Harlow, UK, August 2021… British engineer and producer Dave Eringa has invested in a pair of Genelec 8351B three-way coaxial Smart Active Monitors from ‘The Ones’ series, after relying on his previous monitors for more than two decades. As a result Eringa - whose clients include The Manic Street Preachers, Kylie Minogue and Ocean Colour Scene - feels that he is now ‘doing better mixes’.
“I was doing an album with Roger Daltrey in Metropolis Studios, with mixes done by Michael Brauer, and they had just got the new Genelecs in,” recalled Eringa. “When we got the mix ready and played it on them and turned it up, I said, ‘Oh my goodness, these sound amazing!’ and that’s what started my ‘I’m going to need to do this’ kind of thinking! I thought I knew what to expect but then when I heard them, I thought ‘this is a whole different game – this is brilliant!’ I could hear everything so pinpoint and clear, and the bottom end was just so solid. I was definitely ‘in’ from the first listen.”
While hearing them in Metropolis was a positive first experience, bringing them in to his own Electric Daveyland studio would be a different matter. “I’m lucky enough to be friends with Andy Bensley from Genelec, and he came here and set them up properly for me with the GLM calibration software,” explained Eringa. “He was like ‘let’s see what your old monitors are doing,’ and you could tell he was definitely surprised by how flat they were. I think he thought ‘we’ve got a bit of a challenge here’, but he just blew them out of the water, obviously.
“Andy seems to think that in this room, these speakers without a sub are flat down to 30 Hz which is pretty wide, and I haven’t got enough good things to say about them,” he continued. “I haven’t moved anything by a millimetre. I first had to move a few things around the room that were creating reflections and such, so I’ve just left everything else as it is, because it sounded so good in the first place.”
Having previously used the same studio monitors for so long, the transition to an entirely new setup has provided a unique challenge. “It was a learning curve for sure,” reflected Eringa. “Having worked on one set of speakers continuously for 20 years, I definitely underestimated how easy it would be to change. But I was in the middle of mixing an album at the time, and once I’d got my head around them a week or so later, I started mixing 50% faster! It was amazing – a real game-changer for me.
“I was definitely committed anyway, but it’s like a snooker player changing his cue, it doesn’t happen overnight,” he continued. “But then when it clicked, I ended up taking mixes into the house, into the car, and things were just sounding the same – and you can’t put a price on that. They’re great, I really love them.”
As much as Eringa enjoys the sound of the 8351s, the most important element has been the way it has helped him work. “The main thing for me is that they’ve made my job exponentially easier,” he concluded.