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Telefunken V376
Old 20th February 2006
  #1
Gear Maniac
 

Telefunken V376

Hallo. Is there anyone that own these pres? Can you tell me something more about their sound? Please also compare them to API 512s or Neve 1081s. Thank you,
Old 2nd August 2006
  #2
Lives for gear
 
jmikeperkins's Avatar
V376 is great mic pre

I own and use a rack of 8 V376 mic pres on an almost daily basis in my studio. I consider the V376 a world class "desert island" type mic pre which works well on just about anything you throw at it and is subjectively, as good as any Neve or API unit ever made. It was designed and built by the German company TAB to replace their classic tube V76 mic pre and it sounds similiar but costs about 1/3 as much on the used market and is a great value. At this level, the differences and preferences come down to taste. I would describe the sound as natural, warm, very open on both the top and bottom, and (when in proper repair) the V376 is amazingly noise-free. With 76 db's of pure clean gain, its just THE BEST MIC PRE EVER for ribbon mics and other low output mics like EV RE20's. The V376 was a standard among northern European radio and TV broadcast networks from the mid 1960's well into the mid 1990's. Although built like a tank, some of the units you find were in daily use 30 years and may require service. Oliver Archut of Tab-Funkenwerk has worked on mine. Some of the V376 units will be branded TAB and some will say Telefunken but all were made by TAB.

To my ears, the API mic pres that I have used sound a little "harder" and somewhat less open on top and bottom compared to the V376 but the API is a little "clearer" sounding in the mid range. However, if you grew up listening to the Beatles and the classic stuff recorded in Abbey Road in the 1960's, you will prefer the tone of V376 to the API 512 (or the Neve 1081) as the V376 sounds a lot like the tube V76 units used at Abbey Road in the EMI Redd boards. The great Rupert Neve has designed a lot of excellent mic pres over the years which all sound slightly different from each other. The classic and most used units, like the 1073 and 1081, are famous for their signature mid range character which is "harder" and slightly "grittier" sounding than the V376. I think the V376 is more "tube sounding" and more open on top than a 1081. In Neve land, the closest thing to the sound of the V376 is Neve's later Focusrite ISA series mic pres designed for George Martin's AIR studios in the 70's. I borrowed a pair of those not too long ago and they reminded me a lot of the V376.

Its very much worth noting that 1081's are about SIX times as expensive as V376 units in the used market and the API 512's are at least twice as expensive but all of them are in the same class, just different. This makes the V376 a real bargain and its safe to say its one of the most under-valued pieces of vintage gear out there anywhere. Its also worth noting that Siemens made a similiar unit called the V276. A friend of mine has a pair of those which I have used and they are also excellent and sound very close to the V376.

With its controls on the front, the V376 is made to be rack mounted and requires a good stable 24 volt power supply (the MUCH larger tube V76 had a built in power supply). There are pre-made racks you can buy from places like vintagecity.de for the V376 or anyone who racks vintage modules can rack them. I have an original TAB rack and power supply but its wider than the standard 19" and can be a challenge to mount. The companion compressor-limiter, the U373a, is also EXCELLENT.
Old 5th September 2008
  #3
Gear Head
 

I can only agree! I have 4 v376 pre's, that I finally racked up, and they are absolutely amazing! Great punch but also very warm sounding. I use mine for drums regularly and they also shine on vocals, acoustic and electric guitars. I racked mine with DI and the sound of my P-bass through these is really full and fat.
I definitely a very happy owner and user!
Old 4 weeks ago
  #4
Here for the gear
Amazing pre amp

Even with my Metric Halo pre’s and their really excellent character settings I just couldn’t get that ear to ear grin, wasn’t able to really commit to the sounds and so I tracked down a couple of re-capped Tab Funkenwerk 376 pre’s and suddenly it all sounds right, everything seems bigger and more 3D and real, there’s something to be said about the transformers, has to be the ones with H & H on them. Just passing through them gives the signal something very tangible and difficult to explain, but big smiles now, suddenly I was free from the sterile limitations digital gear alone just doesn’t quite pull off. I love my 376 pre’s, they provided everything I was hoping for, just with I had more of them.
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