Merging’s Anubis at the heart of award-winning mastering engineer’s workflow
One of the most in-demand mastering engineers in the business, Stephen Marsh has been responsible for the musical perfection of some of the biggest soundtracks in television, film and video gaming. In fact, Marsh’s regular client roster comprises a glittering array of Grammy, Oscar, and Golden Globe winners. A mastering engineer of this calibre needs the right tools for the job, and Merging Technologies gear is an integral part of Marsh’s workflow.
Marsh’s Atmos setup is Pyramix based and works all within one system: “I have a Pyramix on a DAW and a PC, and my Dolby renderer also on the same PC. Everything talks via the Merging audio driver. All of the monitoring gets handled between the Dolby renderer and the Pyramix DAW via internal links,” explains Marsh. From here, all monitoring comes through a Merging Technologies Anubis.
One of the challenges posed by mastering in Atmos is ensuring all the downmixes translate. Merging Technologies' Anubis makes quick work of a process that was historically complicated and time-consuming. “If someone is playing it back in 7.1.4, or 7.1.2, or 5.1.4, or 5.1, two-channel, binaural, they all need to sound like they make sense together. The Anubis allows me to do all of that stuff very quickly,” confirms Marsh.
Marsh’s journey to becoming a Merging Technologies user began 10 years ago. “I needed to work in DSD, and they were the only company offering a true end-to-end solution that was mature, and supported, and still continuing to be developed. The by-product of that was that I found it was a system that literally did everything I needed it to do.” In terms of product integrations, the Marsh Mastering studio utilises Pyramix as the DAW, Hapi as the main D/A and A/D and Anubis as the monitor controller.
“My Anubis is integrated into my chain as my monitor control, and it essentially replaced my main stereo monitor controller. When you are critically listening to audio you need to be able to filter it in certain ways to be able to expose different elements of it quickly and easily, just to find out what’s going on. The Anubis handles all of that really cleanly. The interface is super clean, easy to use, and once you get into the thinking of the way Merging stuff operates, it’s really easy to make it go fast,” explains Marsh.
Indeed, Merging Technologies gear has been crucial in streamlining Marsh’s workflow. Explaining the impact that Merging products have had on his methods, Marsh confirms, “It allows me to work with mix sample rates, mix bit depths, all of my plugins work at high resolution, and it allows me to have one version of everything. So, I work at the very highest resolution and then everything can come down off of that. That means I only have to proof it once, I only have to do all the metadata and clerical manipulation once, and then it can go out in all the necessary formats. It’s unparalleled as far as I’m concerned.”