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Which Preamp would best compliment my setup?
Old 22nd January 2013
  #1
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Janesaid2me's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Which Preamp would best compliment my setup?

I have alot of preamps...different kinds/brands/styles etc...tried out alot of what id consider midlevel preamps.
Im considering buying one channel Highend preamp...but not sure
1) which will compliment what i already have?
2) what i should sell to make the space for it?
Here is what i have:
Toft atb16 board...tons or pres with eq
Joe meek twinq
Focusrite ISA428 mk1
FMR RNP w/ RNC racked together
Sytek mpx-4a
ART MPA gold
Joe Meek VC1q
Also have Art VLA 1 and 2 to patch to for compression

Ok...i know your all thinking you have a ton of junk here...
My first thought which ive basically already done would be sell the
Art MPA...my guitar player has had it for months so might just give it to him for cheap....havent used it in over a year.
So should i look for a nice tube preamp to replace...maybe LA610?
Should i sell something else...what other preamps would make for a good fit?

Just feel like i need to lose some lower end stuff for a nice higher end unit.
Right?

Give me your thoughts!
Old 22nd January 2013
  #2
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Enlightened Hand's Avatar
 
16 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
I think it appears as though you have a fixation on preamps. If I were in your position I'd consider simplifying my setup completely. For me, that would mean relying on one style of preamplifier, period.

Maybe sell them all, save the Toft board, and call it good. Everything that you have is enough already. You don't need many varieties of preamplifier, when there are so many other variables to screw with as it stands. The pres, and EQ, on the Toft are nice.
Old 22nd January 2013
  #3
Gear Addict
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
I agree with the poster above. Simplify a little bit and grab the Great River MP-2NV
Old 22nd January 2013
  #4
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🎧 10 years
Definitely looking to simplify....thats why i was asking suggestions on what to part with and what single thing to add....feel like id be better off with one or two high end units plus the board....then a million different options
Like the great river suggestion...definitely was one i was looking into....
Old 22nd January 2013
  #5
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Enlightened Hand's Avatar
 
16 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
With you keeping the board in mind, if I were in your position I would consider the Retro Powerstrip.

Good sounding tube pre, good sounding EQ, and compressor, and a re-amp box. It's just a great, flexible unit, if you're into that sort of thing. I have two that I own and use occasionally. But mostly I track through my 16ch of clean pre. I'm a BIG supporter of the ultra simple, fewer options approach, when it comes to preamps.
Old 22nd January 2013
  #6
Baz
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🎧 15 years
Keep the desk. But as mentioned,Great River MP2NV and then a Daking IV..Now youve got killer vocal pres,DI and are golden for most anything you can run through them.

If you're interested in tube pres, I really recommend you look at Hamptone
Old 23rd January 2013
  #7
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🎧 10 years
The daking looks like a cool option...seems like people like using it on drums...wonder how it would compare to an api 3124? Would assume either would be a good replacement/upgrade to my sytek which i love on drums?
Checked out the hamptone...dont see any rack options...not my style lol
Retro powerstrip looks cool and pricey...3k for one channel!

So what from my list of preamps would be worth keeping?
Old 26th January 2013
  #8
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Janesaid2me's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Any other suggestions...mostly
What should i part with first....what should i keep...
Old 26th January 2013
  #9
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skinnypete's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Well one tube pre I have been interested in is the TAB-Funkenwerk V78. Definitely a step up from the Art stuff.

If you get the Solo-610 make sure to replace the tubes. Mine was pretty useless for anything besides bass before that.

Sent from my Droid
Old 26th January 2013 | Show parent
  #10
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u b k's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
I don't know what kind of sound you're after, but in your position I'd ditch every one of those pre's and stick with the Toft's preamps (I owned an ATB16 for over a year, loved it).

Not knowing what you have, I'd be looking at compression for a) vocals, b) drums, and c) mix buss (or music buss).

Killer vocal compression and drum compression, imho, is the make-or-break factor in productions with vibe. Since I'm a firm believer in vibe trumping sonics, that's where I go first.

Preamps are awesome, but they've gotta be the single most overrated piece in the chain. I'm not sayin preamps are irrelevant --- they're not --- I'm just saying that any great pre is pretty much as great as any other great pre. Comps and eq's, to my ears those make much more dramatic differences to the range of possibilities you have when mixing.


Gregory Scott - ubk
Old 26th January 2013
  #11
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🎧 10 years
Thanks guys...good to see the toft is getting some love here....
My initial thought right now might be to sell everything except the toft and ISA for some reason i really dig that on vocals and its a simple 4 channels of preamp.
I do my mixing ITB...not sure id ever use a mixbus compressor but i wouldnt mind exploring using more comp OTB...i like my art VLA and FMR RNC but i know theres much better.
Id say most of my recording are indie rock/pop rock kind of vibe going on....
So if i sell alot of the extra preamps what compressors should i be looking into?
Should i keep the VLA and RNC?
Old 26th January 2013
  #12
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BLUElightCory's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
I'd also sell everything except the Toft and maybe the ISA428, and put the money towards 1 or 2 really nice channels. The pres in the Toft are pretty good and more than capable of turning out great sounds, and you really don't need anything else (but this is Gearslutz, right?). You're already more than set for pres, so it's probably time to shift your focus elsewhere (mics, room treatment, compression, etc.).
Old 26th January 2013
  #13
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Janesaid2me's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Have a good bit of room treatment...as much as i can really put without making the room look like a complete mess of sound panels and bass traps.
Pretty happy with my mic selection....could probably use a nicer ribbon then my fathead...but i have yet to really fall in love with ribbon mics...plenty of dynamics and condensers.
Compression could definitely improve there...just not sure what would be the right answer there....id assume id sell the RNP and RNC together as they are in a rack unit...could probably part with one of the VLAs and keep one for flavor...

Figure i can sell about 2k worth of stuff fairly easily...which could get me a nice channel strip or preamp and compressor combo?!

Always been intrigued by the LA-610 that be a decent tube pre and comp together for 1k used?
That would leave me another 1k for a used compressor...
Old 26th January 2013 | Show parent
  #14
Gear Head
 
Raven586's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikeeyb ➑️
I agree with the poster above. Simplify a little bit and grab the Great River MP-2NV
I agree with this, keep the RNP-RNC combo, good little stereo setup there, get rid of the rest and by a great river, you can thank me later
Old 27th January 2013
  #15
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Janesaid2me's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
So i was thnking....would i be better off selling alot of the extra preamps for a upgraded converter box?
Right now i have two audiofire12 that run my board and other preamps...
Saw the new antelope orion thats coming out might be worth putting money towards that
Or also saw that black lion audio does a mod on the audiofire for 400 bucks
Another thing to consider spending money on if i disgard all the extra preamps.
Old 1st February 2013
  #16
Gear Nut
 
🎧 5 years
The mic-preamp-nominees are:

* AMS Neve 4081 Quad

* API Lunchbox (I am not sure about that)

* Focusrite ISA 428

* Focusrite ISA 828

* UAD 4-710D twin-finity


And the Oscar goes to...?
Old 2nd February 2013
  #17
Gear Addict
 
skinnypete's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Janesaid2me ➑️
Always been intrigued by the LA-610 that be a decent tube pre and comp together for 1k used?
That would leave me another 1k for a used compressor...
I would just get a 6176. Then you have an 1176 with your 610.

And don't forget to replace the tubes in the pre with NOS!

Sent from my Droid
Old 2nd February 2013
  #18
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Janesaid2me's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Lol... Yea I've seen leaning towards the 610..adding the 1176 isn't a bad idea either obviously...
Thinking maybe selling the extra pres and modding the audiofire w bla and adding the 610 pre
Old 2nd February 2013 | Show parent
  #19
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mikeyman's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Janesaid2me ➑️
Thanks guys...good to see the toft is getting some love here....
My initial thought right now might be to sell everything except the toft and ISA for some reason i really dig that on vocals and its a simple 4 channels of preamp.
I do my mixing ITB...not sure id ever use a mixbus compressor but i wouldnt mind exploring using more comp OTB...i like my art VLA and FMR RNC but i know theres much better.
Id say most of my recording are indie rock/pop rock kind of vibe going on....
So if i sell alot of the extra preamps what compressors should i be looking into?
Should i keep the VLA and RNC?

i like what your saying here .Keep the ones that make you smile .Then sell the others and get a 1176 compressor unless you have one of those in your computer plugins.I like the Waves CLA compressor bundle.It has the Blues stripe that is very nice.Plus you get the La2a and the 1176 black and the La3a for not to much cash.Don't sell the ones you think you will miss like maybe the joe meek and its compressor
Old 2nd February 2013
  #20
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burns46824's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
If you want something that's going to sound good and never be broken or have EMF issues, which some preamps do (Chandler and NPNG, to name a couple), I'd try a Great River MP-2NV. I have one and I think it sounds great.
Old 2nd February 2013 | Show parent
  #21
Baz
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by burns46824 ➑️
EMF issues, which some preamps do (Chandler ),

Chandler? Really? with their remote P/S? Having used the TG2 for quite a stretch, I gotta say this is total BS, sorry. No issues at all....and we had a GR in the same rack.The nonsense we read around here at times is scary
Old 2nd February 2013
  #22
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Janesaid2me's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I actually do have the CLA compressor plugins....so the 1176 isnt a necessity per say...but i like the option of having the LA-610 tube preamp to go to.
The great river is also at the top of the list right now....
And the vc1q is a keeper....1 because its super cool bright green and 2 its very unique in what it does and how it sounds.

Most likely the twinq, sytek, fmr rnp/rnc combo and maybe one VLA will get sold...figure that could get me close to 1500+ to spend....
Old 2nd February 2013 | Show parent
  #23
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cheu78's Avatar
 
4 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Enlightened Hand ➑️
With you keeping the board in mind, if I were in your position I would consider the Retro Powerstrip.
+1!
I'm very late to the party, but I'd suggest to get few quality pieces instead of a lot of mediocre stuff..

Preamps:
Get a couple of special pieces, to have specific/desired sounds..
I'd look into the Avedis MA5 for the 500series if you're looking for some color (the Forssell SMP-500 is another piece I highly recommend in the 500 series if looking for a clean preamp).
John Hardy M1 is another great option for clean with balls or check out the BAE offerings if looking for that neveish tones. heh

Compressors:
1176, LA3A, Crane Song Trakker, Retro Sta Level and/or 176, Summit TLA-100, BAE 10DC, Dramastic Obsidian, Api 2500 is where I'd put my money if looking for compressors.

I hope this helps somehow,



Cheu
Old 2nd February 2013 | Show parent
  #24
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burns46824's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Baz ➑️
Chandler? Really? with their remote P/S? Having used the TG2 for quite a stretch, I gotta say this is total BS, sorry.
In my home "demo" studio, for example, I cannot use Chandler or NPNG products. I'm not sure why, but they picked up radio signals when I recorded with them.
Old 2nd February 2013
  #25
70% Coffee, 30% Beer
 
Doc Mixwell's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Baz ➑️
Chandler? Really? with their remote P/S? Having used the TG2 for quite a stretch, I gotta say this is total BS, sorry. No issues at all....and we had a GR in the same rack.The nonsense we read around here at times is scary
I have a NPNG 2NW in my rack and its SUPER quiet, no EMF/RF issues whatsoever

I frequent a studio with Great River, and Chandler hardware, no issues with them either. Lots of users are flying with this hardware.

You can be sure, if the manufacturer can find no problems with your hardware, than you have an issue inside your place.
Old 2nd February 2013
  #26
Gear Nut
 
🎧 5 years
I have heard so much about API 500 Lunchbox but - apart from AMS Neve stuff - I have never heard of any of the brands creating preamps for it before. I am obviously new in this! So can you give me the top 5 brands you would add in this box?
Old 2nd February 2013
  #27
Lives for gear
 
Janesaid2me's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
On my end of things I'm not really into 500 series stuff. I wonder why there have been issues with chandler stuff... Ud think there would be no issues like that with higher end stuff.
Guess step one is to part with some of these preamps first... And save up the cash
Old 3rd February 2013 | Show parent
  #28
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cheu78's Avatar
 
4 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Salpion ➑️
I have heard so much about API 500 Lunchbox but - apart from AMS Neve stuff - I have never heard of any of the brands creating preamps for it before. I am obviously new in this! So can you give me the top 5 brands you would add in this box?
Well, actually ams was one of the latest brands to go 500 series..
API, which now owns the format, did preamps, eq, comps,etc.. believe it or not one of the first guys to enter in this format many years ago was Avedis with the MA5, and the E15 eq (than became the famous E27 later).

Top brands in the 500 series..(and not only 500 series) Avedis, Forssell, Dramastic Obsidian, Elysia, BAE, Crane Song, Tonelux, Retro.. Of course there are tons of good brands, but these are the first ones that came to mind and that are stellar.

Just my 0.02$,



Cheu
Old 3rd February 2013 | Show parent
  #29
Gear Nut
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by cheu78 ➑️
Well, actually ams was one of the latest brands to go 500 series..
API, which now owns the format, did preamps, eq, comps,etc.. believe it or not one of the first guys to enter in this format many years ago was Avedis with the MA5, and the E15 eq (than became the famous E27 later).

Top brands in the 500 series..(and not only 500 series) Avedis, Forssell, Dramastic Obsidian, Elysia, BAE, Crane Song, Tonelux, Retro.. Of course there are tons of good brands, but these are the first ones that came to mind and that are stellar.
Would you say that AMS Neve is more reliable than any of the other 8 brands you listed? Where would you ranked it in that list? Which of these brands are well-known mic preamps (for their quality of sound) for recording vocals, string instruments, wind instruments, guitars and live drums?
Old 4th February 2013 | Show parent
  #30
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cheu78's Avatar
 
4 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Salpion ➑️
Would you say that AMS Neve is more reliable than any of the other 8 brands you listed?
Not at all, seeing the reports here on GS of their 500 series preamps.
Also beside the name, the ams has very little to do with an original 1073 circuit, no discrete components, IC's (that no original neve had)..

Afaik there's not been a MA5 failure in the last 6 years (beside some output knobs pulled too hard from the users)..
<<< Fwiw you could read my review of the MA5 in the GS review section, below my avatar you'll find the link).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Salpion ➑️
Where would you ranked it in that list? Which of these brands are well-known mic preamps (for their quality of sound) for recording vocals, string instruments, wind instruments, guitars and live drums?
I'd do a search here on GS if I were you, you'll find a lot of information about all these brands..

I'd choose a BAE or an Avedis preamp over any other brand (including ams), if you're looking for a neve style preamp..(also Aurora Audio is a good option for reaching that kind of sound).

Forssell or John Hardy if you're looking for a cleaner presentation.

Crane Song also makes preamps, and very nice compressors and converters..
Retro makes also preamps, eq and compressors.
Dramastic Obsidian makes a stereo compressor which is an SSL style compressor.

With any of these brands you'll get great results.. Search on GS and try to test them in your place before buying (contact your dealer)..



Cheu
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