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The ZDT Zero Distortion Preamplifier series

These look excellent. I've never had the opportunity but hope to grab a chance to try anything in this series.

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http://www.earthworksaudio.com/products/preamps/

The ZDT Zero Distortion Preamplifier™ series is based on discrete circuitry designed by DAvid Blackmer, establishing a new standard of sonic excellence in electronics. This exacting new standard provides frequency response from 1Hz to 200kHz +0.5dB, a rise time of 0.27 microseconds and distortion of less than 1 part per million (0.0001%), eliminating all possibility of sonic degradation. These preamps are so fast, so clean and so transparent that you don’t even know they are there. It is like plugging your microphone into a “piece of wire with gain”. You will hear clarity and detail with the ZDT preamps that is not available in any other preamp at any price.
  • Zero Distortion – less than one part per million
  • High output level +30dBu
  • Very Low Output Impedance will drive long lines without interference or signal loss
  • True 48 volt phantom, polarity reverse & clip indicator
  • Separate XLR & 1/4” Phone (t-r-s) outputs, each with its own gain/level controls
  • 1/4” Phone connector output will drive balanced or unbalanced inputs
  • Lowest Noise of any preamp on the market
  • All Discrete Components; Class A Amplification (No ICs in the signal path)
  • No Electrolytic Capacitors in the signal path
  • Greater Transparency with minimum signal path and minimum features
  • Available in 1, 2 and 4 channels
  • 500 Series preamp available

Having used the Millennia, Grace and Benchmark preamps this Earthworks unit is in a league of its own. It's as true to the source as they come. This thing transmits such a startling 3D image it's almost haunting. It's dead quiet and has gobs of headroom and gain. The beauty is that the 1024 delivers the precise characteristics of what ever mic you hook it up to. Of course paired with an Earthworks mic the combo serves up a vividness that has to be heard to be believed. If I ever see fit to add coloration into my mix I would rather start with the cleanest and truest signal possible and then process after for effect. Without a doubt the finest preamp I've ever owned. A masterpiece by the legendary DAvid Blackmer.

Comments

anonymous Fri, 01/02/2015 - 03:52

Not all that crazy about the first acoustic guitar sound,( am I the only one who noticed just a touch of phasing?) but the piano was gorgeous, and the acoustic guitar with the Telefunken mic really let the mic's character come through.

I would have liked to hear it on vocals, and, maybe it's just me, but a varying impedance feature may have served it well.

That being said, I'd say, based upon viewing this, and listening, that if you are looking for an ultra-transparent pre, this EW model would certainly be one to take a serious look at.

$1000 for a single channel pre may seem a bit over the top to some, but if an ultra-clean gain chain is what you are after, then I think the price tag is fair, and competitive.

( FWIW - This type of transparency is what attracted me to the Grace m101 that we've been discussing in another related thread regarding transparent pres.)

d.

audiokid Fri, 01/02/2015 - 08:24

DonnyThompson, post: 423060, member: 46114 wrote: acoustic guitar with the [[url=http://[/URL]="http://www.telefunk…"]TELEFUNKEN[/]="http://www.telefunk…"]TELEFUNKEN[/] mic really let the mic's character come through

This combo sounded really good to me as well. I tend to like tube mics with clean preamps. Its like having a clean canvas, clean brush to paint detailed colours.

That acoustic guitar is a poor personal choice to me but being a guitarist, I appreciate how true, open and fast the pre and mic is regardless.
I hear it like it was right in front of me, in that room. This sounds accurate considering youtube as well so I'm not really focusing on phasiness.
The piano. (y)

I love these big open preamps.

A Grace is on my list too.

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