ProSoundWeb Community

Sound Reinforcement - Forums for Live Sound Professionals - Your Displayed Name Must Be Your Real Full Name To Post In The Live Sound Forums => HistoryOfConcertSound.org => Topic started by: duane massey on June 24, 2021, 07:07:08 PM

Title: Sliders in consoles
Post by: duane massey on June 24, 2021, 07:07:08 PM
Idle curiosity: when did sliders become commonplace in live mixing consoles?
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Landon Lewsaw on June 24, 2021, 10:18:24 PM
Funny that came up on a podcast I was listening to today.  The guy being interviewed from Silverfish Audio said they had Ashly consoles (who knew?) in '79 that had 100mm faders and that was a pretty new thing.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Mac Kerr on June 24, 2021, 10:43:03 PM
Funny that came up on a podcast I was listening to today.  The guy being interviewed from Silverfish Audio said they had Ashly consoles (who knew?) in '79 that had 100mm faders and that was a pretty new thing.

Not that new. I remember Pete Erskine and I max'ing out all our credit cards at Manny's Music on 48th St to buy a couple of PM1000 consoles in '76. We used them on the Chrysler new car launch that summer. The PM1000 was not the first console with linear faders, certainly Stephenson and others predate them.

Mac
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Chris Hindle on June 25, 2021, 12:06:21 AM
Not that new. I remember Pete Erskine and I max'ing out all our credit cards at Manny's Music on 48th St to buy a couple of PM1000 consoles in '76. We used them on the Chrysler new car launch that summer. The PM1000 was not the first console with linear faders, certainly Stephenson and others predate them.

Mac
I remember mixing on a Soundcraft Series one. Wasn't that born around 1974?
It was the first mixer I used with faders.
At the time I had a Yamaha EM-35(?), 6 channel with rotary pots.
Chris.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: MikeHarris on June 25, 2021, 01:24:56 AM
Mom's Wholesome Audio used Duncan slide faders...Stevenson Interface..one or two Gately mixers.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Ike Zimbel on June 25, 2021, 10:57:05 AM
Not that new. I remember Pete Erskine and I max'ing out all our credit cards at Manny's Music on 48th St to buy a couple of PM1000 consoles in '76. We used them on the Chrysler new car launch that summer. The PM1000 was not the first console with linear faders, certainly Stephenson and others predate them.

Mac
This is a quibble, but the PM-1000 (also the first console I used with sliders, ca. 1978) actually has a very clever arrangement of a rotary pot controlled by the slider mechanism. IIRC, there's a gear on the pot shaft and a toothed belt that is connected to the slider.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Mac Kerr on June 25, 2021, 11:19:02 AM
This is a quibble, but the PM-1000 (also the first console I used with sliders, ca. 1978) actually has a very clever arrangement of a rotary pot controlled by the slider mechanism. IIRC, there's a gear on the pot shaft and a toothed belt that is connected to the slider.

Yes, there were a few consoles of that era that used belt driven rotary pots controlled by a slider. Quality rotary pots were easier to source (and cheaper) than the same quality in a linear pot. Penny & Giles were the high priced spread of the day.

Mac
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: John Roberts {JR} on June 25, 2021, 11:29:25 AM
Yes, there were a few consoles of that era that used belt driven rotary pots controlled by a slider. Quality rotary pots were easier to source (and cheaper) than the same quality in a linear pot. Penny & Giles were the high priced spread of the day.

Mac
Yup, IIRC P&Gs were like $20 each back in the 70s, modern slide pots are more like $0.20....

Those old rotary pots were hermetically sealed and robust, modern sliders and rotaries have both gotten cheaper.

JR
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Ivan Beaver on June 25, 2021, 12:48:39 PM
Yes, there were a few consoles of that era that used belt driven rotary pots controlled by a slider. Quality rotary pots were easier to source (and cheaper) than the same quality in a linear pot. Penny & Giles were the high priced spread of the day.

Mac
My first half decent console was a Biamp 2442.  I replaced all of the faders with P&G.  They were MUCH better than the stock faders.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Steve-White on June 25, 2021, 01:42:33 PM
My first half decent console was a Biamp 2442.  I replaced all of the faders with P&G.  They were MUCH better than the stock faders.
My early career was on a Biamp 2442.  First console was an EV Tapco C-12.  I don't know where they are today with regard to dust and dirt in linear pots - in the early days that was the difficult part in manufacture - keeping the dirt out.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Ivan Beaver on June 25, 2021, 03:37:13 PM
My early career was on a Biamp 2442.  First console was an EV Tapco C-12.  I don't know where they are today with regard to dust and dirt in linear pots - in the early days that was the difficult part in manufacture - keeping the dirt out.
Among the differences between the P&G faders and the cheap stock faders was the location of the carbon track.

The normal ones had the track on the bottom, so dirt, dust (and beer) would settle on it.  The P&G had the track on the side, and an open bottom.  So most of the trash would simply fall through the fader.  And when you moved it, it would kick the trash out and it would fall to the bottom of the console.  Normal faders just pushed it out of the way for a little bit.

 There were other differences (such as much more robust construction) as well.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Ivan Beaver on June 25, 2021, 03:42:11 PM
A photo of my 2442 back in the late 80s.  I modified it to have another aux send.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: duane massey on June 25, 2021, 03:51:00 PM
We built consoles as early as '73 with sliders. As an indication of our ignorance, the very first one (hand-wired with discrete preamps) had the sliders wired upside down, so the gain increased when you lowered the slider. First time we took it out was for a band from the UK, and the engineer was really happy to see a console with sliders, as he had never used one. At the end of the show he told us that he thought maybe they should be the other way around. We changed them the next day.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Brian Jojade on June 25, 2021, 04:00:13 PM
https://www.local695.com/magazine/the-way-we-were-mixers-past-present-part-1/

Here's a fun little page that shows a Westrex RA-1424 from 1954.  So mixers with sliders have been around at LEAST that long.

When did they become commonplace? Well, that's hard to define exactly, but by the mid 70's there were many examples on the market.

The PM1000 was an awesome beast.  I had one that I bought as part of a package deal from a studio built in 1982 back in 2000.  Bummed that I never really could put it to good use to it and finally sold it for a huge pile of money. :)
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Steve-White on June 25, 2021, 04:10:49 PM
A photo of my 2442 back in the late 80s.  I modified it to have another aux send.

Great picture, love that processing rack.  Makes the 2442 smaller than they were.  The stuff I used had MXR & Biamp EQ's, Ashly SC-50 compressors and the legendary Deltalab DL4.  That was a fun toy back then.  At a club ~1982, they had a 2442 up in the crows nest over the waitress station at the end of the bar.  SM58 TB mic in the booth.  During a break, I put the TB mic on the Aux bus, shoved it between my legs and ripped one, and caught the circulate switch on the DL4 at the right time - had it all the way opened up to 1024ms.  The singer/leader and I always had a thing going - all in fun.  He always made it a point to call me out on screwups.

He returned to the blacked out stage first at the end of the break, club packed.  I knew his routine between sets, always showed up with a fresh glass of water and set it beside the drum kit on the bass players rack.  So, this time as he came through the side stage door alone, I faded the break music down slowly as to not be noticed and shifted it over to monitors, pulled the FOH feed.  Then just as he set the glass of water down, the light man hit him with the spot and I muted the music and opened up the DL4 into the monitors with that nice loud fart.  Still makes me chuckle thinking about that one - Larry looked like a cross between a line backer and Charles Manson.  We got the Neanderthal Death Stare.  :)

Not taking anything away from today's technology and methodology - but, some of that old junk sounded pretty good back in the day.  :)

Back in the late 70's and early 80's when the trapezoids came into the scene - arena shows with a 25' tall column of traps on each side of the stage with a ground sub cluster sounded great on lots of shows I saw.  Not as good as today's best, but pretty damm good.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: duane massey on June 25, 2021, 08:53:32 PM
Used a pic of one of our consoles for the cover of an album, released in 1975.
https://www.facebook.com/202315778989/photos/pb.100040815045854.-2207520000../10150138507828990/?type=3

Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: John Roberts {JR} on June 25, 2021, 09:58:15 PM
Among the differences between the P&G faders and the cheap stock faders was the location of the carbon track.

The normal ones had the track on the bottom, so dirt, dust (and beer) would settle on it.  The P&G had the track on the side, and an open bottom.  So most of the trash would simply fall through the fader.  And when you moved it, it would kick the trash out and it would fall to the bottom of the console.  Normal faders just pushed it out of the way for a little bit.

 There were other differences (such as much more robust construction) as well.
The dominant mechanical feature was the dual drill rods that the slider was guided by, providing a smooth feel. In addition the P&G could be disassembled for cleaning and reassembled without affecting the feel.

By the 90s there was a Japanese fader (Alps) with two drill rods for similar smooth slider feel, and then an even cheaper Korean version (Jung poon).

JR 
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Woody Nuss on June 26, 2021, 06:20:50 PM
First one I remember is the Uni-Sync Trooper and Trooper II
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Ike Zimbel on June 26, 2021, 07:59:47 PM
First one I remember is the Uni-Sync Trooper and Trooper II
I think I remember those...didn't they make a monitor console? I think it had very small faders...3" maybe? Also, didn't they have a feature where you could link to consoles and make one?
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Mike Caldwell on June 26, 2021, 11:51:46 PM
This is a quibble, but the PM-1000 (also the first console I used with sliders, ca. 1978) actually has a very clever arrangement of a rotary pot controlled by the slider mechanism. IIRC, there's a gear on the pot shaft and a toothed belt that is connected to the slider.

I think the fader actually slid the pot on a track and gear on the pot shaft was mated to toothed solid
gear track.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: MikeHarris on June 27, 2021, 02:28:21 AM
ADM made another variant using a rotary pot turned by a spun strip of metal which was turned by rollers following fader knob..
we supplied API 440 faders for Cameron Sounds custom ZZ Top API based touring console...which i was told was used to record Spirit weeks before Randy Califormia's passing
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Ike Zimbel on June 27, 2021, 01:01:41 PM
I think the fader actually slid the pot on a track and gear on the pot shaft was mated to toothed solid
gear track.
I think you're right! I just had a few modules through the shop a few months ago...or maybe it was longer ago than that...pandemic time :-\
And, yeah, one of the modules was missing a bushing that held the pot against the track so it was slipping.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Don T. Williams on June 27, 2021, 05:08:57 PM
Woody and Ike.  Not only did the Unisync Trooper consoles have sliders, they had them everywhere - four band fixed eq, aux sends and returns.  As I remember the monitor console had a "main" version (8 in/4 out or maybe 8 in/8 out) and a "slave" (12 more in).  The sliders were something like 35mm.  The console had both a -20 and a -10 pad which were nearly always fully engaged.  The mixer had way too much gain for any "normal" mic.  This was also reflected in the signal to noise ratio (really bad).

Like Ivan I was also an early adopter and dealer of Biamp 2442's.  I remember having earlier consoles with slide faders, but that 2442 console was a real deal in its day.  I replaced the fader panel on one of mine with 6 rotary pots (4 for the subgroup send busses and left and right main busses).  I made all those busses independent and post eq.  This converted it into a 7 + 2 (9 out sort of) monitor console and worked well before it was replaced by a Soundcraft 400M.

And to waver a little more, Steve, I also had a Delta Lab DL4.  During a Miss New Mexico Pageant rehearsal, one of the hired entertainers with a really large ego (not a contestant) gave me the opportunity to" experiment" with the DL4.  Making certain it was only through the mains,  I added huge vibrato to the singers voice in selected portions of his performance.  He couldn't hear it but knew something was wrong from the looks of bewilderment of the few people in the audience.  I don't think the singer ever knew why.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Steve-White on June 27, 2021, 05:23:06 PM
:)  =  Don't mess with the sound guy.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Woody Nuss on June 27, 2021, 08:30:24 PM
Found some info on the Troopers

https://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/uni-sync-monitor-mixer-rack-mount-134758261 (https://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/uni-sync-monitor-mixer-rack-mount-134758261)

From the ad above:   
TROUPER 1 UNI-SYNC RACK MOUNT MIXER
8 CHANNEL XLR INPUTS
4- 1/4" OUTPUTS
3 BAND EQ ON EACH CHANNEL  150 2K 8K
INPUT PAD ON EACH CHANNEL  -10DB, -20DB, OR -30DB
SOLO SWITCH ON EACH CHANNEL
4 SLIDERS ON EACH CHANNEL FOR MIX OUT 1 THRU 4
4 MASTER MONITOR OUT SLIDERS WITH 2 ROLL OFF SWITCHS ON EACH OUTPUT--- ONE HIGH AND ONE LOW
SOLO SWITCH ON MONITOR OUTS
HEADPHONE OUT WITH VOLUME ON THE FRONT
L.E.D. LIGHTS ON FRONT FOR SOLOING
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Woody Nuss on June 27, 2021, 08:33:59 PM
cont for pic
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: MikeHarris on June 28, 2021, 01:47:27 AM
should there be any collectors out there i have a Trouper ll stereo expander...new in box
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Ivan Beaver on June 28, 2021, 08:17:18 AM


Like Ivan I was also an early adopter and dealer of Biamp 2442's.  I remember having earlier consoles with slide faders, but that 2442 console was a real deal in its day.  I replaced the fader panel on one of mine with 6 rotary pots (4 for the subgroup send busses and left and right main busses).  I made all those busses independent and post eq.  This converted it into a 7 + 2 (9 out sort of) monitor console and worked well before it was replaced by a Soundcraft 400M.


This "procedure" was kinda common "back in the day".

My first monitor console was a Kelsey 20 channel, that was converted into a 20x6 monitor console.

I then had a Kustom "pro" console that I converted into a 24x8.  From what I understand there were only 7 of those consoles ever made, and at one time I owned 4 of them.  It was pretty advanced for its time, but the weirdest thing was the 5 band eq that had the "0" point at 6 oclock.  You still turned it clockwise to boost and counter clockwise to cut, but that put the pointer at the opposite position than you would expect.

My final mod (and biggest) was when I took a Mackie 32x8 and made a 32x12 monitor console.

It was A LOT of work, with a lot of rewiring, but it worked and I did a number of national acts with it.

It is much easier these days with digital, but we did what we had to do back then.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Rick Earl on June 28, 2021, 02:36:36 PM
I think the first console I bought with faders was a Kelsey.  Here is a nice link on some of the old Kelsey brochures and Prices from 1976.

 http://soundcitysite.com/kelsey_info.htm (http://soundcitysite.com/kelsey_info.htm)
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: duane massey on June 28, 2021, 07:32:44 PM
We modified a Kelsey for monitor duty as well. Also built a few 14x6 monitor mixers with XLR & mulitpin inputs, but it was all knobs, no sliders.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Ike Zimbel on June 28, 2021, 08:51:39 PM
I think the first console I bought with faders was a Kelsey.  Here is a nice link on some of the old Kelsey brochures and Prices from 1976.

 http://soundcitysite.com/kelsey_info.htm (http://soundcitysite.com/kelsey_info.htm)
I remember mixing on a Kelsey in 1979. IIRC, it was a pretty good desk for the times. I feel like I must've mixed on a Bi-Amp desk a few times too, but I can't remember where or when...so probably a club somewhere. I also remember being pretty happy with any Bi-Amp product that I ran across.
 
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Ivan Beaver on June 29, 2021, 08:11:32 AM
I think the first console I bought with faders was a Kelsey.  Here is a nice link on some of the old Kelsey brochures and Prices from 1976.

 http://soundcitysite.com/kelsey_info.htm (http://soundcitysite.com/kelsey_info.htm)
That 20 channel was the one that was modded into a 20x6 monitor desk.

One of the best comments I got was from "Diving for Pearls".  The Road manager said "When we first got here and I looked at that desk, I thought it came from Jesus Christs last tour", but after hearing the rig, it was the best monitors we have had in 6 months".
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Ike Zimbel on June 29, 2021, 12:04:23 PM
That 20 channel was the one that was modded into a 20x6 monitor desk.

One of the best comments I got was from "Diving for Pearls".  The Road manager said "When we first got here and I looked at that desk, I thought it came from Jesus Christs last tour", but after hearing the rig, it was the best monitors we have had in 6 months".
Must've been the matched set of Eq's  ;). When did we get so spoiled that everything had to be exactly the same make/model to be acceptable? :o
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Ivan Beaver on June 29, 2021, 12:43:50 PM
Must've been the matched set of Eq's  ;). When did we get so spoiled that everything had to be exactly the same make/model to be acceptable? :o
Back then we did with what we had.

Like so many cases, it is the operator, more than the tools.

or as a friend of mine says "Its the Indian, not the arrow".  YES, good tools help, but I would rather have a good operator with mediocre tools, that a poor operator with great tools
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Mark Wilkinson on June 30, 2021, 03:36:44 PM


Like so many cases, it is the operator, more than the tools.

or as a friend of mine says "Its the Indian, not the arrow".  YES, good tools help, but I would rather have a good operator with mediocre tools, that a poor operator with great tools

Yeppers,

Or like Lee Trevino said, "A pro will beat you with an umbrella"
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Don T. Williams on July 01, 2021, 06:20:26 PM
Woody, thanks for the pictures.  I remembered 4 band eq (and maybe 8 out), but I've been through an lot of mixers.  I do remember the Trooper Monitor mixer being noisy and having way too much fixed input gain.  I won't say all those mixer memories blend together, but . . . 
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Scott Helmke on July 02, 2021, 06:04:50 PM
A while back I read a book either quoting Tom Dowd or by Tom Dowd, I forget which.  But at one point he was talking about mixing technique, and the first appearance of "slide wires" or some such named linear resistor.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Dave Pluke on July 02, 2021, 10:55:32 PM
A while back I read a book either quoting Tom Dowd or by Tom Dowd, I forget which.  But at one point he was talking about mixing technique, and the first appearance of "slide wires" or some such named linear resistor.

There's a clip of him talking about this in the documentary film "Tom Dowd & the Language of Music".

Dave
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Art Welter on July 05, 2021, 08:00:17 PM
A while back I read a book either quoting Tom Dowd or by Tom Dowd, I forget which.  But at one point he was talking about mixing technique, and the first appearance of "slide wires" or some such named linear resistor.
Tom was an early adopter (late 1950's) of using wire wound linear faders.
He preferred them wired opposite of the typical convention, saying his inclination was to "push away" what was not needed in the mix, and "pull closer" what was.
Duane Massey originally wired his 1973 console the way Tom likes, but you can't please everyone..
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Chris Hindle on July 06, 2021, 08:10:57 AM
Tom was an early adopter (late 1950's) of using wire wound linear faders.
He preferred them wired opposite of the typical convention, saying his inclination was to "push away" what was not needed in the mix, and "pull closer" what was.
Duane Massey originally wired his 1973 console the way Tom likes, but you can't please everyone..
Art, thanks for the lesson.
that's a brilliant way to look at things.
Too bad it didn't catch on.....
Chris.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: duane massey on July 06, 2021, 10:12:53 AM
Tom was an early adopter (late 1950's) of using wire wound linear faders.
He preferred them wired opposite of the typical convention, saying his inclination was to "push away" what was not needed in the mix, and "pull closer" what was.
Duane Massey originally wired his 1973 console the way Tom likes, but you can't please everyone..
He wired them that way on purpose, we did ours out of ignorance...... :D
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: John Fruits on July 17, 2021, 12:10:25 PM
It's too bad the Tom Dowd documentary is no longer available.  It seems the producers can't get story rights permission from his estate.
Back to the linear sliders, I remember the Tascam recording console from the early 70's.  It used a rotary pot on a slider, but instead of gears used old fashioned radio dial cord around a pulley.  I remember Paul Winter Consort used one on tour at that time.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Dan Mortensen on July 20, 2021, 02:32:08 PM
I remember mixing on a Soundcraft Series one. Wasn't that born around 1974?
It was the first mixer I used with faders.
At the time I had a Yamaha EM-35(?), 6 channel with rotary pots.
Chris.

I would have thought the 1 was later than that, as it was replaced by the 1S in 1979, which was replaced by the 200 a year or two later, etc.

It's too bad the Tom Dowd documentary is no longer available.  It seems the producers can't get story rights permission from his estate.

That is a very succinct summary of the problem, and it's a real tragedy. The goal of the movie was to recognize and memorialize Tom's accomplishments and innovations, and the people closest to Tom are preventing his memory from being honored as it should be. In my reading from afar.

Tragic.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Art Welter on July 21, 2021, 04:44:23 PM
I would have thought the 1 was later than that, as it was replaced by the 1S in 1979, which was replaced by the 200 a year or two later, etc.
Soundcraft Series 1 was created in 1973.
Series 1S in '75, by 1979 they were on to the Series 3.

I got my Series 800 in 1981. It's P&G faders and all the switches were messed up by a fire extinguisher a few months after purchase, but still was my favorite console for another decade...

Art
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Tim McCulloch on July 21, 2021, 08:45:30 PM
Soundcraft Series 1 was created in 1973.
Series 1S in '75, by 1979 they were on to the Series 3.

I got my Series 800 in 1981. It's P&G faders and all the switches were messed up by a fire extinguisher a few months after purchase, but still was my favorite console for another decade...

Art

I have fond memories of mixing on the 800.  Loved the input strip EQ.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: John L Nobile on July 22, 2021, 10:12:35 AM
I have fond memories of mixing on the 800.  Loved the input strip EQ.

Never used the 800 but had an 8000 as a house mixer for 25 years. Good gig. Had the 4 band parametric eq, 32 mono and 4 stereo channels. Still miss it and it sounded soooooo much better than the X32 that replaced it. I A/B'd them once.

The things we put up with for convenience, functionality and size.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Riley Casey on July 22, 2021, 11:38:11 AM
Over the years and across two sound businesses I owned ..

Soundcraft Series One
Soundcraft 1S
Soundcraft 200
Soundcraft 400b
Soundcraft 400 monitor
Soundcraft 800b

Switched to Yamahas starting with a PM3500-48  and continued on into the digital world after that. A few smaller Yamahas and Crests were in the mix over the years as well but I have to say that the early Soundcrafts still are my favorites.

Almost forgot I had a Europa for a while. The one that was too long to go across a truck.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: John Roberts {JR} on July 22, 2021, 11:44:42 AM
Soundcraft Series 1 was created in 1973.
Series 1S in '75, by 1979 they were on to the Series 3.

I got my Series 800 in 1981. It's P&G faders and all the switches were messed up by a fire extinguisher a few months after purchase, but still was my favorite console for another decade...

Art
IIRC the P&G faders could be disassembled for cleaning... switches not so much...

JR
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Ike Zimbel on July 22, 2021, 12:09:48 PM
IIRC the P&G faders could be disassembled for cleaning... switches not so much...

JR
Yes, 3000 series P&G faders are very serviceable and repairable.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Riley Casey on July 22, 2021, 02:11:55 PM
I remember disassembling original Schadow push button switches for cleaning loooooong ago but a console worth of switches was not a thing.


IIRC the P&G faders could be disassembled for cleaning... switches not so much...

JR
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Dan Mortensen on July 22, 2021, 02:39:25 PM
Soundcraft Series 1 was created in 1973.
Series 1S in '75, by 1979 they were on to the Series 3.

I got my Series 800 in 1981. It's P&G faders and all the switches were messed up by a fire extinguisher a few months after purchase, but still was my favorite console for another decade...

Art


Wow, I have a very different memory.

I first saw and used a 1 in 1979, and when I went to buy one in the Fall of 1979 they only had 1S's (no 1's), which is what I got. I remember seeing new ads in R/E/P for the S around the time that mine came.

The US importer/distributor was in Kalamazoo, MI, not far from where my parents lived in 1979, and when I went to my folks' at Christmas we drove over to Kalamazoo and visited the importer, who was more than an importer because they seemed to be getting parts from Soundcraft and assembling them there. I met the lady who put them together and saw a 1S in pieces on the bench being built. Note that it was not being repaired, it was being assembled for sale.

Your timeline seems long, but I only know what I experienced at the time.

Interesting.

Edit: This article, from LSI (https://web.archive.org/web/20110726164606/http://www.livesoundint.com/archives/2004/june/milestones.pdf), says that the 1 debuted in 1974 and doesn't give a date for the 1S. The Wikipedia article about Graham Blyth (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Graham_Blyth) conflates the 1 and 1S and doesn't seem to be much good for finding info. I can't yet find a more detailed history.

Since we are naming our Soundcraft consoles, mine were

1S-20 (still have it)
200-16
200B-32
another 200B-32
200Delta-12
(some 48 channel one that I didn't like, quickly replaced by...
Series Five-46+6 stereo
MH4-48
MH3-32
GB4-16
GB4-32
Monitor Two-48? maybe 40?came in there somewhere. Still have that one because it takes up no floor space. It was used by Lou Reed for a week of rehearsals before a Seattle Bumbershoot.

My son and I on a visit to London made a field trip to the Soundcraft factory and were shown around and taken to lunch by Andy Brown, which was real cool. That was post-Series Five purchase and pre-MH4.

When Soundcraft didn't have a digital board that I could afford 9 of, it was necessary to move to an unexpected manufacturer (spending less for the 9 than for the single MH4) and leave Soundcraft behind. They were and hopefully still are a great bunch of people and I only wish them the best.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Art Welter on July 22, 2021, 04:19:05 PM
The Wikipedia article about Graham Blyth[/url] conflates the 1 and 1S and doesn't seem to be much good for finding info. I can't yet find a more detailed history.
Dan,

Though I had seen some 1 and 1S, well before my Series 800 purchase, was not aware of the entire time line till I used the Wikipedia links and the Wayback Machine to locate a "History of Soundcraft Brochure" covering from 1973 to 2000 which is what the picture in post #43 was from.

https://www.kuklorest.com/?t=1512&ap=1438184180372129&r=021d244d08a5f564bbea1f1ef07bcdf4&hp=1&rs

Art
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: John L Nobile on July 22, 2021, 04:43:16 PM
I remember buying a used 1s around 1978 from Long and McQuade. We had problems with it for a few months. They took it back and put what we paid for it towards a new 1s. I don't remember a newer Soundcrafr being available at the time but back then, my focus was on keyboards.

I remember the problem with those boards was that they looked like they were in a flight case and some people handled them that way. We were our own roadies and were easy on it.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Dan Mortensen on July 23, 2021, 02:51:50 AM
Dan,

Though I had seen some 1 and 1S, well before my Series 800 purchase, was not aware of the entire time line till I used the Wikipedia links and the Wayback Machine to locate a "History of Soundcraft Brochure" covering from 1973 to 2000 which is what the picture in post #43 was from.

https://www.kuklorest.com/?t=1512&ap=1438184180372129&r=021d244d08a5f564bbea1f1ef07bcdf4&hp=1&rs

Art

Thanks, Art, but I get a "This Connection is Not Private. You should close this page" popup when I try to load that page, because the certificate is expired.

I remember buying a used 1s around 1978 from Long and McQuade...

I remember the problem with those boards was that they looked like they were in a flight case and some people handled them that way. We were our own roadies and were easy on it.

The boards "looked like they were in a flight case"? That means it was a console built into an aluminum flight case with the flight case being the exterior chassis of the console (console bolted into flight case)?

That wasn't a 1S, that was a 1. I know that because in 1979 I TRIED to get one that was built that way and was told they didn't sell them that way anymore, and besides, what I really wanted was the 1s not the 1. And it came with a wooden chassis and end cheeks in a padded aluminum road case.

Or so I thought until just now looking for pictures, and finding 1s's that were bolted into aluminum flight cases, as well as some that kind of looked like mine but different geometry on the end cheeks and the arm rest.

Pics of each attached, all found online. No pics of mine.

The 1s in the wooden case is labeled as being from 1979. It appears that we are all correct, that the 1s in the wooden chassis was introduced in 1979 but there were previous versions that had flight case chassis just like the Series 1. They were not for sale in the US, at least, in late 1979. I don't know about before that.

This is definitely a trip down memory lane...
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Gunther Mai on July 23, 2021, 01:37:30 PM
My Soundcraft 1S 20Ch Flightcase Version was delivered in January 1977.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: John L Nobile on July 23, 2021, 02:30:22 PM
Thanks, Art, but I get a "This Connection is Not Private. You should close this page" popup when I try to load that page, because the certificate is expired.

The boards "looked like they were in a flight case"? That means it was a console built into an aluminum flight case with the flight case being the exterior chassis of the console (console bolted into flight case)?

That wasn't a 1S, that was a 1. I know that because in 1979 I TRIED to get one that was built that way and was told they didn't sell them that way anymore, and besides, what I really wanted was the 1s not the 1. And it came with a wooden chassis and end cheeks in a padded aluminum road case.

Or so I thought until just now looking for pictures, and finding 1s's that were bolted into aluminum flight cases, as well as some that kind of looked like mine but different geometry on the end cheeks and the arm rest.

Pics of each attached, all found online. No pics of mine.

The 1s in the wooden case is labeled as being from 1979. It appears that we are all correct, that the 1s in the wooden chassis was introduced in 1979 but there were previous versions that had flight case chassis just like the Series 1. They were not for sale in the US, at least, in late 1979. I don't know about before that.

This is definitely a trip down memory lane...

I remember my 1s looking like the middle pic. Loved that board. I moved up from a Peavey 9 channel with huge knobs to that.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Ike Zimbel on July 23, 2021, 08:48:49 PM
I remember my 1s looking like the middle pic. Loved that board. I moved up from a Peavey 9 channel with huge knobs to that.
That's the way I remember them, too. There was one at the El Mocombo for years (as well as a lighting console that I built, from around 1983 onwards). I mixed on a lot of different Soundcraft desks, and I've serviced a bunch as well.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Art Welter on July 24, 2021, 08:05:57 PM
I remember my 1s looking like the middle pic. Loved that board. I moved up from a Peavey 9 channel with huge knobs to that.
My board evolution went from the Peavey PA-900 (9 channels, almost the size of a Fender Rhodes piano) to a pair of Tapco 6000 R, then a Mark Winger/Straight Up Systems 18 channel console with Bournes rotary pots throughout, then a pair of Yamaha PM1000s before the Series 800 in 1981.

Here's a photo of it from 1985, a Hanley intercom sitting on top of my custom mahogony doghouse.
200 feet from stage, 16,000 watt PA for approximately 40,000 country fans there to see Merle Haggard, John Anderson, George Strait, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Lee Greenwood, Hank Williams, Jr., Nicolette Larson, Janie Fricke, Charley Pride, The Forester Sisters, Sawyer Brown, Earl Thomas Conley, and local acts like the Back Behind the Barn Boys, Guppie, their sound man took the shot.
The taped up sub # 8 fader was a return for a Biamp 1621 mixer used for effects returns, playback and the announce mic. We generally left the channels all up and killed the sub faders to avoid messing with (dirty) mute switches, hard to see mute LEDs in daylight ;^).

Art
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: brian maddox on July 24, 2021, 11:34:40 PM
....
Almost forgot I had a Europa for a while. The one that was too long to go across a truck.

Still think this is one of the more epic design fails in Live Audio history. It was really an exceptionally good desk. I believe the Kennedy Center had one out at the millennium stage for a while because I remember mixing on one there. But the fact that it screwed up half a truck pack to bring it on tour killed it. A brilliant example of why you need people who USE your product on your design team.

The fact that all anyone really remembers is that it wouldn't fit into a truck correctly pretty much sums up the problem....  :)
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Riley Casey on July 25, 2021, 10:03:13 AM
That and the fact that the decision to put a gate in every channel rather than a compressor was apparently based on the fact that the gate required one less IC in the parts count.  ::) 

The Europa came as part of a package and only went out a few times before it went out the door permanently.


Still think this is one of the more epic design fails in Live Audio history. It was really an exceptionally good desk. I believe the Kennedy Center had one out at the millennium stage for a while because I remember mixing on one there. But the fact that it screwed up half a truck pack to bring it on tour killed it. A brilliant example of why you need people who USE your product on your design team.

The fact that all anyone really remembers is that it wouldn't fit into a truck correctly pretty much sums up the problem....  :)
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Tim McCulloch on July 25, 2021, 10:28:33 AM
Still think this is one of the more epic design fails in Live Audio history. It was really an exceptionally good desk. I believe the Kennedy Center had one out at the millennium stage for a while because I remember mixing on one there. But the fact that it screwed up half a truck pack to bring it on tour killed it. A brilliant example of why you need people who USE your product on your design team.

The fact that all anyone really remembers is that it wouldn't fit into a truck correctly pretty much sums up the problem....  :)

You rope eh', ya keep eh'.

Mannheim Steamroller's Christmas show carried a Europa II about 15 years ago.  All I did was help tip the desk and 8 stagehands removed the lid.  Fitting it in the trailer was someone else's problem.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: John Sulek on July 26, 2021, 05:20:42 PM
That and the fact that the decision to put a gate in every channel rather than a compressor was apparently based on the fact that the gate required one less IC in the parts count.  ::) 

The Europa came as part of a package and only went out a few times before it went out the door permanently.

There was also an issue with the memory for the mutes and buss assigns. I remember a pack of D cell batteries in the doghouse to provide the RAM backup.
Good times .com
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: John Fruits on July 26, 2021, 05:34:32 PM
A slight swerve of the slider but I do remember a recording console that had sliding faders BUT it was just before the Neve Flying Faders and each channel strip had a tiny null meter next to the slider and you had to manually move the slider to center the needle for mixdown.  IIRC it was an API console.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Al Forbes on August 23, 2021, 03:38:18 PM
Idle curiosity: when did sliders become commonplace in live mixing consoles?

I had a Midas PR004 that was made in the early 70's. It had P&G wirewound faders.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Mike Diack on August 25, 2021, 05:15:55 PM
Idle curiosity: when did sliders become commonplace in live mixing consoles?
Second mixer I ever built used Langevin faders (found in an SF surplus store). Big solid wirewound brutes, 600ohm in/out.
I think Langevin was a part of Western Electric. I wonder if quadrant faders are in the slider camp or are a limited range
rotary?.
Title: Re: Sliders in consoles
Post by: Art Welter on August 26, 2021, 10:23:42 PM
I wonder if quadrant faders are in the slider camp or are a limited range
rotary?
Considering that rotary potentiometers can be multiple turns, I'd think of a quadrant fader as a fractional turn pot.

Ergonomically it is closer to a linear fader than a rotary pot.
Better tactile position indication than a linear fader, and spacing could allow one hand to control four faders at once, big change from 2" knobs used on contemporary consoles.

Of interest, Johnny Longden's desks made for the BBC using quadrant faders had them fading up towards the operator with the scale being lit when moved off the back stop.

"I believe my special projects one-off desks in the 1960s were among the first to use slider rather than rotary faders, and I had to decide which way they should travel to fade up or down. The commercial desks of the day tended to favour UP - away from the operator, and DOWN, toward the operator, as they did in the USA. I adopted UP for OFF and DOWN for ON, simply because our domestic switches do this, the opposite being the case in America.

I was very amused to read all sorts of comments in technical magazines, discussing the difference between BBC and commercial practice for sound faders years later, where various theories put it down to "not knocking the script pages as one fades outů", etc. Why I didn't join in the correspondence I can't remember - but you've read it first here."
 Johnny Longden

http://www.orbem.co.uk/longden/longden.htm

In this thread:
https://forums.digitalspy.com/discussion/2216313/bbc-style-upside-down-faders
Iain_Betson wrote:
"Hence when mounted in a panel, the top of the fader, the bit where the knob is and the scale is, was humped. So with the fader closed, or fully open, the knob was near the panel surface and in the centre of its travel raised up - like going over an arch.

When a fader is used, most of the level adjustment movement is at the most open (top 25%) position - say between 75 - 100% open. If this design of fader was mounted flat panel with its orientation such that you faded-up away form you then

1. The exact position it is open is obscured because the knob has "gone over the arch"
2 If you want to make a level adjustment you have to reach over arch to work the fader. Pretty awkward to do so for repeated operations.

Turning the orientation of the fader around solves both issues - you can see the fader position, its eacy to operate and when fading-to-closed, you just push the knob over the arch to its stop.

The other bonus is when mixing with multiple faders open on a desk, say when music balancing.. With the unused (closed) faders out of the way you have a clear work space with the faders you want to use in front of you.

Frankly I have no issues driving a desk with the faders working either way.

Even by the 1970s linear faders were no longer arched in design, so the reason for the flip-around was no longer valid, but the practice in the BBC lingered on as it was" what we are used to".

I recall in the 1980s when the BBC invested in commercial recording studio desks, such as the SSL 4000 series at Maida Vale, the faders were flipped around to the BBC way, but in time, as more commercial desk came in, probably due to cost or desk design, the faders were as we expect today.

BBC LR Mk3 desks still have "wrong way around" faders ( a few still remain for the next few months until ViLoR replaces them) and I still see some items of Glensound OB kit with "fade-up towards me" faders, but other than that I think its all standard fader layouts now."