Pre decision, Sebatron, Focusrite, or Millennia...



Ok, so I have a huge decision to make so I have to apologize for the long winded explanation.

I want a new channel strip pre and I've been thrown a couple different ways.

At first I was talking to an engineer and he said that the Focusrite ISA 430 MKII Producer Pack was the pre to get. At $2600 I thought I had better really be sure. The guy I talked to said that it was very versatile and that I would definitely love it.

Then I started to remember some things people on this site had said about Focusrite so I started looking at the Sebatron Thorax again. I talked to some others and they said the Thorax was great, but that it had a "one color" sound. They also said the compressor was great, but the eq was a little weak.

Next I was talked into looking at the Millennia STT1 Origin which can switch between tubes and transistors. That pre is around $2700.

Now the Thorax is the least expensive, so I like that, but I really want to make sure I get the right pre.

I'm recording some progressive rock, fusion, and other stuff like funk, blues, and jazz. I want the pre for guitar, vocals, and sax. (pretty much in that order) I want warmth, but don't want mud.

I would really appreciate your opinions. I'm recording to my harddrive through Nuendo and a MOTU 2408 through a Mackie 1604VLZ pro.



Well-Known Member
Feb 17, 2001
Tampa Bay, FL
Just to add to the confusion, don't forget about the Buzz Audio ARC:

And the Pendulum Quartet:

Not to mention you could get these pieces, which add to up to a channel strip when put in series for around the same price as the above: (The Distressor - which is a mono compressor) (mono preamp and EQ)

All just as good as what you mentioned, all different, all have clarity and depth. Which way to go? :roll:


Jul 18, 2004
I have a sebatron vmp preamp which has served me very well. the EQ is by far part of the characteristic sound of the preamplifier. if the thorax is anywhere like this preamp which I assume it is , it would be worth the purchase. the trick is in running the right amount of gain to get the extra colors .i think the thorax would have that amount of flexibility and would not sound like the desk pres of the mackie which some transparent preamps tend to sound like.If you can afford the extra eq and you feel you need it you should locate a Great river eq-1nv which I have borrowed and love for surgical needs.