UPDATE: If you missed out the first time, another load with 101 more studio gear items have come up from the Roger Nichols estate, ending today, April 22, 2012 and ranging from various outboard rack units to tons of cables of every sort and lots more—starting from just 99-cents. If only this gear could talk, what stories they could tell… Check it out at Sweetwater Sound’s eBay Auction for Roger Nichols , snatch a bargain and help out this noble cause!
BY GEORGE PETERSEN
This week marks both an opportunity as well as some sadness as Sweetwater Sound handles the eBay auction of audio gear from the collection of the late, great engineer Roger Nichols. Roger died almost a year ago—April 9, 2011 after a year long struggle with pancreatic cancer. That alone is a tragedy, but unfortunately, medical costs and bills have devastated the Nichols family, leaving his surviving wife and two daughters nearly bankrupt.
It’s important to note that Sweetwater Sound volunteered to help out with the sale on behalf of the Nichols family and is NOT profiting from this sale. A special thanks to Chuck Surack and the entire Sweetwater team for their kindness and generosity in assisting in this noble effort.
YOU CAN HELP AND MAYBE SNAG A PIECE OF HISTORY.
Roger’s family is offering the gear from his personal collection and from his recording studios for sale at this exclusive auction. Many of the items in the Roger Nichols Collection carry significant historical value, having been used on sessions or tours with such artists as Steely Dan, John Denver, Stevie Wonder, Frank Sinatra, Rickie Lee Jones, and The Beach Boys, as well as for historical work for the Library of Congress.
Prices from the first auction began at just $10, and with 202 items on the sale, there’s lots to choose from, ranging from recorders—like the famed 32-track 3M digital mastering system pictured here, to interfaces, cables, mixers, converters, and more. So if you want to get in on this once in a lifetime opportunity to snag a piece of recording history, you better act soon.
A LITTLE BIT ABOUT ROGER…
Once upon a time, Roger Nichols turned his back on a lucrative career as a nuclear engineer, turning audio knobs instead, and the world’s been a better-sounding place ever since. Besides winning eight Grammy Awards, as well as being honored with a 2012 Technical Grammy just last week, Roger was not only an innovator and great engineer, but a nice guy as well.
Over the years, tracks Roger engineered (such as Donald Fagen’s The Nightfly) became established as standards for speaker demos in audio showrooms and AES booths.
Seemingly, there was nothing he couldn’t do, as Roger constantly proved his production prowess while stretching the limits of technology. When the available gear wouldn’t cut it, he’d invent solutions, such as the 1978 Wendel sampling drum computer (the first drum replacement device) or the Rane PaqRat, which transformed a lowly ADAT or DA-88 recorder into a 24-bit mastering deck. And if that wasn’t enough, his Digital Atomics company developed a vacuum desiccation system for tape restoration that offered an alternative to tape baking.
Roger was a caring and giving person, whether serving on NARAS boards, or volunteering his time to lecture to college students and AES sections. In fact, I once convinced Roger into spending a week with me doing production seminars for the audio community in Buenos Aires, Argentina. That was a little off the beaten track, but Roger was quick to give up his valuable time for the benefit of others.
Now’s your chance to snag a little part of Roger’s world and help out a good cause. The Sweetwater Roger Nichols auction ends soon——so check out the offerings, and pass the word to your audio/music industry friends. Snag a bargain and at the same time, put a little karma in your rack.
Interested in creating great audio for video/film?
Check out George Petersen’s current and archived articles from HDVideoPro/CineSoundPro magazine.
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