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Unread 02-13-2015, 09:37 PM   #1
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tube mic pre doubles as a DI

So for $39.99 one can own their own ART (Applied Research and Technology) tube mic pre amp. The tube is a 12ax7 which is replaceable and does a fantastic job of warming up a vocal or anything g else you wanna plug into it. After seeing demos of it used for a bass I had to try it with bass and guitar. It's a sweet little unit. Some reviewers say the meter doesn't work. With the input and output controls up it works great. The instructions are clear that rather than plugging the XLR into a mic pre, plug it into a line input. I used the 1/4" output as an unbalanced signal into my little mixer which let me heat up the gain on this little gem. Now for my wife's vocals we finally got a tone she likes.

For $39.99 you get a mic pre with that warm tube sound, and a DI. I'm thinking of getting two more and experimenting with different tubes.

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Unread 02-14-2015, 09:06 AM   #2
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I bought one of these a few years ago. It also works as a nice guitar preamp if you're using a lot of digital effects and want to warm the signal up.
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Unread 02-25-2015, 01:56 PM   #3
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I also used the Art Pre to bring a cheap, dead-sounding guitar tone to life for a more lively sound. It was the "secret ingredient" that allowed me to get a great sound out of a cheap guitar, cheap processor, and cheap amp that left people asking, "How do you get your tone?" Ah, 2012 all over again.

There were times I also used it to boost my electric signal going into a 5150 to really crank out a hot tone. Such a handy little unit that I'd recommend to anyone and everyone. I ended up selling it for $20 to a friend. Now I'm thinking about buying one again for recording purposes. The only qualm I had with it is that if you're not careful, it can take a signal with not much noise in it and make it really hiss. But that was just as much the fault of my using it as a live sound solution as part of my guitar rig (where it gets beat around a lot, while it's meant for a studio where it's going to sit in one spot and not move) as it could have been anything else.

Ironically, for being a mic preamp, I never once used it on a mic.
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