Otari

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Allan Holdsworth’s Untold Secrets + Worthy Quotes (Guitar Player 1990)

The same sensitivity allowed Holdsworth to slip easily between the roles of performer, producer, and engineer. Dissatisfied with the limited range of his equipment, he replaced his monitors with highly accurate Yamaha NS40s, rented an Otari MTR90 tape recorder, and turned in his console for a sweet-sounding Trident. He performed a series of meticulous experiments before settling into any irreversible mixes. "I think I made up for the lack of equipment and studio-level sonic quality by keeping everything balanced. I wanted to make the album sound fairly natural, so I didn't go overboard with any processing. I wanted to make it as clear as I could. I'd go in there and get it EQ'd, do a rough mix to a DAT tape, and then I'd make a cassette and play it everywhere. I'd actually spend the rest of the day playing it in someone else's car, my van, the back room where I have a blaster, and through the NS-40s. If there's any gnarl there, I want to hear it."

At home in the Brewery (Home Recording 1997)

Allan Holdsworth may be one of the World's most evolved guitarists, but he records at home for the simple reason most people do: economics. "What I usually do is rent a tape machine because it's cheaper to do that than to go up to L.A. and record in a big studio,” says Holdsworth. "I've rented the Mitsubishi 88032-track, the Otari MTR90 and MX80 and others. I've had a mix of analog and digital, but I've found that renting is the best solution, because I take a long, long time to mix. I simply couldn't afford to take the time to mix what I do at home in a big studio."