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SSL SL 9080 J Pre-owned Console From NRG Studios

80-channel / 160 input SSL SL 9080 J console from Jay Baumgardner's world-class NRG studios with Ultimation Moving Fader Automation, Total Recall, selectable E- and G-series equalizers, Stereo Bus Compressor; includes remote patch bay, tower rack, J-series computer, power supplies, and manuals - plus Pro Audio Designs unparalleled installation, service, and support.

Here is your opportunity to own an SSL SL 9080 J console in excellent working condition at a fraction of the original cost. This beautiful pre-owned Solid State Logic SSL 9080J recording and production console hails from Jay Baumgardner's legendary NRG Studios in Hollywood. This console has had hundreds of hit songs mixed on it, including Papa Roach and Evanescence' Fallen album featuring “Bring Me To Life” - and it's ready to pump out hundreds of more chart toppers. Professionally serviced and maintained throughout its life, this console represents the pinnacle of large-format modular console design. Fitted with 80 channels (160 inputs at mix) it features all the favorite SSL options, including Ultimation Moving Fader Automation, Total Recall, selectable E- and G-series equalizers, and of course the unmatched Stereo Bus Compressor. Includes remote patchbay, tower rack, J-Series computer, power supplies, and manuals.

SSL SL 9080 J Console - Just the Facts:

  • 80 Superanalogue preamps/160 SuperAnalogue inputs at mixdown
  • In-line signal path, with master status switching to quickly re-configure the console for particular tasks
  • Signal routing can be overridden locally, providing even more flexibility than other SSL consoles
  • 48 Multi-track busses, 4 Stereo busses, the Main Stereo (optionally LCR) bus, and 8 Auxiliary busses
  • Ultimation Moving Fader Automation
  • Total Recall snapshot automation and recall
  • Selectable E- and G-series equalizers
  • Stereo Bus Compressor
  • Remote patch bay
  • Tower rack,
  • J-series computer, power supplies, and manuals - plus Pro Audio Designs unparalleled installation, service, and support

Solid State Logic SL 9080 J - Beneath the Surface

The J-series console introduced SSL's SuperAnalogue DC-coupled circuitry, which set the standards for transparent audio reproduction. With a theoretical linear bandwidth of 5Hz to 500kHz (past 300kHz is diminishing returns), the SL 9000 J was band-limited to 10kHz to 80kHz, more than enough dynamic range for digital recording. Additionally, a linear frequency range down to 10Hz is responsible for the console's deep, solid, and consistent bass response.

While the SSL E and G series sold more consoles, there were only 190 SL 9000 J consoles sold, largely due to their custom specifications by SSL clients. The console of choice for R&B, classical and pop music, studios such as the aforementioned NRG, Todd-AO, The Hit Factory, and artists such as Wyclef Jean (Fugees), who equipped one of his Platinum Sound control rooms with an SL 9000 J-series console (the other control had a K series).  

The desk has an in-line signal path, with master status switching to quickly re-configure the console for particular tasks, but the signal routing can be overridden locally, providing even more flexibility than other SSL consoles. The desk has 48 Multi-track busses, 4 Stereo busses, a Main Stereo (optionally LCR) bus, and 8 Auxiliary busses, which are divided into 6 Mono FX sends and a Stereo Cue bus. The four Stereo busses can be used as subgroups, additional record feeds, to generate Surround or Center signals, or as additional FX sends. An ingenious reassign system allows Auxiliary send controls on individual channels to be disconnected from their own bus and routed to any of the Stereo or Multi-track busses, allowing up to 64 discrete FX send mixes to be generated. As well as the Large Fader level and Cut, the following console channel functions are automated:

  • Small Fader level
  • Small Fader Cut
  • EQ In/Out
  • Insert In/Out
  • Individual Aux On/Off switches

These functions are controlled from an automation computer, providing additional processing power, color graphics, pop up menus etc. The J Series Computer also provides complete integration with SSL's digital product range, allowing random access multi-track recorders, digital workstations, random access video recorders, and routing switchers to be controlled from the console.

Input / Output Module

The input/output module bears a strong resemblance to the SL4000G module, but with a number of enhancements. The differences are briefly as follows: The channel input stage is similar to the G Series. The MIC gain is a continuously variable control (from +15dB to +75dB) with a 20dBpad switch. The Mic input can also be switched to high impedance using the HIGH-Z switch, allowing the Mic input to be used for line-level signals. The Multi-track BUS trim control is adjacent to the Group/Tape switches near the bottom of the module. The SL9000J Series Dynamics section is based on the classic G Series circuits, with the addition of a Peak detect option on the Compressor(selected by pulling the RATIO switch up) and a HOLD control for the Gate. The Expander/Gate section defaults to Gate, with Expand selected by pulling the HOLD control. As with G Series, the Dynamics section can be keyed from the Monitor path by selecting MON and either CH IN or CH OUT. It can also be keyed from the Insert Return by selecting KEY and IN for the channel insert point.

Selectable E- and G-series EQ

The Equalizer is a four-band parametric, with variable Q on the mid bands and shelving/bell high and low bands. The normal curves of the equalizer are based on the G Series equalizer. The mid bands are constant Q, so the bandwidth increases as the gain is decreased. LF and HF BELL switches are provided as opposed to the LMF and HMF range shift switches found on G Series EQ. The E switch selects an alternative set of EQ characteristics, based on the classic ‘242' E Series card. The mid bands have a constant bandwidth, so Q increases as gain is increased; the HF band has a shallower slope than in ‘normal' mode. The bell curves are identical to the normal ones, i.e. without E selected. The Equalizer can be switched to the Monitor path using the MON switch. SPLT places the filters at the channel input, just as in G Series. The EQ IN switch is automated.

The Auxiliary send section

The aux send section includes one stereo and 6 mono aux send controls. The Aux On/Off function for each send is automated, with push/push switches on each control toggling between on and off. A yellow LED indicates that the send is On. Auxes can be sourced from either fader. The SF switch next to each send switches the source to the small fader. The PRE switches at the bottom of the section switch the aux source to pre-fader. There is a PRE switch for the Stereo Cue send and one PRE switch for each pair of mono sends. A major advance on the SL4000 system is the FX send reassign system ”“ EFX for short. This allows any two mono FX sends, or the stereo cue send, to be disconnected from their respective busses and used as sources for the channel's Group Output, the channel's Stereo bus routing and/or the channel's Multi-track routing. Aux sends are assigned to the EFX system using the EFX switches by each one. FX1, 3 and 5 can be assigned to EFX ODD. FX 2, 4 and 6can be assigned to EFX EVEN.

Selecting EFX on the Stereo Cue send feeds Stereo Cue L to EFX ODD and Stereo Cue R to EFX EVEN. Note that only one odd and one even numbered FX send or Stereo Cue can be assigned. Red (EFX ODD) or green (EFX EVEN) LEDs indicate that a send is assigned to the EFX system.

Small fader section

Group, Tape, and Record Enable switches function identically to the SL4000 system. The Small-Fader section is similar to that on an SL4000. Both the fader and cut switch are automated. The Small Fader pan is located here and, unlike the SL4000, is always associated with the Small Fader. The pan is permanently in circuit. The Small Fader can be assigned to the Main Stereo mix bus using the SF MIX switch. In mix or record/replay plus small fader to monitor status, the Small Fader is normally sourced from the Monitor input. In Record or Replay status the Small Fader is normally sourced from the channel input. This selection can be overridden by the PRELF/PST LF fader switches.

The PRE LF switch will pick up the channel signal immediately post input selection, or the channel signal post signal processing. Which signal is chosen is set by an internal link option.

PST LF selects the post-Large Fader signal. The Small Fader has its own automation status switch and LEDs.

Large fader section

Below the Small Fader is the Large Fader pan control. This is always associated with the Large Fader and is always in circuit. The Large Fader Cut switch is automated. This and all the other automated switch objects in the channel make use of the Match and Play switches fitted above the Large Fader Cut

And Solo. As with the Small Fader Solo switch, the Large Fader Solo switch can act as a destructive solo, a post pan listen (AFL), a pre-fade listen(PFL) or as a Solo In Front function. This last mode provides a mix of the AFL signal and dimmed Main Mix to the monitors. The different solo functions are selected with the solo mode switches in the console's center section. These switches also include a “Soloclear” switch, Alt, which makes all solo switches inter-canceling, Fleet, which makes them momentary, and Solo Link which links Large and Small Fader Solo cut busses. The Large Fader is motorized and, like all SSL Ultimation systems, can switch the audio via a VCA to allow Trim updates etc.

The Large Fader can be assigned to one of the 8 master control faders in the center section, by using the group select switch at the bottom of the fader. Selecting Hard Group Setup on the Motion Control panel enables the select switches. A short press of the individual select switches increments the group number in that fader's 7-segment display; slightly longer press decrements.

There are four possible outputs from the channel strip:

  • The Main Mix stereo bus
  • The four Stereo Subgroup busses (A, B, C, and D)
  • The 48 Multi-track busses
  • The channel's Group Output

Either or both faders can feed the Main Mix bus via the LF MIX and SF MIX

switches at the foot of the channel strip; the other three outputs each have a source selector. The Multi-track and Stereo Subgroup busses can be fed by Large or Small Fader (post pan control) signals, or by one or both of the EFXODD/EVEN signals. If one EFX switch is selected, then the corresponding routing output will be fed in mono by the selected source. Selecting both switches together will feed EFX ODD to left(odd) and EFX EVEN to right (even) bus. This enables any two Aux Send controls to be re-routed to the Multi-track or Stereo busses, allowing large numbers of separate mixes to be generated without using the Small Fader. The 48-track routing is accessed via 1-24 / 25-48 bank-select switches and signals are normally sourced from the Small Fader unless RECORD/REPLAY + SMALL FADER TOMON(itor) are selected. The Stereo Subgroup bus routing has no source until one is selected. The Group Output is normally fed by the multi-track bus Mix Amp, but this can be replaced with a post-fader channel signal by pressing FADER, or by the EFX ODD or EFX EVEN signals.

Center section

The SL9000J center section is logically divided into two main areas. On the left, two panels provide master controls for the console's audio functions ”“ console status switching, main outputs and monitoring, subgroup and auxiliary masters, meter switching, talkback, FX and cue send masters, echo returns, oscillator etc. Below these panels, eight master control faders are provided. The right-hand side of the center section is taken up by a large color video monitor and a panel housing controls associated with the J Series Computer. A jog wheel, a standard set of transport controls, five instant locate buttons and a large timecode display are provided for machine control. A pen and tablet interface for the computer is provided in the fader area. See the J Series Computer Operator's Manual for more details.

Master audio facilities

The SL9000J master audio facilities offer high-performance, low noise, high bandwidth, and low distortion. The controls provide all of the functionality of a G Series center section, plus master facilities for the additional Auxiliary and Stereo Subgroup busses. The foldback and external source selection systems are substantially refined and extended. Additional switching for the new Solo modes is provided. The main console output is 4-channel with a 4-channel fader and compressor. The output is provided with a pre-fade insert point. The compressor is identical to the design used in the G Series range. Selecting KEY  bypasses the pre-fade insert point and allows the insert return to be used as a key input. The Master Fader has it's own status button and LEDs.

The Offset control allows the Master Fader level to be adjusted while still leaving the Master Fader at the top of its travel. The Left and Right Main outputs are fed from console-wide busses. If the LCR Film Pan option is fitted, then the Centre bus can also be fed directly from the channels. The four Stereo Subgroup busses can also be re-routed back to the Left/Right, Center and Surround outputs, allowing four-channel mixes to be built up even if the console does not have the LCR panning option fitted. The Center and Surround outputs are fed by a mono sum of the selected Stereo Subgroup bus.

The main monitor output is 4-channel with a switchable insert point, pre the monitor level control, for Dolby Surround encoders/decoders. Two pairs of near-field monitor outputs are also available and can be selected using the Mini A and MINI B buttons. The monitors are normally fed by the desk main output, but this can be replaced by either one of two External Source selector banks by selecting Ext 1 or Ext 2. The External Source selectors have independent sources, unlike the SL4000. The buttons are normally inter-canceling, but selecting Sum allows several sources to be monitored together.

LINK connects both source selectors together, for comprehensive multiple-source selection. The Auxiliary bus outputs are provided with level control only. The Studio monitor system has been substantially extended. Three stereo Foldback and one stereo Studio Loudspeaker outputs are provided. Each is provided with level control and can be fed by any one or a mix of External Source Selector 1, External Source Selector 2, or an external signal fed via the patchbay. For the Foldback outputs, this is normally the Stereo Cue output, but this may vary from desk to desk. For the Studio Loudspeakers, the third source is always the stereo main Mix output. The four stereo Echo Returns are similar to those fitted on the SL4000, with the addition of discrete routing switches to the main outputs. Note that the STUDIO level control feeds signal back to the Foldback outputs - not the Auxiliary busses. Oscillator and Talkback level controls are similar to those found on the SL4000.

J-Series computer system

The SL 9000 J Series Total Studio System combines an advanced analog console with a powerful computer. The J Series Computer features an automation system based on the advanced processing used in SSL's family of digital products. The result is a faster system, which provides automation of major console functions as well as comprehensive session management capabilities.

The computer uses an internal hard disk, known as the System Disk, to store data. The way that the data is stored is different from previous SSL computer systems but still retains the ability to store information such as Cues, Track Lists, Total Recall Setups, and Mix Data. These files can be transferred to other storage mediums for transfer between different studios

Information stored on G Series Bernoulli Data Cartridges or 3.5" disks can be imported onto the computer's System Disk, and mix data saved with G Series software can be converted to playback on a J Series system.

The J Series Computer features a pen and tablet as its user interface. Although this type of interface may seem unusual to you, the pen is an instrument that is a very natural tool to get to grips with - most of us have been using a pen since we were children, and you will soon get accustomed to it.

This meticulously maintained pre-owned Solid State Logic SL 9080 J console from NRG studios comes with a rich history of recorded music - but there's still plenty left in the tank for you to add to that legacy - plus it comes with Pro Audio Design's service and support. For more information, call or chat online with you PAD Studio Integrator today.  



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