Collegium Records Expands its NTP Technology DAD AX24

This is the Day: Music on royal occasions

Cambridge-based Collegium Records has expanded its 16-channel NTP DAD AX24 system to 24 channels for the production of a new album celebrating some of the choral music heard on royal occasions during the lifetime of HM Elizabeth II. The recording, 'This is the Day: Music on royal occasions', includes a newly orchestrated version of John Rutter’s celebratory royal wedding anthem, written for the marriage of Prince William and Kate Middleton at Westminster Abbey in 2011.

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"We have been using a 16 channel DAD AX24 system for over three years," comments composer, conductor, editor and record-producer John Rutter. "The AX24 incorporates high quality microphone pre-amplification and analog-to-digital conversion in a single system. Both processes are crucial when you are trying to capture an ultra-high quality mirror of an actual performance. Our new album was recorded at St Alban's Cathedral and London's Temple Church. Eight additional AX24 channels allowed us to field up to 24 microphones instead of the 16 which the system previously accommodated.

"Choral music can generate very fierce peaks which demand very forgiving mike pre-amps. Dual soprano parts in thirds, for example, tend to generate huge energy spikes. The DAD AX24's pre-amps really do absorb them, are ultra-reliable and have very low internal noise. Choral distortion is also dependent on the analog-to-digital converter. Choirs generate all kinds of strange intermodulation artefacts and you absolutely don't want to add any more. The AX24's analog to digital converters are outstandingly transparent. Even before I used the pre-amp options, the AX24 sounded cleaner and clearer than the competition. It delivers the quality we require and is very light and portable.

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"We record onto a Pyramix digital audio workstation using the AX24 system at its 44.1 kilohertz sampling rate which eliminates the need for subsequent downconversion. The AX24 gives us the capability of using sampling rates as high as 192 kilohertz which could be useful to match future audio publishing standards."

The AX24 signal converters were supplied by NTP Technology's UK distributor, eMerging, which also supplied the Pyramix digital audio workstation used by Collegium Records for multichannel recording.

Existing users of NTP DAD audio signal processors include Abbey Road Studios, Bauer Studios, Benny Andersson's RMV Studio, Classic Sound, CMC Studios, Danish Radio, DEX Mastering, DPA Microphones, Echopark Studios, Galaxy Studios, Hana Music Montreux, Helsinki Music Centre, Lindberg lyd, Master Touch, McGill University, Moscow Music Conservatory, NDR Hamburg, NHK, NRK, QVC shopping channel, Real Sound, Royal Danish Opera House, Royal Opera House London, Sidney Opera House, SK Works, Slovak Philharmonic Orchestra, SoundWorks/Jeff Sheridan, Spanish Radio, St Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, Stock Fish Records, Swedish Radio, Telarc International, Timbre Music, Ultimo Productions and the Warsaw National Philharmonic Orchestra.

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Collegium Records was established in 1984 as a label dedicated to the Cambridge Singers, with the aim of presenting a range of choral music in recordings of musical excellence and high technical quality. The Cambridge Singers are a mixed-voice chamber choir formed by their director, John Rutter, for the express purpose of making recordings. The group originally comprised former members of the chapel choir of Clare College, Cambridge, where John Rutter was Director of Music from 1975 to 1979. This nucleus was supplemented by former members of other collegiate choirs. The Cambridge Singers have recorded over 30 critically-acclaimed albums of music from across the broad spectrum of choral music. Live performances have included such venues as the Royal Albert Hall, London, and Carnegie Hall, New York.

NTP Technology produces high-reliability audio routing and signal processing systems for major international broadcasters, audio mastering and editing studios. NTP products are integrated into television and radio stations as well as production centres, post-production facilities and outside broadcast vehicles. Based in Copenhagen, NTP is part of Dan Technologies Group, one of Europe's leading suppliers of audio, video, transmission products and digital media solutions.

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