The Hansa Records label was founded in 1962 (one year after the building of the Berlin Wall) by brothers Peter and Thomas Meisel in the Wilmersdorf quarter of West Berlin. From 1965 they temporarily rented the Ariola production facilities in the Meistersaal location, but also built up their own Studio I on Nestorstraße in the Halensee neighbourhood, which opened in 1973. Nevertheless, it had to abandon its production facilities the next year, and from 1974 again rented the Meistersaal location on Köthener Straße (now called Studio II).
Meanwhile, the outstanding Meistersaal acoustics were used not only for light music productions but also for classical music recordings. In the early and mid-1980s, all productions were overseen by English record producer Michael Blakey. The studios played host to many well-known acts, including Tangerine Dream, David Bowie, Brian Eno, Iggy Pop, U2, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, Claw Boys Claw, Depeche Mode, Marillion, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Killing Joke, Boney M. and most recently Manic Street Preachers, R.E.M., Snow Patrol, Kent, Living Things and Go Go Berlin. The roll of notable recordings and the darkly sonorous sound quality, at once rugged and spacious of many of them, have given the studio near legendary status, especially within the post-punk and synthpop genres. In 2018, the studio was the subject of a documentary feature by filmmaker Mike Christie titled 'Hansa Studios: By The Wall 1976-90' which aired across Europe on Sky Arts and Sky Arte.