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Cleanest most Transparent Lunchbox Pre
Old 3rd February 2007
  #1
Gear Maniac
 
electropoet's Avatar
 

Cleanest most Transparent Lunchbox Pre

Hi,
Just wondering what the cleanest, most transparent 500 series lunchbox pre is...so I can add it too my list of wants. heh

Either current or projected models.

Something along the lines of Millennia or Benchmark.

Already have some of the main colors covered.

Thanks, and by the way, been lurking for some time...great board and resource here. Glad to be an official part now.

Scott
Old 3rd February 2007
  #2
Gear Addict
 
drummerboy1533's Avatar
 

Old School Audio A series???
Old 3rd February 2007
  #3
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numrologst's Avatar
where you at in texas?

I think all the lunchbox style preamps are gonna have some color/vibe to them... I think the osa mp1-a is pretty solid and fairly transparent
Old 3rd February 2007
  #4
IME the Buzz Elixir (although it is a bit more colored than a Millennia in the lows being that the Buzz is transformer output)... the OSA MP1-A is quite transparent especially compared to the other 3 OSA preamps in the same format which have a lot more color.
Old 5th February 2007
  #5
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I'm in Corpus Christi but spend a lot of time in Austin and plan on moving up there eventually. Folks live in Ft. Worth and enjoy it up there.
Old 5th February 2007
  #6
John Hardy is making the M1 for lunchbox,

but its not transformerless if thats transparent

to you, and its not out yet.

Actually he's making the twin servo first which is high gain clean then the others.

anyway .......
Old 22nd July 2009
  #7
Here for the gear
 

the shinybox Si
has a ton of lean gain for ribbons
Old 22nd July 2009
  #8
Quote:
Originally Posted by clinton View Post
the shinybox Si
has a ton of lean gain for ribbons
+1 on the Si, but its not exactly transparent to the microphone in my experience. It adds some really nice, musical low mid weight to the audio, that is very helpful. I can see how its considered clean though.

The Forssel SMP-500 is one I can highly recommend. Great sounding module!!
Old 22nd July 2009
  #9
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Teddy Ray's Avatar
 

DAV model 501

Ive got one on hand(couple actually) that I dont have a box for yet, if you want to try it out...

shoot me a PM ..
Old 22nd July 2009
  #10
500 series nutjob
 
pan60's Avatar
 

hands down the Fred Forssell SMP-500!
Attached Thumbnails
Cleanest most Transparent Lunchbox Pre-forssell_smp-500_2.jpg  
Old 22nd July 2009
  #11
mds
Lives for gear
 

The DAV has to be up there...I havent used the 500 version, but the BG1/2s are very natural preamps.
Old 22nd July 2009
  #12
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Flying_Dutchman's Avatar
 

i never heard sth better in clean land than Forssell SMP-2, so i guess the lunchboxversion will also be great, it´s the same electronics, right?
Old 22nd July 2009
  #13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flying_Dutchman View Post
i never heard sth better in clean land than Forssell SMP-2, so i guess the lunchboxversion will also be great, it´s the same electronics, right?
SMP 500 Microphone Preamplifier A version of our well-known SMP-2 mic preamp

Old 22nd July 2009
  #14
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Old 24th July 2009
  #15
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allencollins's Avatar
 

anyone got some clips of crunch gtr with this pre? or Bass gtr
is it identical to the SMP-2?

THANK YOU
Old 24th July 2009
  #16
500 series nutjob
 
pan60's Avatar
 

Quote:
identical to the SMP-2?
not identical but oh, oh hold it, review interview coming: )~
just waiting on the editor to get things proofed: )~
Old 1st August 2009
  #17
Here for the gear
Hello pan60,

When will the review be posted?

Very curious to read it.

Thanks!
Old 1st August 2009
  #18
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larry b's Avatar
 

The Forssell looks super sweet. Me want.
Old 1st August 2009
  #19
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ISedlacek's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flying_Dutchman View Post
i never heard sth better in clean land than Forssell SMP-2, so i guess the lunchboxversion will also be great, it´s the same electronics, right?
His Master's Voice:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fred View Post
Well I have to say that, much to my relief, there is a subtle difference between the two. Had been no sonic difference between them, than all of the work I did on the SMP-2 preamp cards and support circuitry (power supply, PCB lay-out, filtering, etc) would have been for nothing!

While I did use most the basic SMP-2 preamp card design (which is an ALL discrete JFET design) for the SMP-500, I had to modify the output stage for use with the lower power supply voltages of the API 500 series. I expected to hear a difference between the two and hoped that it would be subtle. It was.

When I say there is a subtle difference I really do mean subtle. However for many people who do high-end recordings subtle differences are important, and for an equipment designer subtle differences are really, really important. It can be REALLY difficult to make very small sonic improvments to very similar circuit designs.

I have only directly compared the SMP-500 to SMP-2 while recording a really good sounding acoustic guitar ( my Martin D18 1937 Authentic) being played by a really good player (a friend named Bruce Bishop). The mics were a Scheops CMC6/MK2 stereo pair. While I could hear a difference, as I said it was subtle. I would describe the difference this way... the SMP-2 had a little bit more honest or balanced lower mid-range performance than the SMP-500. I'm talking about the "wood tones" not the boomy, "chest thumping" range. The SMP-500 seemed just a little bit "lean" in that area compared to the SMP-2.

I have some clients using both preamps for classical recording and I hope of get their comments sometime in the future. I also want to try using both preamps on other sources like full drum kits, grand piano, etc. But for now, my comments after recording acoustic guitar is that's about all I can share with you.

I hope this info helps.

Cheers,
Old 1st August 2009
  #20
Quote:
Originally Posted by ISedlacek View Post
His Master's Voice:
Old 1st August 2009
  #21
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Teddy Ray's Avatar
 

the forsell amp is clean. nothing spectacular or mind blowing. just a clean amp.. passes signal, doesn't do any harm.

there are a million others. buzz, sca, dav, chandler.... really, you'd probably be happy with any of them.


(there is a comparison with a Forsell mic amp and the RME Micstasy in the remote thread(and yes i've used the amp)... the difference in those samples is negligible if there at all which tells me that realistically there is a whole lot of smoke blowing and hype that really does not hold up in practice..not just with the forssell, either, but damn near everything else. the reality is there is no gear that is going to bring world peace, heal the sick, etc. in the scheme of things, the mic amplifier really isn't all that important..)

the only thing that can be mind-blowing is the source.

3 things to really take into consideration.

users/owners of the units are going to brag on the units because they own them. certain emotional attachment and pride that comes with ownership..there is a natural tendency to brag about what you own.

dealers are going to brag on units because they sell them..again, totally natural. Pure economics.

but....the unclouded truth lives *outside* of those two viewpoints.
Old 1st August 2009
  #22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teddy Ray View Post
the forsell amp is clean. nothing spectacular or mind blowing. just a clean amp.. passes signal, doesn't do any harm.

there are a million others. buzz, sca, dav, chandler.... really, you'd probably be happy with any of them.
Truly would! Does the Chandler belong in here? I don't think so.

Quote:
(there is a comparison with a Forsell mic amp and the RME Micstasy in the remote thread(and yes i've used the amp)... the difference in those samples is negligible if there at all which tells me that realistically there is a whole lot of smoke blowing and hype that really does not hold up in practice..not just with the forssell, either, but damn near everything else. the reality is there is no gear that is going to bring world peace, heal the sick, etc. in the scheme of things, the mic amplifier really isn't all that important..)
That was a Comparison on Gearslutz. Not my studio. Does this really hold weight to you, given the subjective nature of recording and music in general? Of course what you suggest is true, [mic amps don't matter as much as other stuff, maybe??] but we're just talking about gear and the designers behind it.

Quote:
the only thing that can be mind-blowing is the source.
I agree with you, but I believe Fred was talking about the difference in power supply and circuit design on his amplifiers and not anything specifically related to how good the performance is before his design. That's sort of suggested in his post, that engineers are picky m/f's and his power supply design MATTERS to them and him. I think its important to teach people about this part of audio equipment design and the impact it has on recording, if you are an engineer, the entire sum of a device is worth worrying about a little bit, no? I would suggest Fred's design is the cleanest 500 unit I have tried, [but there are many others, yes].

Quote:
3 things to really take into consideration.

users/owners of the units are going to brag on the units because they own them. certain emotional attachment and pride that comes with ownership..there is a natural tendency to brag about what you own.

dealers are going to brag on units because they sell them..again, totally natural. Pure economics.

but....the unclouded truth lives *outside* of those two viewpoints.
Aside from being Biased, I personally evauluated the SMP500 and really, really liked it for the way that it sounded, on its own merit. With that said, I think trying a 500 series preamp or processor [or any of this stuff] is actually quite safe to do, as there are many, many dealers that are cool and support your purchase by trying to help you find the right product for your studio and music. The only final arbiter of this choice is the end user. You can try the module, and return it to your dealer if you do not like it.
Old 1st August 2009
  #23
500 series nutjob
 
pan60's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dougwendal View Post
Hello pan60,

When will the review be posted?

Very curious to read it.

Thanks!
any day, just as soon as i get the proof back from the editor, so any day: )~

Quote:
Originally Posted by Teddy Ray View Post
the forsell amp is clean. nothing spectacular or mind blowing. just a clean amp.. passes signal, doesn't do any harm.

there are a million others. buzz, sca, dav, chandler.... really, you'd probably be happy with any of them.
any one might be happy with any of these i would agree, but they a couple you mention just do not belong with the Cleanest most Transparent Lunchbox pre description.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Teddy Ray View Post
3 things to really take into consideration.

users/owners of the units are going to brag on the units because they own them.
agree most often this will be the case.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Teddy Ray View Post
certain emotional attachment and pride that comes with ownership..there is a natural tendency to brag about what you own.
and i own a very large number of 500 format pres: )~
i like bragging on most all of them, but i also feel i would offer a recommendation based on what is being ask for in a given thread.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Teddy Ray View Post
dealers are going to brag on units because they sell them..again, totally natural. Pure economics.
go figure, I AM NO GEAR PIMP!
i have no vested interest in recommending a given piece of gear, other than just voicing my humble views.
views based on gear i have in here ( or have had in here ), to check out, and not just for the weekend.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Teddy Ray View Post
but....the unclouded truth lives *outside* of those two viewpoints.
in the end, the only unclouded truth would be for the end user to audition gear in their own environment, and decide what works for the them.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Roc Mixwell View Post
Truly would! Does the Chandler belong in here? I don't think so.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roc Mixwell View Post
That was a Comparison on Gearslutz. Not my studio. Does this really hold weight to you, given the subjective nature of recording and music in general? Of course what you suggest is true, [mic amps don't matter as much as other stuff, maybe??] but we're just talking about gear and the designers behind it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roc Mixwell View Post
I agree with you, but I believe Fred was talking about the difference in power supply and circuit design on his amplifiers and not anything specifically related to how good the performance is before his design. That's sort of suggested in his post, that engineers are picky m/f's and his power supply design MATTERS to them and him. I think its important to teach people about this part of audio equipment design and the impact it has on recording, if you are an engineer, the entire sum of a device is worth worrying about a little bit, no? I would suggest Fred's design is the cleanest 500 unit I have tried, [but there are many others, yes].
ditto!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roc Mixwell View Post

Aside from being Biased, I personally evauluated the SMP500 and really, really liked it for the way that it sounded, on its own merit. With that said, I think trying a 500 series preamp or processor [or any of this stuff] is actually quite safe to do, as there are many, many dealers that are cool and support your purchase by trying to help you find the right product for your studio and music. The only final arbiter of this choice is the end user. You can try the module, and return it to your dealer if you do not like it.

a big plus Roc Mixwell!
Old 12th August 2009
  #24
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Flying_Dutchman's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ISedlacek View Post
His Master's Voice:
Old 4th October 2009
  #25
500 series nutjob
 
pan60's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dougwendal View Post
Hello pan60,

When will the review be posted?

Very curious to read it.

Thanks!
at last: )~

i had a blast chatting with Fred!
here's the link

Fred Forssell and his SMP-500 pre
Old 6th October 2009
  #26
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musicbydesign's Avatar
 

+1 on Hardy and Forssell as I will be getting one or the other.

Don't forget about the Safe Sound P501. A clean 500 Pre & Compressor all in one for $699. Ive seen 'em at Zenproaudio.com
They say its very transparent (even compressor) so it sounds like it would be great for tracking. I might get one of these also as Im a 500 freak.

Old 7th October 2009
  #27
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Adebar's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teddy Ray View Post


(there is a comparison with a Forsell mic amp and the RME Micstasy in the remote thread(and yes i've used the amp)... the difference in those samples is negligible if there at all which tells me that realistically there is a whole lot of smoke blowing and hype that really does not hold up in practice..
Maybe, maybe not.

The Forssell´s output was fed to the Micstasy´s analog input. So in this comparison you don´t hear the Forssell alone, you also hear the analog input stage of the Micstasy in the audiofile.


Daniel Fuchs wrote regarding this setup
Quote:
I was trying to compare preamps, not Pre/ADC combinations. The SMP-2 doesn't have AD conversion anyhow, so there was no other choice. And I don't think the SMP will require specific proprietary conversion to sound good, will it?
As the German importer of Forssell Technologies I may be biased, but I could imagine a more neutral setaup to compare the mic preamp of Micstasy and SMP-2 (SMP-500), don´t you?
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