It’s so wonderful to see a pro-level analogue console new to the market. Whilst everyone seems to be using ‘in-the-box’ solutions and equipment costs fall, thankfully there’s still high-level products being developed such as this. I’m sure this New Daking MKII Console will hold it’s ground amongst the best in business, whilst providing some talking points of its own. Even if you can’t afford one, this is an interesting release designed by a true engineer that deserves appreciation.
New Daking MKII Recording Console
I haven’t heard an original Daking console before, but certainly heard colleagues praise them. The first Daking console was reasonably simple, mostly offering only preamps and EQ. This new board however, not only goes way beyond this in terms of features, but is designed around modern digital audio workstations in a refreshing manner.
The new desk is designed by Geoff Daking and Dave Thibodeau, who have clearly come from real engineering backgrounds. Instead of trying to fit a DAW system into a typical analogue desk, they’ve built this desk around a DAW. Although there are the now-typical 16 channels of preamp, when it comes to analogue summing and line mixing, this desk offers a wapping 46 possible inputs as standard. This is as a result of dual inputs per channel strip and a comprehensive bussing section which includes level and panning controls.
The 16 input channels all offer built-in compressor/limiters, high and low pass filters and a 4-band inductor style EQ. The EQ features high and low shelving Baxandall filters as well as two mid-band peak filters. With the EQ being in set frequencies, the compressors offering just push buttons for attack, ratio and release settings amongst other less-prominent features, this should be a very musical desk. Daking have clearly gone for the creative approach to yield colourful results quickly, rather than being transparent and fully controllable. I have a lot of respect for this concept, showing it’s been designed by an experienced engineer, maintaining the purpose of using an analogue board in the first place.
The Daking website sees a new page offering some information about this new console, including a link to download a preliminary overview as a pdf. Pricing information isn’t clear yet, but according to an unofficial post on Gearslutz, we are probably looking at something around 65k USD. This is a serious piece of kit, but potentially a bargain for some facilities, compared with the options from Neve or SSL with similar input counts.
Here are 3 videos from Daking Audio’s YouTube channel. First up is their short promo video:
Here Geoff Daking is interviewed about his design:
Finally, this video provides an overview of the console’s features: