For an orchestral recording studio, Mauro Simeon creates a logo based on tuners

The clever ‘in-motion’ logo demonstrates just what goes into creating seamless soundscapes.

2 July 2024


442 is a recording studio based in Bern, Switzerland – but it’s not just any recording studio, it specialises in the fine art of capturing orchestral concerts. Such work relies on precision and perfection, with there only being one chance to get the recording right. It was this fact that designer Mauro Simeon based his identity for the studio on, putting the imagery associated with instrumental tuners front and centre.

Something that’s helped the project along is the Zurich-based designer’s understanding of the world he’s designing for; he’s a hobbying orchestra musician, and has himself played concerts and recording sessions across Switzerland and Sweden. Being immersed in the world and since becoming a freelance designer (before previously working in-house at BVD in Stockholm) Mauro has now found himself working on a lot of projects in the music sector, mostly classical, but some techno projects too. “It’s super fun because to me classical music and techno are very close in style, they can give you the exact same experience,” Mauro says.


Mauro Simeon: Studio 442 (Copyright © Mauro Simeon, 2024)

The focal point for the whole identity is its logo, which draws from one of the tools used to create a perfect recording – a chromatic tuner, necessary when working with such a fine balance. “If you play an instrument in an orchestra, you have to play in tune with all of the other players, in general between 50 and 100 people,” Mauro says. Individuals will usually use the electronic device before rehearsals or concerts, and there is a standardised frequency used across orchestras in Europe – 442 Hz – which also serves as inspiration for the studio’s name.

Mauro adds a sense of movement to the logo by showing it mid-motion. When tuning, the small needle will shake left and right with the note until it reaches the perfect 442 Hz tone, which sits directly in the middle of the measure. For the logo mark, the designer has used the stretched lines of the tuner in motion to spell out 442 – which can be seen across business cards and digital graphics. While the movement of the needle informs the logo, the rest of the layout system is drawn from the sections created within that movement – thinly outlined shapes that house the logo and typography featured on posters, T-shirts and more. This is then all paired with the type system Ease FullRounded Semibold, from Studio Feixen. “It’s fitting to the character of the brand because of its roundness,” says Mauro. “It represents the optimal round sound an orchestra has in the best case – very harmonic.”

For Mauro, he finds his line of work – and particularly branding – as something akin to magic. “If you’re asking people on the street what branding is, no one could really tell you and even in the industry there are a lot of different opinions and strategies on how to approach it,” he says. “That complexity and how to build systems that can represent a brand very consistently over all possible touch points is fascinating to me.” Now, Mauro is looking to expand his horizons – both in branding and life – by making the big move to New York City in August.

GalleryMauro Simeon: Studio 442 (Copyright © Mauro Simeon, 2024)

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Mauro Simeon: Studio 442 (Copyright © Mauro Simeon, 2024)

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About the Author

Olivia Hingley

Olivia (she/her) joined the It’s Nice That team as an editorial assistant in November 2021 and soon became staff writer. A graduate of the University of Edinburgh with a degree in English Literature and History, she’s particularly interested in photography, publications and type design.

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