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Avalon U5 Question (Mic Pre Interface for adding color?)

Discussion in 'Preamps / Channel Strips' started by Randyman..., Oct 7, 2004.

  1. Randyman...

    Randyman... Well-Known Member


    I am seriously considering picking up the U5 for obvious duties on bass guitar. I know it works on other instruments and keyboards, too.

    For Mic'ed signals, does anyone run something like a Mackie preamp (off the insert) through the U5 to help add some color "on the way in" to the A/D?

    I don't have any good pre's to speak of, but I strongly believe my bass sound is in the most need of some help. Thus my rationale for getting the fairly affordable U5 opposed to a $,$$$ uber Pre (for now). I was hoping to get the most "bang for my buck" by using the U5 on Vox or a mic'ed guitar amp - but I have not used one to know how pleasing the results are with a lack-luster pre-amp and some OK mics... Maybe even "double track" a direct mic feed, and a U5 effected signal, and mix the U5 underneath the Direct Mic to control the "color" at mixdown?

    Thanks for any input. I'm sure I'll find out for myself (eventually), I'm just impatient. If it DOES work well, I'll be that much more motivated to pick one up SOON (Like tomorrow!!!). You guys rock :cool:
  2. djui5

    djui5 Guest

    the U5 is just a DI box......no mic pre in it..

    If you want a good DI for bass might wanna look into a Evil Twin.....
    for elec guitar the Radial unit's are nice....

    I haven't heard of anyone using it post mic pre.....not sure how it would take it.......
  3. Randyman...

    Randyman... Well-Known Member

    I knew the U5 did not have a Mic Pre, I was just curious on other applications of the U5.

    I am Just looking to get a better bass DI sound, AND to possibly add some flavor to a Mackie mic pre until I can afford a whorthwhile preamp $,$$$....

    Thanks :cool:
  4. djui5

    djui5 Guest

    It would work for that....I think I mis-understood your question.

    It's a really good bass di.......and would add some flavor to your mackie pre's also....might wanna look into your mackie's output impedence and the input impedence of the U5 to make sure you can plug the mackie's output to the U5 without either blowing it up or not having enough gain to get good level..

    I don't think it would be a problem though.....

    I'd say go for it...
  5. Randyman...

    Randyman... Well-Known Member

    Night Sky Sound - Heard of them?

    Cool. I was hoping I was not as stupid as I thought ;). I am assuming the input impedance of the U5 is fairly high (as not to load passive pickups), and it is likely looking for lower level signals, so I don't thik the Mackie pre-amp will have any issues driving the input to a nominal level.

    I think I will go ahead an bite the bullet.

    Anyone heard of Night Sky Sound? They have an eBay store...


    They are an "Authorized" Avalon dealer, and have a cool Blue LED mod that I like. Yay or Neigh? I highly value you guys' input!!! :)
  6. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    As far as I know, the Evil Twin is no longer made as the designer and builder, Bruce has had some health realted problems affecting the production fo them.

    The Millennia TD-1 or whatever there black DI box is called was designed using the Evil Twin as the sound/tone to copy. I'm just glad I got my Evil twin with the mic pre option several years ago as it sure gets used for a lot of sources in my studio and remote gigs.
  7. Randyman...

    Randyman... Well-Known Member

    Audiogaff - Any opinions on passing a cheap Mic Pre through a U5? (I'm not expecting to get a Neve or Summit sound, just something more colorful than a Mackie Pre). Thanks :cool:
  8. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    Sure, give it a try. Use as little gain on the Mackie as you can get away with. I don't think the U5 has enough color to make a real difference, but you never know until you try. Let us all know how it works. I would likely just go throught the U5 into the Mackie at line level and avoid the Mackie mic pre gain all together. Get the Avalon M5 mic pre and you won't mess with that Mackie mic pre al all...
  9. Randyman...

    Randyman... Well-Known Member

    Awsome. I have been looking online for my Avalon Purchase. Have you (or anyone) heard of Night Sky Sound? They have an eBay store...


    They are an "Authorized" Avalon dealer, and have a cool Blue LED mod that I like. I may pop on over to GC, and see what they will do for me, too... Any opinions on either retailer as far as Avalon goes? :cool:
  10. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    The blue LED/lamp unit is an option, and needs to be special ordered in most cases. I think it also adds around $100 to the cost if I recall correctly. If they are an autherized dealer, then theyu should be ok. You might call Avalon and ask them if they have a legit business/background.
  11. djui5

    djui5 Guest



    I'd recommend getting from one of these sources...they're more than reputable, will provide more than their share of service and you are guaranteed not to get "ripped off"....

    You can buy blue led's and solder them in yourself or Fletcher at Mercenary might install them for you.......sweetwater might also...who knows......

    just a thought.
  12. Randyman...

    Randyman... Well-Known Member

    Wow. Sweetwater has a great price with free shipping (really suprising IMO)! I'm gonna pick one up right NOW! The blue LED's are cool (only $550 on eBay), but I can do without (unless it affected the sound :roll: ) I may do the easy-as-cake LED mod myself - if I "see" the need (ha! - no pun intended).

    Thanks for the input. :cool: I'll report back with my results... :-?

    Add - Just bought it at Sweetwater's online store. $537 something "out the door". Not too bad. :) Now comes the waiting...
  13. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    BTW... if anyone is looking for an Evil Twin Bruce is building them again, and has been selling them directly.

    His contact information is:

    Bruce Seifried
    Eclair Engineering
    PO Box 125
    8 Village Hill Road
    Williamsburg, MA 01096


    It is truly a great sounding unit... you'll never be disappointed.
  14. djui5

    djui5 Guest

    Nice!...this is sweet news...thanks Fletch

    And I agree......it's a great unit.....best DI box I've used yet........
  15. Randyman...

    Randyman... Well-Known Member

    What do "Evil Twins" run for (with and w/o pre-amp)? What is their "niche" (What do they do that is so special)?

    My U5 will be here Tuesday or Wednesday. I do have a 30-day return policy if the Evil Twin may be a better option for Bass DI in rock/hard rock music (and if it does not cost $1000)...

  16. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    Well, I got mine with the mic pre option more than several years ago for under $1000. Not sure what the going rate is now.
  17. Randyman...

    Randyman... Well-Known Member

    The U5 came in Wednesday :mrgreen: I fiddled with it for about 2 minutes with a crappy Yamaha RBX350II bass with dead strings, and I was pleased with the direct sound. I'm liking EQ Preset 2 with that bass - the low fundamentals really come out, and the "mud" is gone. I'll likely keep it, and look into possibly adding an Evil Twin into my arsenal down the road (after a few desperately needed pre's and comp's)...

    I'm still planning on experimenting with a Mackie/Behringer/Tascam mic pre (insert output) running through the U5 (into the recorder) just to see if I like the U5's nice analog EQ curves built in for Vox, Guitar, or maybe a drum room mic. I can still add +32dB of gain from the U5's front panel, so I won't need much gain from the mic pre, and the EQ is far superior to the Mackie's Channel EQ and the Digital EQ in the VS2480/Nuendo (If I can find an EQ curve that is appropriate - fat chance, huh?). We shall see :roll:

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