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2-channel mic pre for overheads?

Discussion in 'Room & Overhead' started by p0llen_p0ny, Feb 7, 2006.

  1. p0llen_p0ny

    p0llen_p0ny Guest

    I'm trying to make up my mind about what mic pre I should get. I'll mainly be using it for drum overheads and overdubbing vocals.

    I initially wanted to get an ART MPA Gold or Pro MPA but the more I read about them the more apprehensive I am. I've seen the specs for both but can anyone tell me how they actually sound?

    I have my eye on the Focusrite Twintrak but I wouldn't use the digital portion of it. Do they have a version without the converters?

    I can afford to spend up to around $400.

    If it helps I'm using a couple of MXL 2003s but will probably be trying out the 603s shortly.
  2. Boltino

    Boltino Guest

    Yes, the converters come in the form of an optional card that must be purchased separately and installed in the back. I chose the Twintrak because I had to have a SPDIF connection so my choices were narrower than yours. I like the twintrak, but I have a slight bit of nagging regret. On one hand, it is a step up from my other preamps (Aardvark Q10), but part of me wished I would have saved up longer and made a slightly bigger jump. I'm happy with the twintrak. I like its features (the compressor is pretty good). Hope this helps. Good Luck.

  3. p0llen_p0ny

    p0llen_p0ny Guest

    Good point. I would like to save up more and spend 1200-1500 on a Sebatron or something but I can't justify spending that kind of cash for 2 channels. Would be nice but I'm recording bands for next to nothing. ;)
  4. p0llen_p0ny

    p0llen_p0ny Guest

    Anyone have any experience with a Presonus MP20? I've heard a few good things about them. I'm guessing they wouldn't shave as much air off of my overheads since they're solid state.
  5. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    Solid state can be VERY muddy and shave highs off - as a matter of fact, I would venture to say that the MP20's transformers are a bit on the muffled side in general (that is, unless you're referring to the originals with Jensen transformers).

    For budget-minded individuals, either of the ARTs you mention would be just fine, as would offerings from Aphex, Focusrong platinum (not too much wrong with the Focusrite platinum series, just not too much "Right" with them either. If you're looking for a pre that will blow wind up your skirt, this ain't it. If you're looking for an improvement over stock pres in a console or sound card, they are a great value.)

    Good luck!

  6. Boltino

    Boltino Guest

    Exactly, well said jeremy. I actually performed a wind/skirt test on the unit but it didn't meet my requirements. (I have very stringent crotch tolerances) :shock:

  7. p0llen_p0ny

    p0llen_p0ny Guest

    Yeah I was thinking about getting one with Jensen's or modding it myself. Is there any way, aside from opening up the preamp, to tell if it has the Jensen's?
  8. jonnyc

    jonnyc Member

    I hate saying it but my DMP3 has served me very well since I've started using it. I own a Eureka and I'd swear the dmp3 is a touch cleaner and better sounding. Its really inexpensive but I just can't get over the bang for the buck value.
  9. If you can save up a bit of money (2,700 US)- you should check out the Drawmer 1960. I use that at the studio I work at, and always use it for overheads.
  10. p0llen_p0ny

    p0llen_p0ny Guest

    No shame in that. My friend had a DMP3 and I was sceptical at first but it sounded tons better than my Mackie pres. Sounds very nice on vocals and guitars.
  11. p0llen_p0ny

    p0llen_p0ny Guest

    I'll spend about that on my next mixer. ;)
  12. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member


    Do you really need a large format mixer??
  13. p0llen_p0ny

    p0llen_p0ny Guest

  14. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    I've got no love for digital EQs either (save a few exceptions - Weiss, Z-Systems) BUT, I don't think a console is a necessity in today's studios. A decent rack of outboard pres, some good compressors/limiters and a good eq or two (a la Speck for cheap, Millennia et al for expensive) and you're in business.

    I also have no love for either Cubase or PT (though I far prefer cubase to PT), but I don't think they cause a mix to suffer significantly enough to justify blowing tons of money on a console (which, BTW, <$3K won't buy you a console that will make a difference in sound - sorry. The cheapest ones are the Ghosts and they will still set you back $5k plus up to another $2K for necessary upgrades. The next REAL consoles are Neoteks and they're around $15K base.)

    You really ought to try the free demo of Samplitude. I think, if you can get used to the interface (which I find to be the most robust I've ever used), you'd REALLY dig the sound. (I know- many of you out there will say there is no such sound difference. I heartily disagree and have tried numerous DAWs).

    Anyway...sorry for the rambling.

  15. p0llen_p0ny

    p0llen_p0ny Guest

    Thanks for the insight. I'll check out Samplitude because I'm not very impressed with Cubase SX (which I'm using now). It sounds incredibly sterile, and SRC and dithering just gives me headaches.

    I'm going to get a used Midas Venice. I don't much like the layout of the Ghosts. Yes I know the $15k consoles are the real deal but to my ears even a track mixed on my Mackie sounds better than one mixed in Cubase or PT.

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