Forssell Technologies SMP-2 by jyc
Let's start with sonics. It feels like the preamp is not there. Hugely detailed, every bit of minute detail is captured and reproduced at the output.
I've owned some color pre, 512, MA5 and at the lower end ART. When I've heard the Forssell for the first time with a dynamic mic, I was blown away. I never knew a dynamic could sound so detailed. This is what the Forssell does. And the sound does not change at all from lower gain to higher gain, which is a big plus to me! Some may say that's boring, but not needing to worry about the sweet spot on a preamp is very convenient.
Function wise it is superb as well. Stepped gain for easy repeatable settings, phase invert, phantom power, mute switch. Separate non-48V input for your ribbon so you don't accidentally fry it with phantom power.
I must admit I haven't tried other renowned clean pre like Millenia, NPNG, etc.. But i'm sold on this one and I don't feel the need to look for a CLEANER sounding pre!!
At 2k a pop, it's not exactly cheap, but then for what it is, I think it's absolutely worth every penny!