New Talent, New Sounds: Composer Adam Hochstatter and Lexicon's PCM92
July 13, 2015
LOS ANGELES, California – Los Angeles can be a tough town when you’re trying to get a break in the entertainment business – but if you have talent, it also offers opportunities available nowhere else. Just ask Adam Hochstatter, who graduated from University of Southern California in 2010 and since has become a highly sought-after composer and orchestrator for film, TV, and commercials. His compositions often blur the lines between live and computer-generated music by using the Lexicon PCM92 Reverb and Effects Processor as a key sonic element in the process.
Hochstatter got started in the business soon after graduation doing freelance work and projects for other composers. As he got deeper into the field he became exposed to more equipment. Eventually Hochstatter started to branch out and get work on his own, and had to move into his own studio space and invest in his own gear.
“A lot of the work I do for television, commercials and independent films involves orchestration and MIDI mock up. This is where you have to make computers sound like a real orchestra, since the client can’t afford to hire a live orchestra as part of the project,” Hochstatter said. “This kind of work means that I’m always looking to enhance realism in my music, and I was recently in the market for a new reverb. I tried a bunch of different software but I wasn’t really happy with any of what was available at the time.”
Contrary to Hollywood’s dog-eat-dog image, Hochstatter found great support from fellow composers in his search. “Since I’m out in LA, I’m lucky because there are so many resources for young composers. Those in our industry are extremely helpful in letting others test out gear.” Ultimately he was able to borrow a Lexicon PCM92. “I fell in love with it.” The Lexicon PCM92 delivers 28 stereo and mono reverbs, delays and modulation effects and a collection of over 1,200 presets, including industry-standard classics from Lexicon’s vast library of sounds.
Aside from its rich sonics and flexible features, Hochstatter points out another advantage: as a hardware unit the PCM92 doesn’t stress his computer at all. It allows him to run sophisticated reverbs with no CPU power taken away from my computer, where he hosts samples and other CPU intensive audio software. “My computer and DAW have enough to deal with as it is!”
“Something about the Lexicon PCM92 just sounds smoother to me. It doesn’t have the sonic artifacts that I heard in the software I tried, and it does an amazing job of making sampled instruments sound more realistic. I used to struggle a lot more with getting my work to sound convincingly lifelike and the PCM92 has made my work sound so much better, whether I’m adding a touch of reverb to an individual instrument or creating a big wash of sonic atmosphere to complement the mood of a film, TV or commercial.”
Hochstatter also does a lot of work for companies that create sample libraries, creating demos that showcase specific instruments. “It’s the ideal way to show what the samples can really do in a musical setting.” Perhaps not surprisingly, he’s now doing demo videos for Lexicon. “Thanks to Adam’s exceptional talent and understanding of how reverb and effects can absolutely make a track, we’re really excited to have Adam produce more product demo videos that really dig deep into the capabilities of Lexicon products,” said Jason Kunz, Market Manager, Portable PA and Recording & Broadcast, HARMAN Professional.
“When I was first looking for reverb units, I was surprised that I couldn’t find a lot of online resources regarding how the unit sounded,” Hochstatter said. “I saw a few YouTube videos that demonstrated a particular feature well, but didn’t give enough of an overall picture for me to gamble and spend the money without really knowing what I was getting. Living in Los Angeles, I was able to borrow and test out a number of things, but if you’re not in a bigger city you might not be able to find the resources you need. My goal is to give insight for those who are starting out in the field like I was, and can’t test the products out for themselves.”
HARMAN (harman.com) designs and engineers connected products and solutions for consumers, automakers, and enterprises worldwide, including audio, visual and infotainment systems; enterprise automation solutions; and software services. With leading brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon®, Mark Levinson ® and Revel®, HARMAN is admired by audiophiles, musicians and the entertainment venues where they perform around the world. HARMAN also is a technology and integration services leader for the Automotive, Mobile, Telecommunications and Enterprise markets. More than 25 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with HARMAN audio and infotainment systems. The Company’s software solutions power billions of mobile devices and systems that are connected, integrated, personalized, adaptive and secure across all platforms, from the work and home to car and mobile. HARMAN has a workforce of approximately 25,000 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $5.9 billion during the last 12 months ended March 31, 2015.