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AMS Neve 1073lb + 1073lbEQ vs. BAE questions. 500 Series Preamps
View Poll Results: Which is the more authenic clone?
AMS
15 Votes - 27.27%
BAE
18 Votes - 32.73%
I don't really know.
17 Votes - 30.91%
Something else. (COMMENT)
5 Votes - 9.09%
Voters: 55. You may not vote on this poll

Old 24th August 2016
  #1
AMS Neve 1073lb + 1073lbEQ vs. BAE questions.

My Choice: I don't really know.
So.. I'm looking for some hype-free, no marketing BS answers to these questions:

AFAIK, a real vintage 1073 has 3 transformers: one for the mic in, a another (different one) for the line in, and an output transformer.

So... How on earth did AMS fit all those transformers into 1 500 series slot?

Are they the exact types/sizes?

Did AMS decide to share one input transformer amongst the line and mic ins?

Or, do they simply bypass the input tranny when switching to line in?

How does AMS claim to use the same circuit, when the 1073lb is SMT and obviously using different parts?

That said, does it matter? Does the 1073lb sound close enough to you guys and gals? Is the headroom difference a huge deal to you? (I have my own opinion on this... I'll keep it to myself for now)

How does BAE compare, in terms of being an accurate clone?
Old 24th August 2016
  #2
My Choice: I don't really know.
Just to clarify, I'm asking about 2 things:

1. the 500 series versions of the preamps. AMS NEVE 1073lb and 1073lbEQ (in insert mode) vs BAE 1073D.

Looking more for definitive technical answers rather than people chiming in about "what sounds better."

2. Second, are either of the 500 series built to the same level as their respective Neve format units (AMS 1073 or BAE 1073). How do they differ?

* I know that there are a million Neve threads on this forum, and that the answers are probably scattered throughout a few hundred pages of opinion. I feel like this thread is merited, to offer a useful and completely technical answer to a question I think many people are asking.

Please feel free to nerd out. I want to hear about laminations, xformer differences, noise, etc...
Old 25th August 2016
  #3
Lives for gear
 
chrischoir's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DomiBabi View Post

AFAIK, a real vintage 1073 has 3 transformers: one for the mic in, a another (different one) for the line in, and an output transformer.

So... How on earth did AMS fit all those transformers into 1 500 series slot?

Are they the exact types/sizes?

Did AMS decide to share one input transformer amongst the line and mic ins?

Or, do they simply bypass the input tranny when switching to line in?

How does AMS claim to use the same circuit, when the 1073lb is SMT and obviously using different parts?

That said, does it matter? Does the 1073lb sound close enough to you guys and gals? Is the headroom difference a huge deal to you? (I have my own opinion on this... I'll keep it to myself for now)

How does BAE compare, in terms of being an accurate clone?
Actually AMS makes the most accurate 500 series 1073. All the other manufacturer sell hot rodded 1272. SMT is an issue, but more so is the mickey mouse gain stage the cloners use after 39db

1073 LB sound great, and while it is cleaner than an original it still is more accurate than most clones. It's really a 1290.
Keep in mind there is no such thing a a 1073 without EQ. The 1290 was the closet thing. So all the cloners using "1073" is all markting hype and in most cases it is deceptive since they are just selling you a juiced up 1272. Do your home work. In general if you hear a "pop" when you click over to 40db then you are being lied to. They sold you a modded 1272 not a 1073/1290.
Old 25th August 2016
  #4
My Choice: I don't really know.
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrischoir View Post
Actually AMS makes the most accurate 500 series 1073. All the other manufacturer sell hot rodded 1272. SMT is an issue, but more so is the mickey mouse gain stage the cloners use after 39db

1073 LB sound great, and while it is cleaner than an original it still is more accurate than most clones. It's really a 1290.
Keep in mind there is no such thing a a 1073 without EQ. The 1290 was the closet thing. So all the cloners using "1073" is all markting hype and in most cases it is deceptive since they are just selling you a juiced up 1272. Do your home work. In general if you hear a "pop" when you click over to 40db then you are being lied to. They sold you a modded 1272 not a 1073/1290.
Informative. Thanks!
Old 25th August 2016
  #5
My Choice: I don't really know.
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrischoir View Post
Actually AMS makes the most accurate 500 series 1073. All the other manufacturer sell hot rodded 1272. SMT is an issue, but more so is the mickey mouse gain stage the cloners use after 39db

1073 LB sound great, and while it is cleaner than an original it still is more accurate than most clones. It's really a 1290.
Keep in mind there is no such thing a a 1073 without EQ. The 1290 was the closet thing. So all the cloners using "1073" is all markting hype and in most cases it is deceptive since they are just selling you a juiced up 1272. Do your home work. In general if you hear a "pop" when you click over to 40db then you are being lied to. They sold you a modded 1272 not a 1073/1290.
So, even with the 2 AMS modules in insert mode, it is actually just a 1290 with EQ?

What about the transformer on the line in on the AMS module? Does AMS just do without an input tranny when using line level signals? I think BAE also only uses 2 transformers, but the line signal travels through the mic level tranny with a pad.
Old 26th August 2016
  #6
My Choice: I don't really know.
Bumping for someone like Geoff to school us all.
Old 26th August 2016
  #7
Lives for gear
 
chrischoir's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DomiBabi View Post
So, even with the 2 AMS modules in insert mode, it is actually just a 1290 with EQ?

What about the transformer on the line in on the AMS module? Does AMS just do without an input tranny when using line level signals? I think BAE also only uses 2 transformers, but the line signal travels through the mic level tranny with a pad.
As far as transformers configuration go my guess is the LB is more similar to a neve 1063. But most of the single space 1073 clones are built that way
Old 26th August 2016
  #8
Gear Maniac
 

My Choice: AMS
Got a 1073 lb and love it. Have had it for 3 years.
Old 26th August 2016
  #9
My Choice: I don't really know.
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrischoir View Post
As far as transformers configuration go my guess is the LB is more similar to a neve 1063. But most of the single space 1073 clones are built that way
You sir, are an encyclopedia of awesome. Is there a Neve cheat sheet somewhere that I'm missing?
Old 26th August 2016
  #10
Gear Head
My vote is for BAE. It just has the sound I'm looking for. It's the sound of Pop vocals at this point. Pretty much every dope vocal you hear these days is a BAE 1073 going into a CL1b and as far as being authentic goes, BAE uses Carnhill St Ives transformers like the original Neves. . AMS use Vigortronix.
Old 27th August 2016
  #11
Lives for gear
 
Geoff_T's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DomiBabi View Post
Bumping for someone like Geoff to school us all.
Hi,

Much as I would like to help, I really don't have much idea what AMS-Neve have in their 500 series modules.

I agree with the poster with saying the 1073 minus EQ was a 1290. It was the only 5.25" mic pre Neve made and was originally used in A373 - 379 Compere Operated consoles sold to RTE. A bit of a shame that as they were never used because the unions would not allow comperes to control their own shows, putting vinyl records on the turntables and cueing them, selecting tracks off the 8T track players, etc. It may be common now but back then the compere just spoke and the engineers in the studio did the rest on broadcast consoles with assistants working the outboard stuff.

A lot of water passed after that 1972/3 bridge.....

Attached Thumbnails
AMS Neve 1073lb + 1073lbEQ vs. BAE questions.-rte-a373-379.jpg  
Old 27th August 2016
  #12
My Choice: I don't really know.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Geoff_T View Post
Hi,

Much as I would like to help, I really don't have much idea what AMS-Neve have in their 500 series modules.

I agree with the poster with saying the 1073 minus EQ was a 1290. It was the only 5.25" mic pre Neve made and was originally used in A373 - 379 Compere Operated consoles sold to RTE. A bit of a shame that as they were never used because the unions would not allow comperes to control their own shows, putting vinyl records on the turntables and cueing them, selecting tracks off the 8T track players, etc. It may be common now but back then the compere just spoke and the engineers in the studio did the rest on broadcast consoles with assistants working the outboard stuff.

A lot of water passed after that 1972/3 bridge.....


From what I'm reading in this thread...

... Does ANYBODY make a technically accurate 1073? Is it all just clever marketing?

Time to come clean. I own a BAE 1073 rack, a pair of vintage neves, and an AMS 1073lb and 1073lbeq (and Mr. Tanner's EXCELLENT pre. Your stuff is great!).

Forget the sound for a second. I know which preamps I prefer and which ones sound closest to the original Neve ( to me at least ). That's not what this thread is about.

I'm really surprised that I can't find one honest to goodness perfect clones, especially when the cloners are all claiming that they sell "the" 1073 (Not Aurora. They freely admit that their pre is different).

Anybody with the knowledge technical know-how to tell us the differences between manufacturers? Who makes the closest thing to a true clone? Why it's so hard to clone it in the first place?
Old 27th August 2016
  #13
Lives for gear
 
Geoff_T's Avatar
 

Hi

Well, for starters, Marinair Radar of Harlow transformers are no more. The name may be resurrected but not the company and the products they made. Are the 2N3055 power transistors used today identical to the Motorola 2N3055 transistors produced 40 years ago? BC184C transistors are starting to become obsolete and the Mullard C280 and C281 capacitors certainly are.

So I might suggest that it's physically impossible to make an absolutely identical clone to those produced in the 1970's. So the question is, whose clone is nearest and how many folk have actually heard a well maintained 1970's 1073 to compare to?




Quote:
Originally Posted by DomiBabi View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Geoff_T View Post
Hi,

Much as I would like to help, I really don't have much idea what AMS-Neve have in their 500 series modules.

I agree with the poster with saying the 1073 minus EQ was a 1290. It was the only 5.25" mic pre Neve made and was originally used in A373 - 379 Compere Operated consoles sold to RTE. A bit of a shame that as they were never used because the unions would not allow comperes to control their own shows, putting vinyl records on the turntables and cueing them, selecting tracks off the 8T track players, etc. It may be common now but back then the compere just spoke and the engineers in the studio did the rest on broadcast consoles with assistants working the outboard stuff.

A lot of water passed after that 1972/3 bridge.....


From what I'm reading in this thread...

... Does ANYBODY make a technically accurate 1073? Is it all just clever marketing?

Time to come clean. I own a BAE 1073 rack, a pair of vintage neves, and an AMS 1073lb and 1073lbeq (and Mr. Tanner's EXCELLENT pre. Your stuff is great!).

Forget the sound for a second. I know which preamps I prefer and which ones sound closest to the original Neve ( to me at least ). That's not what this thread is about.

I'm really surprised that I can't find one honest to goodness perfect clones, especially when the cloners are all claiming that they sell "the" 1073 (Not Aurora. They freely admit that their pre is different).

Anybody with the knowledge technical know-how to tell us the differences between manufacturers? Who makes the closest thing to a true clone? Why it's so hard to clone it in the first place?
Old 28th August 2016
  #14
500 series nutjob
 
pan60's Avatar
 

My Choice: Something else. (COMMENT)
Personally I think Colin at AML drilled it with his ez1073-500. Just my two cents, all discreet through hole rock solid and amazing service. AML get my money for this type of pre.


And his new pre is killer as well!
Old 28th August 2016
  #15
Lives for gear
 
chrischoir's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DomiBabi View Post
You sir, are an encyclopedia of awesome. Is there a Neve cheat sheet somewhere that I'm missing?
The closest thing to a cheat sheet with regards to circuitry is a thing called a "schematic diagram". Read up on them. Pretty dang cool.
Old 29th August 2016
  #16
My Choice: I don't really know.
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrischoir View Post
The closest thing to a cheat sheet with regards to circuitry is a thing called a "schematic diagram". Read up on them. Pretty dang cool.
I know what a schematic is. I'm just surprised that with all it's desirability, nobody has written a technical comparison for the layman. With all the marketing and fetishizing, it's easy for non-technical musicians to get confused.

I'm starting to get the impression that the 1073 clones are all just fakes making a dollar off of Rupert Neve's legacy. That's not to say the clones aren't great tools; I adore my BAE and a bit less my AMS 500 series stuff. It's just strange that these companies market their products as true clones when they could just be honest about it. Its dirty.
Old 29th August 2016
  #17
500 series nutjob
 
pan60's Avatar
 

My Choice: Something else. (COMMENT)
Quote:
Originally Posted by DomiBabi View Post
I know what a schematic is. I'm just surprised that with all it's desirability, nobody has written a technical comparison for the layman. With all the marketing and fetishizing, it's easy for non-technical musicians to get confused.
If it sound good and you like it use it. Most engineers couldn't care less, they use gear they like gear that sounds great and gear made by manufactures they trust.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DomiBabi View Post
I'm starting to get the impression that the 1073 clones are all just fakes making a dollar off of Rupert Neve's legacy. That's not to say the clones aren't great tools; I adore my BAE and a bit less my AMS 500 series stuff. It's just strange that these companies market their products as true clones when they could just be honest about it. Its dirty.
How do you figure?
Some have cloned them some have made their tweaks and say they have. Some are freak-in amazing some are okay and some will be left for more budget minded folks. In the end, if you want a real 1073 buy a real 1073.
I have a number of takes on these from different manufacturers and they are freak great!
Old 29th August 2016
  #18
My Choice: I don't really know.
Quote:
Originally Posted by pan60 View Post
If it sound good and you like it use it. Most engineers couldn't care less, they use gear they like gear that sounds great and gear made by manufactures they trust.


How do you figure?
Some have cloned them some have made their tweaks and say they have. Some are freak-in amazing some are okay and some will be left for more budget minded folks. In the end, if you want a real 1073 buy a real 1073.
I have a number of takes on these from different manufacturers and they are freak great!
You completely missed my point.
Old 30th August 2016
  #19
My Choice: Something else. (COMMENT)
Just to throw my 2 cents in the ring. I believe David over at Don Classics did one of the best 500 series renditions IMO of the preamp if you talking sticking truest to original topology (Vs. other single space 500 units). There are some draw backs with his unit similar to the other 500 series offerings in the same market such as not going up to the full 80dB. But thats just a problem due to space and not being able to fit the proper 3 deck switch.

You can check out some samples vs an original Neve yourself http://www.thedonclassics.com/nv73_diy.html#nv73samples_diy.html

Anyways in my DIY build of his unit I threw in original parts
Attached Thumbnails
AMS Neve 1073lb + 1073lbEQ vs. BAE questions.-image_1097_0.jpg   AMS Neve 1073lb + 1073lbEQ vs. BAE questions.-img_1665.jpg  
Old 31st August 2016
  #20
My Choice: I don't really know.
So... Next question:

Which transformers are closest to the originals?
Old 31st August 2016
  #21
Lives for gear
 
hasbeen's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by pan60 View Post
Personally I think Colin at AML drilled it with his ez1073-500. Just my two cents, all discreet through hole rock solid and amazing service. AML get my money for this type of pre.


And his new pre is killer as well!
Another fan of the ez1073 here.

Hey Pan60, which 'new pre' are you talking about? Thanks.

Old 31st August 2016
  #22
My Choice: Something else. (COMMENT)
Quote:
Originally Posted by DomiBabi View Post
So... Next question:

Which transformers are closest to the originals?
IMO the Carnhill Mic input and Line input (blue transformers) are near exact to the original St. Ives and Marinair respective originals. Honestly I doubt you could tell the difference in a blind test between the 3. As discussed widley on these forums Carnhill bought out St. Ives so they had access to the original sheets. The output transformer made by Carnhill just doesn't have the same presence as they did not have the original spec sheets because only Marinair and Morite produced the original output transformers. If I remember correctly from what Geoff said that Carnhill had to go through several revisions for AMS Neve and could never nail the output transformers.

Also just remember there are a lot of contributing factors to the 1073 sound (Hint: 2n3055 Transistor) that people seem to gloss over.
Old 31st August 2016
  #23
My Choice: I don't really know.
Quote:
Originally Posted by DomiBabi View Post
So... Next question:

Which transformers are closest to the originals?
Bae had a video on YT that garnered a lot of criticism for comparing their transformers/500 series to others which then prompted the other companies to counter their claims. The thread was deleted here and if you search around you may find feedback regarding this situation on FB and other forums.

It was a comparison between AMS Neve, BAE, and Heritage. In the end, I learned none are authentic and all are " makes/ models inspired by original 1073" none are clones or reissues. Again, carnhill was not the original trafo maker as well all know. Marinair is not around even though their name was bought and is now being put on yellow stickers on top transformers in certain AMS gear (facepalmed) (scroll thru link in thread)

New 33609/n??

At the end of the day, the Aurora audio gear felt right for me, all these allegations from companies above which made me shy away from their products. I know BAE/ AMS/ Heritage all make great products, I just like for the Amazing products stand on their own and speak for themselves. Plus the gtq2, was two channels with eq and cheaper than other units from the other companies.

Sound is so subjective,to each his own, one man's AMS Neve is another man's BAE
Old 31st August 2016
  #24
My Choice: I don't really know.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChaseUTB View Post
Bae had a video on YT that garnered a lot of criticism for comparing their transformers/500 series to others which then prompted the other companies to counter their claims. The thread was deleted here and if you search around you may find feedback regarding this situation on FB and other forums.

It was a comparison between AMS Neve, BAE, and Heritage. In the end, I learned none are authentic and all are " makes/ models inspired by original 1073" none are clones or reissues. Again, carnhill was not the original trafo maker as well all know. Marinair is not around even though their name was bought and is now being put on yellow stickers on top transformers in certain AMS gear (facepalmed) (scroll thru link in thread)

New 33609/n??

At the end of the day, the Aurora audio gear felt right for me, all these allegations from companies above which made me shy away from their products. I know BAE/ AMS/ Heritage all make great products, I just like for the Amazing products stand on their own and speak for themselves. Plus the gtq2, was two channels with eq and cheaper than other units from the other companies.

Sound is so subjective,to each his own, one man's AMS Neve is another man's BAE
Very good info there. Thanks!

Wish I could find that video you are talking about...
Old 2nd September 2016
  #25
500 series nutjob
 
pan60's Avatar
 

My Choice: Something else. (COMMENT)
Quote:
Originally Posted by hasbeen View Post
Another fan of the ez1073 here.

Hey Pan60, which 'new pre' are you talking about? Thanks.

the ezAM16-500
Old 30th October 2017
  #26
Here for the gear
 

My Choice: AMS
I’ve got both the new AMS Neve and BAE. The new AMS Neve sound better than any of my BAE. The AMS Neve is really close to the original 70’s Neve I have. The newer BAE are a little harsher and not as full sounding as the newer AMS Neves.
Old 30th October 2017
  #27
My Choice: I don't really know.
Quote:
Originally Posted by DomiBabi View Post
Very good info there. Thanks!

Wish I could find that video you are talking about...
https://youtu.be/T_3qQ1mQZWc

Here you go... BAE also put out this vid.. I like BAE gear, just too pricey for me

https://youtu.be/gTPkDHDp8QQ
Old 2nd November 2017
  #28
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eastbanjo View Post
I’ve got both the new AMS Neve and BAE. The new AMS Neve sound better than any of my BAE. The AMS Neve is really close to the original 70’s Neve I have. The newer BAE are a little harsher and not as full sounding as the newer AMS Neves.
Hi Eastbanjo I'm deliberating between an AMS Neve 1073LB EQ and the BAE all in one 3 rack space BAE 1073D. Would you recommend getting the AMS Neve?
Thanks!
Old 2nd November 2017
  #29
Lives for gear
 
jjblair's Avatar
My Choice: BAE
I have BAEs side by side with my vintage Neves and I can't tell the difference, nor do I have a preference. Take from that whatever you will.
Old 3rd November 2017
  #30
Here for the gear
 

My Choice: AMS
Quote:
Originally Posted by saxparper View Post
Hi Eastbanjo I'm deliberating between an AMS Neve 1073LB EQ and the BAE all in one 3 rack space BAE 1073D. Would you recommend getting the AMS Neve?
Thanks!
Hi I recommend the AMS Neve. Really great sound!
Topic:
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