30 Years of Audio Excellence

30 years

This is our 30th year of making audio products, and in that time we’ve served some of the titans in the industry, who’ve used our gear to made some incredible music. Thank you to them, and all our other wonderful Crookwood users.

We’ve also invented quite a few products that were firsts in their field. And unbelievably, some of our kit is still in daily use, some 30 years later!

For fun, let’s look at some of the things we’ve done that made history.

Our Approach

From the start, at Crookwood, we thought differently.

  • First modular digitally controlled pro audio gear – upgradable, repairable, expandable
  • 75% female workforce, unusual even today
  • We hate waste! Since the early 90’s, we’ve been recycling all unwanted packing materials
  • Keeping it local, where possible we buy and use local materials and staff
  • Circular economy, we try to repurpose damaged or unwanted Crookwood parts into warrantied B stock, rather than dispose of them
  • Still repairing old gear. Where we can get the bits, we keep our old gear alive, and working

Mic Pres

These were our first products, and possibly, still the best pres ever made…

  • First digitally remote controlled, relay based Preamps
  • First balanced (one amplifier a phase) preamp – this honour is shared with Millennia Media, who released their HV3 preamp the same time as our Paintpot
  • First remote controlled preamp with inbuilt ADC
  • First multichannel preamp with native 130V B&K mic power option
  • First web based control of multichannel audiophile grade preamps

Mastering Consoles

Before Crookwood, there were mainly custom only, or partial mastering consoles available. We changed all that.

  • First digitally controlled analogue stereo mastering console
  • First integrated digital and analogue router stereo mastering console
  • First 5.1, 7.1 and Atmos mastering consoles
  • First mastering console with any order insert routing
  • First mastering console with parallel path insert routing
  • First modular mastering console – choose your options from a list
  • First mastering console with converter pooling – choose the converters you need for a job from a pool of available converters, automatically

Insert Routers

Crookwood invented the “any insert, in any order” mastering insert router back in the 90’s. We’re still the leading choice for insert routers.

  • First any insert, any order relay based insert router
  • First modular router, expand and add options as you grow
  • First digitally controlled, analogue mastering insert routers
  • First MIDI store and recall of insert routing
  • First parallel and multi path insert router
  • First automatic A/B level compensation on route paths
  • First delta monitor feature – you can listen to the actual effect of any analogue insert, even while it’s in an insert path
  • First Mix-Master router – automatically move inserts between a mastering serial flow, and a parallel mix or tracking flow, without re-patching
  • First integrated AES and analogue insert router

Monitor Controllers

Sharing lots of features from our mastering consoles, our precision controllers set the standard for monitoring.

  • First digitally controlled relay based monitor controller
  • First modular monitor controller – expandable as you grow
  • First integrated AES and analogue controller with options to use your own DAC
  • Probably the first monitor controller with absolute phase check
  • First monitor controller with over 20 monitor check functions/options

Converters & digital

Equally at home working with digital audio, we’ve developed quite a few digital products. Although they regularly win awards for superb sound, I don’t think we were ever first to the market. Sometimes being second has it’s advantages though…

VU Meters

Ahh, our renowned meters. Lots of innovation here too!

  • First real VU meter with multi-position attenuator for modern levels
  • First real 5.1 VU meter with multi-position attenuator for modern levels

I wonder what’s next?