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
Are mic pres really needed?
Old 1 week ago
  #1
Gear Maniac
 

Thread Starter
Are mic pres really needed?

If recording vocals and guitar - Would skipping a preamp be a silly idea?
Old 1 week ago
  #2
does your audio interface have a pre, or pre's
Old 1 week ago
  #3
Gear Maniac
 

Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by liv4ree View Post
does your audio interface have a pre, or pre's
pres
Old 1 week ago
  #4
Old 1 week ago
  #5
Gear Maniac
 

Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by liv4ree View Post
preamp?
built in preamps
Old 1 week ago
  #6
Gear Nut
 

Preamps are necessary to bring mic level up to line level. You can not go directly from a mic to a line level input (with the exception of some transformer coupled compressor/limiters, like an 1176, but then you're just using the comp/limiter as a preamp).

If you're talking about skipping an outboard preamp and just using the pres on your interface, then it really depends on which one you have. Some have very decent and usable preamps while other do not. Without knowing what you're working with it would be difficult to say.
Old 1 week ago
  #7
Lives for gear
 

I think most interfaces these days have preamps pretty well matched to the converters. So long as you aren't looking for huge amount of gains that can do very well for most things.

External preamps range from being a joke up to the finest gear made. You need to realize however most are WAY over priced. Manufacturers know people are looking for audio quality and its very hard to find anything that will be an improvement over most interface preamps unless you buy in the $300 and above ranges.

Even used preamps still sell at close to retail so long as they are working and even if they aren't the circuits are so simple they can easily be repaired by most DIYers.

One thing that's also notable. If you use an external preamp, you're only bypassing the first two gain stages of the mic preamp. You're still feeding it through the line level preamp section of the interface so its not like you're bypassing all the analog in the interface. If the line level audio quality is poor then its only going to bottleneck the sound quality of your external preamp.

If you consider the costs of upgrading you sound you'd likely need to replace the interface as well so you might simply be better off making sure its also got a decent built in preamp.

The other thing you can try is getting an external interface with a digital out and an interface with a digital in. This way the entire analog preamp of the interface can be bypassed. Thing is - isn't an external preamp with a converter essentially an interface then? With the right port the preamp becomes an interface, so you're right back to your original question. Why not get the best interface you can afford and skip the need for an external preamp.
Old 1 week ago
  #8
This is the newbie forum. For that level of quality I would say that any audio interface on the market with an mic input is good enough.

Another perspective:
It's likely that there are other things in your audio chain that are weaker links than the built in preamp (monitors, mic, acoustics etc). And many of us (speaking to myself here) would probably even better off spending the leftover money on voice lessons...
Old 1 week ago
  #9
Lives for gear
 
CJ Mastering's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by vintagetones View Post
If recording vocals and guitar - Would skipping a preamp be a silly idea?
They are only necessary if the sound source you are recording needs to be brought up to level.

CJ
Topic:
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Forum Jump
Forum Jump