12 Replies Latest reply: Feb 16, 2010 1:34 PM by oceanicrecords
revolver87 Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
Hi guys,, just a quick question. I already have a focusrite isa one preamp which i love using. Have just bought an apogee one which should be delivered in the next few days. Am wondering does anyone out there use external mic pres with the duet and how does it sound.

I have heard reviews that the apogee mic pres are great so will vocals and giutars sound ok going through 2 preamps before my daw? Cheers in advance guys..

imac, Mac OS X (10.5.6)
  • revolver87 Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
    Sorry for a minor mistake.. Have actually ordered the apogee duet.. Cheers guys
  • tbirdparis Level 5 Level 5 (5,500 points)
    You're not forced to use 2 preamps.. If you want to use your existing preamps, you would just connect your source to your preamp as usual and then connect its output to the regular line level inputs on the Duet, which don't go through the Apogee's preamp. That way you'll be able to keep using the preamp sound that you like, and record as normal. Then, as an alternative, you can always connect your source to the mic input(s) on the Duet if you want to have access to a different preamp sound.
  • revolver87 Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
    Cheers for the reply.. Any ideas what would happen if i connected my external pre to my duet mic pre.. Ie usins my mic through both preamps when recording.. Thanks
  • Tegularius Level 1 Level 1 (20 points)
    Cascading the preamps doesn't make sense, you most likely will get a distorted and muffled signal. However you can record your microphone on both preamps simultaneously by splitting it. One signal goes thru your existing preamp and is recorded with line level, the other signal is connected to one of the Duet mic preamps. You can set the input levels for left and right channel separately on the Duet.
  • revolver87 Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
    Cheers for that. It was exactly the answer i was looking for. I could be wrong but im guessing the focusrite isa one would probably have slightly better preamps since its a specific product for that. Also think i read somewhere you can still record through the mic leads yet bypass the internal preamps.. Not sure if this is correct but will check it out...
  • Tom Hartman1 Level 1 Level 1 (115 points)
    You don't connect your external mic pre to the Duet mic pre input, you connect it to the LINE IN of the Duet.

    I use an API 512c mic pre going into the Duet line in and it sounds great.

    TH
  • revolver87 Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
    Super.. Cheers for that. Have one arriving in the post in the next few days.. Will be like a kid on christmas morning..
  • tbirdparis Level 5 Level 5 (5,500 points)
    Cheers for that. It was exactly the answer i was looking for. I could be wrong but im guessing the focusrite isa one would probably have slightly better preamps since its a specific product for that.


    Yes and no. Up to a point, you can sometimes say that yes, one preamp is better than another, especially when comparing cheap 'prosumer' gear like m-audio for example to something more respectable. But when there are quality components involved, it's never a simple matter of saying one is better than the other. For a start, different preamps interact differently with different mics, and then going beyond that, different combinations of mics and pres deliver different colour depending on the source material. So, once you're using quality gear, it really comes down to horses for courses. You might find that the Duet's preamp sound, combined with a certain mic you use, gets you a sound you prefer with say, a certain vocalist's timbre. Or in other cases, the focusrite might give you something nicer.
    This is why you find dozens of different preamps in the biggest studios.. if it were the case that one was just better than all the others, then logically they'd only have the best most expensive one.
  • revolver87 Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
    Good post.. That actually makes perfect sense.. I suppose its just about getting to know your gear and experiment till your happy. Dam i thought there was a quick way to perfection.. I suppose the experimenting will be half the fun.. Thanks for that..
  • SeattleMoose Level 2 Level 2 (170 points)
    I use the following preamps into the line inputs of the Duet:

    Presonus ADL600 - tube pre provides warmer sound that good but "clear" native Duet preamps
    UA Solo 610 - another warm preamp
    Daking PreOne - solid state pre that has its own vibe

    The excellent A/D converters in the Duet allow the character of each of these Pres to come thru.

    BTW..the preamps in duet are quite good but have no "flavor" per se. I use them on occasion but if I want "mojo" I go with one of the above external Preamps.

    Best of luck!!!!
  • revolver87 Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
    Cheers for the post.. Thanks for takin the time.. Looking forward to hours of experimentation..
  • oceanicrecords Level 1 Level 1 (35 points)
    Well, actually you do connect an external pre to the mic inputs on the duet, you just change the setting in the maestro software for the input to function as a +4 XLR line-in and it bypasses the pre (it can also be changed to -10 line-in, or switched back to mic-in. The LINE-IN inputs on the DUET don't give you the flexibility to switch between balanced/unbalanced line levels.

    Steve