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Are they the same, digital section notwithstanding?

I have a PreSonus Firepod - is it worth the extra money to get the digital section in the ART digital, or are my Firepod converter at the same level?


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Boswell Thu, 02/17/2011 - 06:53

If you can afford it, I would get the newer Art digital unit with the built-in ADC, as this then gives you the option of going analog or digital into the Firepod. The digital output is not the only feature that is improved in this unit over the older MPAII. However, you need to think carefully about clocking when connected digitally so you do not compromise the native conversion quality of the Firepod if you are using channels from both units.

If you feed the S/PDIF output of the MPAII into the Firepod S/PDIF input, you get a total of 10 input channels available. By how you assign the channels amongst your sound sources you can not only choose the sonic colour of the important ones (e.g. vocals), but can balance off which of your mics work best with which pre-amp set for the job in hand. The combination of analog out of the Art into the line inputs of the Presonus gives you a third sonic colour, although I would probably employ 6dB in-line attenuators when taking this route.

All that said, we're not talking about the difference in quality between low-end and high-end pre-amps and converters, as both these units are capable of giving very good results. I would put the Art unit slightly ahead, but for a lot of work you would be hard pressed to say which was a "better" sound, although differences between them should be fairly audible. Think of this as the sort of decision that can pay off in future flexibility rather than necessarily a present-day requirement.

JohnTodd Fri, 02/18/2011 - 06:21

No, you were right. I was wanting to know if the difference between the MPA Pro II and MPA digital Pro II was just the digital section and if the A/D converters were better than my FirePod (justifying the extra cost of the digital version)

Here they are:

[=""] ART Pro MPAII Microphone Preamplifier: Musical Instruments[/]="…"] ART Pro MPAII Microphone Preamplifier: Musical Instruments[/]

[[url=http://="…"] ART Digital MPAII Microphone Preamplifier: Electronics[/]="…"] ART Digital MPAII Microphone Preamplifier: Electronics[/]


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