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UA LA2A for vocals Condenser Microphones
Old 15th January 2015
  #31
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mexicola's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by tekis View Post
I'd rather "capture the magic" with a 2A or 3A 'cause it's much easier to dial in and get a workable sound quickly.
I always preferred tracking vox with an LA2A, for the same reason and because they just sound phenomenal, especially with a tube LDC on the singer. Additionally I'd usually use an 1176 during mixdown at 20:1 with very small amounts of GR only to catch the transients the LA2A missed, cuz it will miss some especially with screamers.

If you're talking 1176 for rock vocals though, it absolutely must be a class A 1176. The class AB 1176's are still great, but for rock/metal vocals, they don't compare to the earlier rev's.

I never really liked the LA2A on anything else though, only on vocals. If you need something that's gonna cover more than one base, I'd go for the 1176.

BTW, the only tubes you need to swap for audio improvements are V1 and V2 (ie, the 12ax7 and 12bh7 towards the right side of the rear panel). The two further left tubes (12ax7 and 6aq5a) are not in the audio path. Also, if the 6aq5a needs replacing, you don't need to bias anything.

Last edited by mexicola; 15th January 2015 at 03:05 AM..
Old 15th January 2015
  #32
Gear Maniac
 

All great info, I appreciate it. I pulled the trigger on a UA 6176 and I am looking to do the same on the LA2A here real soon. I imagine NOS tube replacements are not a must with the LA2A. Other than the RCA does anyone have mileage to share for a different brand of tube?
Old 15th January 2015
  #33
Tube brand is all personally preference; get the LA2A and you just might fall in love with the stock tubes. Nothing wrong with them!
Old 15th January 2015
  #34
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jjblair's Avatar
LA2As get darker, the more you lean on them. Also, remember that Elop is a slower attack, so using heavy Elop compression for vocals can greatly increasing sibilance. 1176 is one of the best goal compressors ever. 176 is fantastic, too. Just depends how much money you want to spend. But I don't recommend the LA2A for hard rock, as you will want a great deal of compression. You need a fast attack, fast release.
Old 15th January 2015
  #35
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hasbeen's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnd5412 View Post
I imagine NOS tube replacements are not a must with the LA2A.
No, not at all. But rolling tubes in an LA2A makes an audible difference that I can identify much easier than any of my other tube electronics. That is what makes it so much fun to do.

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnd5412 View Post
Other than the RCA does anyone have mileage to share for a different brand of tube?
Telefunken 12AX7 makes for a tighter, cleaner sound than the RCA. I have some NOS Sylvania that are looser and a bit more distorted. But it is very hard to define in words.

This is something that you need to do for yourself. And I recommend it in general just as an exercise for listening skills.
Old 15th January 2015
  #36
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jjblair's Avatar
Telefunken 12AX7s definitely make your wallet sound more empty!
Old 15th January 2015
  #37
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telefunkens are just plain wrong for an la2a in my book. its an american piece of gear. it was designed with us tubes. that makes the sound. ge, rca or tung sol is what id put in. cetainly no german tubes - they are boooring in this application. way too perfect. im a german btw and id never put anything than telefunkens in my v72s.... but not into an la2a!

Last edited by salomonander; 15th January 2015 at 10:38 PM..
Old 15th January 2015
  #38
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skybluerental's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jjblair View Post
LA2As get darker, the more you lean on them. Also, remember that Elop is a slower attack, so using heavy Elop compression for vocals can greatly increasing sibilance. 1176 is one of the best goal compressors ever. 176 is fantastic, too. Just depends how much money you want to spend. But I don't recommend the LA2A for hard rock, as you will want a great deal of compression. You need a fast attack, fast release.
This is my experience with LA 2A's as well.
Old 16th January 2015
  #39
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I bought a used LA2A. I actually lucked out with it. The original owner thought it was hosed. Really bad distortion at any setting. He sold it to me at a really good price. It turned out that one of the tubes was bad. It also had a blown resister. I replaced the V1 12ax7 with a NOS RCA black plate, and replaced the V2 12bh7J with a Phillips. So I can't tell you what the unit sounds like with stock tubes. I am mentioning this because if you know how to troubleshoot/fix electronic components you can get these things at a decent price. The LA2A are super easy to work on, but be careful of the lethal voltage.

Anyway, I use it for vocals and guitar (electric, acoustic, and classical). It definitely adds that professional sheen. The words warmth, depth, and musical come to mind. It helps things sit nicely in the mix too. I was led to believe that plugins nail the LA2A sound. My personal experience tells me that's a huge load of crap. I will say that some plugins are "decent", but they are NOT LA2A's. The difference is like mono vs stereo vs surround sound, if that makes any sense. I have never owned an 1176 so I can't speak to it. Quite a few people on this site recommend having both. If the genre of rock that you do is closer to metal, then the LA2A may not be able to compress the way you want things to. Then again if it's just for vocals, you might like it. If you live in North Carolina, I would be more than happy to have you over for a listen.
Old 16th January 2015
  #40
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Tommyswami's Avatar
I also have both I just got a new piece the nail by a designs love it

Used it in a hardcore project loved the dimension that it added

It's great to track with also!
Old 16th January 2015
  #41
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blackcatdigi's Avatar
Really love 1176 knocking off peaks into LA2A for a few db of compression. Just sounds like money to me and sits perfectly in the track.

Sold 'em all off years ago, though.
Old 16th January 2015
  #42
Gear Maniac
 

I just loaded up on the la2a, now I need to wait for the delivery. Think I'll browse for some decent tubes to roll till I get that magical sound, any other tube suggestions out there besides those already mentioned?
Old 16th January 2015
  #43
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hasbeen's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnd5412 View Post
I'm not in a location that allows me to demo any products, so I'm looking for your opinions.
thanks
Where U B ???
Old 17th January 2015
  #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hasbeen View Post
Where U B ???
on an island in the middle of the atlantic
Old 18th January 2015
  #45
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I have two reissue LA2A's and an MC77 for sale. These LA2A's have real NOS HA100x transformers, which is where the real magic is in the best old LA2A's…if'n anyone needs some leveling.
Old 11th May 2016
  #46
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stu2's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnd5412 View Post
Hi all,

I'm looking to procure a great compressor for my vocal chain. I have a U89 and a UA solo 610 but no outboard compressor. I mostly record hard rock. As you know this is quite an expensive piece of gear and I'm not in a location that allows me to demo any products, so I'm looking for your opinions.
thanks
How did the La2a pan out?? - Were you able to achieve the sound you were after??
Old 12th May 2016
  #47
Gear Maniac
 

You tell me....minus that bad singing I think sonically it sounds great. This is an Sm57 through it though...not the U89....that mic didn't fit my voice well.
Attached Files

New_1.mp3 (2.07 MB, 1549 views)

Old 13th May 2016
  #48
Gear Maniac
 

Ok, let me apologize upfront...I played a dirty trick...previous recording (scratch track) was a waves plugin...ouch sorry...but I wanted to see the reaction, which I didn't get much which tells me folks were suspicious.

Here is the real deal (little better than a scratch). I have a doubled vocal both SM57 (1 into a sonic farm silkworm (backup)/1 into AML 1073ez (lead). I ran each separate track through the 1176 then into the LA2A simultaneously. Then I bounced them to a stem and reran it back into both compressors...same settings...same series.

Despite my voice, I think this sounds great. Thoughts?
Attached Files

New_2.mp3 (1.11 MB, 1367 views)

Old 13th May 2016
  #49
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Oldone's Avatar
How can I ever trust you again?
Old 13th May 2016
  #50
Gear Maniac
 

I know after all we've been through
Old 2nd July 2016
  #51
Gear Maniac
 

Here is another tune tracked with 1176 into the LA2A and a lot of eq.
Attached Files

14_7.mp3 (10.88 MB, 1040 views)

Old 2nd July 2016
  #52
Gear Maniac
 

Elop and MC77 here.
Elop is LA2A? or LA3A? Something near to that.
Fat, big, you can get a bit of distortion if you push it.
For tracking very transparent. More than 5 dbs of reduction and ... you go out!
The transformers sounds like a bubble, like a power amp tube crystal. Extrange, amazing. You have no transformer outputs.
Both colours.

MC77. Is a 1176?
Well, agressive. Noisy like every 1176 compressors.
For that reason no for tracking.
But always in the vocal channel with the Orban 526a deesser (the same in the Thriller of Michael Jackson in that picture of Bruce Sweden recording studio).
Old 2nd July 2016
  #53
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnd5412 View Post
Here is another tune tracked with 1176 into the LA2A and a lot of eq.
I love it!!!!
Topic:
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