PreSonus Blog

Category Archives: Preamps and Processors


2013 ASCAP Songwriting Retreat

PreSonus was proud to be a part of the 2013 ASCAP Songwriters Retreat, held September 25th to October 4th at the 14th-century Château Marouatte in the Dordogne region of France—an inspiring place for the lyrically inclined.

And that’s the point. ASCAP has designed this retreat to bring out the best in talented writers. This year’s 30+ participants were divided into different groups, every day, to write and record, keeping collaborative spirits fresh and healthy. At the end of the session, attendees return home with renewed artistic vigor, their hearts and hard drives full of song.

In fact, a dozen of the songs written at the camp this year are already on hold for major label artists, including The Temper Trap, Kelly Clarkson, Melanie Fiona, Nylo, Jessie Malakouti, and Jon Bellion.

PreSonus was happy to provide a metric heap of equipment to foster the creative process, including:

Photos from the event follow, as well as a kind thank-you video from the songwriters themselves. You’re welcome, folks, and we hope you wrote enough hits to fill a 14th-century dining hall. Read more about it here.


 

 

Eminence Brings the Heavy with StudioLive

Brazilian heavy rockers Eminance recently released this video for “Unfold.”
Guitarist Alan Wallace says, “I recorded my guitar with the DigiMax 96k.  The sound is heavy, but still very clear! For vocals we used TubePre  and Studio Channel.
Thanks guys, sounds amazing!

 

Glowing ADL 700 Review from Amazona.de, with Audio Samples

This kind review of our latest golden boy,the ADL 700 tube mic preamp, comes to us from the informed masterminds at Amazona.de. Naturally, this one is written with the German-speaking crowd in mind. If you don’t speak German but DO have Chrome installed, you’ve got a translator built right into your browser to help you out!

Amazona has gone a step above and beyond in this review by not only detailing all the nitty-gritty technical specs, but they’ve also included several audio demos of the ADL 700. Click here to read the review in full and hear it for yourself.

Roughly translated, you’ll find such laudatory praise as “The PreSonus ADL 700 is a professional device that costs less than it sounds. A suitable candidate to compliment a serious outboard collection. Sonically, a big thumbs up.”

Using A Single Mic and Preamp for Recording Guitar and Vocals

Can you really get a great recording of a guitar AND vocal perfomance with just a single mic and a single preamp? Absolutely! That’s how the majority of classic recordings were done back before multitrack recording. The benefits of recording with one really great mic and preamp are twofold:

  • The sound is pure and focused
  • You don’t have to deal with phase issues

With a single-mic setup, you have the ability to make the listener feel like they are literally in the room.   So how do you pull this off? First of all, you need to have a great song and a great performance. If you’ve got one mic or 1000 mics, it won’t matter if the song sucks or the performance isn’t there. Assuming you have your song and performance together, here’s a few tips on how to pull this off using the PreSonus ADL 700 Channel Strip and the Blue Microphones Kiwi. The artist I recorded is the amazing Chris LeBlanc.

 

Mic Positioning:  We’re using Blue Microphones’ Kiwi, a nine-pattern microphone (omni, cardioid, figure of eight, and everything in between) featuring their B6 capsule, to capture as much detail as we can. Most of the time, I set the mic to a cardioid pickup pattern, so it is picking up what’s going on in front of it while rejecting reflections that are coming off of the wall behind the mic. When I’m miking a singer/acoustic guitar player, I try to place the mic far enough away to pick up both the guitar and voice—but not too far, otherwise I will get to much room sound. Once I’ve positioned the mic for the correct distance, the next challenge is to position it vertically to get the correct balance between the singer’s voice and guitar. This is also a bit tricky, as placement is dependent on how loud the artist both sings and plays. On this particular session, Chris’ voice was actually a lot louder than his guitar was. Notice I have the mic actually positioned lower, toward the guitar, to account for this. With the Kiwi, it’s good to experiment by opening up the polar pattern to achieve more omni pickup when trying to capture multiple sources. The flexibility of being able to move in-between cardioid and omni is extremely valuable in these settings!

 

Setting the mic preamp and compressor

The preamp gain was set so that I had plenty of headroom. Chris is a very dynamic singer, and puts out quite a bit of volume, so it was important to make sure I didn’t let him clip the input of the mic preamp. The ADL 700 features variable microphone impedance settings, so I set it to the highest impedance available to get a bright, dynamic sound. The High Pass Filter was disabled, and the compressor was set to a light ratio of about 3:1.  I was getting around 5 or 6dB of compression on the meter. This smoothed out the response, and helped control the inevitable peaks that occur when Chris really belts it out.

Setting the EQ Since the mic was pulled back from Chris by about 1.5 feet, I found I needed to boost some lows around 60k just to bring out the body in his acoustic guitar. Since the guitar was tuned down, the low-mids sounded a little muted, so I boosted a few dB at around 400Hz. Lastly, I added just a tad of highs at around 6kHz to bring out the high-end definition.

 

Point and Shoot That’s it! As you can see from the video, sometimes Chris wasn’t looking directly at the mic, but because I had some distance between him and the Kiwi, it didn’t matter. What you hear is what the performance actually sounded like if you were in the room. The trick with this type of technique is to experiment. It also doesn’t hurt to have a world-class mic and preamp, but nonetheless, it all starts with the source. Experiment—happy tracking!

 

Limited time offer from Blue and PreSonus!

 

PreSonus ADL 700 Tube Channel Strip Reviews

Parents are always proud of their children, even the ones who have ornery rugrats who mark up the walls with crayon. We treat pro audio product development a lot like parenthood. Our gear is shaped by our experiences, and  we instill in our offspring  the virtues we hold dearest. It’s a labor of love. And of course, the fateful day must arrive when a product matures, is all grown up, and is released into the world—hopefully to live out the values shaped by our guiding, if solder-burned, hands.

However, that’s pretty much where the similarities end. If you ask a parent who their favorite child is, the universal standard answer is that the parent in question loves all their children the same.

Not so with us. The ADL 700 Tube Channel Strip is far and away our best, most favorite child, and now that it’s graduated from LSU and made it’s way into the world, it has started to reap the recognition we—and plenty of others—feel it deserves.

Some gems follow. Click the publication names to link to the full review, where available.

  • “ADL 700 features performance that approaches the best of the best, though at half to two-thirds the cost of the competition… Vocalists seem to love it, citing clarity, presence and even preference over my usual premium signal chain—generally Chandler Limited, Manley Labs, and Neve components.”
    -Pro Audio Review, Feb. 2013
  • “This is a terrific tool, worthy of consideration by seasoned professionals.”
    -Resolution, March 2013
  • “…an incredibly adaptable mic preamp—one that you could use on anything. I’d love to have for or five of ’em.”
    Tape Op, Jan/Feb 2013

The ADL 700 is available via our Signature Dealers. Click here for a list of where to find the ADL 700 in the USA. If you live outside the USA, please contact the official PreSonus distributor in your area to find out where you can hear/obtain the ADL 700 for yourself. You can find your region’s distributor by clicking here.

Here are some artist opinions on the ADL 700. We’re flattered!

  • “ADL 700 is an INCREDIBLE mic pre!! Next level of anything I’ve ever used—very quiet and warm sounding. I’ve only had GREAT results!!”
    -Teddy Riley, Producer (Micheal Jackson, Bobby Brown, Usher)
  • “The ADL 700 makes acoustic guitars sound smooth and sweet and vocals are big and clean.”
    -Keb’ Mo, three-time Grammy-winning singer-songwriter
  • “…gives the artist warmth and a lot of body. The ADL 700 gives me everything I need and has become my new favorite preamp.”
    -Nick Cooper, vocal instructor, (Beyoncé, Katy Perry, Nicki Minaj)
  • “The ADL 700 is a serious and versatile channel strip with a smooth compressor and impressive EQ. Perfect for our basses, vocals,and anything else we plug into it. We love it!”
    -Bass Monsters Victor Wooten and Steve Bailey

HeatRox Entertainment Lands a Track on the Disney Channel’s “Austin & Ally”

[This just in from the always-a-gem-producer Lisa Simmons of HeatRox Entertainment. HeatRox recently had a great score, landing their new song “Living in the Moment” in a recent episode of the Disney Channel’s Austin & Ally.]
Hey Ryan!
How are you? Hope you are having a great week! We are so excited for the new Austin & Ally episode, “Sports and Sprains.” We used the PreSonus Eureka on this song. Funny story: The tracks recorded with the Eureka were intended to be for the pre-demo only… but they sounded so good that many of the background vocals recorded on the Eureka wound up in the final mix! The final song was recorded with the Ross Lynch at one of Disney’s recording studios.

We co-wrote and co-produced “Living in the Moment” with an amazing team of writers and producers: myself, (Lisa Simmons) Francisco (Flinst0ne/ Stone), Christian Salyer, Styliztik Jones, and J Scott G. We had so much fun!  On Disney’s promo you can hear the instrumental in the background, but the full song will be performed by the actor himself on the upcoming episode.
Over the weekend, “Sports & Sprains” charted at number seven on iTunes as one of the top children’s shows!
Best Regards,
Lisa & Stone

#TeamPreSonus Spotlight: Graham Cochrane of The Recording Revolution!

[We decided it best to give some recognition to our more vocal advocates—and what better way than via a blog series?]

Who are you, where are you, and what do you do?

My name is Graham Cochrane. I am a producer, engineer, songwriter, and worship leader based in Tampa, FL. I’m also the founder of The Recording Revolution, a popular audio training resource.

How were you introduced to PreSonus?

Word of mouth, years ago.

What PreSonus software/hardware do you use and for what purpose?

I currently have a Eureka and ADL 700 in my rack. Both are excellent preamps and channel strips that make recording easy and fun. I’m using the Central Station Plus for monitoring. I also do all of my mastering in Studio One Professional. Love that project page!

What’s so great about PreSonus, anyhow?

You guys make great products, and make them available at real-world prices, and you have an obvious passion for making music. What more could you want?

What’s the last big project that you worked on using PreSonus gear?

I tracked my band’s most recent EP using just about nothing but the Eureka on the front end. Everything I’ve mastered this year has been exclusively in Studio One.

What are you working on now—or next?

Mixing for a few bands this summer. Also writing a new solo album. I’m always making content for The Recording Revolution including a recent video series called Mastering With Stock Plug-ins that was done all in Studio One. It’s free, you should check it out!

Where can our readers learn more about you online? 

www.TheRecordingRevolution.com

www.GrahamCochrane.com

www.Twitter.com/recordingrev

www.Facebook.com/recordingrevolution

Using the Studio Channel as a Bass DI

Sometimes bass players have it the worst. Many (most?) of them have a refrigerator-sized amp that won’t even fit in that car of theirs, what with the sleeping bag and Coleman stove taking up all the room. In fact, a little-known statistic is that 30% of chiropractic clients are actually found to be bassists who have been lugging around monster amps for 10+ years. Sad.

Furthermore, vintage tube-driven 8×12 bass rigs can be a pain to record with, because those loud, wide, bass- frequency waves cut through EVERYTHING, and it can be nigh-impossible to get any sort of isolation when tracking live. And recording that thing in your apartment? Fugeddaboutit. You’d be evicted faster than you can say “Joey DeMaio.”

Enter the PreSonus Studio Channel. A lesser-known application of the Studio Channel is that of a direct injection box for recording bass. Heck, you could even use it to play bass live and run directly into the front-of-house. HomeTracks over on YouTube illustrates this application perfectly in his recent video, showcasing the myriad tones that can be achieved by running your four (or five-, or six-) string baby into the Studio Channel—no amp required! Keep the gain low for cleans, or push that glowy li’l tube for some mid-range grittygrind.

#TeamPreSonus Spotlight: Rhett Mouton!

 

[We decided it best to give some recognition to our more vocal advocates—and what better way than via a blog series?]

Who are you, where are you, and what do you do? 

Rhett Mouton: Producer, engineer, writer/composer.

How were you introduced to PreSonus?

Years ago I was asked by a young band to go to their rehearsal studio to help them record a song. That rehearsal studio turned out to be in Jim Odom’s back yard.

What PreSonus software/hardware do you use and for what purpose?

I use the Central Station for monitoring, ADL 600 for obvious reasons, StudioLive 24.4.2 for live sound and multitracking, Studio One 2 Professional for writing, composing, producing, mixing and mastering.

What’s so great about PreSonus, anyhow?

They always seem to be thinking a step ahead of the curve when developing new products.

What’s the last big project that you worked on using PreSonus gear?

I produced, mixed, and mastered a band called Meriwether’s debut album titled, “Make Your Move” which resulted in a distribution deal and record deal with Suretone/Interscope records.

What are you working on now—or next?

I am currently mixing and mastering projects for clients. I am also composing/writing original music with the intention of licensing for placement in film, television and video games.

Where can our readers learn more about you online?

rmmaudio.com

Facebook.com/rmmaudio

Facebook.com/rhettmouton

Studio Channel and AudioBox Studio Reviews from 2INFAMOUZ

Ayron over at 2INFAMOUZ recently posted a couple great reviews of the AudioBox Studio and the Studio Channel. His AudioBox Studio review is particularly nice, as he breaks down every component of the package, including the M7 microphone and HD7 headphones.

Here’s some highlights:

“You’re not going to find a better deal than the Audiobox Studio when it comes to a low budget recording package. This package includes everything required to start recording at home, and it’s all superior to other products in the price range.” 

“The Studio Channel’s class A vacuum tube preamp provides you with a handful of different settings and parameters to bring vocal recordings to life… you couldn’t ask for much more in a preamp. The fact that the PreSonus Studio Channel is only around $250 is incredible.”

Thanks, Ayron!

2INFAMOUZ also boasts some great tutorials on production, mixing, and mastering that are definitely worth a read!

Click through to check out the reviews for yourself: