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Soundcraft Vi3000 & Culture Club

@Culture Club Reunion Tour

Culture Club's FOH engineer Jimmy Sarikas has added a Soundcraft Vi3000 console to his inventory in time for the band's upcoming tour of North America and the UK.

The first task for Sarikas' new desk – sold through Sound Technology, Soundcraft's distributor for the UK and Ireland – was a private performance from the group at the Heaven nightclub in London. The engineer purchased the Vi3000 for multiple purposes, including live mixing, as well as studio and mobile recording. “I’m a one-stop shop, so I needed a console that could perform multiple functions,” he said. “I can roll up to a festival and do live multi-track recording and broadcast, and I have multiple duplication systems in my truck, so I can give you 200 CDs in a half-hour after the show.” The console offers a number of benefits, according to Sarikas: “For starters, the sound quality of the Vi3000 is just amazing,” he continued. “Vi Series consoles have always had an amazing sound and that’s the case with the Vi3000. The second major factor is ease of use.

I personally feel that manufacturers are making boards that are too small. I want some faders! My arms are more than capable to open as wide as 24 faders, so it’s Soundcraft all the way for me.” For the Culture Club shows, Sarikas is running 53 channels to accommodate the multiple vocals and wide range of instruments, which includes two piano players, several guitars, a brass section and various percussion. He is also utilising the Soundcraft Realtime Rack, featuring a library of Universal Audio plug-ins.

“I’m loving the Dante connectivity because I record 64 channels in and 64 channels out for virtual sound checks as well as my multi-track recordings,” Sarikas noted. “I’m working with two machines for that [Mac Minis with SSD hard drives]. Both computers fit in a 1RU rack located in the flight case of the Vi3000 – one is my recording device and the other is the Realtime Rack.”

Sarikas' positive experience with Soundcraft boards in the past played a factor was another reason for his decision. “I’ve used Vi6 consoles at festivals before and they always felt a bit daunting at first, but the truth is that Vi consoles are probably the easiest control surfaces to use,” he explained. “There aren’t any hidden pages – what you need is right in front of you.”