Just half an hour drive from Zurich, past rolling hills and ancient forests, one would not expect to find a world-class recording and mixing facility owned and operated by one of the 500 inhabitants of the little village of Etzgen. But here is – Synphonic Studios, a three-room facility built inside an abandoned corner shop.
Synphonic founder, and principal engineer Tom Lumholtz reports, “After starting off in the basement of my parent’s house decades back, and then building my first professional studio in an industrial building, this new site is the studio’s third location. And this time I wanted to do it right.”
The facility is a full room-within-room structure, designed to provide sufficient sound isolation from the neighboring buildings, the surrounding studio rooms and the living quarters of the owner and his wife on the upper floors. The room’s design includes an elegantly curved backlit wall with soffit-mounted ADAM S5 audio monitor loudspeakers, currently the largest monitoring system by this manufacturer in Switzerland. A smaller Genelec 5.1 surround sound setup can be implemented in the control room as well. The rear wall is fitted with a special diffusor custom- mounted to integrate a Helmholtz low frequency absorber.
Additional audio equipment includes an SSL Matrix mixing console; a full ProTools HD 5 system with an armada of plug-ins; a Lexicon 960L Effects System, and for the connoisseur a fully operational Studer A827 24 track 2 inch analog tape machine, as well as refurbished Siemens/Telefunken mic pres, Studer equalizers and an AMEK Compressor.
In addition to developing the structural and room acoustics, WSDG designed the studio’s interior space. The owner contributed a bold silver couch which established an elegant style and mood for the space – A smart mix of art-déco elements and modern materialization in a classic red-black color scheme.
“We are completely delighted with the results of this project,” Tom Lumholtz notes. “The entire WSDG team did a fantastic job and the end result far exceeds our expectations. We named the studio our ‘New York Room’ in honor of WSDG’s main office. “We get tremendous feedback from our clients and friends, and despite some inevitable challenges I’m truly happy that we went all the way in terms of sonic quality.”