The History of Solid State Logic
After getting Solid State Logic started with organ switching systems, Colin Sanders turned his attention to building his own recording studio. It was at Acorn Studios that Sanders would first begin building and working on consoles. By 1976, he had completed the first A Series console.
Solid State Logic's watershed moment would occur upon the release of the SL 4000 E Series in 1979. The console would become a favorite in recording studios around the world for the next two decades and lead to the massive expansion of SSL as we know it today. As technology continued to advance, Solid State Logic's console offering did too.
The brand's SuperAnalogue™ design, which first was used in the SL 9000 J Series console, incorporated a capacitor-free signal path that could deliver very high bandwidth and low amounts of distortion. This technology continues to be used in their console offerings including the Duality and AWS series.
The Sound of Solid State Logic
When it comes to the classic console makers, each brand is often known for their own signature sound. Neve equals "warmth," API has "punch," and Solid State Logic is beloved for their sonically pure analog sounds. It's the pristine nature of Solid State Logic consoles and outboard gear that have made them a favorite for years. There are currently 3000 SSL consoles in use throughout the entire world, including in the studios of Bryan Adams, Blur, Sting and many more.
Solid State Logic Consoles, Controllers and Summing Mixers
Solid State Logic Duality Delta Console
For large recording studios and production facilities, the Solid State Logic Duality console series is everything an engineer with a hybrid workflow could dream of. The desk comes in 24, 48, 72 and 96 fader configurations, and gives users the ability to take advantage of an analog signal path while offering controls over two separate DAWS simultaneously.
The Duality console series features dual mic preamps, including the SuperAnalogueTM and Variable Harmonic Drive (VHD) circuit. If you prefer the pure, pristine sounds SSL is known for, you'll want to use the SuperAnalogueTM. Prefer something a little more distorted? The VHD circuit is for you. SSL's other classic signal processing tools are at play with the Duality console series.
Each channel strip has high and low pass filters, EQ and a compressor/gate. The desk also features the beloved SSL master bus compressor, which has been used on countless recordings.
Solid State Logic AWS Delta Console
When creating their AWS Delta console series, Solid State Logic set out to design a desk for medium size recording and production facilities. AWS, which stands for Analogue Workstation System, takes the beloved SuperAnalogue™ console technology and blends it with intuitive controls over your DAW.
The Delta-Control (D-Ctrl) Single Fader Plug-in allows you even more control as you are capable of automating AWS channel and mix bus volume. The DAW's automation system can record the volume control data and send it back to the AWS during playback over an ethernet connection.
Solid State Logic's AWS Delta also features many of the same signal processing effects as the Duality. The consoles include SSL SuperAnalogue™ mic pres, SSL dual curve EQ on every channel, two SSL Dynamics channels, the legendary Stereo Buss Compressor and more.
To learn more about the AWS Delta console series, check our recent Buyer's Guide by clicking here.
Solid State Logic Matrix2 Delta
As you may have picked up on early in this Buyer's Guide, Solid State Logic has put a focus on creating consoles that are suited for hybrid production environments. The Matrix2 Delta follows suit, as users are able to utilize the console/controller's premium summing power and easily insert outboard gear into their signal path. The Matrix2 Delta's features a 40 input SuperAnalogue™ summing mixer, an "Insert Router" that allows individual or chains of outboard gear to be inserted into the signal path and monitor switching and talkback technology.
Solid State Logic Origin Console
The Solid State Logic Origin is an inline, 32-channel analog console with two independent signal paths per channel, 16 buses with centralized bus switching, and advanced communications controls in a compact, ergonomic design. Inspired by the iconic SL 4000 E, SSL Origin combines classic SSL components like the legendary 242 EQ and Bus Compressor with innovative new features like a fully customizable Center section and an all-new transistor-based PURE DRIVE preamp design to deliver unparalleled sound quality and versatility.
To learn more about the Solid State Logic Origin console, check our recent Buyer's Guide on the console.
Solid State Logic System T For Music
Debuting in 2023, SSL’s System T for Music is a specialized variant of the System T console that’s tailor-made for immersive and stereo music workflows. System T for Music bridges the gap between working in the box and traditional analog console workflows. Combining cutting-edge immersive audio technology with legendary SSL multichannel dynamics and EQs, System T for Music is a game-changer for mixing music. Available in two primary formats, the customizable S500, and the fixed S300. Here’s a quick look at what each configuration has to offer.
Solid State Logic XL Desk
Solid State Logic's XL Desk was created for those that crave the non-automated glory years of the recording studio. This vintage-style analog console has a simplified workflow that features 20 channel strips (16 mono/4 stereo), including eight of the distortion-friendly VHD mic pres. The signal path of the XL Desk is 100% analog. A unique feature of the XL Desk is that it offers 18 slots to load up with your favorite 500 Series modules. This gives you the ability to take advantage of Solid State Logic's classic signal processors, while also seamlessly working in any single or double wide module that you love.
Solid State Logic Nucleus 2
With the Nucleus 2, Solid State Logic is once again bridging the gap between the analog and digital world. The Nucleus 2 is a compact desktop controller that includes two SSL SuperAnalogue™ console grade preamps, 16 faders, and DANTE connectivity. If you're working in the box, but prefer to get hands-on with your controls, the Nucleus 2 is a great option.
You're able to control up to three different DAWs at one time and easily switch between them with a push of the button. Additionally, the desktop controller features assignable hardware controls that can be linked to all major DAW and plug-in parameters.
Speaking of plug-ins, the Nucleus 2 comes with the SSL Native Essentials Bundle, which features digital versions of most of the hardware we've talked about so far, including the SSL Channel EQ, Channel Dynamics, and Stereo Bus Compressor.
Solid State Logic's X-Desk is a world-class, compact mixer that utilizes SuperAnalogue™ technology. The X-Desk features eight dual input mono channels, which can be used for 16 channel mixdowns. While it may be small in stature, the X-Desk can level up when cascading it together with other X-Desk and X-Rack combinations.
Sigma Delta Summing Mixer
If you work in the box, but want to get some of the analog mojo of a Solid State Logic desk, the Sigma Delta summing mixer is the perfect choice for you. In this 2U rack design, Solid State Logic gives 16 channels of summing mixing power that can be used in mono or stereo for up to 32 channels when mixing down. All of this is made easier, thanks to the Sigma's dual mix buss design and direct output and insert features.
SiX Desktop Mixer
The SiX desktop mixer is Solid State Logic's latest product to hit the market and it offers up the smallest footprint with the most analog mojo yet. This desktop mixer features two SuperAnalogue™ mic pres, new channel EQ and compressor designs, in addition to the G-Series compressor on the main bus. Whether you're recording on the go, in a project studio or just capturing demo ideas, the SiX offers you the ability to get that classic SSL sound from a mixer that you can fit into a suitcase.
BiG SiX Large-Format Desktop Mixer
Inspired by the best-selling SiX desktop mixer, the Solid State Logic Big SiX is a large format mixer with 16 built-in studio grade AD and DA converters with 96 kHz, 16-channel USB interface and four SuperAnalogue mic inputs. The BiG SiX combines SSL’s class-leading converters, versatile monitor controls and legendary SuperAnalogue mic inputs into one compact and ergonomic interface.
Designed for larger stem mixing sessions, Big SiX offers 18 channels of analog summing and 16 channels of studio-grade analog to digital and digital to analog conversion at resolutions up to 96 kHz. Big SiX integrates seamlessly with your favorite DAW, offering versatile monitor controls with outputs for two sets of speakers.
Solid State Logic Controllers
With UF8, users get an intuitive and robust 8-channel DAW controller with advanced features like simultaneous control of multiple DAWs, custom assignable Quick Keys, and full-scale 100 mm faders. Channel and Plug-In control modes allow users to access channel processing in Pro Tools quicker than ever, and high-resolution displays allow for quick mixing without having to spend as much time staring at computer screens. With 43 keys and the ability to expand to multiple units, the SSL UF platform is perfect for in-the-box workflows that require professional-level tools, while the high-quality faders and sleek brushed metal enclosure remind users of the unmistakable SSL quality.
The ultimate choice in single-channel DAW control, SSL’s UF1 makes DAW workflow seamless for even the most advanced sessions. Standard modern SSL channel facilities like high-quality 100mm faders and physical pan and selection controls deliver a familiar feel to SSL users, while new offerings like the SSL Meter display and over 40 user programmable soft keys set the UF1 apart from other compact DAW controllers. Complete with an efficient transport section and jog wheel, the UF1 enables engineers to mix faster and more intuitively in the box, delivering a solution that allows for more comprehensive and ultimately more impactful mixing.
Designed for use with SSL’s plug-ins, the UC1 is a physical plugin controller that proves perfect as the centerpiece of the modular UF8 system. Seamless integration with the SSL 360º plugin family allows users to flow through their mixes with physical channel strip operation, as well as the iconic Bus Compressor. In hybrid mixing environments, physical control of faders, channel processing and more is a link often lost from the analog era. With the ability to EQ and process dynamics in real time across your mix, users will notice a much more natural mix workflow, while utilizing the only SSL emulations made in-house.
Solid State Logic Audio Interfaces
SSL2 & SSL2+
The SSL2 and SSL2+ USB audio interfaces draw from over four decades of innovation and experience. With class-leading analog microphone preamps and pristine 24-bit / 192 kHz converters, the new SSL 2 Series USB audio interfaces deliver studio-quality recordings. Inspired by the legendary SSL 4K console, the newly-designed "Legacy 4K" mode adds classic analog color and character to your recordings for that extra dose of vintage vibe. An immaculate signal path and a high-current headphone amplifier ensure crystal-clear playback while tracking or mixing.
Combined with a compact footprint and rugged construction, the new SSL2+ and SSL2 USB audio interfaces make it easier than ever to create professional productions in any environment. Top it all off with the included "SSL Production Pack" software bundle, which includes some of SSL’s own studio-grade Native plug-ins and a carefully selected range of DAWs, samples, loops and virtual instruments to take your productions to the next level.
Building on the successes of the SSL2 and SSL2+ interfaces, the SSL 12 expands the familiar workflow to 12 inputs and 8 outs, while still retaining the convenience of a compact, bus-powered format. With four SSL preamps with Legacy 4K mode, +24 dBu operating levels for seamless outboard gear integration, and the ability to add inputs via ADAT, the SSL 12 is perfect for small to mid-sized studios. Plus, with the included SSL 360º software, users can set up low latency headphone mixes, set user programmable workflow buttons, configure their monitor arrangements, and more.
Solid State Logic Outboard And 500 Series Modules
Solid State Logic is a pioneer when it comes to console technology. As the company has grown, they've brought many of their console-based innovations to the world of outboard gear and 500 Series modules.
X-Rack And Mynx Modules
If you're not in the market for a console and prefer to work with smaller-sized outboard gear, the X-Rack system from Solid State Logic is a great option. This modular rack system fits eight channels of world-famous SSL dynamics into a 19-inch 4U rack mount unit. If you'd like to just use two modules, the Mynx is another desktop option.
One quick note, these are different sized modules than the typical 500 Series, which means a X-Rack or Mynx is necessary for their use. The modules that can be used in these racks are as follows:
The classic compression of the center section of the Solid State Logic G-Series analog console.
An exact replica of the classic four-band EQ used on Duality and AWS consoles.
This module features separate compressor and gate/expander sections for powerful and smooth dynamics.
Stereo version of the classic four-band EQ used on Duality and AWS consoles.
A stereo version of the Dynamics module, which features separate compressor and gate/expander circuits.
A one-channel mic preamp with the SuperAnalogue™ design, variable impedance control, phantom power, and phase reverse.
Replicates the EQ used on the SSL 4000 console and features both "brown" and "black" response curves.
The compressor and expander/gate of the SL 611E Series channel strip are back in a module for the X-Rack. The compressor features three distinct voices.
Solid State Logic 500 Series Modules
Currently, Solid State Logic has five different 500 Series modules, all of which bring classic features from their storied consoles to a smaller format.
This is a 500 Series module version of the compressor and expander/gate of the SL 611E Series channel strip.
While Solid State Logic's SuperAnalogue™ mic pre is crystal clear, the VHD allows for everything from ultra-clean to heavy distortion.
The legendary bus compressor from the G-Series console has made its way to the world of 500 Series.
In the 1980s, engineers used a circuit created to prevent overloading the talkback mic to give drums and vocals a super aggressive tone. This module replicates that circuit's unique capabilities.
The sonic signature of the SL 4000 E console channel strip is here in all its glory with two different EQs.
Building off of the strength of the SSL Fusion, the Ultraviolet EQ delivers an upgraded version of Fusion’s stereo EQ section with two fully parametric mid bands, both featuring the thoughtful Focus mode.
Derived from the input channel strip on the SiX console mixer, the SiX CH gives you the mic preamp, EQ, and compression section in a 500 Series format.
Derived from SSL’s original console offering, the B Range, the 4KB Dyn module is designed to give you the iconic, colored sound of the first SSL console on the market.
While Solid State Logic has always been known for the pristine nature of their console's mic pres, the Fusion is the first product to flip that notion on its head. The Fusion is an analog processing tool meant for use on your mix bus and it is a Swiss Army Knife of colorful options. Here are the five onboard tools included in the Solid State Logic Fusion:
SSL Violet EQ: Solid State Logic's first new EQ in over 25 years will give you sparkle and sheen with four selectable frequency points.
Vintage Drive: Two knobs enable you to tweak a unique harmonic distortion and a little bit of compression.
High Frequency Compressor: This section of the Fusion is dealing with analog-style HF roll-off to make sure your tones aren't too harsh.
Transformer: Need more saturation? Turn on the Fusion's Transformer circuit for a thicker low-end and more color.
Stereo Image: Widen that stereo field with the power of the Fusion.