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Stam Audio StamChild SA-670

Stam Audio StamChild SA-670

5 5 out of 5, based on 2 Reviews


3 weeks ago

Stam Audio StamChild SA-670 by IzzyRock

  • Sound Quality 5 out of 5
  • Ease of use 5 out of 5
  • Features 5 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 5 out of 5
  • Overall: 5
Stam Audio StamChild SA-670

I am a huge supporter for plugins, I have won the Slate competition for best mix with their tools and overall have been moving to an in the box setup with just having my Pultecs on the mixbus for that low end and sparkle. I don’t believe hardware is necessary these days as you can make great music and mixes with any tool and plugins are just much easier to use, recall and allows me to work faster.

I was one of the first engineers to use the StamChild as I live in Chile and have access to early prototypes and I can say that just passing my mixes through this beast without adding any compression made everything sound better. The amount of tubes and transformers brought so much excitement, harmonic distortion and overall subtle color that made things sound more elegant in a way I have heard many times from classic records.

The stereo width goes a little bit further also.

The build quality is phenomenal, knobs, VU meters, chassis, transformers and tubes, everything looks and sounds high end.

I have so far used the unit with very light compression as this texture is amazing but it is capable of more than 20dB of attitude.

  • 6
3 weeks ago

Stam Audio StamChild SA-670 by audio911

  • Sound Quality 5 out of 5
  • Ease of use 5 out of 5
  • Features 5 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 5 out of 5
  • Overall: 5
Stam Audio StamChild SA-670

In today’s world of instant gratification of buying something on the internet today and having it at your doorstep tomorrow morning, ordering a piece of audio gear made by Stam must seem crazy to 99.9% of people on Earth. When a new Stam product is announced, it’s usually a computer mock up and a circuit that's being designed by Joshua van der Stam in Chile, but if you’re one of the first to pre-order one, you’ll get a discount! Here’s where the big leap of faith and patience comes in. I took that leap a few years ago with the Stam Audio SA4000 compressor. I put down my $100USD via Paypal and rolled the dice on an unknown company on another continent with not much of a track record. If I never saw my money again, it was no big deal. I’ve purchased plugins for my DAW for five times as much, and to this day, I still never use them and now are not compatible with newer DAWs. Stam Audio was in its infancy, and a business model of getting down payments to source the parts and get them built was unheard of in the industry. Any problems, and there would be a lot of angry customers. The SA4000 took about 2 months to arrive, but when it did, I was very impressed by the build quality. After putting it into service, the sound was equally impressive. I purchased the SA4000 because I’ve only owned Neve consoles, loved the SSL master buss sound, but I didn’t want to dish out the big money for an SSL FX384 or a used SSL 4000 console.

Since I purchased the SA4000, Stam Audio has really ramped up the product line of classic design preamps, EQs, and compressors as well as microphones. I was pretty well stocked up in those departments at my facility, so I didn’t need to make another purchase until the BIG announcement came in 2018. The Holy Grail of compressors was being brought back to life. The Stamchild 670 stereo tube compressor was announced!!! I had the opportunity to purchase a Fairchild 670 in 1990 for whopping $10,000USD, but I thought a Lexicon 480L would be a better investment for my studio because I could rent the unit out to other facilities in the area and make some extra money when it wasn’t in use. Well, the 670 kept going up up up in resale value and the 480L kept going down down down. I guess a Fairchild 670 would never be in my budget in this lifetime, so I resorted to using plugins to get “that Fairchild sound”.

I took the leap of faith again after the BIG Stamchild 670 announcement and put down $500 on a pre-order. The Stam website listed a delivery time of 3 months which was not to too bad considering the SA4000 took two months to deliver. Following Stam Audio on social media became very difficult after putting down my deposit. Angry posts kept showing up about lack of delivery of products ordered months earlier and the Stamchild 670 release dates kept being delayed because of numerous things that were out of the control of Stam like sourced parts and custom transformers. With new products being announced just about every month, I started to rethink if the Stamchild 670 would ever become a reality. I reminded myself of the “Good, Fast, Cheap, pick any two” rule, so I subtracted “Fast” from the equation. Stam Audio gear it’s not going to be ordered online today and show up tomorrow like a 1-800-Sweet-Gear store, but it will be Good and Cheap (inexpensive). In fact, I know a guy that has been trying to make his own Fairchild clone for years at the cost of almost $10,000USD and it’s still not finished!

I put aside the idea that the Stamchild was going to show up by the end of 2018, and watched pictures of the test units on the bench over the next few months on the Stam Facebook page, and then I got an unexpected email from Stam with the subject line: Stamchild Invoice. I almost panicked! I was lulled into waiting so long that now I had to come up with the rest of the payment in order for it to ship. I made the payment and received an email from Stam with the DHL tracking number. I checked the DHL website every four hours to watch the progress from Chile to the United States and eventually got a text message from DHL alerting me that the unit was on the truck and would be delivered by the end of the day! The Stamchild 670 was delivered with a personal thank you for my patience for waiting so long. I opened up the double boxed unit, and there it was. Forty pounds of tube compression heaven! I couldn’t get it plugged in fast enough and hooked up to a sound source. Once I plugged it in and let it warm up (literally), the sound coming out of the Stamchild was better than the sound going in. Magical, yet almost transparent. It was doing it’s thing! I quickly played around with some of the input and gain reduction settings as well as the ratio presets and filters. Wow! I really loved the sound of the WET/DRY setting in the 7-8 position where you get a nice blend of the original signal and make up the wet signal by the front panel input gain. The final make up gain is set by the output knob, which never needed to go beyond half way. The unit offers the perfect amount of much wanted musical Total Harmonic Distortion to bring the sound to life. With eighteen vintage tubes, six custom transformers, and the retro vintage knobs, the Stamchild 670 is now the centerpiece of our outboard gear at Dirt Floor Recording and Production in the United States and it will be in daily use for years to come.

Joshua van der Stam is very ambitious, very detail oriented when it comes to his designs, and his passion for sound quality is a bit off the charts. In fact, he may be too ambitious. To say the wait time to get a unit delivered is long is an understatement, but when it arrives, you’ll know the sound quality is going to be outstanding. Stam products are a work of art and are not mass produced by robots. When your unit arrives, open up the lid (with the unit unplugged!) and take a look inside and you’ll see what I mean. Thank you for your hard work and dedication to making high quality audio equipment and making the Stamchild 670 available to us Josh!

Steve Wytas

Chief Engineer

Dirt Floor Recording and Production

http://dirtfloorrecordingstudio.com/

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