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I'm looking for a great pre that will suit my voice.

Here are some of my songs at:

I've looked at the UA 6176 channel strip and thought it would be a good buy because it has the 1176 compressor built in. You can bypass the 1176 and add another compressor but use the UA 610 tubes or vise versa. So for $2300 that's something i thought would benefit me from spending $4000 if i bought those 2 units seperatly.

I'm not sure if that would match my voice though. I'm recording only acoustic guitar, vocals and piano.

I've recorded though an Avalon 737. Smooth sounding but too hi fi sounding for me.

I heard Great River pre's are very good for rock vocals and electric guitars. acoustics too?

It's coming down to either Great River or UA 6176 because i want a great compressor as well.
If i go for the Great River pre then then my option would be to either buy an urie 1176 (or UA 1176) for $2000 . or i could just buy Great River pre/eq and purchase uad1 with plugins that will include the 1176 compressors.

I'm planning to buy either a Neumann TLM 103 or AKG 414 as well.

Any advice?


Goose3 Wed, 09/17/2008 - 09:20

Not sure what’s so funny, a lot of people on here do have day jobs you know.

I’ve used the great rivers for acoustic work before; I haven’t ever used the UA 6176 channel strip.

People may disagree but I think the great river is fairly clean sounding. I like it on acoustic guitar. If you’re buying primarily for vocals I say go for the 6176, it’s a channel strip and I always prefer to compress on the way in.

My other two cents, worry more about your mic more than pre amp.

You didn’t ask but between the Neumann 103 and the AKG 414 I would go with the Neumann for vocals.

A good engineer could use either pre to create a great recording. Gear doesn’t make great sounding recordings.

anonymous Wed, 09/17/2008 - 11:01

thanks for the advice.

i read from other reviews that UA 610 pre's do not have alot of head room compared to the great river.

UA 610 pres are classic tones, would i still be able to get the modern sound of rock/alternative/acoustic tone using a digi 003 ua 6176. with a suitable mic?

or would a great river for vocals/acoustic and UA 1176 compressor be a better choice?

Davedog Wed, 09/17/2008 - 17:38

I could use either one and get that sound you describe. Its all about mic selection, mic placement, song quality, performance, and musicianship. Then you get to the electronics.

Neither one will make or break your ability to deliver a song. Nor will they restrict you from getting that 'brown sound' or that tight snappy 'modern' noise.

Personally, I prefer channel strips for a single channel set-up.

Even if you dont need compression, there is a certain 'something' about that circuit that adds that vibe to anything put through it.

anonymous Fri, 09/19/2008 - 09:54


I think i'm going to get the Great River mp 2nv and a UA 1176LN compressor/limiter to start with.

this way if i get more pre amps in the future i can always mix and match.

my question is, if i get the 2 channel great river, if i want to record acoustic in stereo do i need my compressor to be 2 channels?

what mic would be good for the "neve 1073 inspired" Great river pre ?

anonymous Wed, 09/24/2008 - 21:28

mcerveni wrote:
i read from other reviews that UA 610 pre's do not have alot of head room compared to the great river.

Swap out the $5 tubes UA gives you with the 610 preamp for a quality set and that statement most definitely no longer holds true IMO.

Works great for trailer VO and imaging too 8-)

GR is a different kind of preamp, but no less effective (more so if you know how to use it properly).

bobbo Wed, 10/15/2008 - 15:54

i've not used either, but if you know the sound you want, why not rent or visit a store that carries those pres, mics, and compressors. and honestly i'd send mercenary audio a message stating what kind of sound you're lookin for, they sell very very high end gear and i've sent them a couple messages before asking either opinions or advice or just a question.

and another piece of info that might help you make a decision on mic/pre/comp: my buddy's band is recording in a really nice studio around these parts, and they have a very very nice mic selection, even a have probably the nicest outboard selection and a board that's either one of a kind custom console or one of six or something like that, i don't know all those details, but the point i'm trying to make here is that, when they went to pick a mic for their female singer, they auditioned all the mics they had there in house, and none of them matched "her voice" so they rented a really nice expensive mic for a couple days (i honestly don't know how they knew that mic they rented would sound just right for her voice, but i guess it worked)

so the point is, not all mics are going to work for everyone's voice, and honestly i think the cheap tlm103 is overrated, but honestly as much as i wouldn't ever pay money for a Neumann it may work for your voice.

look out side of the box, have you considered a ribbon mic, or looked at brands that are about quality and not "brand name" like the mojave stuff, which imo are probably the ugliest mics out there, hah, but i've read tons of great things about them, and i think they look like they're built to work not to sparkle.

i'd say try out dif mics, do a blind fold test, so that mic type or brand isn't swaying your choice as to which one you like better, and who knows, you may like different mics for different types of songs....

and as far as outboard goes, what converters are you using, i'd say its sill to talk about spend 2 to 4 grand on a couple of mic pres and a compressor, when you're using "non-matching quality converters"

i think if you're going for a sound for yourself, then you should either rent some items, try em out, see if you like them, or spend some time in a local studio with those items and see how you like them, or buy them all and return what you don't like.

i don't mean to butt in, or seem rude in any way, just thought i'd like to open your mind, and/or maybe help you think beyond the 'brand name' and what not. and like davedog always says, about having a great song with a great performance, can't be more true.