Metrica, a new commercial audio facility in Playa d’en bossa, Ibiza, has installed an impressive surround sound monitoring system that incorporates 25 PMC twotwo.5 two-way active monitors complimented by three PMC Sub2 sub woofers.
Ibiza’s premier audio supplier, Pro Audio Ibiza, were instrumental facilitating the supply of PMC speakers to Metrica Studios, which has been specifically designed as a creative hub for 3D and binaural projects. Metrica uses Eurecat SfËar immersive audio technology to record and mix projects for the music, film, advertising, TV and gaming industries. The facility is also a research centre for Eurecat so that it can further develop its 3D audio plugins and sound rendering software.
The trio behind Metrica are producer and engineer Javier Ferrer Serra, musician and producer Matias Kamelman and Shams Faure, a man with extensive experience of running record labels and radio stations who was brought in as Head of Operations and Co-ordinator to oversee the building and running of the studio.
As a music consultant for big brands such as Hard Rock Hotel, Matias Kamelman has many years’ experience in music production and has played with numerous artists including Eric Martin (Mr. Big) and Kool & The Gang. Javier Ferrer Serra’s music production career also spans many years and includes a six-year stint as head of Ushuaïa´s Studio. Collaboration between the two has resulted in Banjaara, a new musical concept in Ibiza that merges Electronic music with all sort of instruments and music styles. They also collaborate on other projects such as film scoring and gaming where there is huge scope for 3D and immersive audio.
“The origins of Metrica lie in Javier´s collaboration with Eurecat,” Shams explains. “Javier started testing Sfëar plugins five years ago and that inspired his dream to build a studio where he could develop his interest in both Sfëar and immersive audio. When he met Matias and began working with him on various music projects, he realised he had found the perfect partner and that a studio would provide a production base for them both.”
Consisting of a 70 m2 live room and a 60 m2 control room, Metrica was conceived and designed by Phillip Newell and executed and crafted by Joules Newell and his team. The 25.3 PMC monitoring system is set up in the live room, which doubles as a mix room for Sfëar projects. The system was chosen by Javier because he had used PMC speakers in the past and had always appreciated the accuracy of their sound.
“It’s like The Doc in Back to the Future,” Matias says. “When he was asked why he chose a DeLorean, he said ‘if you want the best, use the best’. That’s how we feel about PMC monitors. They sound spectacular so why use anything else?”
Sfëar immersive audio technology features real-time 3D audio plugins and sound rendering software, which is fully compatible with all common Digital Audio Workstations (DAWs). The 3D audio produced can be rendered to a loudspeaker set up as well as binaural using headphones and head trackers. Thanks to its layout calibration tool, Sfëar’s sound rendering software makes the system aware of the position of each loudspeaker. This calibration can be saved for later use and even for adapting previously made recordings to a given layout.
“Immersive sound is the future – and it is here, today,” Shams says. “When it was first conceived the world wasn’t ready for it, but now it is and you can hear 3D and binaural sound in many places, even You Tube. This means there is a requirement to produce specific content and that´s where Metrica comes in. Our aim is to produce 3D and binaural content and help the music industry embrace this revolutionary technology, which in our opinion it desperately needs. The idea is to turn music from simply ‘listening’ into an experience. Imagine revisiting all the classics in a way you’ve never imagined they could sound. Imagine great artists not being confined to a plain stereo image. The artists, the industry and of course the listener will have something absolutely new that they have never experienced before.”