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What Preamp Emulations?
Old 10th March 2016
  #1
Gear Maniac
What Preamp Emulations?

Hi!

I'm looking at getting one to add flavour to the preamps on my iD22 until I can afford a Great River ME1NV.

I'm aware of the Nebula pres, Lindell's emulation and the new Slate Virtual Preamp Collection.

Are these worth the price of admission?

Are there any others I should consider?
Old 10th March 2016
  #2
Gear Maniac
 

I have tried all three.

The Lindell and Slate versions sound incredible and are low on CPU and easier to adjust and work with.
However, the Nebula pres provide a realism,depth and detail that I haven't heard anywhere else.
They are also incredible value for money.

As long as you are aware of basic gain staging (e.g. hitting those pres at 0VU calibrated at -18dbfs RMS) you will get a sound that I personally like better.
I can recommend Alex B's pre amp emulation package with Nebula.

AlexB Audio Engineering by Alessandro Boschi - PC&S Preamp Colors and Saturation - Nebula Programs

Best 30 Euros I have spent in audio.

In my opinion it comes down to this:
If you are looking for something that can add some mojo and acts like some sort of saturator that you can adjust while mixing the Lindell and Slate versions sound great!

If you are looking for a emulation that comes as close as possible and are ready to commit to it and bounce it and then move forward, go with Nebula.

That is not(!) to say the others don't sound great or are not faithful.
I just think that the incredible weight that a real 1073 adds to the signal is better emulated with Nebula.
Full disclosure: I am also a drummer and was on a few sessions were we tracked the entire drums through a Neve sidecar filled with 1073's and it felt like the drums just got bigger in size. That is the sound I am after ever since.

For me personally, while on one single track there is not too much of a difference between the Slate 1073 and AlexB's version for example , once you apply this over 10 or so tracks you will hear the difference.
Old 10th March 2016
  #3
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mannymac View Post
I have tried all three.

The Lindell and Slate versions sound incredible and are low on CPU and easier to adjust and work with.
However, the Nebula pres provide a realism,depth and detail that I haven't heard anywhere else.
They are also incredible value for money.

As long as you are aware of basic gain staging (e.g. hitting those pres at 0VU calibrated at -18dbfs RMS) you will get a sound that I personally like better.
I can recommend Alex B's pre amp emulation package with Nebula.

AlexB Audio Engineering by Alessandro Boschi - PC&S Preamp Colors and Saturation - Nebula Programs

Best 30 Euros I have spent in audio.

In my opinion it comes down to this:
If you are looking for something that can add some mojo and acts like some sort of saturator that you can adjust while mixing the Lindell and Slate versions sound great!

If you are looking for a emulation that comes as close as possible and are ready to commit to it and bounce it and then move forward, go with Nebula.

That is not(!) to say the others don't sound great or are not faithful.
I just think that the incredible weight that a real 1073 adds to the signal is better emulated with Nebula.
Full disclosure: I am also a drummer and was on a few sessions were we tracked the entire drums through a Neve sidecar filled with 1073's and it felt like the drums just got bigger in size. That is the sound I am after ever since.

For me personally, while on one single track there is not too much of a difference between the Slate 1073 and AlexB's version for example , once you apply this over 10 or so tracks you will hear the difference.
Sweet! & How close do you feel Nebula has gotten you to the Neve sidecar sound?

Also I've noticed there are multiple Neve emulations; the AlexB ones, Acustica's own Navy & Prime Studio's Caribou.

Now I'm even more confused...
Old 10th March 2016
  #4
Gear Maniac
 
omkar's Avatar
 

Howdy to both,

I`m sitting on an idea to mimic itb recording chain (into neve)
and I can`t find a preamp adding weight, could be nebula, uad or vst
(atm I have to exclude UAD, prices are too steep).

I saw recommendation of AlexB PC&S in context of Neve73 and weight,
my questions:
- after dl the pdf, is it the AN73 in particular ?
- is there a list somewhere explaining the hw models ?
Old 10th March 2016
  #5
Gear Maniac
 

@ the Wheatherman

When it comes to how close you have to keep in mind that virtually every single real 1073 out there will sound slightly different and therefore the sampled Nebula versions will share this characteristic. But I personally feel that AlexB's AN73 is the closest I have gotten ITB to the weight and character from those sessions. Stuff like this is hard to explain in words and of course I cant scientifically prove it but when I heard my clean recorded drums in my studio through the Nebula/AlexB 1073 emulation I just knew that this is the colour that I want. It gave the drums that feeling like you are really there with the drummer. You can sort of compare it to the feeling Altiverb will give you vs another great Reverb say the Relab 480. They both sound great but through Altiverb you get the feeling of being transported into the room.

Also, when you buy the AlexB pre amp suite you get 43 pre amps in total ranging from Trident to EMI and API to Neve. All these colors are a good investment.

I also have Navy, which is also an EQ and not only the pre amp.
Both the Alex B and the Navy have 1073 AND 1081 pre amp emulations on board.
I like the AlexB AN73 slightly better but they are both great. It really comes down to personal preference. I personally think AlexB's version has more weight and bottom and the Acustica Navy has more bite to it. You can always demo Navy directly form Acustica for 10 days I think.

The thing about the Nebula world is that you will find multiple Neve 1073's on offer as many developers will have sampled the one that is available to them. I personally have a very high opinion of AlexB as he is one of the most experienced and dedicated 3rd party developers for Nebula out there and really knows what he is doing. All Nebula pre amps I have come across share the same depth and 3D sound quality that I haven't seen like this in other plugins

Prime Studio's Caribou is also an EQ and PreAmp. It sounds amazing but is very expensive and if you just look for a PreAmp might be overkill. But you can also demo Caribou and see if you like it.


What you can ALSO do if all you want is the Neve Sound: Alex B has an emulation of a Neve 8014 console on offer that has the 1073 pre amp section.
AlexB Audio Engineering by Alessandro Boschi - N14 Vintage Neev 14 Console - Nebula Programs

You also get Bus channels etc. If you want just the Neve sound this might be all you need.


@ omkar .

See what I wrote above regarding a Neve recording chain. My favourite of the bunch is the AN73 but also the AN81 and the EMI Road sound incredible to me. Not to mention their Telefunken pre amp which can liven up a not so eciting voal recording.
Regarding the list, they sadly can't mention the exact names due to copyright but it is fairly easy to guess. For example EMI Road or A512 (API) or 3Dent (Trident) etc.

What I can offer to both of you is this: Send me a file and I will process it with the Navy 1073 and 1081 from Acustica and the AN73 and AN81 from AlexB.


And if you are still reading this: Well done. Sorry for rambling but I really do like Preamp color emulations
Old 10th March 2016
  #6
Gear Nut
 

T-Racks and Nebula.
I didn't find great the FG-73 (and all the VMR).
Old 10th March 2016
  #7
Gear Maniac
 
omkar's Avatar
 

@ Mannymac
I appreciate the rambling ...

I was too short on typing and in case of misleading:
"I`m sitting on an idea to mimic itb recording chain (into neve)" means into Neve console which is UAD 88RS.

The UAD console comes close to what I like to hear but I miss a touch of creamy-ish density and weight,
primarily weight before it finally hits the console.

Thanks for the kind offer to process files but I need to hear the entire chain in context plus on various instruments
and a 30 Euro option with various preamps is not too risky to go for.

So your hint to PC&S is pretty welcomed and may match the question of "the Weatherman" as well.


@ _ben
what is your specific choice of your given suggestions to add preamp and/or weight ?
Old 10th March 2016
  #8
Gear Addict
 

Nebula preamps are easily the best. Check out Ownhammers 'Rio Grande', it's a nebula version of the Great River pre (6 $).
Other good preamps are cdsoundmasters Neve 1084 and the 352/440 pres from his Apex tape collection.

Henry Olonga has a warm, sunny helios lustraphone pre (Titan) that you can get for free now I think. Check his site...
Old 11th March 2016
  #9
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by omkar View Post
@ Mannymac
I appreciate the rambling ...

I was too short on typing and in case of misleading:
"I`m sitting on an idea to mimic itb recording chain (into neve)" means into Neve console which is UAD 88RS.

The UAD console comes close to what I like to hear but I miss a touch of creamy-ish density and weight,
primarily weight before it finally hits the console.

Thanks for the kind offer to process files but I need to hear the entire chain in context plus on various instruments
and a 30 Euro option with various preamps is not too risky to go for.

So your hint to PC&S is pretty welcomed and may match the question of "the Weatherman" as well.
Makes a lot of sense. In fact, hearing this on multiple tracks is really where Nebula comes into its own.

Keep in mind that you also need to buy Nebula first before you buy the PC&S. You most likely know this already but just in case

And again: If you are specifically looking for a Neve sound only the Alex B Neve Console might be an even better deal for you
AlexB Audio Engineering by Alessandro Boschi - N14 Vintage Neev 14 Console - Nebula Programs

I sadly haven't gotten round to test the Neve though. For my mixes I often run the signal into the AN73 and after that into the SSL 4k emulation which is a killer sound I think. Have fun and make sure to let us know what you like best!
Old 11th March 2016
  #10
Lives for gear
the lindell one is great i like the hw pre as well nice sounding..
Old 11th March 2016
  #11
Lives for gear
 
ImNotDedyet's Avatar
Kush has one coming out soon as well. Wouldn't sleep on that.
Old 11th March 2016
  #12
Lives for gear
 
lestermagneto's Avatar
A friend of mine has the Waves Schepp73 and the AbbeyRoad TG1234 or whatnot, and while I did not shoot them side by side with the OG units, I have used the 1073's a lot, for better or worse, I thought they sounded pretty good.... or at least embarked a musical quality to "me', but can't vouch for how reliable with the OG units they are ...(but they all sound different anyways depending on construct, where they were kept, how used/abused etc...)
Old 11th March 2016
  #13
Gear Addict
 
zachaction's Avatar
 

112db Redline Preamp is fantastic, infinitely customizable, and so CPU efficient.
Old 11th March 2016
  #14
Gear Maniac
 
omkar's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ImNotDedyet View Post
Kush has one coming out soon as well. Wouldn't sleep on that.
Oh, how lovely lovely lovely it is sounding, saw the demo video of the band.
If the amount of Grandmas to rob in the night would be enough in my local area, I`d go hw, the Omega has that sound I am after the most.

Because of the limitations of vst design I doubt the additional Omega plugins add mojo
(that`s what I am personally looking for) but serves color, rounding and saturation.

Right off-hand my choice for now:
Ownhammer Rio Grande (based on the Great River ME-1NV preamp)
AlexB PC&S (preamp collection)

The selection is not taken in the sense of "good and bad" but of "mojo",
in this case "neve mojo" to support the itb neve record chain.
And as a budget user above appears to be a good "neve budget choice".

Thanks for all the hints and options by now, pretty inspiring.
Old 11th March 2016
  #15
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mannymac View Post
@ the Wheatherman

When it comes to how close you have to keep in mind that virtually every single real 1073 out there will sound slightly different and therefore the sampled Nebula versions will share this characteristic. But I personally feel that AlexB's AN73 is the closest I have gotten ITB to the weight and character from those sessions. Stuff like this is hard to explain in words and of course I cant scientifically prove it but when I heard my clean recorded drums in my studio through the Nebula/AlexB 1073 emulation I just knew that this is the colour that I want. It gave the drums that feeling like you are really there with the drummer. You can sort of compare it to the feeling Altiverb will give you vs another great Reverb say the Relab 480. They both sound great but through Altiverb you get the feeling of being transported into the room.

Also, when you buy the AlexB pre amp suite you get 43 pre amps in total ranging from Trident to EMI and API to Neve. All these colors are a good investment.

I also have Navy, which is also an EQ and not only the pre amp.
Both the Alex B and the Navy have 1073 AND 1081 pre amp emulations on board.
I like the AlexB AN73 slightly better but they are both great. It really comes down to personal preference. I personally think AlexB's version has more weight and bottom and the Acustica Navy has more bite to it. You can always demo Navy directly form Acustica for 10 days I think.

The thing about the Nebula world is that you will find multiple Neve 1073's on offer as many developers will have sampled the one that is available to them. I personally have a very high opinion of AlexB as he is one of the most experienced and dedicated 3rd party developers for Nebula out there and really knows what he is doing. All Nebula pre amps I have come across share the same depth and 3D sound quality that I haven't seen like this in other plugins

Prime Studio's Caribou is also an EQ and PreAmp. It sounds amazing but is very expensive and if you just look for a PreAmp might be overkill. But you can also demo Caribou and see if you like it.


What you can ALSO do if all you want is the Neve Sound: Alex B has an emulation of a Neve 8014 console on offer that has the 1073 pre amp section.
AlexB Audio Engineering by Alessandro Boschi - N14 Vintage Neev 14 Console - Nebula Programs

You also get Bus channels etc. If you want just the Neve sound this might be all you need.


@ omkar .

See what I wrote above regarding a Neve recording chain. My favourite of the bunch is the AN73 but also the AN81 and the EMI Road sound incredible to me. Not to mention their Telefunken pre amp which can liven up a not so eciting voal recording.
Regarding the list, they sadly can't mention the exact names due to copyright but it is fairly easy to guess. For example EMI Road or A512 (API) or 3Dent (Trident) etc.

What I can offer to both of you is this: Send me a file and I will process it with the Navy 1073 and 1081 from Acustica and the AN73 and AN81 from AlexB.


And if you are still reading this: Well done. Sorry for rambling but I really do like Preamp color emulations
Nohoho. This is exactly what I was looking for in terms of information.

I'm on it like a bonnet!

Thank you!
Old 11th March 2016
  #16
Gear Maniac
 
omkar's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by the Weatherman View Post
Nohoho. This is exactly what I was looking for in terms of information.

I'm on it like a bonnet!

Thank you!
Not sure: do you have Nebula Pro already or do you take it into consideration ?
Old 12th March 2016
  #17
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by omkar View Post
Not sure: do you have Nebula Pro already or do you take it into consideration ?
I bought that too.

I was expecting a hurdle when it came to authorization but it's a little annoying that I can't find a .SER file where it's supposed to be (I'm using it on a Mac in Logic X). In the meantime AlexB's samples work but the stock stuff doesn't.
Old 12th March 2016
  #18
Gear Maniac
 

In my experience all the issues with Authorization come from the fact that folks don't read the damn manual anymore

Especially on mac.

You need to have full writing rights for the Nebula folder.
Otherwise OSX will block Nebula from creating the .ser file
Old 12th March 2016
  #19
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mannymac View Post
In my experience all the issues with Authorization come from the fact that folks don't read the damn manual anymore

Especially on mac.

You need to have full writing rights for the Nebula folder.
Otherwise OSX will block Nebula from creating the .ser file
Read & Write is enabled on the file & I did read the manual.

Honestly, I don't think an installation system for a paid plugin should be this cumbersome in 2016, but I will be patient and wait for a reply from licensing.
Old 12th March 2016
  #20
Gear Maniac
 

Oh I meant that above comment about the manual rather funny. I myself only read them when there is a problem :D

And Acustica know their authorization system is outdated. They are working on a new one as we speak.

But at least their stuff doesn't get cracked.
Old 12th March 2016
  #21
Gear Maniac
 
omkar's Avatar
 

Sorry to hear that @ the Weatherman , it was pretty easy on Win and I can`t comment on Mac, but it looks like you are in touch with support.

Now that you have Nebula 3 Pro, my idea of some options to play with without costing too much:
I saw your next preamp is going to be a Great River ME1NV so I`d give Ownhammers Rio Grande for $6,50 a go.
Secondly in your account should be the free AqaVox (Manley VoxBox) preamp to warm up tracks.
Pretty nice Nebula based startup plus your AlexB lib(s).
Old 12th March 2016
  #22
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by omkar View Post
Sorry to hear that @ the Weatherman , it was pretty easy on Win and I can`t comment on Mac, but it looks like you are in touch with support.

Now that you have Nebula 3 Pro, my idea of some options to play with without costing too much:
I saw your next preamp is going to be a Great River ME1NV so I`d give Ownhammers Rio Grande for $6,50 a go.
Secondly in your account should be the free AqaVox (Manley VoxBox) preamp to warm up tracks.
Pretty nice Nebula based startup plus your AlexB lib(s).
It's okay; I wasn't caught off-guard, having read about other people's difficulty getting it up and running.

I will check out Rio Grande once I get the stock stuff up and running.

& Unfortunately the VoxBox emulation isn't available in AU64bit, but thanks for the recommendation!
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