Nick DiDia started working studios in Philadelphia in 1985, and went on to engineer or produce some of the most important albums of the late 20th century - from Pearl Jam to Rage Against the Machine & Stone Temple Pilots.
In 2001 he received his first Grammy Award as engineer on Bruce Springsteen’s The Rising, and went on to record several more albums with Springsteen (Devils and Dust/Magic/Working on a Dream).
In 2010 he relocated to Byron Bay Australia, where he continued to engineer albums for Springsteen (High Hopes) and Pearl Jam (Lightning Bolt) as well as produce albums for Kasey Chambers (Bittersweet) The Waif's (Beautiful You) and many others.
We first checked in with famed producer & mix engineer Nick DiDia back in 2016 when he took delivery of ADAM A7X monitors for his new studio facility ‘LaCueva’ (a joint venture with Australian rock artist Bernard Fanning just outside beautiful Byron Bay).
In the ensuing time Nick has bolstered his insanely prolific output with everything from Bernard Fanning’s ‘Civil Dusk’ & ‘Brutal Dawn’ records (both #2 on ARIA charts) to ‘Live’ a country bluegrass release by ARIA-nominated The Wilson Pickers.
ADAM A7Xs have figured prominently on all projects at LaCueva, a homely creative space set in the hills above the beach. Packed with a huge array of vintage and premium gear, Nick couldn’t be happier with the A7Xs, both in terms of sound & workflow.
“The Adams are sounding great - everyone comments on how they sound and I’ve occasionally been asked if there’s a sub playing along with them.”
“The quality of the recording is very important to me - although I try not to let that interfere with the artists performance - so it’s all about getting sounds quickly and without too much fuss. But if you’re using the right gear, in the right way, in the right room, it’s usually great. Unless you want it to sound Lo fi which happens every now and then.”
In terms of mixing the low end Nick believes its about getting the balance right.
“Often the best rock records have the best bass parts so you want to hear (and feel) the bass. Often it’s about clearing out the low end of other instruments to make room."
"And now it’s even more important, with computer and iPhone speakers, to make sure you can hear the melodic content of the bass and low end."
"I use the Adams and a pair of headphones and occasionally an old iMac to check mixes - and the car of course.”
Balancing the modern tech at LaCueva (SSL desk & Antelope digital clocking sit alongside the ADAM monitors) is an ever-growing collection of tone-drenching outboard gear & amps.
“I’ve got a 5e3 Tweed Deluxe coming from my good friend Rondo at the Tweed Speed Shop in Florida - incredible Tweed Deluxe replica that’ll be a great addition to my other vintage Tube amps."
“ …and a new “old” 2 inch MCI tape machine - mainly for tape transfers at this point but it will be incorporated into the main studio eventually."