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PreAmps or New Mic(s) 500 Series Preamps
Old 29th July 2017
  #1
PreAmps or New Mic(s)

I am slowly but surely building a nice lil studio at my house. I have an Apollo 8p interface, plenty of UA plug ins, 1958 Les Paul, Fender American Strat, Gibson Thunderbird bass, Swart,Matchless and vintage Marshall amps. I have Manley Reference cardioid mic, AKG C414, a few Shure SM57s, Audix drum mics, Golden Age Ribbon, Cascade Fathead lundahls. I am trying to record very thick fuzzy guitars and am debating on adding a Royer 121 or 101 (I honestly like the 101 sound better) OR adding some really nice preamps to compliment my existing mic selections. I am leaning toward the Chandler Germanium or TG2 stuff. Really I will eventually have them both, but it is a matter of what will give the most value immediately and a logical acquisition path. Thoughts?
Old 29th July 2017
  #2
ccg
Gear Maniac
 

I might move in the preamp direction if I were you. Mostly because you actually have decent mics in there. Now it might be time to hear what that SM57 sounds like (and all your other mics) through a spectacular preamp. Not that there's anything wrong with the Apollo. It also sounds like you're willing to buy more gear in the future, so preamp now, more mics later could be a better choice. I don't exactly know what you're style is but you might want to check the Coles 4038 too.
Old 29th July 2017
  #3
I've been digging on slow droney fuzzy rock, Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats, True Widow, that sort of thing.
Old 29th July 2017
  #4
I've been leaning towards the preamp but everyone talks about the Royers like its heaven in a tube - which, you know I can relate too. My first really nice amp - I had that "ohhhhhhhhhh this is why people buy these things" moment so I can see it being feasible that the Royer really does just nail the sound of big loud amps.
Old 29th July 2017
  #5
ccg
Gear Maniac
 

Check out some audio clips of the Coles 4038. If you dig it you might want to get your hands on one to play with.
Old 29th July 2017
  #6
Any thoughts on good preamps to check out besides some Chandlers?
Old 30th July 2017
  #7
Gear Addict
 
Pred80r's Avatar
 

Nice "lil Studio"

You have to separate your worlds into 2, digital and Analog.

1. Get the best Analog gear possible, within budget, to get your analog signal imported to digital. This seems like the most important part of the equation to me...because from here you can manipulate everything digitally and not lose too much sonic quality.

2. Get the best digital gear (plug ins, AD/DA interfactes, effects etc)because now you can manipulate your digital files to achieve the desired effects.

Then you can provide a musical file that has the best of all worlds...

Jack
Old 30th July 2017
  #8
That being said, should I go new analog preamp or fancy ribbon?
Old 30th July 2017
  #9
I'd go for the fancy preamp, you've got a really nice Manley mic and 414. Either of the preamps mentioned would be great with your mics. You're actually in good shape if you don't buy anything for recording thick guitar tracks but this is Gearslutz, let er rip.
Old 30th July 2017
  #10
I'm leaning towards the Chandler Germaniums
Old 30th July 2017
  #11
Gear Addict
 
Kabby's Avatar
If you have enough cash I would buy two used Chandler Germaniums from Vintage King. They currently have used stock.

Using your mics, I would do the 414 or Manley and a ribbon mic stacked phase aligned in front of the amp. I have added a picture for reference. Plug those mics into the 2 germs, pan them hard left and right and be stoked! This lets me keep the vocal, bass, kick & snare straight up the middle for an LCR mix.

Lots of ways to do it but this has been the way I've been doing it lately. Always evolving
Attached Thumbnails
PreAmps or New Mic(s)-fullsizerender-9.jpg  

Last edited by Kabby; 30th July 2017 at 06:41 AM..
Old 6th August 2017
  #12
Ended up getting a deal on a Royer 101.... haven't gotten to really test it yet but so fat loving it. I run two amps so now the question is - add another Royer, another ribbon or a nice pre and record multiple takes to get both amps down
Old 6th August 2017
  #13
Amp set up
Attached Thumbnails
PreAmps or New Mic(s)-img_5946.jpg  
Old 6th August 2017
  #14
Deleted User
Guest
You need a pair of nice preamps.
Old 6th August 2017
  #15
So forgo the extra Royer and get into my pres?
Old 7th August 2017
  #16
Deleted User
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheHolyMountain View Post
So forgo the extra Royer and get into my pres?
You're using only the Apollo preamps?

Go to zzounds.com and order a preamp. They have a 30 day return policy. You can even buy it with a couple hundred bucks down.

Or find an API A2D. Totally undervalued 2 channel preamp.

I've found that preamps do 50% of the heavy lifting.

When you strap that UAD La2A or 1176 across this it will sound stunning.

When you start using real preamps you start realizing why $89 SM57 are used or $300 MD 421 etc

You have great everything other than preamp.
Old 7th August 2017
  #17
Gear Guru
 
kafka's Avatar
I'm a mic junkie, but it's a lot easier to be one if you have at least a pair of really solid preamps. Are the Apollo pre's good? I though most prosumer pre's were supposed to be pretty good these days. I'd be surprised if there were anything lacking about the Apollo's. That said, the above suggestion for the API is a really solid one if you're recording guitars. Really punchy and clear. I don't use an SM57 often, but when I do, it's through an API 512C.
Old 7th August 2017
  #18
You know, I have no point of reference as to weather or not the UAD pres are good as they are all I've ever known since getting back into recording. I def. chase and work to get nice tones - but I'm probably being neurotic
Old 7th August 2017
  #19
Deleted User
Guest
I've heard many recordings with Germs and Royers and they are stellar.
Old 7th August 2017
  #20
Lives for gear
Chandler TG2 dual ch. micpre with summing option.
Great for alot of stuff, and the 2 into 1 summing would be great for guitars.
Old 8th August 2017
  #21
Lives for gear
 

The appllo pre is awesome.
I've got close to 30k of external preamps and I wouldn't bat an eyelid at using the 8p built in pre.

Go for the mics first. They make more of an impact. Get preamps down the line. Good externals are great to have but they are not the be all and end all.
Old 8th August 2017
  #22
Deleted User
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by DannyMac View Post
The appllo pre is awesome.
I've got close to 30k of external preamps and I wouldn't bat an eyelid at using the 8p built in pre.

Go for the mics first. They make more of an impact. Get preamps down the line. Good externals are great to have but they are not the be all and end all.
Wow!

I need to hear this preamp!!

Is it just the 8p? Or all UAD Apollo preamps?
Old 8th August 2017
  #23
So a few things - in my hurry to try the mic I forgot I had jumpers to the Matchless cabinet. So I demoed the mic on the cab above that was unplugged lol. After putting it on the correct speaker WOW! Used UA 610, API Vision plug in, quick run through sounded amazing. So would adding some preamps just push it into that right rich bliss ? I'd love to get a 4 channel if I go that route. Debated on Chandlers, Manley Force and was just reading about Sebatron tube pres - anyone know them?
Old 8th August 2017
  #24
Quote:
Debated on Chandlers, Manley Force and was just reading about Sebatron tube pres - anyone know them?
I own a Sebatron AXIS which I use on just about everything. It's beautiful pre. Can be driven slightly and has an awesome
air type quality about it. Functions as well as a Bass D.I or for keyboards .
Old 8th August 2017
  #25
Gear Guru
 
kafka's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheHolyMountain View Post
Used UA 610, API Vision plug in, quick run through sounded amazing. So would adding some preamps just push it into that right rich bliss ?
I doubt it. A preamp is that last little sprinkle of sugar on the top. Changing from the UA610 to something else is like changing from evaporated cane juice to turbinado.

Honestly, for home recording, a pair of really good preamps is all you need. It seems the Apollo's already fit that bill. If you also have a UA610, which is highly underrated on GS, you have one more flavor already. You'll simply get more mileage out of another mic.

The API Vision is a great channel strip. I use it all the time on just about everything.
Old 8th August 2017
  #26
To be clear I was using a 610 plug in. At any rate, I got a great deal on a Chandler Germanium so we shall see
Old 8th August 2017
  #27
Deleted User
Guest
Preamps can make a huge difference. Huge.
Old 8th August 2017
  #28
Lives for gear
 
Plush's Avatar
At times of making improvements, always start with your source. So that means getting better microphones first.

It is always the rule. Improve the source first.
Old 8th August 2017
  #29
Gear Nut
You can buy Senn 421 or 441 (or both) for more mic combinations on guitar cab... +1000 for API 512c
Old 8th August 2017
  #30
Deleted User
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by Plush View Post
At times of making improvements, always start with your source. So that means getting better microphones first.

It is always the rule. Improve the source first.
He has good mics.

The difference between a Neve, Buzz Audio, API, RME and Onyx preamp is big.

Last edited by Deleted User; 8th August 2017 at 05:42 PM..
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