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api vs. neve; who rocks harder? Dual-Channel Preamps
View Poll Results: who rocks harder, API or Neve?
API
58 Votes - 23.67%
Neve
51 Votes - 20.82%
who ****ing cares as long as it rocks
136 Votes - 55.51%
Voters: 245. You may not vote on this poll

Old 27th August 2002
  #1
There is only one
 
alphajerk's Avatar
 

api vs. neve; who rocks harder?

im talking about pres. and im only talking about rock music [numetal **** doesnt count]... good raunchy rock and roll. i have heard API was the "sound of rock and roll"... but i have heard similar about Neve.
Old 27th August 2002
  #2
I have 4 x API pres and 2 x Neve

On tracking the Neves go on kick & Sn or Bass & snare

I have a favored pre for OH / ribbons so.....,

Priority then for the API, is on live 'keeper' guitars, I find the guitar speaker cabinet 'overtone magic' is where the API's TOTALY excel.

But that said I tend to default to Neve for overdubbing. Thanks Alpha for reminding me to A/B to the API's in future...

Old 27th August 2002
  #3
Lives for gear
 
Wiggy Neve Slut's Avatar
 

WORD....

LUV em both....

Two totally different tones IMHO but they both are cornerstones of rock!

You really cant go wrong with either one its more just a matter of taste and application.

Personally Its API for KIK and SNR neves for everything else for drums.. i think the API's tend to roll off HF more slowly. However API in far more punchy and Fat yet dont have the great 'upfront' transformer driven tone that neve has IMHO... but **** it they still sound great!
Neves have 'faster' HF response for me. so its all am atter of applciation and the types of tomes you are chasing.
API also has superior bottom end response. I was floored when i first used them on a session and they gave you the impression that humble NS10's dont shelve @ around 100hz!

If you were to have either one you would be sorted for many different dates, but IMHO i beleive the tone of Neve to be far flexible in most situations. API is felxible fro ROCK but like it would not be my frist call for vocals on accoustic oriented gigs generally... situation dependent of course!

IF you were to have both then **** you!..... you're a champion !!!!cos for most situations you will rarely have to rent in gear!

Its a shame that API's dont have the legend status that Neve do.... many great albums were cut on them and continue to be cut on them. If i won lotto and i could not get hold of the custom SHEP/Neve console thats currently for sale in japan, a Legacy would be first call! A friends band mixed thier album on the one @ Greene St NY... Punchy as all get out for rock dates and smokes SSL any day! The stuff coming out of those mixbusses is something else!

I am eager to checkout the stereo compressor.... can we pls get someone to give us a lowdown ASAP......

PEACE
Wiggy heh
Old 28th August 2002
  #4
jon
Capitol Studios Paris
 
jon's Avatar
 

IMO with a good drummer and kit in a good room with decent mics, change the heads and tune the kit up, and whatever the mic pres are, it will still rock.

P.S. John Hanlon (Engineer/mixer of Neil Young, Jackson Browne, REM, T-Bone Burnett, Beach Boys, Aretha Franklin) came by to check out the studio this evening and give a hand with the drum tracking sessions going on (the Evans heads are sounding great btw). He suggested trying a second U47 on the floor about 12 feet in front of the kick.

It was interesting to hear him describe how Neil Young won't allow gobos in the studio with the live band...that they are both fans of bleed: "Man, bleed is my best friend"...
Old 28th August 2002
  #5
There is only one
 
alphajerk's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by jon
IMO with a good drummer and kit in a good room with decent mics, change the heads and tune the kit up, and whatever the mic pres are, it will still rock.
well THAT is a given. AFTER that.
Old 28th August 2002
  #6
jon
Capitol Studios Paris
 
jon's Avatar
 

IMO, after that, it doesn't really matter for rock drums. The pres don't rock; the other stuff does. Neve, API, any good pres will do for drums.
Old 28th August 2002
  #7
There is only one
 
alphajerk's Avatar
 

im not just talking about drums... but pre's DO make a big difference in drums... IMO. at least the 4 main parts [for me] which is kick, snare, overheads, and rooms.... toms are a little bit more general in use.

the API and Neve sonic flavors are different to my ears... im just curious which way people lean when doing rock [or another direction all together] like classic rock... the real deal. not this modernized bastardization of it.
Old 28th August 2002
  #8
Gear Maniac
 

Alpha i thought your Flamingo was your go to Pre?

Anyway i am buying an API today (if all goes well)

I've been trying to get the 3124 but the one I just saw on ebay someone snapped up with the buy it now

Anyway hopefully this other one will work out; dual Api 312 racked by Brent Averill..

he says the old one's which these are, are better then the new APi's, true?

next up will be my Neve purchase...probably the the vintech 1272...

yuktyy
Old 28th August 2002
  #9
What a funny poll result!
heh
Old 28th August 2002
  #10
Lives for gear
 
Knox's Avatar
 

I have Neves and APIs. To me the APIs are faster . . . which I like for kick and snare. Seem to have more of 'a point' as well. Really it depends on the song and the overall sound I am looking for. Agressive rock . . . I like APIs with combination of Neve, Calrec etc. Neve seems too soft at times. I never think of API as soft. If I had my choice, there is no doubt that I would buy a Legacy desk over a Neve (and hope to soon) . . . though I love old Neve desks.
Old 28th August 2002
  #11
I found my Helios to handle Kick better than the API, now it goes via Neve a lot of the time..
Old 28th August 2002
  #12
Motown legend
 
Bob Olhsson's Avatar
 

I'm with you all the way on that Helios. I carried a module around with me in the '70s and left my API stuff at home.
Old 29th August 2002
  #13
Lives for gear
 
Fibes's Avatar
 

Whatever alphadude... heh heh.
They both rock but I bought 6 channels of API for one reason, 'cause I like the sound. They are fast and pointy and don't cower like a puppy being kicked for the second time. I've got 2 channels of Phoenix Audio GTQ2 for the Neve thing and I'll rent a neve (sometimes) but that's usually more about the eq. BTW the 1272 is not a mic preamp and I'll go to my grave stating it's more of an effect than a mic pre. Sometimes it works but I prefer the sound of a 1066 or a 1081. 1073s are way overrated.

There is a little bit of difference between the old and new APIs but the newer ones sound better than some of the middlin period API pres floating around out there.

How's that for a load of opinion? (Bull****)
Old 29th August 2002
  #14
Gear Maniac
 

ack what are you saying about the API new/old?

I just bought a pair of 312 racked by brent averill..is there something I should have known to know that they are the Good API's? The old ones are better than the new ones correct?
Old 30th August 2002
  #15
jon
Capitol Studios Paris
 
jon's Avatar
 

I bet your Averill API pres sound great.

Brent Averill and Avedis are really good guys. They let me hand-pick my Neves one afternoon and I literally tried every single Neve unit they had in the shop. Great after-sales service as well.
Old 30th August 2002
  #16
Lives for gear
 
hollywood_steve's Avatar
 

api vs. neve

they both rock. but at around $650 for the 512 preamp and $1000 for the 550 EQ (discount "street" prices for new modules) the API gear qualifies as cheap. Far and away the best deal in serious pro gear.

steve
[email protected]
Old 30th August 2002
  #17
Gear Maniac
 
recorderman's Avatar
 

Re: api vs. neve

Quote:
Originally posted by hollywood_steve
they both rock. but at around $650 for the 512 preamp and $1000 for the 550 EQ (discount "street" prices for new modules) the API gear qualifies as cheap. Far and away the best deal in serious pro gear.

steve
[email protected]
can't argue with that. There BOTH great. You can't go wrong either way. Which ever you you you'll get great tones, and will compensate placement/eq/ect to get what you need. API's have more headroom(30) Neves top ou at around 26. Neves give you that fat/pushed bottom end..API is tighter. Either way...you cant blame the gear.
Old 30th August 2002
  #18
Lives for gear
 
Fibes's Avatar
 

Brent goes through all of his pres before they go out the door so you did the right thing. There was a time when API went through a slump in quality which was deepest in the eq world. I like all things API but chose the new route out of reliability for my pres. I have two ancient 550a eqs that rock however! One day I'll bump my eqs to another rack and buy two OSA clones and a pair of 312s just to mix it up a bit. In fact...
Old 31st August 2002
  #19
One with big hooves
 
Jay Kahrs's Avatar
Either one is great. I have a Vintech 1272 and a pair of OSA preamps that I'm in the process of reviewing. While they don't sound exactly like a 512 they're similar and very cool, that's all for now. I'd like to see someone make a semi-affordable Helios reissue. Some of the best drum sounds I've gotten used the brown Helios modules.
Old 5th September 2002
  #20
Here for the gear
 

1272 effectors

Heya,

Funny to find this thread at a time when I am having a little trouble making a decision which way to go...

I'm looking for a decent front end to my largely-ProTools-based studio and was at first interested in the 1272 for the obvious reasons. After talking to one of the guys from Pro Audio Design (where I recently picked up an Ampex MX-10), he suggested the API 3124. Similar sound, more expensive, but more versatile.

So my first question would be: Why would someone (Fibes...), consider the 1272 an effect, rather than a mic pre?

My second question would be: How can Vintech make a 1272 for $1350? Is this a very, very good deal, or are you sacrificing something by paying this price? What about Dan Alezander's 1272/1073 Neve emulation?

Some of what I do is rock, but generally the music I'm recording is closer to (loud) jazz --- Suggestions?

cheers,

cal
Old 5th September 2002
  #21
There is only one
 
alphajerk's Avatar
 

my question is how can sytek make a 4 channel pre that goes for $829 [buy now on ebay] and still get great user reviews? i have used one and really dug it and was suprised they could be had for so cheap. very clean and very quick. per channel it is going for less than the RNMP is going to go for. certainly not the most "colorful" pre but definately has its uses.
Old 5th September 2002
  #22
Lives for gear
Ok Alpha, sounds like you've got a nice selection of pres, how do you compare your flamingo to api or neve on drums? I'm asking cause I have the vintech 1272,and the osa lunchbox with 1 osa312 and an api525 comp among others and I'm trying to sell stuff to get either more api's or cranesong pres. I'm going on a roadtrip(600miles) to hear one but I'd still like your impressionsrollz
Thanks
Daniel
Old 5th September 2002
  #23
There is only one
 
alphajerk's Avatar
 

well IMO, crane song kicks BOTH their asses. just the incredible variation of tones one can pull between the FAT/normal and IRON switches is just ridiculous. plus the preamp sounds fabulous regardless. crane song is without a doubt my desert island pre.

but crane song happens to be what *I* am after a lot of the time. i dont know if that is applicable to anyone else.
Old 5th September 2002
  #24
Lives for gear
 
Fibes's Avatar
 

Re: 1272 effectors

Quote:
Originally posted by sheep dispatch
Heya,
So my first question would be: Why would someone (Fibes...), consider the 1272 an effect, rather than a mic pre?

cal

I'll try to leave the tech to the techsperts but... A 1272 was not designed to pre a mic pre but has been utilized by many after a bit of a gain modification by adding an additional amplifier at the other end.
I've found 1272s to be a bit lacking in headroom, a little honky, and not real smooth up top. They are very colored and all these reasons are why people like them. They add a bit of "rock" to some sources. I've used them for vocals with an La2a and a Neumann U87 and although this could prove to be a midrange nightmare it worked incredibly for the source. Then again, just about anything would've worked on that particular source.

In conclusion a 1272 is used as a pre but wasn't originally designed as such so it is unfair IMO to compare it to other apples. ....but yes, it's still fun to do and the 1272 can be useful.
Old 14th March 2008
  #25
Lives for gear
 
GYang's Avatar
Five years old thread.
Did anything change since then ?
Old 14th March 2008
  #26
Lives for gear
 
Keyflo's Avatar
 

i have a lil experience with API and non with Neve but im pretty sure they're both good

voted API
Old 14th March 2008
  #27
Gear Addict
 
Zuewi's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by GYang View Post
Five years old thread.
Did anything change since then ?
Doesn't look like ,did it?
Old 14th March 2008
  #28
Lives for gear
 
soundawg's Avatar
 

Just happened to do a pre and mic shootout all last Saturday... no Neve stuff here, but my AD2022 beat the 3124+ across the board. (for me)

I interpreted the differences to be that the 2022 was truer and had much more going on way down low... like the API was almost hi cut sounding in comparison.

I also spent a lot of time cranking the pres and checking that 'thing' out... I know this is against some peoples grain around here - but I found the drum to seem smaller and smaller the more I did this. The less I taxed the pres the more they seemed to sing. How this piles up in a mix though????

No matter - Really neat to take this time and learn how different pres affect different mics on different sources, I am better for the experience!

Now I know what to grab when I want tight or extended, and how to tweak if I want compressed or HUGE.

Soundawg
Old 14th March 2008
  #29
Gear Addict
 
T. Morgan's Avatar
 

Lately I've been tracking with API and mixing on the Neve 8068 at Quad in Nashville. It's been my favorite combo...great console! I usually have an API 2500 lightly on the 2 mix.
API pre's are such a great deal.......can't imagine spending the $$$ on Neve's when you can rent them or use a Neve studio when needed.
Old 14th March 2008
  #30
Lives for gear
 
allencollins's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by GYang View Post
Five years old thread.
Did anything change since then ?
Converters are better? So maybe these pres sound better?
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