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Ua M-610 ? Condenser Microphones
Old 18th May 2006
  #1
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Max headroom's Avatar
 

Ua M-610 ?

I read a lot here about various preamps like Avalon , Millenias , Neves ....

What about Universal Audio m610 ? Is it Hi end ? How would you describe it's sound ? What is the most similar sounding pre next to it ?

I read that it has been dicontinued and price is reduced to 750 e in Germany ....

It is strange that not a lot of people use it here , or they just don't talk enough about them ....

Your opinion ???


Cheers

Max
Old 18th May 2006
  #2
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audioscience's Avatar
 

Just to give you an example of the 610 series being used: "Designed by Bill Putnam, the Universal Audio 610 was among the first modular recording consoles. Early Universal Audio consoles were used in all of Putnam's studios including Universal Recording in Chicago and United Western in Los Angeles...and has left its mark on countless classic recordings from Sinatra to Pet Sounds to Van Halen to LA Woman." (http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/2610/)

I just recently had a chance to see Bruce Sweiden (count baise, michael jackson, frankie vallie, etc.) talk to my class. He made mention of those pres and PRAISED them. Said they're beautiful sounding. But like anything else, check it out for yourself and let YOUR ears decide.

-Matt
Old 18th May 2006
  #3
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Jack Pettit's Avatar
 

Bill Putnam was a cool guy no doubt about it.
When I got past all the history I found the UA 610 to have very little head room.
It was (for me) a good almost special effect Pre that sounded good for some
bass parts or something I wanted to have a lot of color.
For my everyday Pre my Manley Pre-EQ 500 or my API stuff just kicked it's butt.

This experience is with the non vintage UA stuff.
Old 18th May 2006
  #4
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Soldier777c's Avatar
 

That DI section that accompanies the m610 is absolutely killer on bass.
Old 18th May 2006
  #5
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The DI is killer, the pre rocks on soft sensitive vox and craps out on dynamic pop/rock stuff. It sounds best when pushed medium hard, so i like to use it on mixing or tracking less dynamic singers (or people who like distortion )
-Brian
Old 18th May 2006
  #6
Lives for gear
 

Run the gain down, the output way up, and use a shure 15db in line pad on high output condensors....then it sounds great. It does kind of fold up and get weird if you run the input too hot.

Kirt
Old 18th May 2006
  #7
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retropete's Avatar
 

I love it on vocals -- great detail, nice air. Not crazy about it for anything else. But it gets used for vox over my Neves and APIs, but that's just me. I realize that's not a popular opinion, haha... but my singers love it!
Old 18th May 2006
  #8
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Funny and ironic that your user name is Max Headroom. The UA610 should be your wife, Mini. Yeah, Mini Headroom. heh I think there are other pres in that price-range that are better, including the TAB V78. TAB

I have used and heard the original 610 vintage pre, and it sounds beautiful. I have a feeling that the new 610 circuit bears little resemblance to that original Bill Putnam design. It certainly doesn't sound much like it. Even if they're using the same drawing, the way they're excecuting it must be different. And let's face it, you cannot build an exact duplicate of the original 610 nowadays. If you could, it would likely cost far more than a thousand dollars.

My feeling is that if you are shopping for tube gear these days, you need to have a lot of money. The high-end tube stuff is great; like Manley, Pendulum, Fearn, Thermionic Culture, TAB, etc. TAB is actually pretty reasonable.

But if you don't have that kind of dough, you're better off with good solid-state gear, like Chandler, or Great River (and now Portico). They can be just as warm and musical as anything tube. It's a myth that only tube stuff is warm, and we get people calling every day that think they HAVE to have tube gear (and they are often under the misconception that Neve and API gear is tube). One of the best chains you can get right now today is a Soundelux U195 mic and a Germanium pre, a chain which sounds fat and ultra musical, and there isn't a tube in-site. It's the transformers, baby, the transformers!

My favorite records were all done with Neve, API, Trident and SSL consoles and pres. All solid-state, and all very musical sounding. There were some tube mics being used for sure, and i'm a believer in having at least one good tube vocal mic.

I know a lot of people like the 610, and for some applications it's fine. But in-general, beware inexpensive tube gear.
Old 18th May 2006
  #9
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Thank you for your responces so far , though I would like to hear some more . But what sound the most similar to this pre ? And is ti Hi end ?

I can also choose between Amek 9098 pre + eq and Avalon M5 mono .... which are in europe about the same price
( that means about 1000 euro ) are they any better ????


Cheers

Max
Old 19th May 2006
  #10
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GearHunter's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Max headroom
Thank you for your responces so far , though I would like to hear some more . But what sound the most similar to this pre ? And is ti Hi end ?

I can also choose between Amek 9098 pre + eq and Avalon M5 mono .... which are in europe about the same price
( that means about 1000 euro ) are they any better ????


Cheers

Max
Between the M610, the 9098 and the M5, I would get the M5. I like the 9098 pre and eq, but if it's a few years old it might have some issues by now. Probably needs recapping. I think the M5 is a really big, musical sounding pre, and it has Max Headroom!
Old 19th May 2006
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GearHunter
Between the M610, the 9098 and the M5, I would get the M5. I like the 9098 pre and eq, but if it's a few years old it might have some issues by now. Probably needs recapping. I think the M5 is a really big, musical sounding pre, and it has Max Headroom!

like me

I am really shocked about m610 small headroom .....

although I can't find numbers ...... are they well hidden ???


Cheers


Max
Old 20th May 2006
  #12
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jdjustice's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by GearHunter
................
It's a myth that only tube stuff is warm, and we get people calling every day that think they HAVE to have tube gear (and they are often under the misconception that Neve and API gear is tube). One of the best chains you can get right now today is a Soundelux U195 mic and a Germanium pre, a chain which sounds fat and ultra musical, and there isn't a tube in-site. It's the transformers, baby, the transformers!
On an aside, do you prefer
U195 > Germanium
to
U195 > GR??

Because there is more "coloration", I suppose??
Old 22nd May 2006
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdjustice
On an aside, do you prefer
U195 > Germanium
to
U195 > GR??

Because there is more "coloration", I suppose??
I have used the 195 now with both pres, and the phrase "It's all good!" comes to mind. I like both rigs. I'd say the GR might be more versatile, because you can use it on anything and everything. The Germanium, because it's more colored and "juicy" might be really special on guitars and certain vocalists. For myself, my own vocals, they're both good, but the Germ is my gem!heh
Old 22nd May 2006
  #14
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Push845's Avatar
 

I use a 2-610 on everything...I run a U87 for vocals thru it....I have no complaintsthumbsup
Old 23rd May 2006
  #15
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GearHunter's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Push845
I use a 2-610 on everything...I run a U87 for vocals thru it....I have no complaintsthumbsup
What other pres do you have? Or what have you used/tried?
Old 23rd May 2006
  #16
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funka's Avatar
For me, 2-610 works fine here also. Big warm sounding.
I also use DRS-2, 1969 and MWS.
Old 23rd May 2006
  #17
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SoundUniverse's Avatar
 

I have a Portico 5012, Chandler TG-2, Drawmer 1969, ff ISA 428, MTA Trident A-Range and the UA 2-610. I think the 2-610 rocks for bass DI and also sounds great for vocals, electric guitar and drum overheads. I do use my other pres as application requires, but the 2-610 is a good sounding pre. Wouldn't be my first pick, but I like having it in the palate.
Old 23rd May 2006
  #18
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popmann's Avatar
I use the pre in my LA610 a good bit. You have to ignore the manual's advice on gain staging. Push the small knob higher and the big knob lower.

I'd say it gets about as much use as my Hv3...and a Great RiverMe1nv around here at some point, too.

...oh...had the Portico, API 312, 512c, Sytek, RNP, Brick, DMP3 around, too.
Old 23rd May 2006
  #19
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jdjustice's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by GearHunter
I have used the 195 now with both pres.........
On an aside, Drew, how do you feel about the U99... I've noticed that you guys only carry three of the Soundelux models: the 195, 99, and e49 I think.. I know that Fletcher (when he was full time) nixed the ifet7 because of what he felt were construction problems; other than that mic, why not carry the 251, e47C, E251C?? Are there issues with these mics in that they don't live up to Mercenary's standards, or is there some other reason?

Thanks,

J.D.
Old 23rd May 2006
  #20
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Ironically, my M-610 went on the fritz this weekend, so I tracked scratch vocals through a Brent Averill 1272. I really, really missed the clarity and depth of the UA. I love the BA for drums, guitars and bass, but the UA can't be beat for vox. YMMV.
Old 23rd May 2006
  #21
Gear Nut
 

The 610 has a big, slightly spongy sound that I used most often on bass guitar, Rhodes, organ, and voices here and there. Wish I'd tried it on acoustic guitar, but can't remember ever doing that. I actually liked it quite a bit (EQ and impedance selectors are nice) but did feel there is better for the money for my uses. If I found a great deal on another though, I'd be tempted to replace the one I sold.
Old 23rd May 2006
  #22
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airmate's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by GearHunter
And let's face it, you cannot build an exact duplicate of the original 610 nowadays. If you could, it would likely cost far more than a thousand dollars.
how do you come to this conclusion? there's not too many parts inside the 610. the circuit is quite simple.

i completely agree with everything else you said, though!
Old 23rd May 2006
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by airmate
how do you come to this conclusion? there's not too many parts inside the 610. the circuit is quite simple.

i completely agree with everything else you said, though!
What I mean is that, and I'm making an educated guess, is that a number of those exact components are no longer available.

I wish someone WOULD not only make that, but a UA 175 compressor. UA once told me they wouldn't even tackle one of those and that the cost would be out of reach.
Old 24th May 2006
  #24
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WeekendWanker's Avatar
 

So to sum up this thread, if you own a UA preamp, you like it, or even love it, but if you're a dealer who doesn't sell UA, you think it sucks.
Old 24th May 2006
  #25
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That's sounds about right! I really wish dealers that didn't carry a particular line would choose to not comment. It would be allot classier. Even if the dealer claims to not want to carry a line for whatever reason.
I think the original poster just wanted some feedback from 610 users. I have one. I like it. It would not be my first choice pre, but it would be second.
Old 24th May 2006
  #26
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I think the headroom issue is solved with the newer versions of the pre. The mini LA2 channelstrip and the new Solos have PADs, which the original 610 did not have.
Old 24th May 2006
  #27
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We bought a pair of 610s and an 8110 at work and tracked drums for our first go. The the studio owner chose the pres and I was just tracking- he wanted to play with things a bit. The 610 crapped out HARD on the kick - he was hitting it hard though and a pad did help. It sounds beautiful at times but I found it to be too fussy for my tastes. I liked the 110s better than the 610s but that is just my preference... solid state over tube in this case.

Still not a bad pre for the money IMHO. BUT I would, of the three you mentioned, pick the Avalon.
Old 24th May 2006
  #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Weekend******
So to sum up this thread, if you own a UA preamp, you like it, or even love it, but if you're a dealer who doesn't sell UA, you think it sucks.
Hey, well speaking for myself, I must tell you a couple of things. First, I worked for a dealer that sold UA stuff for years and I have always known about this problem and told customers about it even then. Second, I like some of the UA stuff, and personally own the LA-3A reissue, which I like, and the UAD-1 card, which IMO is the best set of plug-ins on the market. I have been VERY vocal about my likes and dislikes, regardless of whether Mercenary is a dealer. We often recommend stuff that we don't sell. If all we did was "love" the stuff we sell and "hate" the stuff we don't, well that would trash our credibility really quick. In this case, I dislike the 610 reissue ALOT. The first time I used it, like 5 years ago, I observed the thing craps out on anything loud, and generally sounds like dog. I wanted to like it and was quite disappointed, because the original 610 is a legendary pre. That was long before I worked at Mercenary. Yes, I DO think it sucks. I really really do.

And just as a disclaimer: I've said this before and I'll say it again. I have been a recording engineer for 23 years. I have only been selling Pro Audio for the last seven or eight years. I have been at Mercenary for less than a year. The opinions I give on GS are totally based on my interest in Pro Audio and recording techniques in general. If I feel compelled to chime in on a thread, it is because I feel I have something to add, and it is NOT colored by my day job as a consultant at Mercenary.

Having said that, Mercenary is a company that picks and chooses the gear it sells VERY carefully and we only sell stuff we really love and believe in. We don't like it because we sell it...we sell it because we like it!
Old 24th May 2006
  #29
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retropete's Avatar
 

And isn't that what makes it a horserace... as always, YMMV.

Personally, I respectfully disagree. As stated, I don't like it on everything. But the things it does well, I haven't found anything better.
Old 24th May 2006
  #30
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OT, I just got a Helios 69 reissue, and that's quite a quirky piece of equipment. The gainstaging definitely needs extra care and it probably won't work on everything either. That doesn't make it an unusable piece, or "suck".
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