Hey, this is my first post in this forum, been floating around for a while..
Anyway, I play in a reggae influenced band outta buffalo, NY. I've been doing the band's latest recordings in our home studio, (Mackie Board, MOTU A/D Converter, Soundcraft Compact 4, various mics, etc....)
I need to get some decent preamps come February. For the last month or so I have been sold on getting 4 n72s from Seventh Circle Audio (Assembly not an issue, electrical engineering background)..
But over the last couple weeks the Sebatron VMP-4000e has been catching my eye, as well as the Focusrite ISA 428.
I know alot of guys around here like the Sytek, so I might as well throw that one in the mix..
The sound I am going for could be described as LUSH, CREAMY, ORGANIC, yet AGGRESSIVE! err... I am not into the ultra clear modern sterile digital pop sound...
Ideally I would be recording to 1" tape, but that is not an option...
You can hear some poorly compressed examples of our music here:
The sebatrons could definitely be described by the four adjectives you used, depending on what you mean by them-
It's DEFINITELY sweet and musical sounding, quite versatile with the different neg. feedback settings the pad switch gives you.
BUT it's on the rounder, smoother, softer side of preamps- can get some edgy with lower pad settings, but still round sounding.
The opposite of german modules for example, with their forward, "in-your-face" midrange-
I just built a couple of SCA modules and the N72 was actually fun. It took about 5 hours to build one N72 module. I'm an electrical engineer with plenty of hands-on building and refurb experience.
The wiring harness was a grade-A pain in the ass to put together, but the actual modules are just a bit time consuming to build.
These kits are very clearly NOT for beginners. Being able to read schematics can be helpful too.
I built a C84 as well as the N72. The C84 is very neutral and not at all what you're looking for (I needed something like that), but the N72 seems right up your alley. Highly recommended.