Time for a new studio: crisis or chance for dream come true?

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Rodgre
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Time for a new studio: crisis or chance for dream come true?

Post by Rodgre » Wed Mar 28, 2012 10:29 am

Its been ages since I was active on this board, and I hope some of my old friends are still hanging around...

To the point: I've been running a studio with a partner for 20 years. I love this room and I know every nook and cranny of the space and every piece of gear. I'm very confident here. However, the time has come for a change. I really want to open my own space, no partners. It's both a great opportunity and a terrifying panic for me.

I would like some advice from you folks. What might you do in this situation? Am I unrealistic to have my heart set on setting up another large room, able to handle full band tracking and storage of all the gear I've accumulated over the years, or is it a waste of space and money to have a large space when the majority of my work over the past few years has been overdubbing and mixing, which requires far less room and gear?

I already own most of the gear I would need to set up a large space, but I would have to invest another $10k +/- in getting a few necessary pieces and upgrading my Mac/pro tools rig. I have a lot of "this will be handy someday!" gear in my collection that I have a hard time letting go of, which would be nice to keep set up, but maybe it's just not wise to be tied to so much gear that isn't essential. I'm a gear collector (non-musicians call it "hoarding") and I have lots of toys that I consider inspirational and part of a creative environment, but they don't get used all the time.

I'm really at a crossroads. I WANT a large room (there aren't any others that I'm aware of nearby) and I would love to consolidate all my gear in one place, but am I stuck in the past by thinking I can keep a large room busy enough to cover my expenses in this time where a lot of potential clients are all recording at home and only requiring me to do overdubs or mixing?

At this point, I am still looking into possible locations, and haven't found anything that speaks to me yet.

Thoughts?

Roger.

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austin
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Post by austin » Wed Mar 28, 2012 12:12 pm

I WANT a large room (there aren't any others that I'm aware of nearby) and I would love to consolidate all my gear in one place, but am I stuck in the past by thinking I can keep a large room busy enough to cover my expenses in this time where a lot of potential clients are all recording at home and only requiring me to do overdubs or mixing?
If there are no large rooms nearby, then you could fill that niche, right? Seems to me that a lot of clients with home recording setups would be doing their overdubs at home ? they'd come to you for a nice drum room or tracking live with a full band.

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Gregg Juke
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Post by Gregg Juke » Wed Mar 28, 2012 4:39 pm

If I were you, I might do some informal and/or formal market research in your area. Are there enough musicians and other work opportunities to make it a go?

Do you have to break-up the partnership now, or do you just want to? Could you possibly stay where you're at while you get your strategic planning and logistics together?

I have a partnership in a studio, and what we did was bide our time, and look hard, for commercial/industrial space that we could afford. If we had just looked at numbers, or what's coming in in the form of actual income, we probably wouldn't have been able to do it. But I knew that in this "downturn economy," that there had to be some decent space going for crazy cheap, and that's exactly what we found. If you take your time, I'll bet you might come across a similar situation.

The other option would be to go with the smaller space that you seem to be leaning towards, and rent storage for your gear. But in the end, you might not save much money, and you can't record or mix in a storage space.

Of course, you could offer incredible vintage gear at bargain-basement prices to folks here at TapeOp, which might help to fund your new space :wink:

GJ

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joelpatterson
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Post by joelpatterson » Wed Mar 28, 2012 7:10 pm

A question: is your ex-partner still going to be running your ex-room somewhere in or near your zip code?

Do you have so many customers that you are turning half of them away half of the time?

I would offer this puzzling zen mantra: it's necessary to follow your heart, nothing worthy ever comes about but for this... on the other hand, the "pay for a session at a properly outfitted studio" seems to be receding into the mists of nostalgia...
Mountaintop Studios
~The Peak of Perfection~
Petersburgh NY 12138

mountaintop@taconic.net

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