Recording Studio

The DARC recording studio is available to rent for Digital Artist and Expert Digital Artist members to use for all their audio needs. The recording studio consists of two adjoining soundproofed spaces, the recording booth and the control room. The recording studio is furnished with an ergonomic desk chair, a large desk surface and fitted with an iMac computer with audio and video editing software, audio interfaces, display options, microphones, headphones and surround sound speaker capabilities. This is a specialist space with various experience level requirements to use and operate. 

 

A DARC Digital Artist or Expert Digital Artist membership is required for access. Recording studio bookings are made on a block booking system. 

Cancellations/no shows

Cancellations must be made 48 hours in advance. If less than 48 hours’ notice is given, members will be billed the full price of the rental. If a member does not show up for their booking, a no-show penalty fee of $30 will be charged.

Request a Booking

Recording studio bookings are available to Digital Artist and Expert Digital Artist members only. Please include your desired block booking time and rental package in your booking request. For general inquiries, please email tech@digitalartsresourcecentre.ca. 

COVID 19 Booking Protocol

All DARC members must act in accordance with our COVID 19 protocols and security measures outlined below. DARC is taking every precaution necessary to ensure the safety of our staff and membership. DARC is only taking bookings for fully vaccinated members (all members of your booking party must also be fully vaccinated). The failure to abide by our COVID 19 protocols will result in the nullification of membership. 

 

* Please note that our recording studio has a maximum capacity of six persons total (recording booth: 4 persons, recording studio control room: 2 persons)

Please review each section before booking:

  • Members (and members of the booking party) must complete DARC’s “COVID 19 Self-Assessment Form” 
  • For all bookings, members (and members of the booking party) must provide proof of vaccination with a piece of government issued photo I.D. and be trained on DARC’s health and safety protocols in place (this will take approximately 20 minutes), this must be done in advance of your booking start time. 
  • For after hours bookings, members (and members of the booking party) must also pick up an access key/card and be trained on DARCs security system in advance of your booking (this will take around 15 minutes).
  • Members must complete the “Safe Sets Certification” and provide proof of completion to DARC staff.
  • Members (and members of the booking party) must wear a medical grade mask at all times while onsite (we have medical masks you may access during your booking).
  • Only if you are working alone in the recording booth may you take off your mask. 
  • For group recordings masks must be worn at all times. 
  • Members (and members of the booking party) must maintain physical distancing (6 feet) from other persons onsite who are not part of your booking party. 
  • Members (and members of the booking party) must sanitize their hands upon entering or reentering DARC facility space. 
  • Members (and members of the booking party) must work with both doors closed.
  • Members (and members of the booking party) are not permitted to bring in any other non DARC staff approved person onsite during their booking. 
  • Members (and members of the booking party) must clean the suite work surface and door knob at the end of their booking (with provided cleaning supplies). 
  • No food or drink is permitted in the recording studio. 
  • Virtual member support will be available during office hours. 
  • DARC staff will wear a mask at all times when onsite.
  • DARC staff will wear PPE at all times when interacting with members during their booking.
  • DARC staff will maintain physical distancing (6 feet) at all times. 
  • All DARC staff members are fully vaccinated against COVID 19. 
  • Medical grade masks, hand sanitizer and gloves will be available for member use while onsite for their booking.
  • The recording studio will undergo a mandatory isolation period in between bookings of 24 hours hours. 
  • The recording studio will be sanitized thoroughly before and after each booking. 
  • If members (or members of the booking party) are experiencing any symptoms of COVID 19 or have any known exposure to COVID 19 before their booking they will be asked to cancel their booking at no charge. If symptoms or known exposure take place during or shortly after the rental period the renter will be asked to inform DARC as soon as possible via email: tech@digitalartsresourcecentre.ca.
  • Any questions, comments or concerns about your booking should be directed via email to tech@digitalartsresourcecentre.ca.

Permitted Uses

  • General recording (podcasts, interviews, voice over, foley, etc)
  • Audio editing, restoration, denoising and cleanup 
  • Scoring for independent video or film
  • Mixing (space can support from stereo to 9.2 surround sound) 
  • Creation of sound art 
  • Sound design
  • Music recording

Non-Permitted Uses

• Commercial productions for which the director/creator does not retain copyright and artistic control, director/creator is being paid under commercial contract for content and for which the production/work is being produced for a commercial client or for the purpose of advertising or promotion.

Block Booking

The DARC block booking system offers four blocks in our recording studio per day. Rates vary depending on the space and configuration used. Blocks are booked for the time slots listed below, regardless of whether you need the entire block. This helps us keep our studio well maintained, clean and available when our members need it.

 

Members are welcome to book more than one block at a time. When booking an overnight session you’ll be required to perform our after hours rules and security procedure. Fees must be paid in advance of all bookings.

 

DARC reserves the right to cancel bookings but will notify you as soon as possible in the event of any cancellations. DARC reserves the right to change these terms at any time.

Rental Packages

* For deluxe audio package, members who do not meet technical skill requirements must hire a DARC technician to work alongside in the studio. In this case, members must pay regular block booking fees + a minimum $35/hr technician fee. 

DARC Technicians

Members who have been determined to not meet DARC’s technical skill requirements to operate the recording studio alone must hire a DARC technician. DARC technicians have been trained by DARC technical staff in expertly operating the recording studio. Members cannot use their own technicians unless those technicians have been trained and or approved by DARC technical staff. DARC technicians are to be paid a minimum of $35/hr for their services.

Recording Studio Technology + Specifications

The recording booth is a non-rectangular space shaped to cut down on the possibility of standing waves, and features treatment to control the amount of reflectivity on the walls and ceiling. The control room has also been constructed to reduce standing waves, and has been treated to control diffusion and reflectivity to help ensure a clear monitoring environment. There are shared windows between the two room and lines running from one room to the other for mic inputs, headphone feeds, talkback and other connections.

There is a patch panel in the recording booth for up to 12 X XLR microphone inputs, and 4 X ¼” TS passive DI inputs leading to the audio interface in the control room. There is 1 X stereo headphone feed returning to the recording booth from the audio interface control room, and capacity for use with up to 6 headphones in the booth.  A system for talkback from control room to recording booth has also been implemented.

For intermediate to advanced work, the control room is wired for use for up to 9.2 Surround Sound.  There are three Focal Trio6 Be monitors in the Front Left, Front Center and Front Right positions. There are two Mackie MRS10 subs and the remainder of the Surround Sound system consists of six Mackie MR624 monitors. For basic projects, there is also simple sound system, consisting of a Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 audio interface, connected to 2 X KRK RPG2 Rockit 8 powered studio monitors.  Please note that this simpler system is completely separate from the more advanced Surround Sound system.

The control room has an iMac loaded with music and video production software.  With the Deluxe Audio Package there are two audio interfaces, a Focusrite Clarett 8PreX and a Focusrite Clarett 8Pre, for a total of 16 X analog (XLR) inputs and 16 X (1/4”TRS) analog outputs. Two of the analog inputs can be used as instrument DI inputs inside the control room.  The outputs are patched into the Surround Sound speaker system and the headphone returns.  The interfaces are connected together through ADAT lightpipe, allowing for sample rates of 48kHz and are connected to the computer using Thunderbolt 3.

 

For basic projects, accessing the Audio Editing Package, there is also a simple sound system, consisting of a Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 audio interface, connected to 2 X KRK RPG2 Rockit 8 powered studio monitors.  Please note that this simpler system is completely separate from the more advanced Surround Sound system.

 

Note: For very basic projects, there is 1 X Blue Yeti USB mic located in the recording booth, for use in very basic voice recordings, such as for podcasting.  It is capable of recording a mono (omni, cardioid, figure-8) or stereo (left to right XY) signal and can be connected via USB directly to a Member’s phone, tablet or laptop (adapters may be required).  It does not allow for a connection between recording booth and the control room.

 

2017 iMac 18.3

  • 27-inch Retina 5K screen
  • Quad 4.2GHz Intel Core i7 Processor
  • 32GB of 2400Mhz DDR4 RAM
  • Radeon Pro 580 8192MB Graphics

 

Headphones

There are several sets of Sony 7506 headphones and one set of Beyerdynamic 880 Pro headphones available.

 

Controllers

There is a Mackie MCU Pro Controller (with Motorized faders) for use with DAWs and other software for hands-on mixing and control.  There is also a Nektar Panorama P6 MIDI/USB keyboard controller for tight integration with recording and music creation software.

 

Visual Displays

There is a projector and screen surface that allows for the video footage to have its own screen, separate from the display screen on the iMac.  There is also a separate monitor screen that can be positioned at the window to the Recording Booth; this can be used to help with such things as Automatic Dialogue Replacement or with visual cues for voiceover talent.

Current available post-production software (only on macOS) consists of:

  • Izotope RX7 audio cleanup, restoration and editing software
  • Cuckos Reaper
  • Logic X Pro
  • Final Cut Pro X
  • Adobe Creative Cloud
  • DaVinci Resolve
  • AATranslator
  • Audio Technica AT4050 multipattern LDC (1)
  • Audio Technica AT4033 LDC (1)
  • Oktava MK012-01 Matched Multicapsule set, including 2 X microphone bodies, 2 X matched cardioid LDC capsules, 2 X matched SDC supercardioid capsules, 2 X matched SDC cardioid capsules, 2 X matched SDC omni capsules and 2 X -10dB pad inserts
  • Shure SM57 dynamic cardioid mics (2)
  • ElectroVoice 635A dynamic omni mic (1)