AMS NEVE 1073lb Review
Old 8th April 2011
  #1
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AMS NEVE 1073lb Review

I got my 1073lb a a few weekends back and thought i'd share my thoughts.
The unit's knobs buttons feel good
to me. Some have voiced concern about the p48 engaging as a push in on the output knob. A dedicated button would have been preferred agreed, though knowing this is the design I will probably never engage it accidentally.
The silkscreen on the metal and the undercoat look nice in my opinion.
I have had a chance to record electric guitar and snare and voice.
At moderate gain levels it was clean with a nice sense of depth I have heard in recordings with original neve 1073, in fact more reminiscent of this quality then other clones I've heard.(to my ears)
I'm not comparing it to an original
1073 persay as I don't own one.
Though I have worked on material tracked thru an original.
Jeff at vk said that conpared to a vintage unit he owns the lb sounds
the same, minus some gristle from old components and noise.
There ends my relating it to its lineage.
Back to the sound as I hear it.
I feel that the 1073 really shines when pushed.
Thick ,rich, good.
However here lies my main gripe;
The 10 db you can reduce the ouput does not cover the amount of distortion I think sounds best, without clipping.
I bought a pad cable from a fellow slut who makes these (cant recall his name right now? )
The pad does the trick.
Overall I love it and its a keeper.
I own and have owned lots of high end pres, and the 1073lb is one of my favs
Good work Ams Neve.


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Old 8th April 2011
  #2
3 + infractions, forum membership suspended.
Quote:
Originally Posted by mahasandi View Post
I got my 1073lb a a few weekends back and thought i'd share my thoughts.
The unit's knobs buttons feel good
to me. Some have voiced concern about the p48 engaging as a push in on the output knob. A dedicated button would have been preferred agreed, though knowing this is the design I will probably never engage it accidentally.
The silkscreen on the metal and the undercoat look nice in my opinion.
I have had a chance to record electric guitar and snare and voice.
At moderate gain levels it was clean with a nice sense of depth I have heard in recordings with original neve 1073, in fact more reminiscent of this quality then other clones I've heard.(to my ears)
I'm not comparing it to an original
1073 persay as I don't own one.
Though I have worked on material tracked thru an original.
Jeff at vk said that conpared to a vintage unit he owns the lb sounds
the same, minus some gristle from old components and noise.
There ends my relating it to its lineage.
Back to the sound as I hear it.
I feel that the 1073 really shines when pushed.
Thick ,rich, good.
However here lies my main gripe;
The 10 db you can reduce the ouput does not cover the amount of distortion I think sounds best, without clipping.
I bought a pad cable from a fellow slut who makes these (cant recall his name right now? )
The pad does the trick.
Overall I love it and its a keeper.
I own and have owned lots of high end pres, and the 1073lb is one of my favs
Good work Ams Neve.


Sent from my VM670 using Gearslutz.com App
good to hear these units are good, still waiting for mine
Old 9th April 2011
  #3
TLH
Gear nut
 

Glad you like your LB. I just got mine in this week, and I posted about some comparisons to my vintage Neve 1073. The LB is great, but it is not the same sonic signature as a 1073 on voice. As a matter of fact, the LB sounds like a Seventh Circle N72 more than it does an original unit. All that said, I think that the AMS product is quality and a great buy. I am getting to ready to get the companion eq for mine that just came out. Are you thinking about the eq as well? Best of luck, tlh
Old 9th April 2011
  #4
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thanks for the input , yeah I want the eq bad... next on the list...
Old 9th April 2011
  #5
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I don't want to ruin the wet dream that 1073s can be had for under 1K in the 500 format but... 1073s they are not. Period.

Are they good pres? I'll give you one better - they are great! Lets leave it to that and everybody's happy.
Old 9th April 2011
  #6
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Wondering if it more of a 1073DPA flavor (in a lunchbox)???



1073 re-issue vs 1073DPA vs 1073LB vs which original 1073




.
Old 9th April 2011
  #7
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The fact is the 1073lb sounds great. I will add Mr Tanner is quick to point out different examples of vintage 1073 and the various revisions do not sound alike.
Also price point is not established as a factor for sound quality, there
is more to the story then that.

If wet dream = fetish commodity
then I agree.
However with your comments, which seem a mantra and mine the counteracting mantra
not much original is being added here.

The previous poster comparing hid vintage to an lb is great info taken with the requisite salt.

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Old 9th April 2011
  #8
TLH
Gear nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mahasandi View Post
The fact is the 1073lb sounds great. I will add Mr Tanner is quick to point out different examples of vintage 1073 and the various revisions do not sound alike.
Also price point is not established as a factor for sound quality, there
is more to the story then that.

If wet dream = fetish commodity
then I agree.
However with your comments, which seem a mantra and mine the counteracting mantra
not much original is being added here.

The previous poster comparing hid vintage to an lb is great info taken with the requisite salt.

Sent from my VM670 using Gearslutz.com App
All true statements. And Geoff's input is always valuable. That said, the comparison that I made with my 1073 to my new Lb does shed light on a few things. First, unless you send the signal through an original L0166 output transformer with the proper load, the clone will not sound exactly like a 1073. The iron is what makes the difference. I have done some experimenting with this. Today, the only iron available is Carnhill. Which by the way are excellent transformers, but not the same as the L0166. So the high end clones (BAE,AMS, ect..) use discreet high quality components, but end up outputting to a Carnhill transformer. End of story... So should we still buy the high end clone stuff, Absolutely! Keep adding paint to the palate! Also, in case your thinking you can just swap out the transformer, think again! As several posts have pointed out its not that easy. A swap requires that you get the load right and the clone is designed around the Carnhill output and not a L0166. This is best left to pros. All said and done, I am really happy with my 500 series LB.
Old 10th April 2011
  #9
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Thanks TLH I appreciate what your sharing.
I totally agree it's the "not just the parts but the way they are used in a design ...mantra , a good point no doubt.

At the end of the day it's a 1073 compared to a probably more consistently voiced modern manufacture 1073lb.
And I can't imagine they would sound identical for many reasons, again not the least of which is that there is no one "original" to which any modern version would be compared.
But I'm glad your enjoying the lb and the original is not going to lose any value for many reasons, including a fetish/name aspect...as well as each vintage units particular sound.

I thought i'd link this tape op review:
Tape Op Magazine > Reviews > 1073LB 500-series mic preamp

very similar to mine actually.
Interestingly he says the 1073lb is darker then an original... a single original.thumbsup
Old 10th April 2011
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mahasandi View Post
Interestingly he says the 1073lb is darker then an original... a single original.thumbsup
All of my vintage Neves were darker than the LB - even the AMS re-issue modules.
Old 10th April 2011
  #11
TLH
Gear nut
 

Again, I agree. I don't know about the original being darker. The 1073 sounds more 3d if that makes sense. It has tighter low end and a more pronounced highs. Of course my comparisons are with eq out. And by the way, I have several 1073's and all of them sound pretty much the same. I mean I can't tell one from the other tracking with them. I have a kinda makeshift unit with 1073's coupled to pair of 2254a's through a mix bus for tracking and enhancing the two bus. It would be a 80 series clone if I had more money as I need one more piece of the puzzle. I am trying to put together an Aurora console GMT8 to send everything through. 8 1073's through a GMT8 coupled with my 2254a pair. My plan for the future.
Old 11th April 2011
  #12
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Syra, When were your vintage 1073's last recapped??

Quote:
Originally Posted by syra View Post
All of my vintage Neves were darker than the LB - even the AMS re-issue modules.
Old 11th April 2011
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by superburtm View Post
Syra, When were your vintage 1073's last recapped??
I haven't recapped them cause they were all in great condition at the time of purchase... 1084s, 1066s and even 1272s (btw they all sound the same - enough about "all vintage gear sounds different"... they may not be as consistent as modern manufactured units but once they are tech'ed out they can be extremely close - identical at times). Don't get me wrong... they are still bright in the classic Neve kinda way... When I need a dark sound I do NOT reach for the Neves ... its just that the LB was a different kind of bright - less pleasing to my ears. More pronounced. Also the lowmids were softer too... that may have played a part on how I perceived the highs... its all relative.

Again, I'm not slamming the LB. It sounds great. I'm only addressing the hype that its 100% a 1073.
Old 17th April 2011
  #14
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I have no idea if a vintage 1073 sounds identical to another or not
And I couldn't care less if someone was knocking the 1073lb my ego is not realy in this I do like the pre I'am happy with what it can do well for what I want from it.
I just feel there is a bit of potential for fetishizing with this stuff
we're all susceptible to our own placebo effect especially when our gear was $$$$$ we tend to identify with our investment perhaps beyond our objectivity...
definitley not knocking good ears that love sound and hear subtle differences either!!!!!!!
adding from Geoff Tanner:


Quote:
Hi Rock

This appears to be the same thread you started on GearSlutz.

In the interests of accuracy and eliminating any more urban myths, I must contest the statement you made above.

As in your other thread, you completely ignore the THD (total harmonic distortion) issue. I can assure you that any Neve style transformer, including the Carnhills supplied to cloners for aeons, can handle +26dBu across the audio band without significant THD issues and the difference between the original Marinairs and the samples that Carnhill supplied to Neve for their reissue 1073/1084 was the difference in THD between the Marinair and Carnhill at 20Hz and above +26dBu.

I believe the Marinairs were in the region of 4% and the Carnhills up around 10%. Note that there was significant distortion with both so the "no distortion" does not carry any weight in the truth department. You also need to state the load impedance on the transformer at this level.

I know that Altran are supplying transformers to several cloners and I wish them all the best. It's just that posts that gloss over or exaggerate performance issues make me grind my teeth at times!

In the real world, do these performance issues really matter? I'm doubtful and put it in the snake oil category. You'll never use those levels/frequencies and need a variety of transformers... the Carnhill, the Marinair, and the "other LO1166 manufacturer" (there's no point trying to contact them, by the way)... to make a judgement.

I'm sure most owners of clones are perfectly happy with their 10% thd at 20Hz @ +28dBu!
Old 8th June 2011
  #15
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As to the depth of the lb I'm quite pleased. It captures a sense of space around the sound nicely, better in fact then any clone I've heard.
I have the eqs on the way will review...
After using this pre for a while my new gear high has not worn off nice :-)

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Old 8th June 2011
  #16
Gear nut
 

I did some tests last week-end with the LB vs DPA for bass DI, and I was really pleased with the LB been as good as the DPA in that application.
Old 13th July 2011
  #17
Gear Head
 

You guys are all splitting hairs. The average listener on the street (IF your song even gets that far will never EVER EVER be able to say, "oh, well that sounds like a neve clone, so it's no good..." Gearslutz, let's get back to the craft of songs and the art of writing good music and stop the madness!!!
Old 14th July 2011
  #18
Harmless Wacko
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Duke of Clouds View Post
You guys are all splitting hairs. The average listener on the street (IF your song even gets that far will never EVER EVER be able to say, "oh, well that sounds like a neve clone, so it's no good..." Gearslutz, let's get back to the craft of songs and the art of writing good music and stop the madness!!!
I disagree.

To be clear: I don't like the concept of the "this vs. that" threads in any exclusively determinative sense.

In my estimation, persons who use these types of decidedly subjective information as SINGULAR causative impetus to consider employing ANY production tool(s) are either:

1.) Not the sharpest knives in cupboard.

2.) Not very experienced in the practical application of various recording devices in the craft, and the tremendous realm of subjectivity inherently associated with such activities.

3.) Bereft of a system which allows persistent comparison of aforementioned tools.

4.) Persons with an agenda driven largely by ego or market.

I gotta say: #3. is important to consider with some altruistic equity, as many persons, for a myriad of logistical considerations DO NOT have the luxury of such a system and tend to RELY on GS "consensus" to PURCHASE things.

Which, of course, brings group #4 into play, and the plot thickens exponentially.

On the other hand...

The average listener(if such a thing could actually exist) is a stone deaf and utterly clueless boat anchor who needs a good shoe in the nads.

Kidding of course.

Kinda.

Anyhoo.

I propose the day you start making records for the critical watermarks established by those loomers is the day you should find something else to do for a living. Just a thought.

GS is a place where the people who SHOULD agonize over the tools they use in recording to come and argue preference in application.

It's the INTENDED PURPOSE of the "So Much Gear", "High End", and even "Low End Theory" sub-forums as far as I can tell over the last 9 years of membership and it's attendant contributory responsibilities... and why I come here for the most part.

I think we can ALL AGREE: There are CERTAINLY other forums on the internot, and even "sub-forums" HERE dedicated to the sentiments of the consumer apologist crowd.

No biggie.

Just sayin'

Best regards,

SM.
Old 14th July 2011
  #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slipperman View Post
I disagree.

To be clear: I don't like the concept of the "this vs. that" threads in any exclusively determinative sense.

In my estimation, persons who use these types of decidedly subjective information as SINGULAR causative impetus to consider employing ANY production tool(s) are either:

1.) Not the sharpest knives in cupboard.

2.) Not very experienced in the practical application of various recording devices in the craft, and the tremendous realm of subjectivity inherently associated with such activities.

3.) Bereft of a system which allows persistent comparison of aforementioned tools.

4.) Persons with an agenda driven largely by ego or market.

I gotta say: #3. is important to consider with some altruistic equity, as many persons, for a myriad of logistical considerations DO NOT have the luxury of such a system and tend to RELY on GS "consensus" to PURCHASE things.

Which, of course, brings group #4 into play, and the plot thickens exponentially.

On the other hand...

The average listener(if such a thing could actually exist) is a stone deaf and utterly clueless boat anchor who needs a good shoe in the nads.

Kidding of course.

Kinda.

Anyhoo.

I propose the day you start making records for the critical watermarks established by those loomers is the day you should find something else to do for a living. Just a thought.

GS is a place where the people who SHOULD agonize over the tools they use in recording to come and argue preference in application.

It's the INTENDED PURPOSE of the "So Much Gear", "High End", and even "Low End Theory" sub-forums as far as I can tell over the last 9 years of membership and it's attendant contributory responsibilities... and why I come here for the most part.

I think we can ALL AGREE: There are CERTAINLY other forums on the internot, and even "sub-forums" HERE dedicated to the sentiments of the consumer apologist crowd.

No biggie.

Just sayin'

Best regards,

SM.
gosh , are you writing a thesis or what for your science study master degree ?
Old 14th July 2011
  #20
Slipperman has studied you guys and will make a call now on his red phone in the oval office.

Hohohoho.

Kiddin.

Kinda.

Thanks slipperman, to the point as always. (and the only guy around here,where I have to use dict.leo.org to translate words... )

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Old 14th July 2011
  #21
3 + infractions, forum membership suspended.
Not sure if that was a joke... but it certainly proved Duke's point.
Old 14th July 2011
  #22
Harmless Wacko
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by yotonic View Post
Not sure if that was a joke... but it certainly proved Duke's point.
1.)

The defense rests.

SM.
Old 14th July 2011
  #23
More of a spoon eh?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Slipperman View Post
1.)

The defense rests.

SM.


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Old 14th July 2011
  #24
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RoundBadge's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Duke of Clouds View Post
You guys are all splitting hairs. The average listener on the street (IF your song even gets that far will never EVER EVER be able to say, "oh, well that sounds like a neve clone, so it's no good..." Gearslutz, let's get back to the craft of songs and the art of writing good music and stop the madness!!!
ya I agree,although last time I checked,this forum was called the "high end" .
the specific place where people do split hairs and agonize over this shit.
Old 14th July 2011
  #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duke of Clouds View Post
You guys are all splitting hairs. The average listener on the street (IF your song even gets that far will never EVER EVER be able to say, "oh, well that sounds like a neve clone, so it's no good..." Gearslutz, let's get back to the craft of songs and the art of writing good music and stop the madness!!!
That's the point of view of an artist.
The day engineers stopped splitting hairs to figure out the best possible way to capture the performances of artists is the day engineers should get out the business.
Old 14th July 2011
  #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nukmusic View Post
Wondering if it more of a 1073DPA flavor (in a lunchbox)???
The 1073DPA is very similar to the preamp portion of the reissue 1073 (3 gain stages & Carnhill output transformer) albeit with an electronically balanced line section.
Old 14th July 2011
  #27
teo
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So the question now is: Slipperman, have you tried one and if so, what do you think?
Thanks
Old 15th July 2011
  #28
Harmless Wacko
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by teo View Post
So the question now is: Slipperman, have you tried one and if so, what do you think?
Thanks
I haven't.

But I will be happy to defend your right to express your opinion on this or any other piece of audio equipment, in the smallest detail and subtlety, in any terminology or semantic approach you might desire to do so in, here on GS.

I read these threads because, in fact, if yer working, you pretty much CAN'T find the time to try EVERYTHING...

Hence the "So much gear so little time" forum moniker.

Or you don't have the financial means to audition EVERYTHING... Especially things which have a significant dollar value attached to their purchase and use.

Hence the "High End" forum marquee.

Again, in my estimation, this place was purpose built for guys who DO care about stuff like this, and don't mind kicking a few loose balls around on it verbally.

A place to TALK SHOP TOOLS.

People who don't understand and/or empathize with this mindset might wanna spend more time in other parts of this forum, or other music related forums in general.

SM.
Old 15th July 2011
  #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slipperman View Post
But I will be happy to defend your right to express your opinion on this or any other piece of audio equipment, in the smallest detail and subtlety, in any terminology or semantic approach you might desire to do so in, here on GS.
Somebody's read Voltaire.
Old 15th July 2011
  #30
teo
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slipperman View Post
Again, in my estimation, this place was purpose built for guys who DO care about stuff like this, and don't mind kicking a few loose balls around on it verbally.

A place to TALK SHOP TOOLS.

People who don't understand and/or empathize with this mindset might wanna spend more time in other parts of this forum, or other music related forums in general.

SM.

Thanks
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