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9098 console mic preamps Dynamics Processors (HW)
Old 13th May 2006
  #1
Gear Nut
 
Haskell Brooks's Avatar
 

9098 console mic preamps

Hi, does anyone have any experience with 9098 console preamps? I have a trade in the works for my Blueberry and I'm looking for feedback. Would you swap a Blueberry for two 9098 mic amps?
Old 13th May 2006
  #2
Lives for gear
 
seaneldon's Avatar
 

financially speaking you'd be getting the better end of the deal. especially if they're the 19" rackmounted strips and not just something someone ripped out of a console.
Old 13th May 2006
  #3
Harmless Wacko
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Haskell Brooks
Hi, does anyone have any experience with 9098 console preamps? I have a trade in the works for my Blueberry and I'm looking for feedback. Would you swap a Blueberry for two 9098 mic amps?
I'm assuming you are referring to the rack-mount 9098 systems pre/eq's?

The actual 9098i desk pre's... working from the confines of the desk... are another story, I assure you.

Those suckers(The desk version) can stand and deliver head to head against ANYTHING ever made in a lot of applications. I've "blind-tested" them time and again against the 'usual suspects' in the presence of some pretty skeptical and discerning ears, and I've rarely heard another argument about it after the experience. Like everything out there... they may not be the perfect pre for a particular circumstance... but they are NEVER 'totally wrong' for ANYTHING, in the fabric of my experience. Which is a pretty remarkable achievement...as far as I'm concerned.

Personally, I think the Blueberry is a much better paperweight than a microphone and the 9098 rack pre/eq's are damn good kit. Kit which will eventually find it's rightful place in the pantheon of 'classic' gear.

Others think I'm insane.

No matter. They will perish in a lake of eternal fire. HOHOHO.

Anyhoo. Whatever. Even at current used market price for the 9098 rack version(which is dreadfully low at this juncture), the exchange is slanted in your favor.

Good luck with it,

SM.
Old 13th May 2006
  #4
Lives for gear
 
Soldier777c's Avatar
 

9098's sound nice. I've got two of the Mic Pre/Eq strips and have no complaints about them. You'll dig those pres.
Old 14th May 2006
  #5
Gear Nut
 
radicalron's Avatar
 

Amek 9098 Mic Pre

The Amek 9098 is a Fine Mic Pre. If your getting the EQ model you are really Stoked! The Neve Designed EQ is among the best Rackmount EQ with a Mic Pre in a 1 unit box ever produced. Those Neve Designed Filters are Perfect for Tracking.
I've got 4 channels of them.
Old 14th May 2006
  #6
Gear Head
 
fadista's Avatar
 

hi, I have an amek cib and love it, my only complaint is the noisy fan, do these sound the same, and more importantly, do they have fans?

cheers
Old 14th May 2006
  #7
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by fadista
hi, I have an amek cib and love it, my only complaint is the noisy fan, do these sound the same, and more importantly, do they have fans?

cheers

I have two Amek CIB's and they sound fooking awesome.

Paul

ps No fans in mine!
Old 14th May 2006
  #8
Lives for gear
 
Knastratt's Avatar
 

I have my CIB in a locker. Noisy like hell. Never tracked anything that wasn't close to stellar sounding. Comp sucks a little. EQ is, wow...

Brauner Valvet in front is almost scary.

I think Fletcher once said: "A 9098 in the control room is as much fun as you can get with your clothes on"!
Old 14th May 2006
  #9
Lives for gear
 

I did hear the older models had noisy fans. Mine have none at all. Honestly they're tottally silent and sound superb. The comp is just OK but only cause it has very little if any character. The EQ is superb and though the pre is a tad neutral it's performance is stunning!

Paul
Old 14th May 2006
  #10
Lives for gear
 

Hi
You can't rip a 9098 module from a desk and use it as so much of it is automated the extra stuff you would have to fit would make it unworkable. You would also have to saw it in half to get it into a 19 inch panel.
The 1U units do not have fans (blowing the air variety!).
Matt S
Old 14th May 2006
  #11
Here for the gear
 
Mr Rich's Avatar
 

I've got a couple of the Dual 9098 pres. Not at all bad, considering the modest price tag. I use them mainly for location recording and you can drive a lot of cable with those fellas.

I like them because they work on just about anything.
Old 14th May 2006
  #12
Gear Maniac
 

Sounds like a good trade to me- especially if they have EQ. The 'sheen' button is particularly addictive on vocals.
Old 15th May 2006
  #13
One with big hooves
 
Jay Kahrs's Avatar
Yo Slippy!

Have you had a chance to compare the 9098 desk pres against the rack pre/EQ and the straight up rackmount dual micamp?

I dig the dual pre & the EQ on the single channel rack box is mad cool...but the pre on the latter always sounds kinda' flat & boring to me. Very neutral in a bland way...nothing that makes me wanna' drink Drain-O if they're around but IMO the micamp on the the pre/EQ is lacking something that the other variation has in spades.

I'd assume that the dual pre is WAY closer to what's in the desk...

Thoughts?

Yeah...yeah...lake of fire...



FWIW...I'd do that deal, swapping a Blueberry for a pair of 9098's of ANY type!
Old 15th May 2006
  #14
Lives for gear
 
Wiggy Neve Slut's Avatar
 

OK then... im gona ask the hard question.. but appraently there is A BIG difference between the 9098 dual mic pre/ eq and the RCMA the remote controlled microphone ampliefiers.. the digital controlled looking things!

Any opinions.. cos u NEVER see them for sale ANYWHERE and have only seen them once for sale second hand.

Wiggy
Old 15th May 2006
  #15
no ssl yet
Guest
How close is the CIB to the desk channel?
Old 15th May 2006
  #16
Lives for gear
 

Hi
As far as I remember, without getting the manuals out, the RCMA and a dual channel mic amp / EQ should be pretty similar (with EQ out of course) as the circuit is practically identical but the physical layout of the components is different.
With this in mind I would love to know WHAT the difference in sound is between the two units, but I doubt many users would have one of each side by side to do anything like decent A/B comparisons.
I don't think many RCMA units were made as although the idea of remote control is good, I don't think it has really caught on in studios although it is probably very handy for live performance from a stage.
If anyone can define the sound difference please tell us!
Matt S
Old 15th May 2006
  #17
I've redone a few of those, the mic pre benefited from replacing the 5534 opamps to LT, TI or National devices. The transistors also benefited from Hitachi transistors being used. Add some decent coupling caps and it was pretty neutral.
Otherwise, it sounded similar to most 5534 transistor fronted mic pre designs found in numerous British consoles.

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
Old 16th May 2006
  #18
Lives for gear
 
Yuri Kogan's Avatar
 

As I understand the desk has the same sound as the CIB. The dual rack 9098 pre sounds diffrerent (scratchier, cheaper manufacture...) but can be easily modified to be very similar to the CIB. We have done it to ours and its very close in sound to our CIB (the mode involves 7 surfacemount chip swaps and some caps)

Yuri
Old 16th May 2006
  #19
Gear Maniac
 
John Noll's Avatar
 

RCA and Beyer ribbon mics sound superb through the 9098 dual pre. The 9098 is a pretty solid performer.

I'm not sure what "scratchier" sounds like.
Nonetheless I'd be interested in hearing about your mods.

thanks.
Old 16th May 2006
  #20
Lives for gear
 
Yuri Kogan's Avatar
 

The mods were done by Giles Audio (whose website is forever down) their number in Australia is 0613 98859134. They were the warranty repairers for amek stuff in Oz and know the units intimately. Ross is a noce guy to talk to.

The mods made the 9098 pre less grungy and very similar to the CIB in sound. Upparently the work is fiddly as the units are surfacemount and very densely packed boards (unlike CIB). But the end resul is well worth it.

Yury
Old 16th May 2006
  #21
Lives for gear
This is a very interesting thread for me. I own a Amek BC3 and it too has the Neve TLA design in it. I have tested it against my brothers Amek 9098 DMA and it gets in the same ballpark but the 9098 is just that little bit smoother. Honestly, I kinda preferred the 9098 over my Portico as well. I only ran the tests on acoustic and vocals though....but I do wonder if there's anything I can do to my BC3 board to get it that little bit closer to the 9098. I guess it wouldn't hurt to recap it first and maybe replace some opamps. The thing runs a little hot and was built in 1993. It's definitely a killer sound though. I should probably leave the damn thing alone cuz it sounds just fine.
Old 16th May 2006
  #22
Lives for gear
 

Hi
When a BC3 has the optional transformers fitted they would have been Lundahl.
The 9098 series never had lundahls standard or option. The 9098 units had a custom toroidal output transformer the same as the desk strips, but I can't remember who made them.
Is Jim Williams going to be sent to Siberia for suggesting that when he has messed about witha Rupert Neve designed unit it sounds better or strictly speaking it may have been cleaner?
Matt S
Old 16th May 2006
  #23
Lives for gear
 

the 9098 compressor is fantastic, on that alone i want to try the pre.
Old 16th May 2006
  #24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Syson
Hi
Is Jim Williams going to be sent to Siberia for suggesting that when he has messed about witha Rupert Neve designed unit it sounds better or strictly speaking it may have been cleaner?
Matt S
Better send that ticket. No designer can claim perfection with any design, all can be improved, specs and sonics. The final decision was not made by myself but rather the customer that wanted something more from the perfect designs of Mr. Rupert Neve. This also applies to the 80 series modules which I've rebuilt many with different transistors and capacitors.

That 9098 mic pre was ok, but the EQ was not, IMO. The torroid output transformer also smeared the sound, the preamp sounded much better when patched out seperately.

The day we claim perfection in design, we might as well all go home. I'll still be here in the shop working, whether here in Carlsbad or Siberia.

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
Old 16th May 2006
  #25
Lives for gear
 

Hi Jim
I presume you realise that I was just kidding by my suggestion. It is mainly a dig at the 'it has to have Neve written on it' brigade. Assuming you have listened to more than one layout of what are basically the same mic front ends, do you hear a difference due to the layout rather than the actual components? This would be with freshly recapped units with same chipset. If so, is there any test you can make which will show up the difference?
Many units had 5532 as the front end, later MC33078 were used, which chips would you suggest as an 'upgrade'?
I believe Siberia has good weather for skiing, how is Carlsbad?
Matt S
Old 16th May 2006
  #26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yuri Kogan
As I understand the desk has the same sound as the CIB. The dual rack 9098 pre sounds diffrerent (scratchier, cheaper manufacture...) but can be easily modified to be very similar to the CIB. We have done it to ours and its very close in sound to our CIB (the mode involves 7 surfacemount chip swaps and some caps)

Yuri
At AES I asked people from Amek what was different between the 9098 pre eq and the CIB, I was told the difference was it had a compressor in it, period.
Old 16th May 2006
  #27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Williams
Better send that ticket. No designer can claim perfection with any design, all can be improved, specs and sonics. The final decision was not made by myself but rather the customer that wanted something more from the perfect designs of Mr. Rupert Neve. This also applies to the 80 series modules which I've rebuilt many with different transistors and capacitors.

That 9098 mic pre was ok, but the EQ was not, IMO. The torroid output transformer also smeared the sound, the preamp sounded much better when patched out seperately.

The day we claim perfection in design, we might as well all go home. I'll still be here in the shop working, whether here in Carlsbad or Siberia.

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
respectfully I disagree about the 9098 eq. I think it sounds really good and is incredibly flexible.
Old 17th May 2006
  #28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Syson
Hi Jim
I presume you realise that I was just kidding by my suggestion. It is mainly a dig at the 'it has to have Neve written on it' brigade. Assuming you have listened to more than one layout of what are basically the same mic front ends, do you hear a difference due to the layout rather than the actual components? This would be with freshly recapped units with same chipset. If so, is there any test you can make which will show up the difference?
Many units had 5532 as the front end, later MC33078 were used, which chips would you suggest as an 'upgrade'?
I believe Siberia has good weather for skiing, how is Carlsbad?
Matt S
It's sometimes hard to tell what exactly causes a sonic difference between to identical designs with different layouts. Any static test should show up but dynamic differences are sometimes hard to measure. The 9098 pieces I've done had 5534/32 front ends and a lot of 33078's for the EQ. It's been awhile but I think I ended up with either LT1358's or LM6172's. Coupling caps were changed with film cap bypasses. I also added polypropylene film caps in the EQ, it helped.
I liked the mic pre after the changes, but something still sounded funny about that EQ, even in bypass so it may have been that torroid output transformer. I would have just popped in a Jensen, but it had some extra taps on it.

Snow Summit in Big Bear just closed for skiing just north of here, they had a long season. Kinda cool that you can ski in the morning and surf in the afternoon.

Jim Williams
By the pool in Carlsbad...
Old 17th May 2006
  #29
Lives for gear
 
Yuri Kogan's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Musiclab
At AES I asked people from Amek what was different between the 9098 pre eq and the CIB, I was told the difference was it had a compressor in it, period.
It is one thing what the salesmen tell you. It is a different story when you look inside the unit (s). There are similarities, however the 9098 looks like a "cost-effective" version of the CIB, minus the comp

Yuri
Old 17th May 2006
  #30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yuri Kogan
It is one thing what the salesmen tell you. It is a different story when you look inside the unit (s). There are similarities, however the 9098 looks like a "cost-effective" version of the CIB, minus the comp

Yuri
I usually am skeptical of salesmen, but in this case the only thing they could have sold me was a CIB since I have a few of the original mic /eq's. One of these days I'll get one down here so I can A/b for my self. I wanted to ask Rupert but he was with too many people.
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