This site is supported by the advertisements on it, please disable your AdBlocker so we can continue to provide you with the quality content you expect.

Welcome to Our Community

Wanting to join the rest of our members? Feel free to sign up today.

Big DI Shootout 10-300€

Discussion in 'Backline' started by Torgal, Dec 21, 2011.

  1. Torgal

    Torgal guitar nerd

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2011
    Messages:
    67
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Hey guys!

    I'm a semi-long time reader and first poster. As I'm recording all the guitar-tracks for our band at home I recently discovered the Hi-Z input of my ESI ESP 1010e not to be up to par with my quality expectations. The clean tracks were distorted even at very low input signal levels. ESI support gave the advice to simply record via the "normal" analog inputs which of course resulted in terribly dull and muddy tracks. Yeah thanks ESI :Smug:
    After some research I discovered the need for a good quality DI-Box and ordered some for further examination.
    Thanks to Metaltastic for his fantastic shootout and akbeda for pushing me to post all this rubbish :loco:.

    Here is my testing gear:

    • 1998 Gibson Les Paul Std. with 500T in bridge position
    • 2010 Ibanez RGA72TQM

    • ESI ESP 1010e

    • Millenium DI-E ~10€
    • Palmer PAN 01 ~35€
    • Millenium Pro ~60€
    • Radial JDI ~200€
    • Little Labs Redeye 3D Phantom ~280€


    Please ignore the extra-sloopy quick&dirty performance, I hope you'll be abled to hear whats necessary.

    Passive guitar(LP)
    Active guitar(Ibanez)

    I've reduced the samples for the Ibanez to my favourite three boxes but I won't tell you wich ones. This is a blind shootout so I'm holding back the solution for a more unbiased comparison until a least some people had the chance to give responses. Hopefully you can pick out something usefull for yourself out of this. Happy guessing!

    I'll have the devices available for a few weeks from now, so if you've got any questions feel free to ask.
    Furthermore I promise to take a picture of my testing-desk including all the devices once I've managed to make it look presentable :)
    Edit: Ok I take that one back, it's never going to be tidy and presentable :loco:

    Here in post 18 is the Solution, so skip it if you still want to do the bilnd test.
     
  2. GeertSamuel

    GeertSamuel Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2006
    Messages:
    2,179
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Location:
    Nieuw-Buinen, The Netherlands
    Go from G to H.....WOW! What a difference..and I'm even on shitty headphones.
    Will check tonight cause I'm curious..
     
  3. akbeda

    akbeda himself

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2011
    Messages:
    142
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Location:
    Germany
    i know it...i know it...:hotjump:

    welcome to the forum!
     
  4. KillDivision

    KillDivision Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2005
    Messages:
    639
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Location:
    Holland, Zwolle
    I need to advise a friend/client to buy a cheap but good DI, so i'll be watching this.

    Thanx for the shootout.:worship:
     
  5. aviel

    aviel Member

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2011
    Messages:
    787
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    I sounds best to me. best bass punch. what DI box is that?
     
  6. Torgal

    Torgal guitar nerd

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2011
    Messages:
    67
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    You'll have to be patient for a little while. The great revelation isn't happening too soon I think ;)

    BTW: akbeda and me are preparing a Reamping Shootout for next week, so stay tuned ...
     
  7. ForHerDeadEyes

    ForHerDeadEyes Señor Member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2011
    Messages:
    815
    Likes Received:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Sweden
    I'm guessing K and G are the expensive ones.. the rest sound about the same, a bit duller..
    I'm listening on some Creative pc speakers.. so it's not my usual setup.. but from what I hear.. that would be my guess..
     
  8. aviel

    aviel Member

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2011
    Messages:
    787
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16

    HA! i am about to order my reamp box in 2 days. its between plamer and proRMP
     
  9. Trevoire520

    Trevoire520 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2007
    Messages:
    5,014
    Likes Received:
    9
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Location:
    Fife, Scotland
    i and J seem the best out of the passive bunch. I has a little bit more low end than J I think but J seems to have a slighter better high end extension.

    H is awful, really honky sounding. G doesn't seem to have much high end. K sounds alright but again it seems a little dull in the highs.

    For the active pickups I like A the most, then C and B least.
     
  10. Joshua Wickman

    Joshua Wickman Yes Sir!

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2009
    Messages:
    1,505
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Location:
    Michigan
    Funny the active tracks are all pretty similar. I think A has a has a slight edge on the others though in the high end.

    The passive G and K sound the best with the rest sound dull and lifeless. I would say G is my favorite as it sounds like it has a better low end as well as top end over k.

    Neat test though and curious to see what is what.

    My only gripe would be, i wish the Countryman was in this test as well cause that is what i own and use.
     
  11. derekmoffat

    derekmoffat 608 STUDIOS

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2009
    Messages:
    228
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    +1

    I liked I, J, and then even G a little.

    Actives weren't as drastic as the passives, but A was the best I thought.
     
  12. kronk_1985

    kronk_1985 Member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2008
    Messages:
    274
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    In the Passive ones, I & J sound almost identical (i'm only listening to the DI tracks, not running them through a sim or anything).. G & K both sound pretty much identical too. They G & K sound the nicest, IMO, nice warm bass signal coming through.

    I hope the Red Eye is either G or K. haha. Cos otherwise i need to reassess my plans.
     
  13. deLuther

    deLuther Member

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2007
    Messages:
    1,220
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Location:
    Russia
    H turned passive pickup almost into active, there is some serious highpass :)
     
  14. Torgal

    Torgal guitar nerd

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2011
    Messages:
    67
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Thanks guys for all the feedback so far! I did not expect the responses to be so diverse. Keep them posts comming!

    @Joshua:
    Yeah, the Countryman is an excellent box from what I've heared so far. I decided not to pick it up, because it's an active DI and can't be used for reamping. So I picked up the JDI because its the same price range and can be used for reamping later. Two birds with one stone . :Smokedev:

    @deLuther:
    Jep thats what I recognized as well. I watched all the tracks in cubse with span after I've listened through every one very cloesely. My apporach was to set peak-hold on infinate and run through the whole sample. It was amazing for me to see that a loss of highs can be interpreted as a boost in lows. H is definately no option for recording bass.

    Active vs. passive:
    If I have done my homework correctly the reason why the active-PU samples are pretty close is their lower impedance compared to the passives. I found a verry good article about this in german language.

    In short:
    Input impedance on the DI should be approx. 10:1 to the guitar PUs impedance. Otherwise the circuit of the PU works a little like a light low-pass which results in dull sounding samples. Quality DI-Boxes include isolating transformers (no, not the big robots that can turn into vehicles :loco:) with input impedances up to 150K ohms. Cheaper ones usually have much lower impedances. Especially passive Metal PUs sit around 15k Ohms. Active PU have a lot lower impedances (1k - 10k) so the effect is minimized. Unfortunately I could not determine the exact impedance of my LoZ3-B Pickup in my Ibanez RGA72TQM. To verify this I did a track with each guitar into a "standard" (no Hi-Z) input of my interface(~150-300 ohms). The Gibson LP with the passives lost a lot more high frequnecies than the Ibanez with actives.

    Please correct me if I'm wrong!
     
  15. deLuther

    deLuther Member

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2007
    Messages:
    1,220
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Location:
    Russia
    Active pickups does not suffer from lower impedance not because of lower impedance, but because their impedance is much less frequency dependent, passive pickups have much larger impedance due to inductance, most specifications is just supply DC resistance value, not impedance, impedance raises linearly with frequency.
     
  16. Wisheraser

    Wisheraser Member

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2009
    Messages:
    396
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    SK, Canada
    I don't mean to hijack, but it's probably better to put this here than start another DI shootout thread.

    My bass player and I did a bass DI shootout back in the fall between the JDI, J48, Countryman, Avalon U5 (eq off), and the DI in the Jonas Hellborg preamp (eq off), which is supposed to be a cut no corners, best components available kind of preamp. We found that the later 3 sounded practically identical, with the Hellborg having just a tiny smidge more low end girth. The 2 Radial boxes however both had a noticeable lack of high end clarity compared to the other three, almost like his strings had aged by a week. That definitely solidified my faith in the quality of the very affordable Type 85. I only wish we had a LL Redeye to test along side these guys. I can see if I still have the files if anyone is interested.
     
  17. deLuther

    deLuther Member

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2007
    Messages:
    1,220
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Location:
    Russia
    Wisheraser, what impedance have Jonas Hellborg preamp?
    Both Radials have relatively low impedance, Avalon and Type 85 have larger than 1 M impedance (3 M and 10 M respectively), maybe good 1 M interface can also be duller... What with comparison with straight to amp sound, maybe some DIs can give to much highs relative to original signal?
     
  18. Torgal

    Torgal guitar nerd

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2011
    Messages:
    67
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Thanks for claryfying that deLuther!

    Wisheraser, I can imagine that 500€ + DIs make the "high end" boxes in this thread sound dull. :p However I had to set myself a price limit at some point.

    And here it comes the great revelation:

    Passive:

    G-JDI
    H-Millenium-Pro
    I-Millenium-E
    J-Palmer PAN 01
    K-Redeye


    Active:

    1 = Redeye
    2 = JDI
    3 = Millenium DI-E

    This is how I feel about the candidates (In order of preference)

    G-JDI:best resolution, super bright highs, nice attack, sounds a little like Fender amps
    K-Redeye: slightly less precise , super resolution, very nice highs, very good attack, sounds a little "amped"
    I-Millenium-E: noticable loss of highs, muffled
    J-Palmer PAN 01: almost can't distinguish between I & J, feels a tiny bit duller
    H-Millenium-Pro: similar to I & J but lacking lots of bass

    1 = Redeye: again sounds a little amped but preserves the tone best
    2 = JDI: pretty close but sounds a little "thinner"
    3 = Millenium DI-E: muffled again but not as bad as with passive PUs


    So depending on the reamping shootout (planned for next week) it is going to be the JDI or the Redeye for me.

    Discuss! :popcorn:
     
  19. Wisheraser

    Wisheraser Member

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2009
    Messages:
    396
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    SK, Canada
    http://www.beyondeleven.com/Warwick-Jonas-Hellborg-Signature-Series-Pre-Amp-p/warwick-jhpreamp.htm

    Looks like it has 500K ohm input impedance.

    Yeah I hear ya, but my point was that to my ears, the Countryman Type 85 (which is actually 20 bucks cheaper than the JDI) is at the same level of audio quality to much, much more expensive units. I only brought it up because the type 85 was mentioned earlier in this thread.

    Carry on!
     
  20. deLuther

    deLuther Member

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2007
    Messages:
    1,220
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Location:
    Russia
    Thank you for the test Torgal.
     

Share This Page