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Author Topic: Sound Devices USBPre2 vs MixPre into Edirol R-09HR  (Read 8044 times)

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Offline bryonsos

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Re: Sound Devices USBPre2 vs MixPre into Edirol R-09HR
« Reply #15 on: June 12, 2012, 02:38:55 PM »
The MixPre and MixPre-D have input transformers like page mentioned, but they really don't color the sound like output transformers do. Transformers can have multiple functions, in this case they're used to boost gain without coloration, they are there just for long cable runs. Both pres do not color the sound, they are incredibly neutral.
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Offline DigiGal

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Re: Sound Devices USBPre2 vs MixPre into Edirol R-09HR
« Reply #16 on: June 12, 2012, 06:25:20 PM »
As a user, Here is what I think.  USBPRE2......Digigal is right but I equate it to a difference between audio and video use.  Well beside transformers.  I am not going to get into tech talk about specs, and small differences between them.  Headphone amp has LOTS of power but is not quiet enough for some.  I have seen complaints "that when I turn it all the way up I hear a hiss"  If I turn the volume all the way up on my sony MDR7506 cans I can't even get them near my ears.  You cannot beat it for the ease of use and as a soundcard.  It does require external power though.  I personally would never care about panning.  I am recording separate channels anyway and can pan whatever I want in post.  The BIGGEST advantage and THE REASON I bought it is because it will sync to an external SPDIF singnal.  This makes syncing two DR-680's effortless.  I really think the Pre-D is gear just for the DSLR/Camera market.  I also think that you could see the meters in daylight but I can't say that I've noticed it one way or the other.
I should also add that I run a Sound Device MP-2 and Lunatec V3 so I feel like I have the best combination of preamps and that they give me every feature set I would ever want between the three of them.

Thanks for all this info Kirk, I have a set of MDR7506's and they are fairly common field cans so perhaps SD had them in mind when designing the USB-Pre2's HP amp.  I'm still undecided if I'd go with MixPre-D, USB-Pre2 or a Lunatec V3, the latter has no headphone output at all.  Have also wondered if Sound Devices might refresh the SD302 by making a SD302D, that could be awesome.  Was considering the USB-Pre2 for dual use as a standalone field preamp and as a DAC for my workstation but ended up finding a nice deal on a factory refurbished DAC1 direct from Benchmark so the DAC functionality is no longer a requirement for me.

It would be nice to find a rental house to try all these before making a purchasing decision.
« Last Edit: June 12, 2012, 09:51:36 PM by DigiGal »
Mics: AKG CK91/CK94/CK98/SE300 | Shure VP88 | Senn ME66/K6/K6RD Cables: Gotham GAC-4/1 "StarQuad" w/Neutrik EMC | Gotham GAC-2pair w/AKG MK90/3 connectors | DigiGal AES>S/PDIF cable Preamp: SoundDevices MixPre-D Recorder: Marantz PMD 661 Edit: 27" 3.4GHz QuadCore i7 iMac | OS X High Sierra 10.13.6 | Wave Editor | xACT  | Transmission | Final Cut Pro X                                                            

kirk97132

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Re: Sound Devices USBPre2 vs MixPre into Edirol R-09HR
« Reply #17 on: June 12, 2012, 09:50:20 PM »
As a user, Here is what I think.  USBPRE2......Digigal is right but I equate it to a difference between audio and video use.  Well beside transformers.  I am not going to get into tech talk about specs, and small differences between them.  Headphone amp has LOTS of power but is not quiet enough for some.  I have seen complaints "that when I turn it all the way up I hear a hiss"  If I turn the volume all the way up on my sony MDR7506 cans I can't even get them near my ears.  You cannot beat it for the ease of use and as a soundcard.  It does require external power though.  I personally would never care about panning.  I am recording separate channels anyway and can pan whatever I want in post.  The BIGGEST advantage and THE REASON I bought it is because it will sync to an external SPDIF singnal.  This makes syncing two DR-680's effortless.  I really think the Pre-D is gear just for the DSLR/Camera market.  I also think that you could see the meters in daylight but I can't say that I've noticed it one way or the other.
I should also add that I run a Sound Device MP-2 and Lunatec V3 so I feel like I have the best combination of preamps and that they give me every feature set I would ever want between the three of them.

Thanks for all this info Kirk, I have a set of MDR7506's and they are fairly common field cans so perhaps SD had them in mind when designing the USB-Pre2's HP amp.  I'm still undecided if I'd go with MixPre-D, USB-Pre2 or a Lunatec V3, the latter has no headphone output at all.  Have also wondered if Sound Devices might refresh the SD302 by making a SD302D, that could be awesome.  Was considering the USB-Pre2 for dual use as a standalone field preamp and as a DAC for my workstation but ended up finding a nice deal on a factory refurbished DAC1 direct from Benchmark so the DAC functionality is no longer a requirement for me.
I dont think that there is a big difference in sound.  the Pre2 might be a tad brighter...maybe.  I got the V3 for word Clock output.  But for the money the Pre2 will more than hold it's own against the V3.  The Pre2 has optical and spdif.  The V3 spdif and AES.  Both require external battery.  And FWIW V3 is now discontinued.  But even so yo are gonna spend 800-850 and the pre2 new is 650.  Id say get the Pre2.  if you don't like it it should be an easy resell since there are not any around used. 

Offline alpine85

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Re: Sound Devices USBPre2 vs MixPre into Edirol R-09HR
« Reply #18 on: June 13, 2012, 12:37:43 PM »
As a user, Here is what I think.  USBPRE2......Digigal is right but I equate it to a difference between audio and video use.  Well beside transformers.  I am not going to get into tech talk about specs, and small differences between them.  Headphone amp has LOTS of power but is not quiet enough for some.  I have seen complaints "that when I turn it all the way up I hear a hiss"  If I turn the volume all the way up on my sony MDR7506 cans I can't even get them near my ears.  You cannot beat it for the ease of use and as a soundcard.  It does require external power though.  I personally would never care about panning.  I am recording separate channels anyway and can pan whatever I want in post.  The BIGGEST advantage and THE REASON I bought it is because it will sync to an external SPDIF singnal.  This makes syncing two DR-680's effortless.  I really think the Pre-D is gear just for the DSLR/Camera market.  I also think that you could see the meters in daylight but I can't say that I've noticed it one way or the other.
I should also add that I run a Sound Device MP-2 and Lunatec V3 so I feel like I have the best combination of preamps and that they give me every feature set I would ever want between the three of them.

Thanks for all this info Kirk, I have a set of MDR7506's and they are fairly common field cans so perhaps SD had them in mind when designing the USB-Pre2's HP amp.  I'm still undecided if I'd go with MixPre-D, USB-Pre2 or a Lunatec V3, the latter has no headphone output at all.  Have also wondered if Sound Devices might refresh the SD302 by making a SD302D, that could be awesome.  Was considering the USB-Pre2 for dual use as a standalone field preamp and as a DAC for my workstation but ended up finding a nice deal on a factory refurbished DAC1 direct from Benchmark so the DAC functionality is no longer a requirement for me.
I dont think that there is a big difference in sound.  the Pre2 might be a tad brighter...maybe.  I got the V3 for word Clock output.  But for the money the Pre2 will more than hold it's own against the V3.  The Pre2 has optical and spdif.  The V3 spdif and AES.  Both require external battery.  And FWIW V3 is now discontinued.  But even so yo are gonna spend 800-850 and the pre2 new is 650.  Id say get the Pre2.  if you don't like it it should be an easy resell since there are not any around used.

Exactly. 

This is why I rolled the dice and picked one up, even after my somewhat bad experience with the USB-Pre 1.5 (plus I've been assured that the problems with the D/A have been straightened out).  I really wanted to hear what this pre sounded like with the AKGs, and there aren't any samples out there, so I guess I'll be the guinea pig  ;)  I figure if it sounds like ass I can just turn around and sell it for a minimal loss...

It gets here Friday... looking forward to trying out that headphone amp and then hopefully in the field next week
MICS: AKG CK-1/CK-63/CK-8/CK-22 --> AKG 460/JW460/JW452
CABLES: GAKcables and Mogami
PRES: Apogee Mini-Me, SD USBPre-2, Busman UA-5
RECORDERS: Oade R-44, Tascam DR-100-MKII, JB3

kirk97132

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Re: Sound Devices USBPre2 vs MixPre into Edirol R-09HR
« Reply #19 on: June 13, 2012, 12:53:23 PM »
I can tell you without a doubt, it WILL NOT sound like ass.  It will reveal any flaws of the mics, AND in fact it can make mics that might sound a little lacking  sound like impressive superstars.  Case in point a set of ADK SC-T mics I recorded Warren Haynes Band with.  Don't get me wrong, I love the ADK mic line but paired with the USBPre2 the mics really shined!  http://bt.etree.org/details.php?id=549535.  Recording was put up against Nak 300's and a set of sleeper Toa K2 mics I own and even the ADK TL's which are fairly well known around here.  IT just sounded amazing like a completely different set of mics.  (All BT's here: http://bt.etree.org/index.php?searchsss&cat=182&incldead=1&page=50)   Like the V3 very clean and transparent.  Gobs of mic gain and the ability to output Four different types of signal at the same time(SPDIF, OPTICAL, XLR, & RCA) AND two headphone outputs.

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Re: Sound Devices USBPre2 vs MixPre into Edirol R-09HR
« Reply #20 on: June 13, 2012, 01:09:25 PM »
Is the USBPre2 able to do "on-the-fly" matrix recordings in stand alone mode?  Is there a field case available for it, Portabrace doesn't list one but are there any others out there at this point?
Mics: AKG CK91/CK94/CK98/SE300 | Shure VP88 | Senn ME66/K6/K6RD Cables: Gotham GAC-4/1 "StarQuad" w/Neutrik EMC | Gotham GAC-2pair w/AKG MK90/3 connectors | DigiGal AES>S/PDIF cable Preamp: SoundDevices MixPre-D Recorder: Marantz PMD 661 Edit: 27" 3.4GHz QuadCore i7 iMac | OS X High Sierra 10.13.6 | Wave Editor | xACT  | Transmission | Final Cut Pro X                                                            

kirk97132

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Re: Sound Devices USBPre2 vs MixPre into Edirol R-09HR
« Reply #21 on: June 13, 2012, 03:47:50 PM »
NO "Matrixing" only single(stereo) input is possible.  Selectable on front panel.   Dunno bout cases.

Offline DigiGal

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Re: Sound Devices USBPre2 vs MixPre into Edirol R-09HR
« Reply #22 on: June 13, 2012, 04:25:05 PM »
NO "Matrixing" only single(stereo) input is possible.  Selectable on front panel.   Dunno bout cases.

Okay got it, so those look like a couple more difference's btw. the SD units.  I believe the MixPre-D can do a matrix and has a field case available. 

I've still got my DigiMod UA-5 BM2p+, have considered selling it and only hanging on to it for the occasional matrix.  If eventually deciding to go with a USBPre2 then the UA5 would still be necessary if ever doing an "on-the-fly matrix".

Not ruling out USBPre2, just making notes and weighing options for future plans.  Haven't found a rental house with these units as yet but maybe one will turn up.

Choice is pretty much narrowed down to just the SD units, especially considering your experienced opinion that the sound quality is effectively the same as a V3.

Thanks for your feedback, it is greatly appreciated.
« Last Edit: June 13, 2012, 04:36:47 PM by DigiGal »
Mics: AKG CK91/CK94/CK98/SE300 | Shure VP88 | Senn ME66/K6/K6RD Cables: Gotham GAC-4/1 "StarQuad" w/Neutrik EMC | Gotham GAC-2pair w/AKG MK90/3 connectors | DigiGal AES>S/PDIF cable Preamp: SoundDevices MixPre-D Recorder: Marantz PMD 661 Edit: 27" 3.4GHz QuadCore i7 iMac | OS X High Sierra 10.13.6 | Wave Editor | xACT  | Transmission | Final Cut Pro X                                                            

kirk97132

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Re: Sound Devices USBPre2 vs MixPre into Edirol R-09HR
« Reply #23 on: June 13, 2012, 06:33:54 PM »
I think, the Pre-D 3/4 input option does not have any level control like the UA-5 does.  I guess it could be done by just mic level adjustment as long as you can get enough mic mixed into the line level signal without clipping the outputs.  I' a assuming that the mix will be summing all inputs.  SO if your line input is hot then you would not be able to add much mic level before you reach 0 dBFS.  Imiss my UA-5 it is a great little piece of gear:-)  But then again I don't record any two track stuff anymore.

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Re: Sound Devices USBPre2 vs MixPre into Edirol R-09HR
« Reply #24 on: June 13, 2012, 08:25:21 PM »
Hmm, it's a bit awkward and confusing but this is what I'm seeing in the MixPreD manual which seems to indicate that an unbalanced stereo -10 RCA (or properly attenuated XLR or 1/4") board feed via 1/8" RTN input could be matrix'd with individual level control of (3 & 4) inputs and mics, am I misinterpreting this?

Inputs 3 and 4
Each channel of the Tape Return input can be routed to various locations. When additional inputs are needed (such as when multiple wireless receivers are used) the Tape Return channels can be independently routed to the main output bus of the MixPre-D to act as additional inputs (3 and 4).

To cycle between the available routings of the Tape Return signal, hold down the Input 1 Button (for Channel 3) or the Input 2 Button (for Channel 4) and press the Headphone Controller. An LED in the right meter will illuminate to represent the destination of the routing:
-30: RTN L (Channel 3) or RTN R (Channel 4)•
-18: Left output bus.•
-16: Center (left and right) output bus•
-14: Right output bus•

When any channel of the Tape Return input is routed to the main output bus, the RTN Monitor Source is disabled.

The TAPE RTN (Input 3 and 4) Input is an unbalanced stereo input that is suitable for tape or line level devices only. There are no microphone preamps on Inputs 3 and 4.

Channel 3 Level   Hold Input 1 Button and turn Headphone Controller. Adjusts input level of input 3 (when set to something other than RTN left).
Channel 4 Level   Hold Input 2 Button and turn Headphone Controller. Adjusts input level of input 4 (when set to something other than RTN right).
« Last Edit: June 13, 2012, 08:56:10 PM by DigiGal »
Mics: AKG CK91/CK94/CK98/SE300 | Shure VP88 | Senn ME66/K6/K6RD Cables: Gotham GAC-4/1 "StarQuad" w/Neutrik EMC | Gotham GAC-2pair w/AKG MK90/3 connectors | DigiGal AES>S/PDIF cable Preamp: SoundDevices MixPre-D Recorder: Marantz PMD 661 Edit: 27" 3.4GHz QuadCore i7 iMac | OS X High Sierra 10.13.6 | Wave Editor | xACT  | Transmission | Final Cut Pro X                                                            

Offline George2

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Re: Sound Devices USBPre2 vs MixPre into Edirol R-09HR
« Reply #25 on: June 14, 2012, 12:29:41 PM »
The reason there isn't a case for the USBPre2.. It isn't considered a portable field mixer while the Mixpre-D is.
Get the right tool for the job.
Mixpre can run on external power, and if that goes, can be switched to internal power without affecting the audio.
« Last Edit: June 14, 2012, 10:02:25 PM by George2 »
Sennheiser 418s>SDMixPre-D>RO9HR
Beyer MC930>Fostex FM3>NagraSD
Couple of Schoeps CMT441 too.

kirk97132

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Re: Sound Devices USBPre2 vs MixPre into Edirol R-09HR
« Reply #26 on: June 14, 2012, 01:40:06 PM »
@ Digigal, maybe I misread it.  I only saw the input enabling feature.  But then again I don't own one

 

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