Whether you're a musician, a freelance engineer, or a record producer, this will help you select a recording or mastering studio for your next project. Right now it is focused on the Northwest and Western USA/Canada, but the database is open-ended and easy to expand. If you own a recording or mastering studio in the states of WA, OR, ID, MT, HI, Northern Cal, or BC Canada, you are invited to list all the basics about your studio here for FREE. Hopefully the FAQ below will answer your questions.
Why is this necessary?
Hints and tips for a successful search
How do I get my studio listed?
Why isn't my geographical area included?
Guidelines for submissions
How do I update or revise the data for my studio?
SUBMIT RECORDING STUDIO INFO
SUBMIT MASTERING STUDIO INFO
Here's the philosophy/rationale: As a freelance producer/engineer since 1986, I travel quite a bit. Sometimes, when offered a recording gig in another city, I am asked "What studio would you like to use?" To which I often reply, "....er..." because I've never been there before. I'd call and try to get word-of-mouth recommendations from various contacts, but in the back of my mind I always knew that there were probably loads of other studios in that area but I had NO WAY TO FIND OUT ABOUT 'EM. Yeah, I suppose I could have gotten a yellow-pages for that city (easier now with the web) and called every studio listed and played twenty-questions, assuming I could even get anyone on the phone, but there should be an easier way.
Studios advertise locally in printed publications, and some print brochures which they will send on request, and most have websites, but there exists no way to easily find, organize and compare all this info. There had to be something better, and I figured I could start right here in my own area and do something about it. Not being a studio owner myself, but having worked in a zillion studios in ten countries by now, I figured I was as qualified as anyone to do this; at least I know the difference between an NS-10 and an NS-10M.
Personally, I need recording studios to exist so I can continue to have a freelance engineering/producing career. To exist, they need business. To get business, people need to be able to find them. What is really useful is new business from outside the area. When I find out what people are paying for in other cities, I think, "Heck, they should come here and record." Now maybe they will.
Recordingstudiosearch.com is an online database of recording studios (and, now, mastering studios as well) from the greater Pacific Northwest area (so far!). This ain't Google (heck, it's better!) but if you read the hints and tips (below) you should be able to find whatever you're looking for.
You'll notice that the visual layout is pretty terse. My goal: maximum density of information and ease of use, and most importantly, monitor and browser compatibility, so there's no fancy graphics, no waiting for huge pages to render or huge flash files to download. It is not intended to supercede a studio's own website; it's just a search tool. (But, hey, if you don't have your own studio site, at least this is something.)
I've tested the site pretty extensively for compatibility, on Macs/PCs/Linux. I ain't saying it's flawless though. Bugs should be reported to me. (Please mention browser version and operating system.) But first, be sure and Read This.
Searching for a recording or mastering studio in a particular city or area of the Northwest or Western USA/Canada? Searching for one with your favorite piece of gear? Wanna know which studios the Posies recorded at, or who has a Studer 24-track machine? Now you can find out. The steps:
1. Choose the geographical area ("choose search region") you are interested in, then
2. Choose a search category, then
3. Enter your search term, such as a studio name, a make or model of multitrack machine, number of tracks, kind of mixing board, band names, city names, brand of monitors, microphone model number, whatever you're looking for... as long as it makes sense in the category you selected. Then...
4. Click on [SEARCH]. Results will be listed in the left frame as clickable links. Click on one, and details for that studio will appear in the right frame.
5. To skip the search term and categories and just view all the studios listed for an area, select an area and click on [LIST ENTIRE AREA].
Try it, it's easy. Some other points:
* CAPITAL letters and dashes [-] are ignored, and partial search terms work fine: searching for "maHA" or "s10" or "NS-1" under "Monitor Speakers" will show every studio with Yamaha NS10 monitors; searching for "ouNdgA" under "Clients/Bands" will show studios Soundgarden recorded at, at least until some band named "Oundga" comes along and screws everything up.
* On the other hand, whatever phrase you do enter will be treated as a single, long search term. There are no plans to accommodate multiple search terms, phrases in quotation marks, boolean searches (AND/NOT/OR etc), or any of that fancy web portal stuff. This ain't Google; keeping it simple keeps it quick.
* If you click on a studio's direct website link, a new window will open for it, but this search engine's window (with your last search term and list of results) will remain intact under it.
* The [VIEW PRINTABLE] button opens a new window from which you can print a basic spec sheet for a studio. If for some reason you can't print right now from your browser or computer, just save it as an HTML file or a generic text file which you can print at a later time. Close the PRINTABLE window, and this search engine page should still be there under it.
There's one more "hidden" feature. If you don't know what geographical area in the search engine a particular small town is listed with, choose the search category "City,Town,Neighborhood", enter the name of the small town, and click "Search". It will tell you where that town is listed, and switch to that database.
* Two things you won't see are the street address of each studio, and the hourly rates. My view, and that of many studio owners, is that publishing the studio's street address is an invitation to a robbery; they prefer to screen prospective clients over the phone first. And "official" studio hourly rates are about as meaningful as the "official" price on a new car or a piece of stereo gear: merely useful starting points in determining the real price that will be charged, which can depend on many things... Hey, it's just Economics 101, folks, that's just how it is in the studio biz. You usually call and talk (haggle) with a (gasp!) human. Enjoy.
I believe this info is important to have available and I will maintain it myself; all you have to do is submit an update whenever you want to change something in the listing, like new equipment, clients or staff. I will enter the new info as soon as I can, the only exception being if I am on the other side of the globe for a few weeks with a flaky internet connection. Of course, I'll even delete your free listing on request if you don't want to be part of this at all.
There's online submission forms that you can use to submit a listing; one for recording studios, and one for mastering studios. Fill it in and follow the instructions. You may be amused at the data-posting method, but it's completely fool-proof.
My original focus was the Pacific Northwest, because that's the area I know first-hand, and where the studio people know me. I'll probably stick with that.
If you're located in a Northwest or Western region I have not included yet (Alberta, Alaska, Nevada, whatever) I can add another region pretty easily; just ask me. Why no L.A.? 'Cuz there's probably over 1000 studios there, the highest concentration of studios in the world. The technology I used for this website can not yet deal with that much data, nor would I personally have time to maintain it if it could! They don't need my help. Why Northern California then? Cuz MIX Magazine (based in LA) persists in calling that "Northwest" and lumping it in with Seattle! And I like SF. Why Arizona? Cuz some of my TapeOp friends are based there, no other reason!
Keep it reasonably short, please. List things briefly, just brands and model numbers for instance, and leave the minute details for your own website. You can assume a certain degree of intelligence in this site's users.
Go to the search engine and list the existing data for your studio. It appears in the right frame as always. Scroll it down all the way. See the tiny "Update" link at the bottom? Click it and follow the instructions. The updated data will not appear in the database until I receive it and can verify the source; it might even take me a few 'days' (weeks?) if I'm in the middle of some mixing-deadline-hell, for instance. You understand, surely...!
SUBMIT RECORDING STUDIO INFO
SUBMIT MASTERING STUDIO INFO
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