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preamp to remove Allen & Heath MixWizard from the chain?
Old 14th November 2009
preamp to remove Allen & Heath MixWizard from the chain?

Does anyone have experience with a MixWizard and know what is a good step up for a preamp from this mixer? I already have some nice tube preamplifiers. I am looking for something solid state/ clean without a bunch of character so I can remove the MixWizard from preamp duty.

I was looking at Rane stuff mostly---DMS22 or maybe a couple MS-1 preamps. Are they a step up from the Allen & Heath MixWizard? I have been looking for an answer to this question for awhile and have not found anyone addressing the question. I hate to waste my time picking up one of the Rane preamps only to find they are no better than what I have in the MixWizard.

I am sure that a True Systems P-Solo or a Grace 101 would be a good choice, but they are above what I was looking to pay, thus my looking into the Rane gear. I have used other Rane gear in the past and I always thought it was solid. I had my eye on a Black Lion Audio Autuer or maybe an FMR Audio RNP as well, but again they are a bit more than I wanted to pay for.

I read where a lot of folks like the DMP3--is that a step up from the MixWizard? Rane DMS22 or DMP3?

I do think the MixWizard is pretty nice. It sounds a bit boxy compared to other preamps I have used though. But it is FOR SURE better than my Presonus Firepod preamps. I compared the two and there was no contest--the MixWizard preamps were much clearer, cleaner, better apparent volume, less wooly,....

Any thoughts?
Old 15th November 2009
No one has any suggestions?
Old 15th November 2009
Gear Maniac

Given your implied budget limitations, it sounds like you are really looking for a "different" sounding preamp than a "step up", which ironically could seem like a step up depending on many factors.

The Rane models and the DMP3 definitely sound different than A&H - typically described as cleaner, more transparent sounding, whereas the A&H can be described as "fuller" punchy, or as you described, "boxy". What sounds "warm" to some can certainly sound muddy and wooly to others. I think you'd be satisfied with a Rane or the DMP3 if your budget is really limited. I've rarely heard negative things about either and I have used both and recommend them for small budgets.
Old 15th November 2009
Ah! Thank you! So you really think they will have a more clean sound when compared to the MixWizard preamps? Very good. And yes, my budget lies within the realms of the used Rane gear. The future may allow more $$$ for a higher-end clean mic pre, but I am considering the Rane/ M-Audio level gear right now. Like I said, I just am trying to figure out if I would be buying more of what I already have or if picking up any of the already mentioned gear would expand my preamp palette and hopefully have a more accurate and clean sonic picture.
Old 15th November 2009
Lives for gear
dickiefunk's Avatar
I haven't heard the pres on the Miz Wizard but have heard the Zed R16 pres and would say these are better than my DMP3.

I started with a DMP3 and Tampa and since buying a Focusrite ISA One have realised their weaknesses.

I am now looking to replace these with either a Audient Mico, Grace M101 or True Systems P-Solo.

I would personally save your money until you can afford one of these!
Old 15th November 2009
Gear Maniac
vientos00's Avatar

if you're looking for something clean the focusrite ISA one is very nice. Has a very natural sound
Old 15th November 2009
Gear Maniac
vientos00's Avatar

hey dickiefunk, i'm thinking about getting a zed model by allen and heath. Can you describe the sound of the pre's and convertors? clean or more of a low-fi board?
Old 15th November 2009
Originally Posted by vientos00 View Post
if you're looking for something clean the focusrite ISA one is very nice. Has a very natural sound
That is another pre I have looked at quite a bit. I really dig that you can adjust the impedance with the ISA preamps. It seems to have some 'swiss army knife' qualities to it. I have noticed they really retain their value on the used market. I guess that is a testament to the ISA quality, as well as the Focusrite marketing.

Anymore thoughts on Allen & Heath preamp quality versus the Rane and DMP3 preamps? I will probably sit on my money before I dump it into a preamp that will not get me any further than I already am.
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