Midas and Meyer at the Cape Town Jazz Festival

Having taken a break for a few years, I had the immense privilege a few weeks ago of returning to my yearly ‘job’ of mixing at Rosies stage – at the Cape Town Jazz Festival. Working alongside the legendary Aki Kahn this had been a regular gig for some ten years. This year I was busy on stage doing monitors – but had the chance inbetween rehearsals to check out the new arrivals for this year in Rosies: a  Midas Pro-X mixing console and, on the loudspeaker side, the new Meyer Leopard line arrays. With Mark Malherbe and Johan Griesel at the controls this promised to be interesting!

What a revelation; Midas have very clearly taken a great deal of input from live-mix engineers and incorporated real-world features that (like the best “inventions”) seem so totally “obvious” that you wonder why no one else has thought of them! This is an almost scarily powerful desk whose capability “beneath the hood” reminded me of driving a powerful luxury vehicle that carries its passengers in safety and comfort but has the sheer power to get you out of trouble when needed! And as with a well-sorted vehicle that “brute-force” is readily accessible – no “sub-menu of a sub-menu” excuses here…

And the Leopard line arrays conveyed a level of detail that even the “non-technical” listeners commented on. Ultimately these are the people that matter: they are the jazz-lovers, and they know when they are getting more music for their money; the transparency of these arrays (particularly in the top-end) provides that in spades.

Prior to actually hearing this Midas/Meyer combo I had thought it a bit “extreme” that Aki had driven all the way from Cape Town to Jo’burg to hear the demo at Montecasino’s Teatro a few weeks prior to the Jazz Festival.

But as the saying goes: “hearing is believing!”

Keith Davies (Tonmeister – UK)

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