Solid State Logic (SSL) is a legendary large-professional-studio-grade console manufacturers (with API & Neve). Based in Oxford, England, They are famous for their ’70s and ’80s mega consoles, namely the 4000 series and its sweet stereo-bus compressor. But times have changed and large studios are closing. A new era of computer-based small-scale home recording is here. This almost cost SSL its life…

Saved from bankruptcy by Peter Gabriel in the mid-2000s, SSL is back with a vengeance… And with, among others, the high-end home/independant studio in mind (X-Desk, X-Rack, Nucleus, Matrix, 500 series…)

Today, SSL announces a interesting addition to this range, the XL-Desk.
What is there to like about it?

  • 20 + 1 fader, over 40 input SuperAnalogueTM SSL console
  • 8-built in Variable Harmonic Drive (VHD) preamps
  • 16 dual input mono channels (switchable between main input or DAW return)
  • 4 stereo channels (switchable to mono for tracking)
  • The legendary Stereo Bus Compressor, with new high-pass filter sidechain (That’s the mod one makes when buying/making the original…)
  • 18-slot 500 format rack built-in, accessible from channels or mix busses (What a lunchbox 🙂 !! )
  • In addition to a 500 rack insert each mono channel also has a standard insert point
  • 4 stereo Mix Buses with their own insert points and access to the 500 rack
  • One stereo and 2 mono aux sends. Two dedicated stereo return inputs
  • Direct outputs on every channel, stereo return and mix bus for stem printing
  • Fully-featured monitoring section with bass management
  • Foldback A and B with individual talkbacks for headphone mixes
  • Built in Listen Mic input + classic compressor circuit, with its own direct output
  • AFL and Solo-In-Place solo modes, with Solo Clear and Solo Safe (Protect) modes
  • Balanced D-Sub rear panel inputs/outputs & Front panel headphones & iJack sockets
  • High quality internal PSU

What does it not have?

  • Automation
  • DAW control
  • A cheap price tag (GBP £11,750, euro 14,749, USD $19,999 excluding VAT or local taxes)

I can’t wait to hear it. I hope it does better than the X-Desk, which was disappointing for summing.

It will be interesting to see how it compares to rival in the same price range, mainly Audient’s ASP4816.

Those who live will know…