Dec 19 2020 10:34
by jasensmith
Joined on Tue, Jan 15 2008, Arizona, Posts 1582

Actually, I think my studio looks more like Williams' than HZ's.  Instead of the drawing board however I have a computer and instead of the Piano I have a keyboard.

But Zimmer looks like he's sitting on the bridge of the Starship Enterprise for God's sake.  A lot of those banks look like old analog equipment.  His studio is reminiscent of the so-called synth pioneers' studios back in the day.  Musicians like Wendy Carlos, Kraftwerk, Tangerine Dream and Suzanne Ciani with these huge wall units and a spaghetti of wires running everywhere. Remember, back in the early 70's, a sequencer was about the size of one of those wall units Zimmer has and before the Mini Moog a regular Moog synthesizer had a switchboard of patchworks which cost about as much as a small house. Ironically, many of the aforementioned pioneers are, or have already, switched to softsynth libraries of legacy analog synths while the younger kids are trying to get their hands on those cumbersome analog banks of hardware gear.

But you know I bet Williams' piano probably cost more than Zimmer's banks but well worth it I'm sure. Just saying.     

"If at first you don't succeed, try, try again. Then quit. There's no point in being a damn fool about it."
- W.C. Fields
Posted on Sun, Dec 20 2020 09:33
by Errikos
Joined on Tue, Jun 12 2007, Posts 1115

Hello everyone!

I am so very rarely on the forum these days, I somehow ended up here, probably through registering Anand's invocation subconsciously.

My reaction to the subject forwarded is "How can one do so little with so very much (equipment)?!", and the opposite goes for John Williams (who needs none).

I also dug up my favourite video of the drone guru expatiating on his profound understanding of tertian harmony. Unfortunately, but understandably, the video has since become 'private'. I post the URL here for your viewing pleasure, in case you manage to hack through (it's worth it!):


If you can't notate/MIDI it yourself, it's NOT your music!

In these modern days to be vulgar, illiterate, common and vicious, seems to give a man a marvelous infinity of rights that his honest fathers never dreamed of. - Oscar Wilde
Posted on Mon, Dec 21 2020 17:37
by agitato
Joined on Mon, Jun 22 2015, Posts 444

I always know the right invocation to call Errikos :)

That link doesnt work for me either unfortunately. So unless I seek some Russian help in hacking I'll have to miss our Guru's words of wisdom about tertian harmony and resort to my harmony books. 


Anand Kumar
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