Originally Posted by Darius1
What are the uses for multiple channel preamps?...Can you actually record two or four instruments at a time in real time? So that each instrument gets a single track in a DAW?
Yes, of course. A lot of musicians actually play together at the same time to make music! (what a concept!)
Live ensemble/band/orchestra recordings are often done with a "main" mic array of 2, 3 or more mics for the ensemble plus many individual "spot" mics for the individual instruments or instrumental groups. Interfaces with 24, 48 or 72 simultaneous channels are readily available and are used all the time. Since such interfaces don't typically include more than (4) built-in mic pres, if any, it's not uncommon to see a rack full of multi-channel mic pres in use. The multi-channel mic pres take up less space than a group of separate single-channel pre-amplifiers and typically have matched characteristics.
A couple of very good eight-channel mic pres: