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Yamaha AD8HR sound quality vs. MLA8
Old 18th August 2014
  #1
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Yamaha AD8HR sound quality vs. MLA8

I realize they are different animals but I have the MLA8 and I like it. So, I'm wondering if I should add another one or go for the AD8HR. From what I have read, the MLA8 is from the DM2000 and that is a respected sound. Is the flavor of the PM5D a lot different? Supposedly the AD8HR is from that board. I'm recording live shows via DM1000 Yamaha V2 to Logic 9 using Dante. Thanks!
Old 18th August 2014
  #2
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Don't know the MLA8, but I do use the AD8HRs a lot... They are a pretty substantial step up from the PM5D. They aren't amazing, but they aren't bad either... Like other Yamaha gear, put a good quality external clock on it and you'll take a pretty good sized step up.

--Ben
Old 18th August 2014
  #3
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One great feature of the Yamaha AD8HR is the 1dB digitally controlled steps. Also, conversion in a 1u space. Great for repeat concert recording.

I could point you to a UK No. 1 classical album from this year that used nothing but that preamp (did well in the pop charts too!)

It's no slouch...

Davey
Old 22nd October 2018
  #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveyJones View Post
One great feature of the Yamaha AD8HR is the 1dB digitally controlled steps. Also, conversion in a 1u space. Great for repeat concert recording.

I could point you to a UK No. 1 classical album from this year that used nothing but that preamp (did well in the pop charts too!)

It's no slouch...

Davey
Album name?
Old 22nd October 2018
  #5
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the ad8hr preamps are related to the pm5d: not the one with the built-in mic pres though (pm5d) but the one with the remote stagebox (pm5d rh).

anyway, the ad8hr is s very good preamp, better imo than those in the rio stageboxes. i once compared it to some other remotely controlled pres (aphex, grace, rocknet and others) and the yamaha was as good as the much more expemsice ones for most any source.

gets a bit hot so some air circulating between units cannot hurt, nor does using it in high profile situations: although i do prefer my studer pres, i'm happily using the ad8hr for classical music recording (and monitor through a dm1000. btw: no problem using these preamps as well and frankly, splitting a mic and going into mla8, ad8hr and a few others, i'm pretty much convinced you'd be hard pressed to tell the pre if just used on a few channels - maybe different if we're approaching 100 channels...)
Old 22nd October 2018
  #6
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[QUOTE=deedeeyeah;13585107]the ad8hr preamps are related to the pm5d: not the one with the built-in mic pres though (pm5d) but the one with the remote stagebox (pm5d rh).

anyway, the ad8hr is s very good preamp, better imo than those in the rio stageboxes. i once compared it to some other remotely controlled pres (aphex, grace, rocknet and others) and the yamaha was as good as the much more expemsice ones for most any source.
QUOTE]

+1!
Yes! I agree.. I'd probably not say very good, but it's a good preamp and when used with a pm5d you'll get the best sound possible out of any Yamaha console I've used (using only yamaha stuff I mean).
the pm5d paired with these pres is still the best sounding desk that yamaha has imho.

It sound indeed better than the rio boxes and possibly better than the new pm10 or pm7, which I guess uses the same thing.



Cheu
Old 22nd October 2018
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deedeeyeah View Post
the ad8hr preamps are related to the pm5d: not the one with the built-in mic pres though (pm5d) but the one with the remote stagebox (pm5d rh).
Sorry gotta correct something here. the 5D and the 5DRH use the same preamp- the control of gain is what differs. Both preamps are built into the console, but one can recall with scene memories and the other has a manual gain knob (and an analog insert if memory serves)

the AD8HR is similar to the 5D in sound, but I have always considered it a much better sounding box and I used to use a rack of them as a remote stagebox using Ethersound to transport the audio.

Today, though, I tend to be happy when I can work on more modern stuff. A lot of improvements have come down the line in the decade plus since they came out.

--Ben
Old 22nd October 2018
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fifthcircle View Post
Today, though, I tend to be happy when I can work on more modern stuff. A lot of improvements have come down the line in the decade plus since they came out.

--Ben
Yes, I agree, but not from Yamaha though.

Yamaha should go back and think about the quality of their analog stages, digital conversion AND software processing..

No matter how hard they try to sell us that RND marketing guerrilla plugin BS..

They were the first 20 years ago.. They took a looong nap since then.
Go back and design decent I/O stages, both analog and digital side of things and get somebody onboard Who is worth something in the processing world.



Cheu
Old 22nd October 2018
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cheu78 View Post
Yes, I agree, but not from Yamaha though.



Cheu
I'd put the PM10 up against these easily. That being said, Yamaha has never really been known as the ultimate in fidelity.

The newest pres from Digico (the 32 bit Stadius preamps) are seriously impressive. While I still hear differences between them and some of my "high end" stuff, those differences are getting smaller and smaller to the point where in few situations do I feel I need to bring external pres when I'm using those.

--Ben
Old 22nd October 2018
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fifthcircle View Post
... the 5D and the 5DRH use the same preamp- the control of gain is what differs. Both preamps are built into the console, but one can recall with scene memories and the other has a manual gain knob (and an analog insert if memory serves)...
i was told that the dsp5d stagebox has a different preamp design than those built into the pm5d, rh or ex - but yes, i was thinking that the rh would be the one controlling the dsp5...

Quote:
Originally Posted by fifthcircle View Post
I'd put the PM10 up against these easily. That being said, Yamaha has never really been known as the ultimate in fidelity...
yeah but it's the neve silk feature that everybody (in live sound) is having fun with!
Old 22nd October 2018
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deedeeyeah View Post

yeah but it's the neve silk feature that everybody (in live sound) is having fun with!
Ahahahahah!
The silk thing was a joke even in the analog world.. No more than a mere eq boost at 300hz as I proved many years ago with an AP graph showing the thd values of that portico unit.. i can't find that post anymore.. it might have been disappeard from GS..
..Now go figure in the plugin world LOL



Cheu
Old 22nd October 2018
  #12
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I tried to avoid using the DSP5D- only used it a few times because it was a pain to set up. But my recollection is that if the pres were different, they still basically behaved the same as the full console. It was marketed as a way to get the big channel count without having to link 2 desks together. Use the box and 1 console and you've got a 96 channel system (which is exactly how we used it- usually as a monitor rig when we had a PM1D at FOH)

I've moved to Optocore and DigiCo for the big shows these days. Recording is a breeze with them and I've been very happy with the results- even doing big orchestra gigs with them and getting very favorable sounding mixes. My biggest issue with Digico for live to 2 is that the effects (reverbs, etc...) are pretty second rate.

--Ben
Old 22nd October 2018
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fifthcircle View Post
I tried to avoid using the DSP5D- only used it a few times because it was a pain to set up. But my recollection is that if the pres were different, they still basically behaved the same as the full console. It was marketed as a way to get the big channel count without having to link 2 desks together. Use the box and 1 console and you've got a 96 channel system (which is exactly how we used it- usually as a monitor rig when we had a PM1D at FOH)

I've moved to Optocore and DigiCo for the big shows these days. Recording is a breeze with them and I've been very happy with the results- even doing big orchestra gigs with them and getting very favorable sounding mixes. My biggest issue with Digico for live to 2 is that the effects (reverbs, etc...) are pretty second rate.

--Ben
Digico have always been great sounding desk (and I prefer their preamps to the optocore ones) but I agree with you the fx's is where they're "lacking" especially on some "delicate" genres..
They do have the waves servers, they might be ok by now, I remember that when I went to a workshop they were kinda buggy not very stable..
Although, at that level I'd look into a pair of Bricasti or Quantec or even Kurzweil ksp8, or a tc 6000.

Honestly I was very (positively) surprised by the fx's in the A&H dLive.. much better than the ones found in the digico imho.



Cheu
Old 24th October 2018
  #14
0VU
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I've been happily using Digico front ends on live recordings and broadcasts for several years now, usually shared via MADI split with FOH PA setups, and they get better with each iteration. Where we're asked to specify a PA system for projects which we're recording a Digico is usually the first choice. (Sonically, I like Studer consoles a bit more but there aren't many Studers in PA companies in the UK.) I definitely prefer them over Yamaha, Avid, or digital MIDAS consoles. (Never tried an A+H.) The Digico preamps are quiet, clean and usefully neutral sounding. On the kind of shows where we're using them - usually loads of channels (frequently 100+) - they're a good option.
Old 24th October 2018
  #15
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If you get a chance to get an SD rack with the 32 bit Stadius pres, I highly recommend it. The regular SD racks certainly are not bad, but I've been extremely impressed with the Stadius pres - especially when orchestras and stuff like that are involved. Used them a few times now and the results are always impressive. Basically, I see it as being like the difference between a D Rack and an SD Rack. Goes up that much again...

--Ben
Old 24th October 2018
  #16
0VU
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Oddly enough, we used the 32 bit cards for the first time a couple of weeks ago and yes, they're a noticable step up.

On Friday we're doing aconcert at the Royal Albert Hall, this time as a live broadcast, and with a simpler and physically quieter lighting and FX setup than last time. I think they have the cards so we'll get another chance to check them out. It's an LSO concert of John Williams film music so we should give the new cards a good workout. Sadly we found out today that the intended conductor - John Williams - has been taken ill so won't be able to conduct the concert which is a pity; It was his first appearance conducting over here in 20 years and I was very much looking forward to working with him. However, illness isn't to be taken lightly at 86 years of age I really hope he makes a speedy recovery. The replacement conductor (Dirk Brosse) is excellent so it should still be a top evening of music.
Old 24th October 2018
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 0VU View Post
Oddly enough, we used the 32 bit cards for the first time a couple of weeks ago and yes, they're a noticable step up.

On Friday we're doing aconcert at the Royal Albert Hall, this time as a live broadcast, and with a simpler and physically quieter lighting and FX setup than last time. I think they have the cards so we'll get another chance to check them out. It's an LSO concert of John Williams film music so we should give the new cards a good workout. Sadly we found out today that the intended conductor - John Williams - has been taken ill so won't be able to conduct the concert which is a pity; It was his first appearance conducting over here in 20 years and I was very much looking forward to working with him. However, illness isn't to be taken lightly at 86 years of age I really hope he makes a speedy recovery. The replacement conductor (Dirk Brosse) is excellent so it should still be a top evening of music.
Very cool!
If you had the chance try the A&H dLive, give A&H a chance. Thy also have (they should come out soon) the prime cards, which should be the A&H dLive version of the stadius preamps cards, intended for classical music in mind.

I've only heard the regular dLive S class preamps, and the cool feature is that they're relatively clean and neutral and detailed (they sound pretty good) when used with a "regular" gain stage, but you could also push them quite a bit and get a more "rock'n'roll" sound, with a big bottom end and a sweet top end..
I couldn't believe that a digital console could do that.. like some great old analog consoles of the past, where you could pushed them to reach a musical "bending" or pleasant saturation..

I believe GS member @ aisle6 , could confirm that.. when he told me that I was the first to raise my eyebrows.. until I got the console in my theater and tried myself on the D&B PA..

Plus the dLive has very usable (I'd say pretty good) fx's, compared to the digico.. although with an orchestra like that I might use a Bricasti or some outboard fx box.



Cheu
Old 24th October 2018
  #18
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does anyone know whether these new preamps both from a&h and soundtracs can be used alone/get controlled by any other device than their desks? i'm not a huge fan of either surface or some of their features...
Old 24th October 2018
  #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deedeeyeah View Post
does anyone know whether these new preamps both from a&h and soundtracs can be used alone/get controlled by any other device than their desks? i'm not a huge fan of either surface or some of their features...
Well, you can use your pc/mac with the director software installed, since the engine and the control is in the mixrack, you might need a madi card or a dante card or some sort of card (or you could get a custom mixrack with aes xlr outs as well, and use'em like direct outs maybe?) to be able to get into your desk. In the end you want to control the gain only, right?

Although I doubt you'll be able to control them with your studer vista desk (which already has nice preamp/processing btw).
Like with any other manufacturer they have their own protocol.



Cheu
Old 24th October 2018
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cheu78 View Post
Well, you can use your pc/mac with the director software installed, since the engine and the control is in the mixrack, you might need a madi card or a dante card or some sort of card (or you could get a custom mixrack with aes xlr outs as well, and use'em like direct outs maybe?) to be able to get into your desk. In the end you want to control the gain only, right?

Although I doubt you'll be able to control them with your studer vista desk (which already has nice preamp/processing btw).
Like with any other manufacturer they have their own protocol.



Cheu
i still want to believe that it should be possible for the major manufacturers to team up as they did with midi, madi... - midi over madi wouldn't actually be that bad.

i believe that every now and then, someone would buy any of these preamps/stageboxes for studio use without having the need for a desk though.

[maybe all it would take is that it would have to start with an 'm'! here's my suggestion: mmmpp' or '3mp2' - which stands for 'multiple manufacturer's mic preamp protocol']

speaking of studer: their larger stageboxes (d21/d23) can be remotely controlled by a simpe programm running on a pc - no need for a desk!
Old 24th October 2018
  #21
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Originally Posted by deedeeyeah View Post
i still want to believe that it should be possible for the major manufacturers to team up as they did with midi, madi...
That would be great indeed, but at the moment it's not the reality, unfortunately.
Every manufacturer probably hopes that his format/protocol will take over the other and they could be able to license it or something like that.. Dunno really why..
Would be great being able to buy studio grade preamps and controllin g them with you fav desk/interface..
Although, to be honest, as Ben said the new iteration of preamps from few manufacturer doesn't leave mich to be desired.. They're already pretty good.. (Although there's always room for improvement..).

Quote:
Originally Posted by deedeeyeah View Post
i believe that every now and then, someone would buy any of these preamps/stageboxes for studio use without having the need for a desk though.

speaking of studer: their larger stageboxes (d21/d23) can be remotely controlled by a simpe programm running on a pc - no need for a desk!
That's exactly what I said you could do with the A&H dLive mixracks.. Download the director software on your pc/mac and control (and mix) the unit. You don't need a desk. (But I'm not a big fan of mixing on a pc or tablet, but that's me..)





Cheu
Old 19th November 2018
  #22
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Scottish Fantasy

Quote:
Originally Posted by GIACOMO-_ View Post
Album name?

Here it is:

NICOLA BENEDETTI - HOMECOMING - 1 CD / Download - Deutsche Grammophon Gesellschaft
Old 19th November 2018
  #23
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Thank you!
Old 19th November 2018
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GIACOMO-_ View Post
Thank you!
I should specify:

the orchestral and solo violin parts were recorded using the Yamaha preamps into a SADiE LRX system. The other instrumental parts were recorded in a different location and with different engineers & producer.


Dave
Old 19th November 2018
  #25
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveyJones View Post
I should specify:

the orchestral and solo violin parts were recorded using the Yamaha preamps into a SADiE LRX system. The other instrumental parts were recorded in a different location and with different engineers & producer.


Dave
Do you remember which mics were used?
Thanks!
Old 20th November 2018
  #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bremusound View Post
Do you remember which mics were used?
Thanks!
If I remember correctly, we are going back a few years now, it was the usual setup for this producer which I believe is a little different from what you might expect...

It's a mix of Blumlein Coles 4038 & spaced Schoeps MK2 on Violin spot.

Then the Orchestral main array is a decca tree arrangement but with Schoeps MK41 (HYPERCARDIOID) instead of the usual MK2S that most people use.

This is supplemented by a pair of MK2S and an inner pair and an outer pair of DPA Omnis on the flanks.


String Spots are KM84s.


The rest are a mix of Neumann LDC and Schoeps MK5.



Hope that helps!
Old 20th November 2018
  #27
Gear Maniac
That‘s interesting! Thanks a lot!
Cheers
Old 6th June 2019
  #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GIACOMO-_ View Post
Thank you!
Very nice recording. I recently purchased a pair of AD8HR pres, which I am looking forward to trying out next week.

Last edited by waldie wave; 8th June 2019 at 10:16 AM..
Old 3 weeks ago
  #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waldie wave View Post
Very nice recording. I recently purchased a pair of AD8HR pres, which I am looking forward to trying out next week.
Care to share your thoughts on them?
Old 3 weeks ago
  #30
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For $100 NZ you can't go wrong as you get 8 channels of preamps. The preamps are quite neutral sounding. Basically what you hear is what you capture. There's no extra mojo added by transformers. The only negative is that you need to have 8 channels of AES/EBU on your DAW to use these (unless you are connecting them to a Yamaha digital desk). I just have these as a back-up as I have other preamps I reach for first (Buzz Audio, Aurora, Pacifica, and Grace).
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