Digital Console Rental Adds DiGiCo SD8
Engineer Howard Jones established Nashville’s Digital Console Rental, Inc. in 2004—armed with 20+ years of touring expertise and the newly launched DiGiCo D5. In a few short years, DCR has gone on to become a thriving ‘dry hire’ digital console rental house, offering product for high level touring artists, sound reinforcement companies and corporate events. It recently added the new DiGiCo SD8 to its rental inventory.
“When we got started, being a new company, we wanted to come in with the hottest new piece of gear on the market,” recalled Jones, “and the DiGiCo D5 was the new badass console on the block. Although 2004 was not that long ago, the only viable large frame digital desk at the time was the Yamaha PM1D, but it had been out for 3-4 years. The D5 epitomized what the whole digital desk concept was about. We established the company with the D5, so it made sense that when they came out with the SD8—a smaller, more affordable digital desk—we should move on to that as well.”
As a dry hire rental house, it was imperative that the DiGiCo desks had an online and offline editor so that acts that rent the desks for a run of shows can pre-program the desk using the DiGiCo RCE (Remote Control Editor) software. “I just tell the engineer to download the program off of the DiGiCo website and they have all of the same controls of the desk on their laptop,” he adds. “Because this is an online program as well as offline, the engineer can also put his laptop on the SD8 surface and use this as an additional ‘live’ screen with the SD8.”
The SD8’s features, combined with its great sound and ease of use were high on Jones’ list of benefits. “The DiGiCo line as a whole is a great sounding line. Some of the pluses with the SD8 are that you get a lot of the features of the bigger desks as well as retaining the audio quality. The SD8 offers a better value to our existing dyed-in-the-wool DiGiCo clients looking for a more affordable and compact digital offering to go up against the Digidesign Venue and Yamaha PM5D. One of the big improvements in the SD8 and SD7 over the D-series is there are no socket files to deal with. Also, having 12 channels per touch screen as opposed to 8 is definitely a move in the right direction.”
Jones adds “the ability for an engineer to be able to do high resolution Hard Disk Broadcast Wave file recording with a RME MADI-face, and do virtual soundcheck for $1,500 is a very powerful statement in itself”.
Moving forward, Jones and Digital Console Rentals are working closely with DiGiCo to help develop and expand the SD8 market, and to that end, are opening an office in Austin, TX at the new Soundcheck facility this fall.
When we got started, being a new company, we wanted to come in with the hottest new piece of gear on the market and the DiGiCo D5 was the new badass console on the block. The D5 epitomized what the whole digital desk concept was about. We established the company with the D5, so it made sense that when they came out with the SD8 a smaller, more affordable digital desk we should move on to that as well.