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Preamps
Old 2 weeks ago
  #1
Gear Head
 

Preamps

I’m one of the unproductive ones who has flipped countless equipment and assembled a place where I like to make noise over the past two decades or so. Currently have an Allen and heath qu32 for my main console which I like a lot, but I’ve never had any fancy preamps and found a good deal on a focusrite isa two and went ahead and ordered it. Now my question is, should I expect to hear much of a difference tracking vocals and acoustic guitar through that thing instead of the preamps in my qu32? What should I be listening for? I’ll also mention I have some pretty low to middle end mics. Md421, sm7b, mxl v69. Perception 170 pair. I think my room is ok as far as untreated rooms go, I plan to work on that soon along with probably expanding my mic cabinet. I don’t have any ribbons so I’m thinking a Beyer m160 is my next mic. I have a few guitars I don’t play that will likely fund my next equipment. I’ve accumulated enough stuff over the years where I can basically flip things I don’t use to fund more stuff I’ll probably hardly ever use, but I’m having fun.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #2
Lives for gear
 
Owen L T's Avatar
Don't expect to hear much, if any difference. Certainly nothing that anyone could possibly say "it will sound more ... [adjective]".

In an untreated (or cheap foam treated) room, the sound of the room imposes so much of its sonic characteristics on anything recorded with a mic - with the possible exception of an SM57 right on the grille of a guitar cab - that it's almost impossible to evaluate the sort of subtle differences you might get by buying a slightly better, clean preamp. But it can take a while before our ears recognize this, hence how many of us purchase nice pre-amps, but nickle-and-dime the room treatment. (Was guilty of this myself.)

But if you are looking to improve the quality of your vocal recordings, the single best thing you could do is treat the room - something like a GIK room kit, or DIY equivalent.

Yes, even singing close to an SM7B, there will be more room in the recording than you might currently realise. (In fact, for sure - else it would have ben treatment first, preamp second!)
Old 2 weeks ago
  #3
Gear Head
 

I was looking at GIK. General consensus is their room kits are pretty good? My room is around 10 ft wide by 15 ft long and 10 ft ceiling. Monitor setup on a short wall. I do have a bunch of guitars on the wall and rack and modular gear pretty high up on one side. It is definitely a densely packed area with multiple desks and a drum set. I don’t expect anywhere close to perfection but if one of their kits gets me into a decent middle ground I think I would be happy.
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