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good preamp for recording synths and keyboards
Old 15th January 2007
  #1
Here for the gear
 

good preamp for recording synths and keyboards

Hi to everyone!

I'm new here.

I'm not a good engineer, I'm mostly a songwriter and producer.

I need to buy a good preamp (2 channels) for recording synthesizers (both analog and digital) into PT with 888/24.
My budget is around 3.000 EUR (3,800 USD).

Someone told me Neve 1073 DPA, some other Millennia TD1 (x2), someone Focusrite Liquid channel (x2) and so on...

Does anyone have a suggestion?

Many thanks
Old 15th January 2007
  #2
Registered User
 
Pericles's Avatar
 

Hmm, what kind of synths? If they have digital outs don't even use a pre, just go direct. If you're using some older analog synths pres I've used or heard that I liked were the Neve 1073 (nice low end, really made an old mini moog come to life), Chandler Germaium, and for a strong, cleaner sound, the Avalon 2022. API 312 will certainly do the job too. Just remember that everyone's ears are a bit different. Try out a few units if you can before you make your decision.

Again, some synths won't need a pre. My Roland V Synth can light up a signal path like a Christmas tree with the volume on 2. By far the hottest output I ever had on a keyboard. Direct in was certainly the best for that type of synth.
Old 16th January 2007
  #3
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pericles View Post
Hmm, what kind of synths? If they have digital outs don't even use a pre, just go direct. If you're using some older analog synths pres I've used or heard that I liked were the Neve 1073 (nice low end, really made an old mini moog come to life), Chandler Germaium, and for a strong, cleaner sound, the Avalon 2022. API 312 will certainly do the job too. Just remember that everyone's ears are a bit different. Try out a few units if you can before you make your decision.

Again, some synths won't need a pre. My Roland V Synth can light up a signal path like a Christmas tree with the volume on 2. By far the hottest output I ever had on a keyboard. Direct in was certainly the best for that type of synth.
Hi!
thanks for answering and suggestions!!!

yes mostly for old analog synths and some digital synths with no digital out

Choice is not so easy, they seem to be all great pres!

I will try to hear all the units you told me.
thanks again
Old 16th January 2007
  #4
Lives for gear
 

Maybe a Rupert Neve Portico 5012. It has fairly high input impedance (10K from memory) that means it can function as a line amp as well as a mic amp. The Silk button switches in some harmonic distortion, more like the old Neves. With Silk off, it's a more modern clean sound.
Old 16th January 2007
  #5
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six_wax's Avatar
 

MP-2NV is pretty unbelievable for this.

Plus is works great as a pre on pretty much everything...
Old 16th January 2007
  #6
Gear Head
 
skan's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pericles View Post

Again, some synths won't need a pre. My Roland V Synth can light up a signal path like a Christmas tree with the volume on 2. By far the hottest output I ever had on a keyboard. Direct in was certainly the best for that type of synth.
I see your point, but wouldn't you still be better off going through a pre if only to get a better quality of signal? ( i.e to reduce that 'flatness' you get when recording a synth direct into a soundcard)
Old 16th January 2007
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by six_wax View Post
MP-2NV is pretty unbelievable for this.

Plus is works great as a pre on pretty much everything...

Ditto the Great River MP2NV. Also great DI for bass guitar, or your older monophonic synth basses. It even helps soft synths sound better, and is definitely worth the trip out & back in to the computer.
Old 16th January 2007
  #8
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If you could hold off until you can add another $1000 to your $3800, you could have the Great River MP2NV AND the Great River EQ2NV.

That is the Gearslutty thing to do,
And that's what I'd do if I were you.
Old 16th January 2007
  #9
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superburtm's Avatar
 

pair of 512's in a lunchbox with room to put in a few 550A's
Old 16th January 2007
  #10
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bjm007's Avatar
 

I love the MP2NV as well but the API 3124+ is always a good choice and a heck of a value. Its four channels and I've yet to find anything it doesn't sound good with.
Old 16th January 2007
  #11
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Improv's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by superburtm View Post
pair of 512's in a lunchbox with room to put in a few 550A's
I agree, 512c's are my favorite for getting a stereo synth anything onto a hard drive. Although, once we get our second Germanium, I might change my mind.

The Germ goes a long way towards humanizing a synth. Even in mono.

Anyone with P1 and 512c modules care to comment on this application? I'm also trying to talk my good friend (band boss) into demoing a pair of those
Old 16th January 2007
  #12
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A440's Avatar
if you don't need the mic pre's...the Phoenix audio Nice DI would be a good option (great value too)..
Old 16th January 2007
  #13
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tomdarude's Avatar
AuroraAudio GTQ

2ch., big bottom & you can add a little touch of EQ
Old 16th January 2007
  #14
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superburtm's Avatar
 

I have the Germ as well however, to me sometimes it is perfect and sometimes it is totally wrong. The API is always a safe bet.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Improv View Post
I agree, 512c's are my favorite for getting a stereo synth anything onto a hard drive. Although, once we get our second Germanium, I might change my mind.

The Germ goes a long way towards humanizing a synth. Even in mono.

Anyone with P1 and 512c modules care to comment on this application? I'm also trying to talk my good friend (band boss) into demoing a pair of those
Old 16th January 2007
  #15
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Midlandmorgan's Avatar
 

We regularly use a pair of P1s for synths...the OSA MP1Cs are pretty decent as well...if the synth is mono, it WILL go thru the REDDI first...that's all it needs more times than not.

For a REALLY cool and just a bit different synth sound, try an EM Silver...fat-city...
Old 16th January 2007
  #16
Lives for gear
 

none.

to buy a hi end preamp (even with a di or line in) just for recording synth is a ludicrous idea appart if you're loaded, and have more money than sense...
Most soundcards have enough juice to accept a synth, even an old analog one ( RME soundcards let you choose the impedance, as well as 3 levels of gain but I'm sure it's the same on most decent interface)
If you already have a preamp with an eq and a di, why not using it on your synth but to buy a MIC pre just for recording synth....I just can't see the point. If you want to use your MIC pre as a distortion box or an EQ you're better off buying an EQ or a distortion pedal or a PODxt.

my 2 nepali rupees
Old 16th January 2007
  #17
Here for the gear
 

Thanks to everyone!!!

Thanks to all for answering and suggestions!!!

I'm sure that any pre you told me is good but I have to choose one (not easy, friends...)

What do you think about the API A2D?
Are the converters better than an 888/24 or in this case a pair of 512 plus a 888/24 are a better choice?

In the case of a A2D I could save some money since I shouldn't buy the 888/24 (I have only a 882/20 and I can use the spdif).

Many thanks
Old 16th January 2007
  #18
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danasti's Avatar
 

Since you are recording both analog and digital synths I'd look at a channel strip with a peak limiter, a nice soft compressor (to catch overs and control dynamic range especially on the analogs) and something with a little character and bigness to it for the digital synths. I have a Nord Lead and I love it with API flavored preamps/eqs because of the clarity and definition in the highend and fat but controlled lowend. Neveish sounding stuff is soft and warm in the mids and lowmids. Certain tube preamps can have a fantastic effect for stereo width, three dimensionality and tonal softening or warmth. (To get hyper-subjective with my terminology.. : -)

Pendulum MDP1, Electronaut or ADL 600 - 2 channel tube mic amp with a Rupert Neve Portico 5043 dual channel compressor - 2 speck xfrmr balanced eq - $4000 - $4500 but you could look for some or all used

2 x Aurora Audio Channel strips (2 x pre/eq/comp/limiter) $????

1 x API 6 space lunchbox with (either a 512/mono gama/ A designs P1/purple biz preamp - 2 x API 560 eq) & a Funk logic rack with 4 channels comp/limiter,1 rnc and 1 rla - round about $3500 new ...

The 560 is awesome for synth - especially recording bass tones or things like "thuddy" / "boomy" kick drums.

Good Luck!

Quote:
Originally Posted by analog-digital View Post

yes mostly for old analog synths and some digital synths with no digital out

Choice is not so easy, they seem to be all great pres!

Last edited by danasti; 16th January 2007 at 07:05 PM.. Reason: wirding
Old 16th January 2007
  #19
Moderator
 
TonyBelmont's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by tomdarude View Post
AuroraAudio GTQ

2ch., big bottom & you can add a little touch of EQ
Yep. One of these or an API would be the way to go!
Old 17th January 2007
  #20
Gear Addict
 
drummerboy1533's Avatar
 

The Demeter VTMP-2b=chocolately goodness!
Old 17th January 2007
  #21
Moderator
 
TonyBelmont's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by danasti View Post
2 x Aurora Audio Channel strips (2 x pre/eq/comp/limiter) $????
The GTQC's are $2800/ each.
Old 17th January 2007
  #22
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funka's Avatar
 

I would second phoenix audio nice DI.
I have the DRS-2 and find its DIs to be the best I know for synths and keyboards.
Old 17th January 2007
  #23
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by digibird View Post
If you could hold off until you can add another $1000 to your $3800, you could have the Great River MP2NV AND the Great River EQ2NV.

That is the Gearslutty thing to do,
And that's what I'd do if I were you.


and if you can't wait, get the pre now and add the eq later.
Old 20th June 2012
  #24
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pericles View Post
Hmm, what kind of synths? If they have digital outs don't even use a pre, just go direct. If you're using some older analog synths pres I've used or heard that I liked were the Neve 1073 (nice low end, really made an old mini moog come to life), Chandler Germaium, and for a strong, cleaner sound, the Avalon 2022. API 312 will certainly do the job too. Just remember that everyone's ears are a bit different. Try out a few units if you can before you make your decision.

Again, some synths won't need a pre. My Roland V Synth can light up a signal path like a Christmas tree with the volume on 2. By far the hottest output I ever had on a keyboard. Direct in was certainly the best for that type of synth.
Then Baikonour [16/1/07 10.26pm] says its a waist of money! I am thinking of a pre for my minimoog and love the above quote where a neve 1073 made a minimoog come to life, if i can improve my sound i will go for it, mostly live but dudes are saying to me my soundcraft 200 series pres are good enough that i wont hear the difference... any thoughts most welcome.

Last edited by Mark Richardson; 20th June 2012 at 03:45 AM.. Reason: typo
Old 20th June 2012
  #25
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Meh DI
Old 9th December 2012
  #26
227861
Guest
Bump! Need to know this in the current time.
Old 9th December 2012
  #27
Gear Head
 

Empirical Labs Mike-e
Old 9th December 2012
  #28
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degas's Avatar
 

My synths go through a JDI Radial into a 1073 DPA.
Nothing to complain about there.
That said, I wouldn't hesitate to run my synths through any of the higher end pre amps/di's.
Old 9th December 2012
  #29
Gear Addict
 

I like Chandler gear.

My Moog Voyager likes a germ.

My Dsi Polyevolver likes a Tg2.
Old 9th December 2012
  #30
Gear Addict
 
skinnypete's Avatar
 

I have a Moog Little Phatty and I run it through a Vintech 573 -> API 550B, sounds great to me. Thumbsup for Neve-style pres and API eqs.

Sent from my Droid
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