Welcome to my audio-blog!
Here I'll post shootouts, some personal audio-research and more. Studio-related stuff mostly.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

UA 610 solo vs. Mackie Onyx

A new preamp-shootout. It's a little bit oranges and apples this time.
But, as I needed the test for myself, I might as well share it with you.

- UA 610 solo 1channel, tube pre, $700
- Mackie Onyx 800r 8ch, transistor pre, with AD-convertors, $1000

UA 610 solo
Mackie 800r

Vocal, NT5:
A: Onyx  UA610-L10
B: Onyx UA610-G10

Guitar, NT5:
A: Onyx  UA610-L10

Bass DI:
A: Onyx  UA610-L10

You can find all files, 16 bit wav.zip and mp3, Here
Additional folder for C1jjMod Vocal, Cad M179 Vocal and SM58 Vocal

Technical information:
Røde NT 5 (matched pair) > Onyx > Onyx AD
Røde NT 5 (matched pair) > UA 610 solo > RME Hdsp 9632

Not matched converters, but.. that's life :)

You can find all files, 16 bit wav.zip and mp3, Here
Additional folder for C1jjmod_vocal, Cad M179_vocal, SM58_vocal and BassDI

For the NT5-files and BassDI, the takes are identical.
For the other folders, it's different takes.

UA 610 solo: L10 means Level 10 (clearest setting), G10 means Gain 10 (tubiest setting)

Recorded at -10bdFS (+-3db), normalized with RMS-window 0.3-2s (depending on source)


  • The UA 610 solo is just a very good preamp
    • In the clean setting, it's rather clean and neutral
    • When dialing in some more gain, it really gives you something extra.
    • Rocks on DI Bass
    • It's balanced in the low end
    • and pleasant sounding in the high end
  • The Onyx, though being a useful preamp for most sources, does not have the same pro-studio-quality. Though, this should be expected when comparing features and prices.
I'm just very happy with getting this into my studio. I can't think of any source that the UA 610 solo wouldn't handle well.

Gearslutz: Here

Friday, September 9, 2011

Gap 73 vs. Art Mpa and Mackie Onyx

This time I'm checking out the Golden Age Project  Gap73-preamp.

The Gap73 hit the market a couple of years ago. It has been praised for being a quality preamp with a very moderate price tag ($300).

I'm testing it together with my other preamps, so these are the contenders:

  • Gap 73 (main object of the test)
  • Art MPA
  • Mackie Onyx 800r
Art Mpa

Mackie Onyx 800r
Nt5-1: Mpa Gap73
Nt5-2: Onyx Gap73
C1jjMod, Gap73: Trim17 Trim12 Trim9

You'll find wav 16bit and mp3 -files Here
Additional folders: Cad M179  Sm58  Elguitar(DI)  Bassguitar(DI)

Technical details:

Nt5 (matched pair) > Mpa > Rme Hdsp 9632
Nt5 (matched pair) > Gap73 > Rme Hdsp 9632 (#1 goes with the Mpa, the other with the Onyx)
Nt5 (matched pair) > Onyx > Mackie Onyx 800r

Recorded within 1,5dbFS, normalized to same RMS-level (100ms window)
Mpa: +20db, impedance 3 o'clock, Sovtek tubes
Gap73: Trim 12 o'clock

And I've added some more tests of the Gap73:
Studio Projects C1 jj mod > Gap73 > Rme Hdsp 9632
-> 3 trim/gain-positions

Recorded within 2dbFS, normalized to same RMS-level (100ms window)

The additional folders: No identical takes
El. guitar, Yamaha Pacifica 112J, DI, pickup middle, Earnie ball 10
Bassguitar, Morgan YB-48, DI, picup 50/50 neck/bridge

I've added some new files, see additional folders.

- I didn't fancy the Gap73-sound that much, kind of new that..
- The Gap73 wasn't the best match for my C1 jj mod, as both are a little dark.
- The gap73 sounded very nice on BassDI, and SM58 dynamic mic.
- Learned: "Trust your ears Luke"

Gearslutz: Thread here