Behringer Tube Ultragain T1953 by Mark_Andrasko
I'm not gonna lie I bought the Behringer Tube Ultragain T1953 for $50. Actually a guy on craigslist more or less threw it in for a free while I was bartering him down on a Neumann mic purchase. Being an unintentional purchase I was pleasantly surprised that this thing isn't a complete pile of crap that performs capably on a lot of instruments!
I must admit I completely agree with one reviewer. Behringer spent a lot of time making this thing look badass which they could have spent simplifying the design and making it sound better.
The T1953 sports two channels of preamp, each with phantom power, a microphone/line switch, and +20db optional tube gain. These all work very solid. There's also a phase reverse switch and a high frequency pass that I haven't needed to use.
My biggest issue with the Tube Ultragain is "Warmth" knob. The "Warmth" knob does absolutely nothing but add high frequency hiss to your recording. Maybe with upgraded tubes it might contribute something to the sound but even then I doubt it.
For $50 I'm definitely keeping the Tube Ultragain and I would buy it again for that price. It does pretty decent work on drum overheads especially with my Rode NTK and sounds very decent on bass guitar DI. It has done a pretty decent job on every instrument I've ran through it although it's always my last option.