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Should I sell my UA LA-610 and get a Avalon 737?
Old 19th June 2008
  #31
Gear Maniac
 
Amstel's Avatar
 

posted by wildcowboy's in 2005:

"here is my priority list of the things that make a difference, from most to least:

1 song
2 performance (and the producer´s abililty to coach the talent to better the performance)
3 source sound & room acoustics
4 mic selection & placement

.
long gap
.
.
5 preamp
6 ad converter"


Jules?????
Old 12th February 2010
  #32
LA-610

I couldnt buy the Avalon 737 or LA-610 so easy. Since it has to be shipped from USA and it also gets stopped at Russian customs control. Finally I was able to find and buy the UA LA-610 MK1 used unit for almost $2000. Believe me that's considered lucky, because I spent about two weeks on the internet and making phonecalls just to find one around for any cash.

Right now I have a Neumann TLM49 mic into the LA-610 (or old JoeMeek OneQ). Compared to OneQ, the LA-610 seems more solid and round. The vocal seems to sound very good and punchy, like it has more weight on it. The only problem I have is the unit's headroom - when performers go from low volumes to high ones I get a distortion, which doesn't bother much in a mix, but is heard well when vocals get played back in solo. Also the vocals seem to be oversaturated sometimes, but I guess it has to do with the impedance (500ohms/2kohms) or the 4.5khz boost that I use. Another thing is that I dont have the low cut thingie on my LA-610 unit which brings PPPlosives to the record and then I have to low cut them on the EQ after tracking. I was thinking the fat sounding TLM49 together with the fat sounding LA-610 was not such a good formula, but have found enough posts that claim it was a well used couple for many recordings. The compressor is perfect and transparent once you get the feel for it.

Like the only friggin thing is that headroom issue with MK1 units. However, I've read someone say to try to use it on -5 gain. I think that should work.
Old 12th February 2010
  #33
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WunderBro Flo's Avatar
If you run into distortion with the 610 make sure the output gain is at max, setting the level to the ad converter with the Input gain only, that way it is very unlikwly that you get any distortion. When using the compressor make sure to use a low threshold so you are not tempted to drive the compression with more level from the preamp section, which will possibly and unneccessarily distort the signal. Basic rules of gain staging...
Rock on!
Pat

ps-use a popscreen, filtering pops away is not as good imho as not recording them to start with. Besides, they trigger the compressor...
Old 12th February 2010
  #34
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WunderBro Flo's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Amstel View Post
Jules?????
it's been a while...grown up yet? heh
Rock!
Pat
Old 12th February 2010
  #35
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steelyfan's Avatar
 

keep the la-610.

it's got so much character, but it can be very clean if you want.

Really, with the e.q. it's quite a few pres in one, just take it easy of the saturation and you can do lots with it.


steelyfan
Old 14th February 2010
  #36
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adamlloyd's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by WildCowboys View Post
If you run into distortion with the 610 make sure the output gain is at max, setting the level to the ad converter with the Input gain only, that way it is very unlikwly that you get any distortion.
Really? The manual says the level should be between 7 and 10...With the output Gain knob at max, that would be unfeasible (way too loud/overdriven)... I always tried keeping the output Gain around 5 (which I believe is unity), now I'm curious how this other approach would sound...
Old 14th February 2010
  #37
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WunderBro Flo's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by adamlloyd83 View Post
Really? The manual says the level should be between 7 and 10...With the output Gain knob at max, that would be unfeasible (way too loud/overdriven)... I always tried keeping the output Gain around 5 (which I believe is unity), now I'm curious how this other approach would sound...
try it! The most common cause for internally distorting preamps is too much input gain, while attenuating the output too much. With the out set to max and the input set low enough not to overdrive the following input (try an AD while bypassing the compression to get a feeling what levels it spits out) you will have a hard time to get the internal distortion many are complaining about.
Rock in!
Pat
Old 14th February 2010
  #38
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adamlloyd's Avatar
 

cool, ok i will.

one other thing, when you say setting the level with the "input gain only," do you mean the Level knob? or the actual input gain knob (th 5 db increments)... I'm assuming is the Level knob? Where do you find you have the input gain usually with this technique?
Old 14th February 2010
  #39
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BOWIE's Avatar
I put the output fairly high and mostly adjust the input. It is true that the input (with its limited headroom) is responsible for most of the distortion issues on the 610s.
Old 14th February 2010
  #40
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ChaosCreation's Avatar
 

go with a lunchbox! get an MA5
Old 14th February 2010
  #41
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tysonviolin's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by adamlloyd83 View Post
cool, ok i will.

one other thing, when you say setting the level with the "input gain only," do you mean the Level knob? or the actual input gain knob (th 5 db increments)... I'm assuming is the Level knob? Where do you find you have the input gain usually with this technique?
I'm confused by this too. I think what they are calling the "input knob" is actually the output gain knob for the pre. What they are calling the "output knob" is the overall output of the compressor. I own the 6176 and not the la610 so I could be wrong.
Old 14th February 2010
  #42
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popmann's Avatar
I love the LA610. I've had various pres through here over the last few years...Great River, Millenia, Vintech, Demeter, RNP, Brick, API 312 and 512c, A couple of the Adesigns 500 series...

While there are other preamps that made WONDEFUL sounds in combinations with given mics...the LA610 stays...because it always yields a good sounding track--be it bass or EP DI, vocal w/ condenser or Sm7b, Egtr amp with anything from a 121 to 57 to 421 to Um70s...even responsible for some nicely colored acoustic tracks with the Sm81.

The key is learning it's somewhat non intuitive gain controls. When I first got it, it fuzzed up seemingly everything...I had an assistant engineer in town show me how he gain staged it--ever since, it has shined. At some point, I replaced the 12ax7s for NOS 12at7s...it still has ample gain and kinda "nicened" the midrange a bit. I've used it with HELLA high output LDCs and low output stuffs like the 121 and Sm7b...all of the above turn out just fine.

It's a nice preamp. It's colorful in a musical way...but, less so than it get reputation for around here, IMO.
Old 14th February 2010
  #43
Lives for gear
They both have their uses.

But I'm still tryig to wrap my head around someone selling a pie because of negatibe comments on GS...

And then buying a 737.....the most bashed gear on GS.
Old 14th February 2010
  #44
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adamlloyd's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by tysonviolin View Post
I'm confused by this too. I think what they are calling the "input knob" is actually the output gain knob for the pre. What they are calling the "output knob" is the overall output of the compressor. I own the 6176 and not the la610 so I could be wrong.
Yeah I think so, meaning the "input knob" is the "Level" knob, and the "output knob" is the big "Gain" knob on the right.

Quote:
Originally Posted by popmann View Post
The key is learning it's somewhat non intuitive gain controls. When I first got it, it fuzzed up seemingly everything...I had an assistant engineer in town show me how he gain staged it--ever since, it has shined.
What technique did he show you, popmann?
Old 14th February 2010
  #45
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fhames's Avatar
 

I have a couple LA 610's. Had them for several years. Meantime, I've added some other pre's, including The River MP-2NV. The 610's hold up very well and still get used among the other amps. I use them exclusively on piano.



Bryant - Hames Music
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