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EARS is excited to roll out the first ever DIY Mash-up Party and YOU are invited to come join the fun. Whether you roll your own gear from a kit, or from scratch, or mod your own gear, we wanna HEAR IT! That's right...we are inviting you to BRING YOUR HOME-BREWED GEAR so we can plug it into the chain and run some SOUND through it. THEN we will invite you to get up and share your personal DIY experience with your fellow audio comrades.

But even if you don't roll your own, this is definitely a great event to learn about building your own audio gear as well as learning first hand about the theory and operation of how many classic audio circuits actually work. There will be loads of information on where to go and how to make your own gear from others who have actually been there and done it. Shirk Studios is definitely the place to be on Tuesday night for some down home audio chivalry and camaraderie.

CNC machine, Mic Capsule, 1176
1) Eric Heiserman's home built CNC drill press, 2) One of Eric's condenser mic capsules, 3) Replica of Revision A Blue Stripe 1176 with panel, knobs, and meter parts from Hairball Audio

One of the most prolific home grown builders in our group is EARS member Eric Heiserman. Eric manufactures condenser mic capsules for U67's, 47's, and C12's in his own home and has created quite a following and demand for his revered mic capsules. Case in point, Eric built his own CNC machine for tooling the capsule frames and spatters and stretches his own mylar diaphragms. Eric will be on hand Tuesday to discuss his DIY experience and show off some of his home built goodies.

Shirk Studios
Views from inside Shirk Studios

We will also enjoy a fine live performer and vocalist for mic demos featuring EARS own Dave Wheeler who also happens to be a prolific DIY builder. We will be listening to some live shootouts between home built DIY reproductions and some actual vintage originals including the venerable Neumann U67 condenser microphone. Do these home-brewed reproductions sound as good as the original ? You get to decide for yourself !

Among other DIY creations from EARS members, you will get to hear first hand, a home built:

- stereo LA2A limiter
- U47 condenser mic
- U67 condenser mic
- C12 condenser mic
- 1176 Rev D compressor
- API mic pre's
- and much more...

A huge thanks to Steve Shirk for opening up his excellent and spacious recording studio for the event. You can find out more about Shirk Studios at or

Look forward to seeing you there and don't forget to bring your own DIY project!!!

You do not need to be an EARS member to attend this event and we encourage anyone curious about EARS, DIY, or Shirk Studios to come check it out. The DIY meeting begins at 7:30pm and will be a casual affair with food, beverages, and a lot of the usual networking. A big thanks to Steve Shirk, Eric Heiserman, and Dave Wheeler for helping out with this event. And of course a big thanks to our sponsors Shure, Vintage King, and Gepco for making all of what EARS does possible.

See ya there!
Additional Resources for some DIY Audio sites:

Hairball Audio:

Classic Audio Products of Illinois:

Drip Electronics:

Studio 939

Vintage Microphone PCB Kit:

Group DIY

Gyraf Audio DIY

FairChild 670

For around $3800 in parts, the ambitious, skilled, and highly motivated can build an exact replica of the classic Fairchild 670 stereo tube compressor compliments of Drip Audio. The original vintage units now fetch upwards of $20,000 but with some patience and good soldering skills you can build one for yourself. The assembly manual is close to 400 pages and the design calls for as many as 20 tubes. The Fairchild 660 and 670 were used extensively on most of the Beatles recordings at Abbey Road Studios. These compressors had to be smuggled into England from New York City where the engineers at Abbey Road immediately attempted to reverse engineer the circuit.


EARS annual BBQ save the date 8-27-2013

EARS presents an evening with ED CHERNEY

Chicago Music Summit
(View the schedule of speakers and topics here and view the program schedule here. Click to register).


- The DIY event is open to EARS Members and non-members alike.

- Bring in your own DIY project and join the party!

- Shirk Studios is located at 1551 W. Chestnut St, Chicago

- Meeting start time = 7:30pm

- Light food fare will be available compliments of EARS and our sponsors

- Adult beverages will be available.

More on DIY... According to Wikipedia, DIY (do it yourself) is the method of building, modifying, or repairing something without the aid of "experts or professionals". Academic research describes DIY as behaviors where “individuals engage raw and semi-raw materials and component parts to produce, transform, or reconstruct material possessions. And this includes high end PRO AUDIO GEAR !
EARS Pirate Logo

EARS is proudly sponsored by:

Shure Inc.
GEPCO logo

Vintage King

Join or Renew your membership with EARS here.

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