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What Next ???

Discussion in 'Recording' started by larrye, Mar 23, 2004.

  1. larrye

    larrye Active Member

    I have been lurking and posting a few questions on this board and I still can't believe pros like the people on this site are so willing to help home recording folks like me. Wish I could retire from my teaching job and do this full time, but I have another 5 years or so of teaching and I have a TON to learn about recording.

    I would like to take another step toward inproving my recordings. I have had a home studio for about 5 years. Things are better but not great yet.

    I currently am recording on PC using N-track as a recording app.
    Here is what I now have:

    1. Soundcard-- Aardvark direct pro 24/96
    2. Monitors - Tannoy Proto-J
    3. Room - small (12' by 18') Room is used as combination control, mixing and everything else. It is to small to effectively use room reverberation so I have made it into a large vocal booth, heavily treated with 2" ridgid fiberglass on walls and ceilings.
    4. Mics - 1 - MXL V-69 tube condenser
    2 - Oktava MK-012 sd condenser
    4 - Shure beta 87A
    1 - Old AKG D 1000 E dynamic
    2 - AKG C 535 EB
    5. I record mainly vocals, keyboard, some acoustic guitar, a rock band every once in a while and the gospel quartet I sing in.
    6. I have no rack gear except for a cheap picoverb and small mix console for monitoring recording sessions.
    7. Plugs - timworks compressor-x
    timeworks reverb
    I use sampletank to produce soundtracks
    many cheap worthless plug-ins

    My vocals seem to lack the depth and fullness that I wish they had. I visited the listening sessions and was really impressed with the depth and thickness that the Neve preamp has but was worried that recording a vocal quartet with that preamp might be too much? But I am interested in spending about $1,000 to $1,500 on some equipment. What I am not sure about is where to spend it. I realize that 1500 is not much money but it's a lot for a school teacher, so I don't want to waste it.

    Would you guys like to offer a suggestion or two?

  2. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    A good high quality mic pre can make a very big difference in helping to get what you want, but then so does a very good high quality mic. They really do go hand in hand in achieving depth, fullness, detail and many other apsects in a top notch quality sound. From your list, I wouldn't get my hopes to high on what to expect from just a mic pre with those mics. Colored mic pre's like any of the Neve type clones or API would help give the kinds of mic's you have much more depth and fullness than any other type of mic pre except mabe a UA 610/2610 or D.W fearn which may be too full or deep. The Great River NV units offer a good full, mildly clean or a more heavy Neve type tone that works in many applications. If you want eq and a mic pre in one unit, then any of the Neve clones would work fine.
  3. larrye

    larrye Active Member

    Thanks for the info.

    Do you known anything about, or heard the MP-1 tube pre from A Designs Audio?
    I read a couple of reviews but I have learned not to take most reviews for exactly what they say.
  4. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    No, I've not heard one myself - as of yet. I also have heard some good things from users. You are wise to not take gear reviews rfrom anyone or anywhere at full face value. I'm sure it is a very good unit. Not sure if it has the WOW factor I look for or how well it matches up to a variety of mics. Like a lot of fairly new and good quality gear in the market, it gets some decent buzz in the early days, but it's consistant rating as a great tool over time is yet to be proven.
  5. larrye

    larrye Active Member

    Another one I am considering is the Brent Averill 1272. This, I believe, is a class A, Neve 1073 clone.
    What do you think of it. It is a little cheaper.
    Thanks Again,
  6. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    The A Designs MP-1 is reviewed in the RO E Mag by our old friend E Cue. He really likes it a lot. The B/A 1272 is not a 1073 clone, in fact it was not even meant to be a mic pre. These are built using op amps that were initally intended as talkback and summing amps. While they are a step up from most pres found in small consoles and mid priced pres.. I personally have used the B/A 1272s and I don't care much for them. I would lean more towards a Sebatron vmp 2000 or a Great River MP 2NV.. Both Sebatron and Great River makes one channel units also.
  7. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    I own the BA 1272 and I like it. I like it a lot. It has 2/3 of the exact same components as a 1073 mic pre and sounds very much like it, if not just like the 1073 at low to mid gain levels where every mic I've tried sounds wonderfull. At higher gain settings, it performs different than a 1073 and this makes it unique and much sought after for that specific sound.
  8. larrye

    larrye Active Member

    Thanks once again,

    I think I will go with the BA 1272.

    I am curious though, Mr. Flats, what do you not like about the 1272. I really value both of your opinions.

  9. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    To my ear the 1272 I used had no character. It just didn't do anything for me..

    I respect AGs feelings on the subject but to my ear even at lower gain settings a true 3 stage Neve clone like the Great River MP/NV sounds better than the B/A 1272's. I also did not care for the build quality of the unit I used. It literally fell apart in the rack within 16 months ...
  10. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    As much as I like my BA 1272, I agree with Kurt that the Great River MP/NV is and sounds better than the BA 1272. One day I will likely own a GR NV as well. It should be noted that the BA 1272 that is sold now is not the same nor sounds exactly the same as the refurbished 1272's that BA used to sell. Mine is at least 10+ years old.
  11. larrye

    larrye Active Member

    Well, I ordered one of each, one I will keep, send the other back.
    Thanks a lot for all your help.

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