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Dear god help me.. I have been bitten by the 500 Series bug!
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Production Techniques  
Author Dear god help me.. I have been bitten by the 500 Series bug!
D/A A/D
So I am seriously thinking about jumping into some 500 series gear, the new chandler has me chomping @ the bit... The new Shadow Hill stuff looks amazing, and there is just SO MUCH out there right now.

So who is rocking a 500 setup??? School me boys, I'ma need some learnin'...

help
Babaluma
i was sorely tempted a couple of years ago, but decided to go for full size outboard instead, mainly because i wasn't likely to be needing a mobile setup, and i had heard that the power supplies were generally better in standalone gear. it's also nice to have a bit more speace to tweak stuff.

if you are stuck for space or need a mobile setp, it's ideal though. i am rather partial to the purple rack.

i started a thread about the availability of 500 series modules on the tapeop forum a couple of years ago:

http://messageboard.tapeop.com/viewtopic.php?t=49035

i believe there is a similar thread on gearslutz too.

i don't see any 500 stuff in my future, but you never know. wink let us know what you get and how it sounds!
JohnLRice
RIGHT before I jumped into building a modular synth I was flipping out over 500 series mic pres etc! I kept thinking to myself "I think part of the reason I like these so much is that they look a little like modular synths!" hihi hyper

I have the Brent Averill 11 space rack mount box and I think it's awesome, very well made! applause (I started with a 6 space rack but HAD to move up to an 11! thumbs up ) I highly recommend Brent's racks!
http://brentaverill.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=4&It emid=31

Brent's 500 series 312A preamp is also most excellent (I have one):
http://brentaverill.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=3&It emid=30

I also have a Shadow Hills Mono Gama and an API 512c, both most excellent! hyper

I have an Old School Audio pre to which, I was a little undewhelmed by, but I kept it because it sounded a lot different (darker) than the others. (good to have choices)

And of course, I have ALL of the A-Designs Audio 500 series mic pres! hyper hyper hyper hyper hyper
http://www.adesignsaudio.com/p1_emseries.html
They are all really great!
I was fortunate to get in on the early beta testing and I ended up doing pictures for the A-Designs web site and promo material so I bartered my photo time and efforts for some deep discounts!! w00t They have since gotten a new photographer who does some excellent work too cry but logistically using me probably wasn't practical for them (they had to ship stuff to me etc and I'm sure there are more than a few compotent and convienient photographers in the Bay area! lol )

Here's a couple of my pics you may have see before here on Muff's or GearSlutz:




goiks
the a-designs p-1 (500 series/one channel of the pacifica) is indeed beautiful. howver, i think i'm about to sell mine (and 2-space 500hr rack) to get a metric halo uln-8. i've been whittling down my setup to be even more mobile. /remote.
Kent
Modulez iz Modulez iz Modulez... it's all crack!

I've got some early Aphex CX-1 (compressors) & EQF-1 (EQs) in a lunchbox which I really like. I'm also partial to the dbx 900-series modules. When I bought them, there was actually more variety in that format than in 500. 500 has exploded like Euro-rack.

Check out the Buzz Audio & Purple Audio stuff. Really nice.
Fnord
Currently rocking a half full purple sweet 10 rack.

Purple Biz MK- I like, sounds good, has gain AND level controls, which I find to be an incredibly useful feature.

Shadow Hills Mono Gama - 3 difft output transformers == 3 difft "flavors" of pre in one slot. verynice.

Chandler Ltd. Germanium pre - Doesnt work in every case, works in mine, sounds tasty.

Purple Odd eq - It's the only EQ i own, so I have nothing to compare it to. I could add in a bunch of annoying adjectives here about how it adds "sparkle and shine" to my tracks, but really, I only use it subtractively, and in small doses at that.

Purple Action Compressor - Again, I have nothing to compare it to, save for some compressor/gate guitar pedals. It uh, does what it's supposed to do, but comparing it to other hardware compressors isn't something I'm in a position to do.


I sometimes kick myself for not getting pairs of my pre's, so keep that in mind.
Babaluma
it sounds like you have a nice 500 rack fnord, i have to admit to wondering what all those tasty pieces would sound like in my studio.

i'm in the same position as you really, in that i don't have anything to compare stuff to. i have a stereo eq, a stereo pre and a pair of comps. i have some nice pieces, but have never had the chance to demo a lot of the stuff i really wish i could. all i know is that since acquiring these things over the last 18 months or so, the quality of sound in my studio has like quadrupled timed a zillion. applause

(sorry, bit drunk...) Guinness ftw!

at least two of everything is nice because it means you can use stuff for processing stereo tracks/whole mixes/mastering stuff through etc. not to mention the m/s fun you can have. i've found that applies to certain synth modules too!

screaming goo yo screaming goo yo screaming goo yo
Soy Sos
I have a 6 space lunch box.

2x API 512-c ... Amazing clean mic pre, seems to sound great on everything. Total high end solution for all my mic-ing needs.

1x Purple Biz mic pre ...Sounds great on almost everything. Really useful DI
1x Purple Action compressor. Clean and accurate, but I'm not in love with it.
Looking to trade towards the Chandler comp of some other 500 comp.

2x Speck EQ's ... Clean, useful, flexible, accurate but not really vibey.

That's what I've got. I don't regret the investment, I use the lunch box on every tracking session at my studio. Mostly though I track vocals through my
Jim Williams modded dbx 160's
http://www.audioupgrades.com/

I have a firm policy not to lust after more modules. My studio is my business and more 500 series stuff will not make me more money.
LOL!
lol
Reptil
no lunchbox, but a wooden box with two API 550a (Huntington 2520)
this week I jumped the gun on two 550 from the Demedio desk (which is now being decommissioned)
I also have 2 DIY kits of Peter Purpose 525 type compressors, but it's quite a difficult build, and I want to do some synth DIY first, before I fuck that up. It's a 525 with attack and decay. Ed Anderson transformer. I'll get the red dot 2520 clones,
I'm in love with the seventies API sound. So nasty nice. oops

Other stuff that may have to add to my setup are these API 312 type preamps:
http://www.eisenaudio.com/products/eac312v/
http://www.classicapi.com/catalog/

A compressor that is much praised is the BAC500. I haven't heard it.

Radial stuff: DI with phase shift!


and the "Voice Of God" (VOG)


and the "workhorse" w00t
http://www.gearslutz.com/board/attachment.php?attachmentid=138337d=125 4462279
parasitk
Kent wrote:
Modulez iz Modulez iz Modulez... it's all crack!


Too true.

I have a(n older) lunchbox with a Mono Gama and API 525 in it. I'm looking to add a second Gama, OR sell that and buy two of those Eisen EAC312V's Reptil mentioned. I'm torn at the moment. I'd be selling my A-Designs REDDI to make either happen. I love it, but I want to focus tracking everything through the same pair of pres/DIs. Several years ago I started to get caught up in the "optimized input for xyz source" game. Although it got me some awesome sounding stuff (REDDI, Phoenix Audio Nice DI) I'm not in that head anymore.

And I too happen to really dig the old API sound! love
panda30y
Welcome to the deep end of gear buying D/A A/D! d'oh!
500 series stuff is like a gateway drug to more expensive recording equipment.

Ok here's my response to your post. 500 series gear is fantastic, and has a lot of support similar to eurorack gear in modular synth-land. What exactly are you after? Pre's? Eq's? Compressor? Or everything?

I've noticed you are lusting for shadow hills and chandler (not a big surprise w/ the trends i've seen on this forum hmmm.....), and they do make good sounding modules. If you are interested in the new Chandler Little Devil series compressor or EQ, I would have to say my personal experience is that it isn't that great, and I wasn't terribly impressed meh. In terms of eq's and compressors, there are better options in my opinion in the 500 series market. Check out API, because their eq's are just dead sexy, and sound great. Avedis has a sweet sound eq too. Compressors I personally prefer to go with standalone units, as none of the 500 series compressors sound nearly as good as many of the standalone compressor units, including chandler and shadow hills 500 series compressors to their standalone compressors, but you will be paying a premium for standalone.

Shadow Hills is a smaller company that is getting better and better with every month. The Mono Gama rocks, and is very versatile with the selectable transformers. And their compressors are pretty good, but again I think the standalone compressors sound better, and I would prefer to get those instead. Just expect their standalone outboard gear to be fucking huge and heavy ambulance.

Here is what I prefer in 500 series. A lot of the pre's and eq's sound great in 500. In terms of preamps, API 512c, BAC API 312, Avedis MA5, and Shadow Hills Mono Gama are the 4 I think offer the best/most in terms of pre amps. If I wanted a tube preamp, I would get LaChapell, and that is the only 2 slot preamp I would get. The Great River preamp doesn't tickly my fancy as much as any of the other preamps I've listed. But all of the other options will still sound good, I just prefer these 4 preamps in terms of sound, quality, and features to all the others.

In terms of EQ's, I really like the API EQ's (550, 550A, 550B, 560), and the Avedis EQ. I can't say enough about Avedis, and I think they are greatly overlooked on this forum. Fantastic stuff. Also Brent Averill (BAC) is a fantastic company, and their equipment is amazing as well and don't get as much attention as API, Shadow Hills, and Chandler with this forum.

But there are also some great preamp/eq modules such as the newer LaChapell which finally fully utilitzes the 2 slots you take up as you can use the second slot for line inputs into the eq, or you can just toggle a switch and send the preamp's lineout straight into the eq, so you could run the two channels in parallel. Also, perhaps the tastiest is the Helios Type 69 preamp/eq. It should come out in 500 series format in the next year or so, and it sounds fantastic. I've had my hands on the prototype for an hour or so, and I think it sounds as good as the larger type 69 format they offer. In fact, I probably still would drop 500 series format just to get the Helios type69 format because I love the eq's and pre's enough that I wouldn't want any of the other 500 series offerings.

Now my reply to other posts:
Fnord
Chandler's Germanium Pre works in all of the newer API cases. I know that the old ones had the biggest issue with Chandler, but you can still use the older API lunchboxes as long as you turn the power on for about 3 seconds, then toggle the on/off button off to on really fast. It gives the module the extra power boost it needs to run properly. Sounds very janky, but that's what they have recommended.

Reptil
I've tried the Pete's Place BAC500 (not to be mistakened with brent averill) and I must say it does sound better than most of the 500 series compressors.

OK, this is a patheticlly long post about 500 series format, and I apologize. I need to get out of bed now...
Kent
Reptil wrote:

this week I jumped the gun on two 550 from the Demedio desk (which is now being decommissioned)


Uh... eek! are these from the full-on desk that Vintage King has or is it unrelated to that. I'd hate to see them part out that desk!
ignatius
if i didn't already have a small format mixer that has some killer analogue mojo i'd think about 500 series now that the radial rack is on the way and it has summing, inserts etc and DB25 connectors so you can make a small all analog mixer for tracking a synth rig.

but there's also the great river/mercenary audio rig coming out that has 4 pre's + 20 other inputs and summing, monitor control etc.

http://www.gearslutz.com/board/new-product-alert/438979-new-great-rive r-product.html

"Its a 20X2 Recording Mixer with 4 newly designed Great River Mic amps, complete with console inspired Monitor/Master section. Transformer Balanced Master Inserts. Complete with Bypass switch."
Audio Resistance
ignatius wrote:
if i didn't already have a small format mixer that has some killer analogue mojo i'd think about 500 series now that the radial rack is on the way and it has summing, inserts etc and DB25 connectors so you can make a small all analog mixer for tracking a synth rig.

but there's also the great river/mercenary audio rig coming out that has 4 pre's + 20 other inputs and summing, monitor control etc.

http://www.gearslutz.com/board/new-product-alert/438979-new-great-rive r-product.html

"Its a 20X2 Recording Mixer with 4 newly designed Great River Mic amps, complete with console inspired Monitor/Master section. Transformer Balanced Master Inserts. Complete with Bypass switch."


Stop it already evil

There I was waiting around for the Radial and you show me that. However a buddy of mine had a couple of the Great Rivers and I prefer my API any day.

Seeing all that shit is the reason I do not go to gearslutz much anymore. Especially since I have started my Serge panels.
D/A A/D
I have no clue why I didn't get any notifications about this thread! d'oh!

I will have to prosess all this awesome info now, but at this moment... RADIAL??!?!?!?!!!!!?!?!! I had no idea they were into the 500 stuff! I <3 Radial sooooo much, I have used a lot of thier gear over the years. Plus they are Canadian, so thats just extra awesome!

Will read now...
ignatius
D/A A/D wrote:

I will have to prosess all this awesome info now, but at this moment... RADIAL??!?!?!?!!!!!?!?!! .


they have a rack coming out and as per the pic in this thread they bought Burgin McDaniel who make the Komit compressor for 500 series.. or maybe they just bought the compressor.. not clear on that.

http://vintageking.com/Radial-Engineering-Workhorse;jsessionid=0a01084 31f432bc944aee3394eae833af612b7150b9b.e3eSbNyQc3mLe34Pa38Ta38QaN10?sc= 13&category=37680
JohnLRice
I took a quick pic of my 500 rack for ya! hyper

mmp
500 series stuff is like crack for audio addicts.

I have three mostly filled 6 space racks.

2 Great River Mp500NV Pres
2 LaChapell 583S Tube Pres
2 BAE racked vintage API 312 Pres
2 API vintage API 500A EQs
2 Purple Action Compressors
1 API 560 Graphic

I love tracking synths through either the 312s or LaChapells. I am really hot to get the newer LaChapell pres with EQ,
but have been slowed down by other distractions from my synth addiction. Also, a germanium based pre of some sort will be in the rack eventually.

And I will never sell the old API 500As I have...just love 'em on just about anything.

I find it funny to find this thread here, as I am just starting up on the modular synth addiction.

I guess both are gateway drugs.

Regards,

MM
Reptil
Kent wrote:
Reptil wrote:

this week I jumped the gun on two 550 from the Demedio desk (which is now being decommissioned)


Uh... eek! are these from the full-on desk that Vintage King has or is it unrelated to that. I'd hate to see them part out that desk!


here's more information. http://www.gearslutz.com/board/gearslutz-secondhand-gear-classifieds/4 33646-fs-vintage-api-312-demedio-console-500series-ready.html
there was also the old desk of Crosby Stills Nash for sale some time ago, you mean that one? This Demedio is another one. (huger hihi )

Also I forgot d'oh! to mention the Purple TAV and Odd. I see there's an Odd here too.
I have a pair of Sphere 900 eqs and love them to death, I hope the TAV is close, but it'll be different (modern purple opamps etc.) I've been told the Odd and TAV sound "laid back" with a nice top and bottom.

oh FYI: There's no such thing as a "gateway drug", scientifically. It's a contruct of government officials that needed a "hocuspocus" "scientific" backbone to their ridiculous "war on drugs" (which is really a "war on people that they don't like").
I just had to correct this, sorry for the OT, and sorry if I'm nitpicking. Mr. Green

I understand the point and agree. Gearslutz is an unhealthy environment if you're not filthy rich. one could get depressed seening all the expensive goodies pass by. hyperdehype hype! LOL
I'm happy to see I'm not the only wiggler with a "problem" hahaha Rockin' Banana! Dead Banana However I think hihi an empty 19" rack is just as tempting as a lunchbox. ambulance and then... there's the "Danner" 5u broadcast format. Dirt cheap pro gear from the broadcast industry of centuries past. If 500 series is crack, Danner stuff is methamphetamine. waah lol

hope you don't mind me posting a picture of my (non-500) rack
Babaluma
agreed, i prefer rack gear to the 500 series, and now my racks are filled, where does that leave me, help!
Reptil
Babaluma wrote:
agreed, i prefer rack gear to the 500 series, and now my racks are filled,

picture?
Babaluma wrote:
where does that leave me, help!


more racks?
like this guy? eek!
panda30y
LOL!

Armando Avila is fucking pimp! I've always loved that pic!
Babaluma
that just takes the piss and is completely unnecessary!

i might just get there if i had the space, but my studio is a 10 foot cube!

pics:





first case:
16u frac rack modular

second case:
metalbox custom interface/attenuators/multiples
future retro mobius sequencer
the beast 606

third case:
chandler germanium compressor x 2
thermionic culture pullet passive stereo eq
chandler tg2 dual preamp/d.i.
lexicon pcm 70 reverb/effects
neutrik patchbay
echo audiofire 12 interface
oberheim matrix 1000 synth

at the side you can see my avalon u5 d.i. (mainly for guitar, bass and matrix 1000), and yamaha msp5 monitors.

there's also a mackie 1604 vlz3 mixer, a bass, electric, and acoustic guitar, and a korg wavestation ex keyboard hiding in the other corner, and that's it!!! no more space!!!

but i do feel i have everything i NEED now, which is a weird position i have never been in before, and has put the pressure on to create more art and MUSICK rather than worrying about what gear i don't have. wink
Reptil
I agree, it IS taking the piss out of setting up a studio with careful thinking because you can only get one cheap compressor, however, the guy is completely sincere, and is taking everything very seriously. It gives me joy knowing there are actually people like him around on this planet, doing completely outragious stuff. applause

nice setup. almost every function is covered there I see. My homestudio (after moving out a building where I had my studio) is almost ready. I found a "secret weapon" effects box (not an eventide but just as powerful (hopefully), and service and reorganise my danner collection. Then I'll work with that for a while, and see what is really needed and what not. And sell the access gear. Too much slows one down, and modules are addictive.
I see you like Chandler stuff. How is the Pullet? Been wondering about that one. ???
And you need another (clean) compressor. lol This is fun! This is fun! This is fun! MY ASS IS BLEEDING This is fun! This is fun!

edited at 0:51
Fnord
I'm kinda curious about that monster setup going on, does anyone know what type of power module he's using? It's all the same one, and it sure isn't my cheapie furman.

Also, how important is venting? I'd imagine not so much for modular gear, but what about for outboard? He's got some massive fans going on at the bottom of each rack, and a boatload of vents going on around what i'd imagine are the hotter running modules.

I think Babaluma's in a nice place, i'd like to be 'done' within the next year. I've left a little room to grow for whatever cool new modules come out, but besides that, i'd like to be done with outboard and setup etc.
Audio Resistance
ignatius wrote:
D/A A/D wrote:

I will have to prosess all this awesome info now, but at this moment... RADIAL??!?!?!?!!!!!?!?!! .


they have a rack coming out and as per the pic in this thread they bought Burgin McDaniel who make the Komit compressor for 500 series.. or maybe they just bought the compressor.. not clear on that.

http://vintageking.com/Radial-Engineering-Workhorse;jsessionid=0a01084 31f432bc944aee3394eae833af612b7150b9b.e3eSbNyQc3mLe34Pa38Ta38QaN10?sc= 13&category=37680


It looks like you can add that to cart there. I wonder if it is available already?

Hmmmm, I really want that Radial but I need a TKB. I hope I get a large X-Mas bonus. screaming goo yo
mmp
Reptil wrote:

oh FYI: There's no such thing as a "gateway drug", scientifically. It's a contruct of government officials that needed a "hocuspocus" "scientific" backbone to their ridiculous "war on drugs" (which is really a "war on people that they don't like").
I just had to correct this, sorry for the OT, and sorry if I'm nitpicking. Mr. Green


Oh, I don't believe the gateway drug thing either, but it seemed like the right idea for the point I was trying to illustrate.

Regards,

MM
Reptil
you're right, and I understand, sorry for going OT Guinness ftw!
Babaluma
sorry for the thread derailment!

Reptil wrote:
nice setup. almost every function is covered there I see... Too much slows one down, and modules are addictive.
I see you like Chandler stuff. How is the Pullet? Been wondering about that one. ???
And you need another (clean) compressor. lol


thanks dude. it was my idea to have every base covered and i pretty much have that now. every piece has been thought out extremely carefully, and there is no surplus gear in the studio.

i love chandler gear, really really love it. it gives me the sound i always used to associate with what i thought "tube" sound was. very classy.

the pullet is wonderful, i only got it in june so i am still learning it really. whatever you do with the knobs, it seems to sound better than before, it's a very smooth and subtle eq.

i've stayed away from "clean" sounding processors by choice. although i am sure it would be nice to have an ultra clean compressor and clinical parametric eq (api 2500 bus comp or gml eq etc.), if i was mastering classical and jazz albums, that's not what i'm really all about. i record and master electronic music digitally. to me at least, digital generally sounds like arse when compared to vinyl or tape. the "coloured" analogue processors i employ make things sound nicer - that's all there is to it!

also, the germanium compressors are actually capable of being very clean sounding, transparent even, when set with a soft curve, low ratio, wet/dry set at about 50/50 and not pushing the output line amp too hard.
JohnLRice
Babaluma wrote:
agreed, i prefer rack gear to the 500 series, and now my racks are filled, where does that leave me, help!


Lunch box? More racks? Bigger studio space? Decisions are EASY when it's someone else's money! Mr. Green
Babaluma
yeah, if we ever move to a bigger place i'm in trouble!
Reptil
Babaluma wrote:
sorry for the thread derailment!

Reptil wrote:
nice setup. almost every function is covered there I see... Too much slows one down, and modules are addictive.
I see you like Chandler stuff. How is the Pullet? Been wondering about that one. ???
And you need another (clean) compressor. lol


thanks dude. it was my idea to have every base covered and i pretty much have that now. every piece has been thought out extremely carefully, and there is no surplus gear in the studio.

i love chandler gear, really really love it. it gives me the sound i always used to associate with what i thought "tube" sound was. very classy.

the pullet is wonderful, i only got it in june so i am still learning it really. whatever you do with the knobs, it seems to sound better than before, it's a very smooth and subtle eq.

i've stayed away from "clean" sounding processors by choice. although i am sure it would be nice to have an ultra clean compressor and clinical parametric eq (api 2500 bus comp or gml eq etc.), if i was mastering classical and jazz albums, that's not what i'm really all about. i record and master electronic music digitally. to me at least, digital generally sounds like arse when compared to vinyl or tape. the "coloured" analogue processors i employ make things sound nicer - that's all there is to it!

also, the germanium compressors are actually capable of being very clean sounding, transparent even, when set with a soft curve, low ratio, wet/dry set at about 50/50 and not pushing the output line amp too hard.


no excess gear - flexible and simple, nice concept. I did sell a lot of stuff. And will sell some more, to come to a smaller setup.
I used amplifiers before to use with passive eq (Eckmiller coupled with DAV BG-1), that really put the character of the Eckmiller in the spotlight. Putting the amp before the Eckmiller also had a good effect. Maybe driving the Pullet with your amps will have the same result?
Reason I'm asking is because the Eckmiller only has top and bottom, and Pullet is supposed to be a mid range eq? How does that work out?
The API 2500 is not superclean! Yes it can be clean, but also can have a very noticable effect. The tone control and feed forward/backward really changes a lot. Deserted island machine. it is also released as 527 (500 series module). I like to mix "into" it. Turn it on, threshold low, ratio at 4 and then start making noise with the modular and other stuff. nanners

As for the "clean" approach, I like my mixers clean high headroom, like an empty canvas, and have a choice between a little color or a lot of color in synths and processing.
The 500 modules are great for adding tone!

edited for spelling 14:41
mono-poly
I prefer Daner format smile
Maybe this one comes off for you guys.

http://www.prodigy-pro.com/diy/index.php?topic=36522.0;topicseen
Babaluma
Reptil wrote:
Maybe driving the Pullet with your amps will have the same result?
Reason I'm asking is because the Eckmiller only has top and bottom, and Pullet is supposed to be a mid range eq? How does that work out?


the pullet expects a line level signal, has a 40dB insertion loss, and a mic level/impedance output, so you need a decent mic pre to follow it and bring the level/impedance back up to line. i can already drive the pullet really hard with the line amp in the germ comps, which has about 30dB of gain already. hence the comp-eq-pre combo in that order.

the pullet is great on mid range and highs, but has no bass control. i haven't found it a problem in usage, as i can somewhat craft the bass with the compressors. i can also just cut the mid and highs, and increase the makeup gain on the pres, effectively boosting the bass.

all gear is a compromise, but i have arrived at a place where i am truly happy!
science
Has anyone picked up the new Radial Workhorse yet? Is it even available yet?

I'm still trying to figure out what I want to do, but leaning towards that. Just waiting for some feedback once people start receiving them.
ignatius
don't think the radial is out yet. son though.

seems you don't get all the routing benefits w/standard 500 series modules. the radial ones you do of course. but w/standard 500 series you have to patch the out of the module directly in to the summing bus or something. i forget. read about it on GS a while ago. it will take 2u and 1 u 500 modules though. i guess the little guide rails come out so you can fit wider modules in there.
science
I figured that much, but that's not really an issue for me, since I'd be doing it with any other box anyway (without the benefit of the mixer in the same box).

Hopefully they'll start shipping before my fiance finds more expensive stuff to add to the wedding plans MY ASS IS BLEEDING lol
science
Reptil wrote:
Babaluma wrote:
agreed, i prefer rack gear to the 500 series, and now my racks are filled,

picture?
Babaluma wrote:
where does that leave me, help!


more racks?
like this guy? eek!
http://vintageking.com/site/files/images/armando_avila_wallofsound.jpg

Damn. If that guy can manage to build all that by doing work with like 8 musicians I've never even heard of, I need to change businesses.
panda30y
science wrote:
Reptil wrote:
Babaluma wrote:
agreed, i prefer rack gear to the 500 series, and now my racks are filled,

picture?
Babaluma wrote:
where does that leave me, help!


more racks?
like this guy? eek!
http://vintageking.com/site/files/images/armando_avila_wallofsound.jpg

Damn. If that guy can manage to build all that by doing work with like 8 musicians I've never even heard of, I need to change businesses.


Ummm.... he does have a few grammy's... and I would assume he's talented at what he does. razz
Babaluma
nice new database of 500 series modules and racks here:

http://www.lunchboxhero.com/500seriesdb.html
bastille
Kind of an old post, but...

500 is great for those of us with more limited space to work in. I've got an API rack in my control room and I've considered starting a second one, though upgrading the console will probably take priority.

I really love the Shadow Hills stuff. I've got a pair of GAMAs and an Optograph, and if I can make the space, would love to have a Vandergraph as well. The preamps remind me of a triangle formed between Quad 8, API, and Seimens V276. I have an Avedis MA5 and A-Designs P1 as well, both of which are awesome and on two different ends of the spectrum, but I may sell/trade for 2 more GAMAs because I'm trying to simplify a little.
Arturo00
I got bit about 2.5 years ago. Got a stacked lunchbox with API including 2 original API 525 compressors from the 70s, and then bought a second lunchbox with an A-Design P-1 and an EM-Silver about a year later.

Fell out of pres shortly after the second purchase when I was bit by the synth bug. I haven't looked back since...


citizen mori
i've a few... i quite love my avedis e27 eqs and the chandler little devil comps!
bastille
Arturo00 wrote:
I got bit about 2.5 years ago. Got a stacked lunchbox with API including 2 original API 525 compressors from the 70s, and then bought a second lunchbox with an A-Design P-1 and an EM-Silver about a year later.

Fell out of pres shortly after the second purchase when I was bit by the synth bug. I haven't looked back since...



Sage amps, nice! I've got one of their mics, love the thing. What's the big blue thing near the bottom of the rack?
Monobass
bastille wrote:
I really love the Shadow Hills stuff. I've got a pair of GAMAs and an Optograph, and if I can make the space, would love to have a Vandergraph as well.


hey bastille.. I'd love to hear an Optograph demo if you could find the time! Can this thing be pushed into spongy but brutal LA2A levelling territory?

I'm currently drooling about the idea of a 500 series 2-bus.... Dual Optographs, Elysia xpressor 500 and a pair of Great River Harrison EQs maybe...
Monobass
I wonder about the chandler little devil EQs too but I'm not sure if they are a bit too heavy for the master buss....
Norman_Phay
I purposely avoided getting into studio sub-rack shit, it looks like a bottomless pit, even worse than modular synth gear. I occasionally look at that tonelux mini-rack setup, which I don't think ias actuaslly 500-compatible, and it looks so nice, probably fortunate that it's expensive enough that i can't/won't get a start on it.

I would like to get a few decent pres to record my ac gt with, but there is too much choice out there, it's almost as bad as boutique pedals.
bastille
Monobass wrote:
bastille wrote:
I really love the Shadow Hills stuff. I've got a pair of GAMAs and an Optograph, and if I can make the space, would love to have a Vandergraph as well.


hey bastille.. I'd love to hear an Optograph demo if you could find the time! Can this thing be pushed into spongy but brutal LA2A levelling territory?

I'm currently drooling about the idea of a 500 series 2-bus.... Dual Optographs, Elysia xpressor 500 and a pair of Great River Harrison EQs maybe...


I don't own an LA2 and have only used them once so can't compare. The Opto bites a little harder than I expected it to, sometimes the attack sounds bad at more than very mild compression. Other times it works amazingly well - I sort of like this; it lets you know quickly if it's right or not. I love the Opto, but for master bus I'd without hesitation suggest the Vandergraph over it within the 500 range 2bus processing. I'm hoping to get one myself. The Elysia stuff is awesome; haven't seen this 500 thing. The Mpressor is very cool, but for the price it's getting into 33114/609 territory and I'd rather have those. Mpressor can do things nothing else can, but it just didn't grab me beyond the "woah! this can do WHAT?" - I guess I'm just not at that stage yet.

You should check out the API 527. It's pretty incredible, too.

"I wonder about the chandler little devil EQs too but I'm not sure if they are a bit too heavy for the master buss...."

They sound AWESOME. But, BUT, they totally mess with your gain staging (serious boost) and aren't totally even unit to unit in my experience. Better suited to individual tracks.
01010110
bastille wrote:
The preamps remind me of a triangle formed between Quad 8, API, and Seimens V276.


I've used a Mono GAMA for some time now and really like it a lot! But, a couple of months ago I bought an API 3124+ and noticed that the GAMA in Nickel-mode sounded VERY much like the API. Almost identical. Nickel is the setting I preferred in about 4 cases out of 5, so now I'm thinking about replacing the GAMA with something else. Leaning towards an Avedis MA5 or that big Great River preamp for some nice Neveish-flavour in 500-format.. but the gearslut in me want one of each.. including the GAMA. .. but some kind of trade could be interesting..
D/A A/D


THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING!
Arturo00
bastille wrote:
Arturo00 wrote:
I got bit about 2.5 years ago. Got a stacked lunchbox with API including 2 original API 525 compressors from the 70s, and then bought a second lunchbox with an A-Design P-1 and an EM-Silver about a year later.

Fell out of pres shortly after the second purchase when I was bit by the synth bug. I haven't looked back since...



Sage amps, nice! I've got one of their mics, love the thing. What's the big blue thing near the bottom of the rack?


Woah, saw this a bit late.

Yeah, Sage is made locally. Haven't really spent much time with them cos they were always somehow not working.

The blue thing at the bottom is a "Pandora LM-402". A very obscure limiter that's sorta setup like and 1176.
bastille
01010110 wrote:

I've used a Mono GAMA for some time now and really like it a lot! But, a couple of months ago I bought an API 3124+ and noticed that the GAMA in Nickel-mode sounded VERY much like the API. Almost identical. Nickel is the setting I preferred in about 4 cases out of 5, so now I'm thinking about replacing the GAMA with something else. Leaning towards an Avedis MA5 or that big Great River preamp for some nice Neveish-flavour in 500-format.. but the gearslut in me want one of each.. including the GAMA. .. but some kind of trade could be interesting..


Yea, I'm usually in Nickel with mine as well. That Steel setting is nice to have, though, when something needs extra weight and dirt. I've got an MA5, had a Great River 2ch unit for a while. I prefer the GAMA to both, but all three are very good.
bastille
Arturo00 wrote:

The blue thing at the bottom is a "Pandora LM-402". A very obscure limiter that's sorta setup like and 1176.


Neat. Never seen one before. Shame about the Sage amps. They've sounded fantastic every time I've heard them.

I've never used a 525, but have always been curious. Recently tried the 527 and loved it; was farther away from my 2500 than I expected. What do you like the 525s for?
Arturo00
bastille wrote:
Arturo00 wrote:

The blue thing at the bottom is a "Pandora LM-402". A very obscure limiter that's sorta setup like and 1176.


Neat. Never seen one before. Shame about the Sage amps. They've sounded fantastic every time I've heard them.

I've never used a 525, but have always been curious. Recently tried the 527 and loved it; was farther away from my 2500 than I expected. What do you like the 525s for?


I like the 525s on bass and vocals mainly. I can't use them on guitars on account of their extremely fast (and set) attack time. I get wicked crackles when they're hit too hard. Though maybe it's something about my particular units. They are 30+ years old after all...
parasitk
Arturo00 wrote:
bastille wrote:
I've never used a 525, but have always been curious. Recently tried the 527 and loved it; was farther away from my 2500 than I expected. What do you like the 525s for?


I like the 525s on bass and vocals mainly. I can't use them on guitars on account of their extremely fast (and set) attack time. I get wicked crackles when they're hit too hard. Though maybe it's something about my particular units. They are 30+ years old after all...


The 525 is a great vocal compressor. I use it a lot on bass and mono-synth lines too (mostly again, bass type sounds).

It also works great on drum room mics, but you need to tread very carefully unless you want a big sucking sound (generally I don't).

Finally, toss it into "OFF" mode and enjoy the sound of the circuitry with no compression (very, very nice).
Arturo00
Hey Parasitk, do you experience the crackle with yours? do you have the classic vintage ones or do you have the reissues? I have the classics and I get really bad crackling when I hit it too hard with certain signals (with fast attack).

At first I thought it was a gain staging issue, but after running a few tests, i can't be certain anymore.

I know the 525's have two 2520 Opamps in them, so maybe it's one of those. Unfortunately they're soldered in, so I can't swap them like I did for my 550 when it's opamp died (API replaced it no questions asked).

I've had these things for years, but use them so rarely that I haven't bothered to get it checked out. seriously, i just don't get it
parasitk
I have a reissue. I've never had crackling, just the fast-attack sucking sound on a big transient. More on drums than anything. At some point I'd like a second one. I'm not sure how much different the reissue sounds, but I really love it.

I recently built (I mentioned this somewhere else in the forum) a pair of Eisen 312 clones (EAC312v) using clone input and output transformers and op amps. Sounds really great. They're based off the old 70's API 312 preamps. http://www.eisenaudio.com/products/eac312v/

I love that old API sound. love
Tweekhead
I got into the 500 series gear a while back myself. I love it, use it everyday, but you can build the stuff way cheaper than buying it. For example, the Neve 1073LB is retailing for $995. You could build a clone for half of that.
www.thedonclassics.com/nv73diy.html
http://www.soundskulptor.com/uk/mp573.html

Then there is the classic API 312 mic pres, API 512C, $760, and Brent Avrill clones sell for $760, but you could build one "with the DOA" for $260 a channel from http://classicapi.com/catalog/index.php?cPath=22_47_55

The guys over at www.prodigy-pro.com/diy are really very, very cool, and the API pres are very easy to build. The only thing I highly recommend is a decent DMM, and a decent soldering station. I have a Hakko 936, "costs maybe $90.

Check out "The Lab" for great info, and then "The White Market" for fantastic DIY stuff.
JohnLRice
Welcome Tweekhead! w00t

I just noticed this new Neve 500 series pre has been announced:
http://www.vintageking.com/Neve-1073LB

essex sound lab
JohnLRice wrote:

I just noticed this new Neve 500 series pre has been announced:
http://www.vintageking.com/Neve-1073LB


Oh my.

And unrealistic as this shot may be, it makes for some nice porn...

Low-Gain
c'mon guys.. i'm not seeing enough talk about Great River 500 series! smile
har har..

*the burn-in rack*
bastille
I wonder about that Neve. Seems like it would have no more I'm common with a proper 1073 as many of the clones. I'm sure it's cool though.

Re: those GR Harrisin modules... Just bought a Harrison board! Cool EQs. Wonder how the GRs differ.
panda30y
bastille wrote:
I wonder about that Neve. Seems like it would have no more I'm common with a proper 1073 as many of the clones. I'm sure it's cool though.


THe 1073LB sounds very close to the Avedis MA5 and is comparable to that. I A/B'd those two preamps and they were very similar and hard to distinguish. Compared to a vintage 1073 it was pretty close, but regardless it gets you in that area and is a great preamp.
parasitk
Tweekhead wrote:
Then there is the classic API 312 mic pres, API 512C, $760, and Brent Avrill clones sell for $760, but you could build one "with the DOA" for $260 a channel from http://classicapi.com/catalog/index.php?cPath=22_47_55


This is almost what I did, except I used the Eisen kit. I did source the I/O transformers and knobs from the Classic API site. I sold my SH Mono Gama and turned it into two channels of API - total win for me! thumbs up

I just wish there were more EQ or compressor kits for the 500 series...

//Chris
bastille
panda30y wrote:
bastille wrote:
I wonder about that Neve. Seems like it would have no more I'm common with a proper 1073 as many of the clones. I'm sure it's cool though.


THe 1073LB sounds very close to the Avedis MA5 and is comparable to that. I A/B'd those two preamps and they were very similar and hard to distinguish. Compared to a vintage 1073 it was pretty close, but regardless it gets you in that area and is a great preamp.


Interesting. I like the MA5 a lot, but didn't really think of it as being that similar to the old Neves I've used. Obviously we're talking subtle differences. I thought the Great River actually did that big, saturated low end thing more like the Neve stuff, where the Avedis was still powerful in the lows but a little more hollow and clear. I'm sure they'll sell a boatload just so people can say they've got a 1073 on their webpage.
Tweekhead
I just wish there were more EQ or compressor kits for the 500 series...

//Chris[/quote]

I agree for the need of more EQ, compressor kits. There are a few out there, but for most you have to source all your own parts, and there always seems to be a back ordered part at Mouser that you won't see for 3 months...

Check out http://www.prodigy-pro.com/diy/index.php?topic=40009.80
Igor's 1176 in 500 series
Entrainer



This comes today!

Got a Atlas Pro Revolver coming on Wed to house it.
Trying to avoid a 500 collection, prefer rack mount
or console myself.

SOMEDAY....
someday...

I will have a "modular" Tonelux mini console.
Tweekhead
Nice! I'm addicted to the 500 series. No need to find a case, toroidal, PSU, etc... I'm all about the DIY modules myself, as most of the modules are way to pricey to really get everything I want, so I'm always on the prodigy-pro.com/diy site.

There are some very cool new projects coming out for the 51x, and 500 series, but alas, not fast enough for me.)
Entrainer
Tweekhead wrote:
so I'm always on the prodigy-pro.com/diy site.


I checked that out about a year ago. I need to revisit, brush up.
I'd love to build a GSSL + 1176 clone someday.

Plus there are a ton of modules I'd like to DIY.

I just "built" my first project, the level 1 (easy) difficulty MOTM power supply.
The PCB was already populated... minimal soldering. But it works!
Tweekhead
cool! I've done quite a bit of diy recently, and very soon I'll be working on the latest GSSL incarnation. The SB4000

http://www.prodigy-pro.com/diy/index.php?topic=40755.0

I've already received the boards, and faceplate, but I'm waiting on the "whole enchilada" parts order from Ptownkid

http://www.prodigy-pro.com/diy/index.php?topic=36609.0

I'm very much a nub to schematics and troubleshooting, but peeps on the forum are very cool about helping you out.

Bo Hansen DI is a great place to start, and the unit sounds fantastic with the Lundahl LL1538 transformer.

Check out: http://www.prodigy-pro.com/diy/index.php?topic=36569.0

and: http://www.hansenaudio.se/techpage#active%20DI-box,%20my%20work%20hors e%20from%201975

Compared to my Countryman it's very colored and sound fat and round on bass.
Arturo00
btw, the new Radial entrance into the 500 series game looks very very promising. Especially their case/PSU! It's got internal routing, aux sends, built in mixer with headphone outs,
huge amount of power, etc. Looks perfect for location recording! And they've got about 6 or 7 modules ranging from $300 to $750!

If this stuff is anything like their DI boxes, I think this will bring Radial to another level entirely! I'm certain of it...

http://www.vintageking.com/Radial-Engineering-Workhorse



Tweekhead
The downside on the Radial Workhorse 5000 is that no one really knows when this is going to be released. I was waiting so long for the Radial I canceled my order and picked up a 2nd iunchbox, and this was about 10 months ago.
Babaluma
yeah, was gonna say the same thing, they were talking about it and advertising it on the back of tape op all last year, still no sign... i'd go with a purple of BAE if i was gonna go the 500 series route.
zerosum
Even though I still don't have a 500 rack to put anything in,
I keep looking at this these things and forgetting I don't have a house for them:
http://www.fivefishstudios.com/500-series-modules/peq-503-equalizer

I have some nice pre's and compressors on the way, what I would be missing is more EQ, so starting out with a 500 series rack dedicated to EQ would be nanners

I think next year might actually be the year of the 500 for me, we will see.
applause MY ASS IS BLEEDING
bkbirge
This is my favorite 500 series pre by a large margin, I've got 4 of 'em, soon to be 6...



I've used 'em all and the next one I can't wait to try is the Flickenger that just came out...



The Classic API stuff (VPN25/26/etc) are also great pres for the DIY'er. I'm building one of Igor's mixbuzz's GSSL 500 series comps also...

Tweekhead
Nice! I was looking at the Mixbuzz project, but I'm going to attempt the 1176 in 51x/500 series
MrDys
There's a part of me that really wishes that I can get excited by this stuff, but I just can't. I think the bank account side of me is pretty glad for that, though.
Babaluma
me neither, they all look like little barbie doll modules or something. give me a 19" 1u unit over one of thee any day!
JohnLRice
bkbirge wrote:
This is my favorite 500 series pre by a large margin, I've got 4 of 'em, soon to be 6...

So, what is it that you like about the Roll Music pre over others you've tried? In particular I own:
A-Designs P1, Red, Blue, Silver, Gold
API 512c
BAE 312a
Shadow Hills Mono Gama
Old School Audio MP-1

bkbirge wrote:
I've used 'em all and the next one I can't wait to try is the Flickenger that just came out...


Those do look pretty cool! hyper
http://www.keyclubrecording.com/skibbe/?page_id=7

bkbirge
Babaluma wrote:
me neither, they all look like little barbie doll modules or something. give me a 19" 1u unit over one of thee any day!


LOL! lol
bkbirge
JohnLRice wrote:
bkbirge wrote:
This is my favorite 500 series pre by a large margin, I've got 4 of 'em, soon to be 6...

So, what is it that you like about the Roll Music pre over others you've tried? In particular I own:
A-Designs P1, Red, Blue, Silver, Gold
API 512c
BAE 312a
Shadow Hills Mono Gama
Old School Audio MP-1


The Roll is nice and pure clean on low gain settings but you can really dial in the color as you crank the gain. It's a pure classic tube design, has very little in common sound wise with the A-designs stuff. I just got rid of an EM-Red to help fund the modular stuff but I love those too, very midrange focused and perfect for my upright. I've had the Blue also, didn't fall in love with it but I'm a Quad 8 nut so the A-designs stuff all sounds really good in my opinion. Those are all excellent pres you mention, I just love love love the way the Roll Tubule stacks during a mix, creamy and 3D all the way nothing gets in the way. You can't go wrong with any you listed though I haven't tried the Old School Audio line.
Arturo00
Tweekhead wrote:
The downside on the Radial Workhorse 5000 is that no one really knows when this is going to be released. I was waiting so long for the Radial I canceled my order and picked up a 2nd iunchbox, and this was about 10 months ago.


yeah, they've been touting the Workhorse for ages. I spoke to a Radial rep last week and he passed me printed literature on the Workhorse, which I gather is a good sign. But I totally forgot to ask when the release date is supposed to be. I'm pretty certain a release is going to happen soon. I'll ask them tomorrow...
zerosum
hmmmmmmmm.....




hyper
bastille
Hmm. That's actually pretty interesting. Wonder if the variphase only affects the DI signal.
zerosum
Quote:
Wonder if the variphase only affects the DI signal.


from what I understand it adjusts the phase relationship of the DI signal and the mic signal:

Quote:
Blended Use

Used as a single channel device for instruments, the 5017 can be used to phase align, combine and compress direct and amplified signals. To achieve this, use the DI for the instrument’s direct signal and the mic preamp for the speaker cabinet signal. The blend control is used for mixing direct and amplified signals to achieve the desired tonal blend between the two sources, and the variphase is used to minimize or extenuate phase cancellations between the two signals. To compress the blended signal, the internal compressor jumper must be set to the blend path (this is the default setting). This technique could also be used to create a single, mixed output of a guitar and vocals.


It's the same specs as one of these

Rockin' Banana! Rockin' Banana! Rockin' Banana!
syzygywell
I need to leave this thread immediately. eek! help
zerosum
syzygywell wrote:
I need to leave this thread immediately. eek! help


No no..... It's good for the soul 8_) I'm bouncing up and down on the diving board about to jump off in the deep end and I welcome you to come join me applause

There is going to be some cool stuff coming out this year for the format! hyper
attacksustain
zerosum wrote:
There is going to be some cool stuff coming out this year for the format! hyper


metasonix in 500 series ? Dead Banana
zerosum
attacksustain wrote:
zerosum wrote:
There is going to be some cool stuff coming out this year for the format! hyper


metasonix in 500 series ? Dead Banana


HA I wish!
Just me
http://fivefishstudios.com/

Sale this weekend only if you are interested in this sort of stuff. (I was perusing their DIY section and remebered this thread.)
bkbirge
Just me wrote:
http://fivefishstudios.com/

Sale this weekend only if you are interested in this sort of stuff. (I was perusing their DIY section and remebered this thread.)


Fivefish stuff has a great reputation. As far as metasonix goes, they could do it but there's not much point. The guys who are into the API stuff are into it because of the clean sound, not the distortion so much. Not to say it wouldn't be cool to see a bit of the KV-100 in the API format, it would probably sell like hotcakes.

Personally as soon as I'm done building this modular, I'm filling up a 10 space API rack with more Roll Tubules and a pair of Flickinger pre's. My drums and other acoustic stuff has never sounded better since going that route.
zerosum
Just me wrote:
http://fivefishstudios.com/

Sale this weekend only if you are interested in this sort of stuff.


The EQ is a for sure!
Right now I am calculating some numbers to get one of each preamp..... hmmm.....
zerosum
Quote:
As far as metasonix goes, they could do it but there's not much point.


Metasonix won't do it, but Zerosum Inertia will.
Veqtor
Dammit, I just ordered a group-diy 511 case...
I'll be ordering a elysia xpressor soon...

help
zerosum
The fivefish stuff is really really cool!
I took advantage of that sale 8_) wink

500land is great applause

peachlyfe
500 Series newbie here w00t
So I've ended here a "few" years later, and now the Radial Workhorse is out. Is anyone using the Workhorse with the summing mixer? I'm thinking about using it for a live setup.
felixer
i really don't get it. why are people paying more money for a 1 channel device if they often can get 2 channel one in a 19" rack? i'm pretty sure the portability is not key, for most ...
Futuresound
I don’t think there are many examples of a single-channel 500-series costing more than an equivalent 2-channel unit.

But there are a lot of reasons that 500 is appealing. Primary among them for me is functional density. I can fit a lot more into a 10-slot 3U rack than in 3U of 19”.
Soy Sos
Funny, I chimed in on this thread around 9 years ago.
I had just gotten in to the 500 format with pres, EQs and comps.
I sold my 10 slot rack and all modules this summer to pay for a Schertler
Arthur 48 console and some outboard compressors and I'm really satisfied
with the work flow. Once I really got my head around it I was fully
convinced and the quality of my work speaks for itself.
BTW, I've still got an Inward Connections VOGAD comp
and S&M EQ going cheap. Hit me UP!
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