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I thought I would post this report due to the large number of people that ask this and other forums about which 8 channel pre-amps they should purchase.

I recently bought an M-audio Octane unit for recording drum tracks in my home studio. I use the adat lightpipe to connect to my Protools 6.4 le system. My mic setup consists of the following:

kick - Audix D6
snare and toms - SM57's
overheads - (2) Marshall MXL 2003's
hi hat - Rode NT-1A

I discovered almost immediately that when plugging my overhead condenser mics onto channels 7&8 with phantom power engaged, that a fairly loud buzzing and humming noise came up. The noise slowly faded away after about 10-15 min. I switched chords, outlets, ground scenarios etc. and it still happened after a cold start. The weird thing was that if I engaged the -20 db pad on channels 7&8 the buzz went away, even with the gain all the way up. M-audio sent me a 2nd unit to try to see if the unit was defective. Same results with the 2nd unit.

I took the Octane to a local high end recording studio to check it with other mics, cables and power supply. Same results with my mics (Marshall's & Rode) but when some Neumann U87's were used, no buzz. We started trying some other mics with different ohm ratings (ADK-A51's, Oktava mk012's, Shure KSM-141's). Bottom line, any mic less than 200 ohms caused channels 7&8 to buzz. I informed M-audio's tech support of this and they did their own testing of the Octane units at their factory with various mics. Sure enough, they have admitted to me that it is a design flaw.

So, if you have an M-audio octane or are looking to buy an Octane be careful about the condensers you use. Anything less than 200 ohms will more than likely cause you a very annoying buzz or a 15 min. warm up time for the noise to go away.

Hope this post helps someone. It cost me a lot of time, headaches and some $$ to ship one of my Octane units back to the factory. Worse yet, M-audio didn't even say thanks for finding the flaw or offer any thoughts as to if the problem would get worse over time. Go figure. :?

Van

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Reggie Wed, 03/08/2006 - 14:29

Worse yet, M-audio didn't even say thanks for finding the flaw or offer any thoughts as to if the problem would get worse over time.

Thank you? They're probably sending ninjas over to your place to silently end you before you leak the word any further. :lol:

drumvan Thu, 03/09/2006 - 05:50

lol. well my 7 year old daughter is taking some martial arts classes so i guess we'll be ready for them :o :lol:

i was just surprised at their "oh well" attitude. maybe i shouldn't be.

van

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