Matt Greco

Mixing Engineer | Producer

(971) 703-4184

Matt Greco is a mixing engineer/producer located in Portland, Oregon. Currently working out of The Rye Room available for all studio needs.

1964 Ears

When I started touring with Gino I was using some great universal Ultimate Ears (Superfi 5 pro). I had them for a few years prior, but had always lusted after some custom IEMs. The entire band uses 1964 Ears, and my first day with them was the first I heard about the company. 1964 Ears is a local company to Portland run by a very friendly staff and Chief Technical Officer Vitaliy Belonozhko. Each custom monitor is hand built at their office in North Portland. I’m definitely a sucker for local independent companies, and 1964 does an incredible job supporting local bands and artists. After talking to Vitaliy a bit, I decided to order some new ears. I ordered in November of 2012, a few weeks before Gino’s Tokyo tour. Vitaliy guaranteed that I would have the ears before I left on tour, and he definitely followed through with his promise.

Having the customs IEMs isn’t even a fair comparison to my older UEs. The customs provide the ultimate fit because they are made out of my personal ear molds. This provides the best isolation, which really makes a big difference when I’m on stage mixing monitors. I can clearly hear the mix better, translating to a better mix overall. Fit wise the 1964 Ears are incredibly comfortable and I can wear them for hours. It takes a little bit of getting used to taking them in and out, but once you do it’s second nature. I decided to go for the triple driver model mostly because I prefer flatter tuned monitors. 1964 does a great job offering many different customization options. I went with clear molds and custom wood faceplates. I brought a piece of purple heart veneer to Vitaliy, and he did an incredible job with the finished product. Sound wise the ears are incredible. The highs are very smooth, but with plenty of clairty. The mids are very balanced but clear as well. I find dialing in the midrange on these ears to be very easy. Low driver definitely provides a nice thump and solid low end. There are times I wish there was a little more bass, and times I’m more than happy with the low end. Maybe it just depends on how I’m feeling that day…. Overall they are very neutral and I love the sound. Referencing my studio mixes on these is a treat as well. These IEMs are incredibly affordable especially when comparing the custom UEs. There of course are many other brands out there, but overall I have been very happy with the quality and service from 1964 Ears.

Photography by 1964 Ears

Shadow Hills Mono Gama Mic Pre

The recording industry is in a very interesting state right now. Some professionals believe it’s declining, some believe just the opposite. I’m not here to argue that, but as a younger engineer and producer I am happy to be working my way through this tough industry. I personally believe that the music industry in general, living in a state of uncertainty, is a positive thing. I guess we will find out as time goes on. For now it seems like everyone is an engineer or has some sort of studio. There are positives and negatives to that as well. The internet has really been a great resource for me when I got started, and I still use it today. Unfortunately there is a lot of sifting through what most would consider useless information. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion and that’s totally fine. So maybe I’m just more useless information…. I hope not. I have decided to talk about gear and what I’ve learned in this industry purely because I’m only speaking from experience. I’m not going to talk about stuff I don’t know. Experience and education wins in this industry, and that is where I’m coming from. I have spent some time teaching kids and adults how to record along with studio consultation work. I hope I can become someone people can trust for useful information.

To start out I’m going to review my first high end outboard mic pre I ever bought; the Shadow Hills Mono Gama.

First of all, I love this company. Every engineer I know loves this company and their products. Everything is hand built and the build quality is spectacular. If I had the money I would totally fill at least one lunchbox with these pres. I would definitely describe the preamp as a colored pre. When I was first looking for a high end outboard pre, I quickly found out there were many options and flavors. I decided on the Shadow Hills mostly based off the switchable output transformers. It basically gives you 3 flavors in the 1 preamp. The discrete transformer reminds me of the api 521c with a little more low end. Obviously it’s going to sound similar to any discrete preamp. The steel and nickel transformers really add in their own flavors. It honestly depends on the source your are recording, because the nickel and steel transformers tend to sound different on just about everything. Both of those transformers really add on some serious mojo to the source. Sometimes it’s a nice low mid range that really compliments a bass or acoustic piano. Other times I’m going back to the discrete transformer because the nickel or steel are adding in harmonics that aren’t favorable. Overall I love the flexibility this preamp has. It is a favorite on vocals, bass, electric guitar, and just about anything else. If you want examples of how it sounds, listen to any of my recordings. I use it all the time. Other option is to get one yourself. I promise you won’t be disappointed.

-Matt

logo.jpg

e: mgreco@theryeroom.com p: (971) 703-4184