Dear Mr. Ainlay, Bill Porter/Brothers in Arms - Gearspace.com
The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
Dear Mr. Ainlay, Bill Porter/Brothers in Arms
Old 15th November 2005
Gear Maniac
mattallen's Avatar
🎧 15 years
Dear Mr. Ainlay, Bill Porter/Brothers in Arms

Mr. Ainlay,

I sat in on your mix session when you working on the Bill Porter mixes. I was waiting for him that day to come back to the studio. I was just wondering how that was going and if Bill liked the initial mixes.

Also in my digital audio class we've been listening to the original release of Brothers in Arms, The SACD version, and the DSD version in light of me buying the new DSD version and we had some questions.

1. Did you do just the 5.1 remix or did you mix the "CD" side of that disk also. We were unclear due to the linear notes.

2. Was your source material the original master tapes or digital files?

3. What was the sample rate and bit depth that you used?

Any other information you could provide would be fantastic. Thank you so much.


Matt Allen
Old 16th November 2005
Here for the gear
Chuck Ainlay's Avatar
🎧 15 years
the quiet one in the back of the room

Good to hear from you Matt,

Bill seems please, we spoke just yesterday. What an honor to work with such a legend among Nashville engineers. When you consider his carreer, engineering for artists like Elvis and Roy Orbison and so many others.

The 20th anniversary of Dire Straits, Brothers in Arms has the original stereo mix of Neil Dorfsman's, although remastered by Bob Ludwig. To do the surround mix I transfered from the original digital multi-track masters and slave reels off of a Sony 3348 HR machine, analog out to Nuendo using the Apogee 16x converters at 96k/24bit. I had to do an analog transfer since the original master tapes had pre-emphisis on and there was no way to strip the emphisis to do a digital transfer. I did the transfer at 96k because there were some analog slave reels that I wanted to archive at the highest resolution. I then mixed through a Neve 88R at Mark's new studio in London, British Grove. The mixes were captured on a second Nuendo system using the Prism eight channel converters, also running at 96k/24bit. Bob mastered the album PCM and resampled to DSD for the SACD release.

You didn't say what you thought of the surround remix. It was very tramatic remixing such a classic album that I have always held with such esteem. Hopefully, you feel I did it justic.

High Fidelity Review is going to publish an interview with me about the surround production of this album that might shed more light on how I mixed BIA. Maybe worth reading.
Old 16th November 2005 | Show parent
Gear Maniac
mattallen's Avatar
🎧 15 years
I just didn't know what to say......

Thanks for your response, it was very informative.

The whole reason I bough the album was because of the surround mix I heard at AES. Bob Ludwig played it for everyone and after hearing it I knew I had to buy it. It sounded amazing. I hold that album in a special place because I grew up with it on family trips, as my Father just adored it. But....I haven't had a chance to sit down and listen to the surround mix as I don't have a system, but a friend does so I will soon. I can't wait to hear all the tracks in surround.

I'll look for that article, I'm sure it will be a good read.

I talk to Bill quite often still and he never seems to stop amazing me. I've learned so much from him and I owe a lot to him. I talked him after he received the first discs to see what he thought and overall he really liked it. You guys must have had a funny conversation about Bill hearing the EQ and Compression on the tracks. Bill just laughed when he told me. He really enjoys working with you from what I've heard.

I'll be moving to Nashville in January for an internship with Omnisound as of now, unless I find something I feel is more appropriate. It's not quite the mentor-ship I was looking for but many people recommended it over some of the other studios that I had successful interviews at. So hopefully I will see you around. Thanks for everything!


Matt Allen
Old 17th November 2005
Here for the gear
🎧 15 years
bill porter

Hi. I got to meet bill in Vegas 1971. I had been to a couple of elvis shows before bill got on board at thee hilton. Bill sure inproved that show. Bill mixes sounded like studio play backs coming off that stage. I still cant figure how he got such a Great mix live. It only proves its all in the ears.
He is unbelievable.
Don Kidwell

Similar Threads

Thread / Thread Starter Replies / Views Last Post
replies: 577 views: 34075
Avatar for kdm
kdm 1st July 2009
replies: 50 views: 5989
Avatar for Animus
Animus 26th April 2010
replies: 81 views: 37391
Avatar for nukmusic
nukmusic 10th April 2011
replies: 29678 views: 3207957
Avatar for rickdrumss
rickdrumss 16 hours ago

Forum Jump
Forum Jump