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Tube preamps essential for Metal DI's?

Discussion in 'Backline' started by mirflee, Jul 19, 2013.

  1. mirflee

    mirflee SSL Studios

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    Hello, I was wondering if it's a good idea to invest in a good Tube Preamp like the Presonus TubePre V2 for Guitar DI's for a better tone and a more realistic overall feel?

    Currently running through my POD HD Pro/Focusrite Scarlett interface and it's always been a little too thin and boxy for for me no matter what Impulses/Amp Sim combinations I'm using.

    Thanks in advance. :)
     
  2. BLUElightCory

    BLUElightCory Member

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    Nope. Get the best, most transparent solid state DI you can. Radial JDI, Countryman, Little Labs, etc.
     
  3. jipchen

    jipchen ForesterStudio

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    No, it won't help. Don't let the "tube" label fool you. A good preamp doesn't need a tube at all, most of the preamps that are considered very good are actually not tube preamps (i.e. Neve, API, Daking)
    +1

    Or get a good guitar amp + cab or perhaps even better, a Kemper (imho).
     
  4. egan.

    egan. daylightdies.com

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    I think tube pre's are the last ones you should buy TBH. There are some great ones out there but I can't think of a single one that I'd choose as a "desert island" preamp. Anyway, as others have said, with guitar Di's in particular you want the least color possible from your DI and preamp.
     
  5. Max Morton

    Max Morton Member

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    And least noise possible, too. Great thing to invest into will be Little Labs Red Eye or Radial JDI, as was mentioned before.
     
  6. Sethis

    Sethis Member

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    That's probably because of the POD tbh.
     
  7. Nimvi

    Nimvi Member

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    the answer has already been given a few times but I just wanted to add:
    imagine it this way; if you would record your guitars directly without any reamping, you would probably plug your guitar straight into the (TS +) amp. So ideally, the whole DI and reamping chain should remain as true as possible to the original path, which was nothing at all. That's why neutral is considered best.

    I know that you are not reamping it through a real amp, but the logic remains the same.
     
  8. botus99

    botus99 Microphone Assassin

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    I can agree with all that's been said, but I have one thing to add. I bought a Presonus DualTube preamp (I might have the name wrong, but a cheap 2-channel tube preamp) and it was pure garbage for DI's. However, I do like using a tube preamp for bass DI's on occasion
     
  9. deLuther

    deLuther Member

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    Line 6 preamps not good, have tendency to cut low end (too much high pass), so passive pickups can be closer to active.
     
  10. deLuther

    deLuther Member

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    JDI is passive transformer-based DI-box, active DI, like J48, should be better in general.
     
  11. mirflee

    mirflee SSL Studios

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    Appreciate the inputs guys. Anyway, I haven't been clear on my process for guitar tracking.

    So basically, I have three options. I could either run direct through my INST input on the Scarlett or have the HD Pro's dry out through the INST input of the Scarlett. I also have a Samson S-Direct so would that be a better way to go than the first two options? I'd love to make the best out of my options here before thinking of an upgrade.

    Also, I've always looked at DI Boxes as a more of a negligible tool like standard XLR cables or something so would the change be 'night and day' if I were to really bring in a beast like the J48/JDI/Red Eye?
     
  12. blue_fAng

    blue_fAng Member

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    I think the best would be to ditch the POD for studio purposes. I also agree that it's preamps are weak, and you can get better results with free amp and cab sims. I'd get a DI box just in case. Since I got my countryman 85 all the guitar DI's I've recorded with passive or active pickups sound perfectly clean.
     
  13. Studdy

    Studdy Member

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    My Desert Island Preamp would be the Great River 1NV. Solid State, It sounds amazing and has the ability to be very clean and detailed or I can make it sound thick as hell. Great DI on board. The other options/buttons on it will also change the sound which makes it very versatile.
     
  14. Rex Rocker

    Rex Rocker Call me Hugo!

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    I guess that would be the case most of the time...

    ... however, I own both a Countryman Type 85, and a Radial ProDI, and quite honestly, cheaper as it may have been, I dig the ProDI better. All of my guitars have active pickups, though.
     
  15. drew_drummer

    drew_drummer Dancefap

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    If you're not getting a good tone from your Pod HD, then you're really doing something wrong. Bad workman always blames his tools, etc etc...
     
  16. Chris Lucas

    Chris Lucas I DON'T BELIEVE IN MAGIC

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    As Andy always says, "80% of the guitar tone is in the players hands".

    The more and more I record and produce metal music, the more true this becomes.

    It just takes one time recording and mixing a great player before you realize that most of it is just how tight and violent your chugs are :p

    That being said, stick with solid state. The idea of capturing a DI is to capture the output of the guitar as cleanly and accurately as possible, since that's exactly what you'd want to send to a real amp later.
     
  17. mirflee

    mirflee SSL Studios

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    I really can't express my thanks enough with the suggestions given here. It helps me open my newbie ears/eyes/mind out to the other less obvious solutions to the problem and who knows, I might not have go out on a spending spree!

    Having said that, I'll probably check out the DI Boxes mentioned. Thanks again!

    EDIT : Oh yeah, I have a mix of guitars with active and passive pickups, so I'm guessing, I need to get an active/passive box instead? Or is it a matter of power source?
     
  18. deLuther

    deLuther Member

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    Active DI box works well enough in most cases. But I`m heard one comparison with EMGs between Radial JDI and JDV (more expensive than J48, with larger input impedance) in which JDI sounded slightly better. In general, active pickup can sound good even in conventional line input :)
    Another variant to check - BSS AR-133.
     
  19. BLUElightCory

    BLUElightCory Member

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    Yeah, but I had a J48 and wasn't a fan of it compared to the JDI, so I didn't want to recommend it.

    Personally, I use a Little Labs IBP. It's some of the best money I've spent - the DI sounds great, the reamper works perfectly, and it's got phase adjustment on board (the main selling point, but the thing I use least). Money well spent considering how much value is in the box.
     

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