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Hi End Channel Strip...vs UAD Apollo wUnisyn 500 Series Preamps
Old 15th September 2018
Lives for gear
oceantracks's Avatar

Hi End Channel Strip...vs UAD Apollo wUnisyn

So I use a lowly Apollo Twin Silverface. I use either the Neve or SSL Unisyn Pre Plug ins to record, acoustic, bass, some electric (mainly DI) and the occasional vocal.

Back when I had a Duet I finally got an API 512 lunchbox and yes it made a large difference. But that's long gone.

I'm trying to decide whether to bite the bullet and go for the TG Mic Cassette, I'm familiar with it's tone and heritage and I'm sure it would sound great. Right now VK is offering 36 months on this so the payments would be under a hundred maybe as low as 75 or so if I add some cash.

I'm just trying to figure out whether this purchase is worth it, as I need many other things (better acoustic mic, better monitors, better work desk, etc, goes on forever).

On the other hand, having a great channelstrip I doubt could ever be a BAD move, so I'm kind of reaching out asking for input on whether I'd be over purchasing or not.

I do this for a living so every increment of better sound in theory, should be a no brainer...

Thx much
Old 16th September 2018
Gear Head

As an owner of 2 Microphone Cassettes I cant say anything but good things about them.

As an investment, I think they are great, the hold their value and is always very impressive for costumers to see high end hardware (Chandler, Manley, TubeTech, Neve, API).

Soundwise, they are what I call a ‘smile maker’. Anything I plug into them sounds great.

The preamp has a sound. Lots of character and warmth, still very accurate.

The EQ section has only 3 bands, which 2 of them are fixed frecuency. So it is not the most versatile Eq you’ll see but is very musical and make everything sound better, even when pushed hard.

The opto comp has a learning curve and you’ll have to forget everything you know about compressors to use it. Anyhow, as the whole unit, it’s great.

Start with one, and soon you’ll be wanting the second unit to use them in the 2buss, buses and stereo tracks.

Anyway, I bought them the same week I upgraded my duet to a Lynx Hilo. Also I have a heavily treated room with good monitoring, so if you are willing to make the best out of the Microphone Cassettes be sure to have the rest of your chain as good or better than them.
Old 16th September 2018
Lives for gear
I do this for myself nowadays and if nothing else it gives you more time to experiment.. I've come to realization over the years if mixing becomes difficult you've got an issue somewhere, it needs to be creative rather than problem solving (even if there's some technical know-how needed)..

I have fought with plugs, whilst I don't have the TG I do have a pair of Shelford channels and tracking through those converted days of "fixing" or confusion into minutes where I just track / do some basic EQ to fit the mix / maybe some verb and done.. We're talking 30 mins tops to get a good sounding scratch track.

Of course monitors / treatment for me at least is the most important step, still you'd have to summon forth armageddon before I gave up my channel strip..
Old 16th September 2018
Lives for gear
tkaitkai's Avatar

Go for the Chandler.

I have a Twin MKI, and while the Unison stuff is decent, it always left me feeling like something wasn't quite right, even with really high end mics. Getting a Burl B1 totally changed my perspective on the importance of a good preamp — vocals were tighter, more focused, more detailed, less grainy, and felt more phase coherent, even if only by a small margin. Earlier this year, I snagged a used Wunder PEQ2R (one of my dream pieces), and I now have the same mic and channel strip that my favorite producer used for some of my best vocal recordings. My vocals sound exactly the way I want them to, meaning I can simply put up a mic and record, with zero worries about gear. The confidence this has given me is pretty unreal.

I can certainly get by with the Apollo's built-in preamps & UAD plugins, but when given a choice, I'd pick high end outboard every time. Luckily for you, the Chandler has a lot of great stuff packed into one box — a TG2 preamp, a TG1 opto limiter, and a Curve Bender EQ. Paired with a great mic, you simply cannot go wrong with that.
Old 18th September 2018
Lives for gear
oceantracks's Avatar

Thanks everyone, I'm sure it will be a joy to have around if I go through with it, and it appears I'm going to do so....will report back when its up and running.

Yes I kind of hate having nothing but software, I grew up in analog studios with wonderful little boxes everywhere
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