The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 Search This Thread  Search This Forum  Search Reviews  Search Gear Database  Search Gear for sale  Search Gearslutz Go Advanced
Nominate your favourite (non-500 series) mic preamp under $500
Old 13th October 2016
  #61
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by tedtan View Post
The only people I see getting their panties in a twist over the ISA range are those who go out of their way to knock it, of which there are a few here on GS.

As far as why people like ISA pre, it is solid cleanish/neutralish preamp that sounds good (good, not flattering) on pretty much anything you run through it with a lot of great features.
  • Mic/Instrument/Line inputs
  • 80dB of clean usable gain (great for ribbon and other low output dynamic mics, which are already colored in and of themselves)
  • Sweepable high pass filter
  • Variable input impedance
  • Insert for FX
  • Solid A/D option
Even though I have other more flattering pres, I still use my ISA 428 - its a great all-around workhorse.
Well I used to hate my Avalon as well (boring) so maybe I'm a hard sell but If I'm going to drop hundreds or even thousands on a pre it damn well better do SOMETHING interesting
1
Share
Old 13th October 2016
  #62
Lives for gear
 

anybody think a S/H peavey valve mic pre VMP-2? can hold its head up in this company? two channels so definitely going to be under $500 per channel, maybe even catch a whole unit for under $500....
2
Share
Old 19th October 2016
  #63
Here for the gear
Warm Audio WA12
1
Share
Old 19th October 2016
  #64
Lives for gear
 
Funny Cat's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by mutetourettes View Post
anybody think a S/H peavey valve mic pre VMP-2? can hold its head up in this company? two channels so definitely going to be under $500 per channel, maybe even catch a whole unit for under $500....

Yes absolutely. I have one with handpicked NOS Mullards from Bowie and it is every bit as good as my Daking and ua 4-710d pres. It actually beats the ua in the sound department and edges the Daking because it has an onboard tube EQ.

The Daking is obviously a little cleaner and HiFi (just a little though after swapping tubes in the VMP) and probably just a hair "leaner" if you get my meaning. The differences are pretty subtle despite what you may think after reading threads like these. Well kept VMP-2's seem to be going somewhere in the $600-$800 range.





[EDIT] The VMP's line outs sound noticeably better than the xformer coupled XLR outs. I tested and confirmed this on my unit and the difference is drastic. so make sure to use the TRS outs!
Old 23rd October 2016
  #65
Gear Addict
GAP73 in all of its incarnations.
1
Share
Old 25th October 2016
  #66
K23
Here for the gear
 

Try the summit audio 2ba-221 with a NOS RCA 12ax7a or a NOS Mullard.
Old 25th October 2016
  #67
Lives for gear
 

ok, and also any support for the electo-harmonix 12ay7 while we're on a valve theme?
Old 26th October 2016
  #68
Lives for gear
The Black lion Auteur belongs on the list. About $500 for two channels.

Now if you open this up to 500/channel, Then the Vintage maker M12 is a great API 4 channel clone for about $1200. I also has 2 channels of DI. The Vintage maker Never clone is over 500/chan, but also great bang/buck.

I also just noticed a Grace 801 that did not sell on ebay for under 2K w/ 8 channels.
Old 26th October 2016
  #69
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by heyhey View Post
Under $5 is way easier:

Realistic STC 35
2 x Vintage "lively" mic pre's with gorgeous overdriven-transistor distortion,
$4.99 at goodwill (if you see one, grab it!)
I have a Marantz PMD-360. It never occurred to me to try using the mic-pre's in it, but why not, right?

My favorite $500ish pre is my ISA One. It's the only pre I have, so it must be my favorite.
1
Share
Old 30th October 2016
  #70
Lives for gear
 
Jeezo's Avatar
Isa one ...you have to triple the price to find some better

usually for students i say Isa one best bang for the buck , Summit , grace design ... serious & affordable and PRO sound

Last edited by Jeezo; 31st October 2016 at 02:17 AM..
Old 30th October 2016
  #71
Lives for gear
 
Lenzo's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joey Gunz OBM View Post
WA12 over the GAP 73 any day
I was never a fan of the GAP. Poorly made in my opinion. The WA12 on the other hand was amazingly good for the price. I now have the Tonebeast, the WA-76, the PEQ and the WA-2a. Warm is making some great sounding, well made stuff at reasonable prices.
L.
2
Share
Old 1st November 2016
  #72
Lives for gear
Almost every single poster is saying he or she has found a favorite preamp within the suggested criteria. The fact that they are a number of different preamps is enlightening. Some like it hot, and some do not. Some like preamps with hair and some like them smooth and silky.
The two most mentioned preamps are the GAP 73 and the ISA One. I happen to own both. I expected to love the GAP 73, but after trying it on many sources with many different settings, I did not love it. I don't dislike it, and I use it occasionally. It's a "hairy" preamp that sounds a little wooly to me. It's not the sound I'm after. But it is the sound that almost half the responders like, and I respect their choice. I've heard things from some of them that I like a lot.
The ISA preamps are simply more to my taste. I understand why the "hairy" crowd find them boring. They don't do anything dramatic to the source. But to me they do a subtle enhancement of most sources that I respond to. That's apart from all the choices and features they have. If you don't like the basic sound, the extras are unimportant.
So... To the poster, try those two preamps. I can almost guarantee that one of them will go very far toward the sound you want, and put you into a genre, smooth or hairy, where you will find your preamp.
1
Share
Old 10th November 2016
  #73
Focusrite ISA One
Old 10th November 2016
  #74
Lives for gear
I like the Golden Age Pre73 mkII

Here it is in action:

Old 11th November 2016
  #75
Here for the gear
 

ADK-AP-1

They are hard to find, but if you get a chance grab a ADK AP-1. Very clean, very easy to use, and if you want you can switch out the op-amps and transformers to customize the pre-amp for the instrument or mic that you are using for that recording. Very nice.
I love this thing.
And it has a "direct" input right on the front.
Larry Villella over at ADK came up with a winner. I have no idea why they don't make these any more.
Old 11th November 2016
  #76
Gear Addict
 

New? Warm WA12. Used? Well, I paid under five bills for my Warm TB12s, which are a fair bit more versatile sonically.

'Course, used is a whole different animal. I wound up paying a hundred bucks for my Yamaha M916 desk, which works out to... $6.25 per channel, before the cost of a third of a can of contact cleaner sprayed into the thing to get things up and running. It sees regular use alongside "better" gear, particularly for drum tracking.
Old 11th November 2016
  #77
The GAP Pre73 MK III "PLUS" is $499 and the "Plus" designates that it comes pre-installed from the factory with two Carnhill transformers. That's the cheapest Neve-style preamp that I know of that includes two name-brand transformers. For an extra $100 at $599, I decided to go Seventh Circle Audio N72 over the GAP Plus. The N72 is excellent and the best pre I've personally used.

The Seventh Circle Audio A12 (API style, like the Warm Audio) is only $399 pre-installed in the one-shot chassis (CineMag input/output transformers, and choice of output transformer: steel, nickel, or 50/50): https://www.seventhcircleaudio.com/products/PC01

The Warm Audio WA12 also uses two Cinemag transformers at $449

The Warm Audio TB12 ToneBeast can be found used for $400-500

The ISA One does use a Lundahl transformer, but only one, and it's still a very clean pre overall not heavy transformer coloration. It's clean, accurate, and sure perhaps boring (which can be good) but it's a step up from most interface pre's like Mackie Onyx or Presonus Xmax. Also all the added features are really nice, the headphone amp is INCREDIBLY beefy and sounds great.
3
Share
Old 12th November 2016
  #78
Lives for gear
 
DR Music's Avatar
GAP 573 mkll 500 Series! Just a GOOD sounding pre!
kfhk
Will be trying the Warm Audio W12 and the Rupert Neve 511.

Last edited by DR Music; 15th November 2016 at 04:29 PM..
Old 14th November 2016
  #79
Here for the gear
 

wa12

Warm audio WA12
Old 15th November 2016
  #80
Gear Head
 

I'm a pretty big fan of the Pre73 with the Carnhills. I actually have an older version (mkII maybe?) that I modded myself and got the transformers direct from Carnhill.

Anyone mention the RNP yet? I still use mine for cleaner stuff - stereo percussion, acoustic guitars, BG Vox, etc.
1
Share
Old 17th November 2016
  #81
Gear Maniac
 
dgkenney's Avatar
Warm WA12.
Old 21st November 2016
  #82
ISA One it just feels top grade and solid. It can take any mic you toss at it including the SM7.
Old 23rd November 2016
  #83
Lives for gear
 
Kronos147's Avatar
This thread is the list of items that will be purchased by the flower pot guy and you will now see prices for over $1000 from him.

1
Share
Closed Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook  Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter  Submit Thread to LinkedIn LinkedIn  Submit Thread to Google+ Google+  Submit Thread to Reddit Reddit 
 
Topic:
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Forum Jump