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Please critique my ideas on purchases here

Discussion in 'Pro Audio Equipment' started by EricWatkins, Feb 17, 2008.

  1. EricWatkins

    EricWatkins Active Member

    Hi. Thanks for taking time to read this. I am bringing up my studio from almost pure midi tracking to having 3 recording booths and two small rooms for recording things like acoustic guitars and other acoustic instruments. So, I decided to but the Tascam DM-4800. It is what I want and need to get plenty of synth channels and other recording channels into my DAW at once. The big decisions now are for mics and pres. I dont have a ton of money so I'm trying to get myself just one or two great sounding channels for my vocal booth and for recording guitars and bass. For pre amps, I am thinking of either the UA-610 or the Vintech X73. Perhaps the two channek versions of each. I'm not sure. As far as compressors, I'm thinking the 1176. Maybe the 6176 to combine the 610 and 1176 into one purchase and save a little money. For mics, I already have two AT2020s and now I'm thinking of buying the following to cover the bases that I mentioned. A 57, 58, an MD-421, an AT-4047, and if I can afford it, a Royer R-122. I'll definitely get all the dynamic mics but the ribbon is only a maybe if I can afford it. Like I said, I want to cover vocals and rock/pop guitars. Primarily female vocals at first but I'll also want to do male vocals eventually. The search function brought up the AT-4047 and Royer as being good for female vox. This isnt just an inquiry. I WILL be making purchases in the coming days and weeks and I just want to be able to get the sounds I'm after. Mainly good heavy processed sounds like Evanescence and also modern pop sounds. I should also mention that I'll probably be buying a UAD card with a lot of plugins that are supposed to be representative of the compressors I'm looking at. Any help would be much appreciated. Trying this stuff out somewhere is not really an option. All the things I'm looking for are already field-proven equipment. I just value the experience and knowledge of the members here to help me hone in on the best of these things for my intended purpose. Thanks again.

    Eric
     
  2. backinthelab

    backinthelab Guest

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  3. tubefire

    tubefire Guest

    Hello Eric... ** you may want to read the reviews at Sweetwater.com because several engineers are saying that this is used a lot for male vocals and seems to be better on those voices! I like the mxl v69M tube mic modified with a NOS Mullard 12AT7 tube for almost all vocals... Also a very respected audio engineers, Dan Richards said that the MXL V69m microphone was the best microphone under $1000. that he has ever tested !!! Go to the MXL website... as far a preamps go, if you can afford the one's that you mentioned go for it but there are very high quailty alternatives in the $400. range too! All the best...
     
  4. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    I have used a lot of the preamps in the 400 dollar range and while my personal skills makes it easier to get a good sound with them, there is no substitute for high-end gear....as we all know.

    I dont think you're looking to 'just get by' so I encourage you to purchase gear that isnt going to fade on you as your skill set grows. I cannot say anything bad about either the UA or the Vintech stuff. Its all quality. I would suggest a close listen, as both of those pres have a distinct sound to them.

    As for a mic for vocals, the 4047 is very much a vocal oriented mic. Again, at this level, its best to trial and error though having a 4047 in your locker will never be a bad thing, simply another tool.
     
  5. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Well-Known Member

    I have a pair of 4047s. They are great on many voices, certainly not just females. They have a certain character that NO MXL I've run across can touch. Great build quality, too.
     
  6. tubefire

    tubefire Guest

    "We've been very impressed with MXL mics in the past, but this time we
    figured we'd really put the review unit through the ringer. So, we tested
    the V69 against-count 'em-11 other popular condensers, ranging in price
    from $169 to $5,000 list. Our test subject was an experienced recording
    artist with multiple CD titles under her belt. While the rest of us knew
    which mics were plugged into which inputs, for the singer, the test was
    completely blind.
    After a couple hours of testing, both the engineer/producer and the singer
    picked the V69 over the other 11 mics. None of them had the same
    combination of classic tube warmth and top-end air of the V69."
    From the January/February, 2003 Issue of Performing Songwriter
    Magazine. Author: Fett.

    I currently have 15 mics in the studio and have sold 6 after testing the MXL V69M which has become my go to vocal mic. This mic with a tube change is out performing nearly everything I have in my collection or available to me from other sources. A blind test is very convincing!
     
  7. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    You seem hell bent on reviews there Tubefire.

    I'd hate to tell you, but if you believe half the stuff you read (or quoted and/or alluded to in this post), then you have no one to blame for making poor decisions but yourself.

    There is NO preamp in the $400 range that can stack up to the Vintech or UA pres.

    Also, having used the V69, I can tell you that while it's a decent mic, there's easily 20 to 30 mics under $1000 that I would choose over it for many situations. The entire AT 40 line accounts for some of them. Bock Audio, Mojave, ADK, BLUE and others make some seriously great mics for under $1000.

    Ignore the reviews and just listen.
     
  8. EricWatkins

    EricWatkins Active Member

    Thanks everyone for your help. I have to start somewhere and since I already have the AT2020s and love them for what they are, I think I'll probably start with the 4047. I also think I'm sold on the LA-610 for starters. If I really love it, I'll probably get another for stereo recordings. Then I can slowly build up more and more great channels. I'll definitely want to get the VIntech stuff at some point and then maybe the Langevin. Whoever dies with the most toys wins right? Seriously though, I want to get a rack full of enough great pres to record 8+ channels at a time for drums at some point. Right now, I think I'll let my credit cards catch thier breath for a little while. Thanks again.

    Eric
     
  9. tubefire

    tubefire Guest

    I make my mic choices based on blind tests with another engineer after reading reviews and before I purchase... where can I buy a Vintech or UA for $400. ?
     
  10. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    Curious.

    It sounds as if you're quoting other engineers - I didn't get anything about blind test that you were doing based on your writings above.

    Also, I didn't state you could get a Vintech or UA for $400. You advised that EricWatkins look at some $400 preamps. I'm saying, if he's interested in UA and Vintechs, why in God's name would he consider looking at any $400 preamp.
     
  11. tubefire

    tubefire Guest

    Oh hey sorry about that !!! I'm posting to the wrong thread!!! Excuse me... I'm new around this Forum posting on the internet!!
     
  12. tifftunes

    tifftunes Active Member

    For 8 pres, get a Presonus Firestudio (or FP10). It'll do what you ask for less than one UA 610.

    May I also suggest the vintage Ampex mic pres (yet again)? The 351 has a power supply built in (as does the 354 if you want a pair). The 350 is quite nice also, but requires a separate power supply. However, all the Ampex pres mentioned here can be had for less than the UA pre and sound about as good (slightly different is about all).

    For a more "middle-of-the-road" sound, I'd recommend the Focusrite 428. It has enough transformer influence to make the sound a little richer (vs no tranformers), and yet is still very clean and clear - mostly an uncolored Neve sound. And it is a bit less $$ per pre than the UA610 Solo (IIRC).

    The Shure KSM44 multi-pattern LDC is a very versatile mic for which I've yet to find anything I don't like through it (including strident female voices). It's a mic (better in pairs for OH, rooms, etc) you'll never out grow.

    For much less cash than the KSM44, the MXL V6 is a "valve" imitation mic. Very smooth.

    At about the same price point are 2 very hard working dynamics - Shure SM7B and EV RE20 (or RE27). Both worthy of your scrutiny.

    The UAD-1 card is very nice as well. Good enough to fool almost everyone with the 1176 and LA2A compressors.

    IMHO. YMMV.
     
  13. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    I don't think Eric is looking for a new interface but specifically good, high end preamps. I'm not questioning your advice. He simply isn't looking for a new interface.

    I'm in no way in any position to make suggestions but the Millennia HV-3D and TD-1 are on my drool list. Not so much the HV-3D bu the TD-1 for a single channel strip in a box. I've never seen one for under $1300 here though.
     

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