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Difference between 3124 and 512C Sonically 500 Series Preamps
Old 22nd August 2007
  #1
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Difference between 3124 and 512C Sonically

I have never used either preamp. I'm trying to decide which one to try first.


Option one - Get the 3124


or


Option two - Get a lunchbox and four 512C's (and then have the flexibility of adding other 500 series modules)


What are the advantages and disadvantages of both? What are the differences (sonically) between the two? In the end, I will need to hear them both. But I'm just looking for a starting point right now. I just want to learn more about them in order to give me direction as to which one to try first. API's website doesn't tell me enough about the differences between the two.
Old 22nd August 2007
  #2
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API 3124 or (4)512 w/ lunchbox

i used the search function and typed in "differences 3124 512 lunchbox" not trying to be rude, just throwin the idea out there
Old 22nd August 2007
  #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gm5k View Post
thanks
Old 22nd August 2007
  #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bexarametric View Post
thanks
you're welcome thumbsup
Old 22nd August 2007
  #5
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I'm thinking the lunchbox route would be the way to go.
Old 22nd August 2007
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bexarametric View Post
I'm thinking the lunchbox route would be the way to go.
a lot of people would advise you to go this route. it is a very exciting format that is still growing exponentially. dont rule out getting a rack instead of a lunchbox. you'll get almost double the spaces. this format is very addictive so it's nice to have those extra 4 or 5 spaces.
Old 22nd August 2007
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Yeah, I should get the rack. Everything else I own is in a rack.
Old 22nd August 2007
  #8
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Well the one advantage to the 3124 is that you can get 4 channels for what it would cost you to get 3 modules in the lunchbox format.

If you are sure that you want at least four 512c modules, I would go with the 3124...

-Chris
Old 22nd August 2007
  #9
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i have 3124 and it is one of my favourite peices

Sonically from what I researched you won't be losing either way

One of the benefits of the 500 series that hasn't been mentioned yet is that on a 3124 if one of your channels goes down you have to send in the whole unit to get serviced

In a 500 series chassis, if one channel goes down you just have to send in the one channel to get serviced, something to consider if your pre selection is limited.....
Old 22nd August 2007
  #10
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Sonic Circus has a deal right now on API 500 series pre's. Buy 4 and get the lunchbox free.
Old 22nd August 2007
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lowfreq33 View Post
Sonic Circus has a deal right now on API 500 series pre's. Buy 4 and get the lunchbox free.

Nice
Old 22nd August 2007
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by True North View Post
i have 3124 and it is one of my favourite peices

Sonically from what I researched you won't be losing either way

One of the benefits of the 500 series that hasn't been mentioned yet is that on a 3124 if one of your channels goes down you have to send in the whole unit to get serviced

In a 500 series chassis, if one channel goes down you just have to send in the one channel to get serviced, something to consider if your pre selection is limited.....
Do channels go down often?


From what I have read here, you guys are saying that there's not a HUGE difference between the two sonically, it's more of a matter of what format is more to my liking, correct?
Old 22nd August 2007
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bexarametric View Post
Do channels go down often?


From what I have read here, you guys are saying that there's not a HUGE difference between the two sonically, it's more of a matter of what format is more to my liking, correct?
that's correct. The 3124 is still going to be the cheaper route. All depends on your dealer I guess though...
Old 22nd August 2007
  #14
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Fletcher's Avatar
FWIW... the 3124MB+ is such a remarkably versatile tool it's almost a pity not to save up the extra scratch to go that route.

In addition to it's 3 busses [left, right & aux] you have an insert point between the mic pre and the busses.

I usually use my 3124MB+ on things like toms and guitars. When I'm mic'ing toms from the top and the bottom I use the insert point to do things like put a Transient Designer on the output of each pre so I can sharpen the attack on the top mic a bit while increasing the sustain on the bottom mic a bit [you can't do that sort of thing unless you print each mic to a separate track unless you have some kind of mix buss available during tracking].

While I spend a good amount of time on microphone positioning when double mic'ing guitar cabinets... sometimes a little "IBP" goes a long way to really get the guitar sound to sit in context with the other sounds in the song [in terms of getting the guitars "large" but not taking up so much real estate in the sonic landscape that they're a bitch to get to sit in the mix].

That sort of thing isn't available in the lunchbox format unless you have an excellent sounding ancillary buss available [which kinda means a console] and I've never met a 4 channel / 3 buss summing mixer for $750- that even comes close to the API from the perspective of sonic performance.

As always, YMMV.

Peace.
Old 22nd August 2007
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fletcher View Post
FWIW... the 3124MB+ is such a remarkably versatile tool it's almost a pity not to save up the extra scratch to go that route.

In addition to it's 3 busses [left, right & aux] you have an insert point between the mic pre and the busses.

I usually use my 3124MB+ on things like toms and guitars. When I'm mic'ing toms from the top and the bottom I use the insert point to do things like put a Transient Designer on the output of each pre so I can sharpen the attack on the top mic a bit while increasing the sustain on the bottom mic a bit [you can't do that sort of thing unless you print each mic to a separate track unless you have some kind of mix buss available during tracking].

While I spend a good amount of time on microphone positioning when double mic'ing guitar cabinets... sometimes a little "IBP" goes a long way to really get the guitar sound to sit in context with the other sounds in the song [in terms of getting the guitars "large" but not taking up so much real estate in the sonic landscape that they're a bitch to get to sit in the mix].

That sort of thing isn't available in the lunchbox format unless you have an excellent sounding ancillary buss available [which kinda means a console] and I've never met a 4 channel / 3 buss summing mixer for $750- that even comes close to the API from the perspective of sonic performance.

As always, YMMV.

Peace.
I never thought about the + Fletcher. Thanks for that recommendation. That's not a bad route either.
Old 22nd August 2007
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bexarametric View Post
I'm thinking the lunchbox route would be the way to go.
Yes!!

You cant go wrong with 4 API's, but you will have more options with the lunchbox. 2 API's to start then maybe 2 A-Designs P1's!

Old 22nd August 2007
  #17
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I can get a lunchbox with two 512c for the same price I can get the A2D. Right now I have the FF400 and I would love to have 10 channels. That's what I would need.

I was almost 100% sure that I would get the A2D but now I've been second guessing myself.

If I go for two 512c, I would still need a unit like ADI-2 and 4 more preamps to record 10 channels. But... I would then have the lunchbox and 4 empty spaces which would rock.

But if I get the A2D it would give me 10 channels right away and I'd only need to buy 4 more preamps because A2D, what I have read should have a killer AD.

What to do, what to do...

if I get the lunchbox it's 1450€ and then RME ADI-2 it's 450€. 10 channels and a lunchbox with 4 empty spaces.
if I get the A2D it's 1450€... and I could spend the "extra" 400€ to buy an empty lunchbox with 6 empty spaces.


something says to me that A2D is a better deal right NOW, but is it in long run...

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