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Old 9th November 2010
Slate Pro Audio / Slate Digital
Steven Slate's Avatar

Hi Bryan... recently it seems that pres tend to not have metering as its easy to use your recorder or workstation to set the levels.

But most important, we needed to find a way to keep the cost of this unit down to a reasonable price. Keep in mind that all Slate Pro Audio hardware is hand assembled by one person in El Segundo and uses only the top spec'd components.. so given the massive amount of circuitry that the FOX contains, it could get expensive really fast.

The prototypes at AES were fun to show.. but we've got a new faceplate design coming next week


Some history on the FOX...

Doing what I do in the recording industry, I've become the gear-buying psychologist for many of my audio buddies. I get the same questions all the time.. "Do I get a Neve pre, or an API, or a Millenia????"

My answer to this question has been the same for years. "Get them all. You'll find uses for all of them."

If you can afford it, having different preamp choices to choose from is great. But last spring, I was talking to Tim and Greg, the hardware team for the Slate Pro Audio, and I asked them if we could put two unique preamp circuits in one channel.

They loved the idea and started in on the design. When I first heard the 73 style preamp, I thought it was brilliant sounding.. so warm and fat and lush.. The modern preamp was equally as impressive.. It was super precise and detailed and has now become my go-to snare pre because of the way it picks up the stick attack.

So after getting my wish for two pres in one circuit, I decided to see how far I could push Tim's tolerance.. and asked if there was another sound we could add to the circuit. The simple answer, due to real estate in the one rack unit box, was NO.

This was a bummer. While two distinct options would be really useful, three would be even better.

Greg saw how adament I was about this, so he got Tim and I on the phone to tell us about a cool idea he had. "What if we do a combo of the two preamps?"

It was a complex project to be able to combine the front ends and back ends of BOTH pres, but Tim is a genius and was able to make it happen.

So we ended up with four unique tonal variations that give the engineer a lot of versatility. I can't wait for you guys to hear it!

And thats the story