uln-8 experiences

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vapour trail
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uln-8 experiences

Post by vapour trail » Sat Jan 30, 2010 10:29 am

hey everyone, and specifically you experienced Metric Halo users.

a quick question to help me decide on some purchases for this year's oncoming projects.

which set-up would you guys choose (mobile recording rig, recording bands, guitar/pop music):

A.
2882 + Audient ASP008 (via adat)
preamps: Daking mpIV, 3x Amek 9098, UA 6176, 4x Siemens v276

B.
ULN 8 + 2882
no extra preamps (well maybe 2)

considering that with what I allready have, the ULN8 still is the more expensive option and slightly stressy to cope with financially. On the other hand portability, and integrated functionality are also important factors. And quality is an absolute priority.

But the main question would be if MH's Character algorythms can really justify getting rid of those preamps???

any opinions are greatly appreciated!

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Post by vapour trail » Sat Jan 30, 2010 11:32 am

...found this on that other forum, which is pretty much what I was looking for:

http://www.gearslutz.com/board/high-end ... -halo.html

(posting it here for documentation's sake.)

...but any thoughts are still welcome.

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Post by AstroDan » Sat Jan 30, 2010 1:35 pm

I would recommend the 2882. They're giving away the non-DSP version ($650 for the last used one on ebay).

You have badass preamps. I've done way passable rock recordings exclusively on the 2882's built in pre's. The guitars not so much, but the low end stuff, yes. It is a low end, 'depth' machine.

I love MH - but that uln 8 is crazy expensive!
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Post by AstroDan » Sun Jan 31, 2010 11:14 am

Okay, I'm an idiot that pays no attention. I will leave it at this: the 2882 is a lovely converter, the stock preamps are way useful, and is super cheap right now used. So it seems you could save at least a couple thousand by going 2882 and eight channels of outboard of your choosing.

Of course, if the pre's on that uln-8 are as good as they say, your second option isn't terrible. I would just personally be scared to pay that much for one box.
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Post by vapour trail » Mon Feb 01, 2010 2:34 am

thanks for your thoughts astrodan, let me tell you I'm absolutely terrified about that ULN8. I'm not too keen otherwise on starting a "what to buy" thread.

I actually hadn't considered simply getting a second 2882 (indeed a great box), i guess that's my third option... one that'll still allow me to take my girl out to dinner

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Post by tdbajus » Mon Feb 01, 2010 11:56 am

I have had my 2882 for maybe 7 or 8 years, sent it in for the DSP update, and every time I use it, I find another cool wrinkle. The UNL-8 seems very, very sexy to me, but even after 8 years, I don't feel like I've outgrown my 2882.

I love the built in preamps, but I also use a manley dual mono (on semi-permanent loan), a langevin Dual Mono (awesome) and 2 Chameleon Labs Neve Clones, so most of the time, I'm bypassing at least 4 of the preamps.
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Post by AstroDan » Mon Feb 01, 2010 1:06 pm

I'm no uber authority - I just own a 2882. People swear by the ULN-2's pre's so a whole converter box plus 8 great preamps in one is probably not a terrible deal. Especially if you had the luxury to try one out and determine if the ULN-8 preamps will be all you will ever need. It just seems a better deal to go 2882 for under a grand, then go with the many, many dual preamplifiers you could get for around the same price (or Sytek or that Audient) and even fall back on the stock 2882 pres.

$5000 would suck if you hated the way the ULN-8 sounded on some sources. Could happen!
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Post by sdevino » Tue Feb 02, 2010 5:15 am

Are you sure you saw a 2882 go for $650 on ebay? Last week one sold for $1650. The 2882s hold their value really well. Typically $1500-$1600 for a 2D, $1700-$1800 for a +DSP.

The ULN8 is also valued for its converters. When compared to the price of high end 8 channel converter box plus preamps its not so expensive anymore IMO.
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Post by tdbajus » Tue Feb 02, 2010 5:33 am

speaking of converters:

I thought I would make two ass-whooping channel strips, so I bought an RME ADI-2 and a UA 2-610. Those two channels cost me more than the whole 2882. Didn't really much improve the quality of the sound- as far as line level signal A/D goes, I have a very hard time telling between the pre-amp-less ADI-2 and the 2882 (using the same outboard pre).

While I could tell the difference between the 2-610 into the RME, vs just the plain 2882 using its built in preamps, it certainly was not worth $1100/input vs $220/input.

I've given up on recording at 88.2K, btw (see enormous thread on this), so now the RME 192K thing seems 4x as useless.


While we're on the subject- I'm starting to develop a nice pile of preamps- I've always wondered why someone doesn't offer a version of their converters without the preamps built in at all.

This was the logic behind me getting the ADI-2, which wound up being a bust, but how could a 2882 with only line inputs not be significantly cheaper to make/sell? You could buy one a a second unit, use the existing pres from your 2882, and hook up your other box with external preamps, FX loops, whatever.

Is there something I am missing here?
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Post by vapour trail » Tue Feb 02, 2010 6:53 am

The 2882's that go cheap on ebay are the old non-2D ones, and there aren't too many of those about anymore. the new ones indeed hold their value well

A 2882 without it's utillity preamps wouldn't cost much less than what it does now I think, and to be honest it's been great having them available at least as a safety net. Just switch to line inputs for xternal pres..

I'm not surprised comparing the RME to the 2882 line inputs doesn't show any audible improvement.


Still no decision made though,

the ULN8 is a good deal considering, but leaves me with more features then I really need right now. most future proof option though. For smaller gigs i wouldn't need to drag racks of preamps with me.

the second 2882 option is all right, but I'd need to get some extra preamps still (I could rent them though-). At which point the pricedifference grows considerately smaller.

the Audient, which hasn't really been discussed here, is financally the mst interesting, and preamp-wise better then the 2882's (correct me if I'm wrong) but is more heavy, and leaves me without 8 extra outputs, which I'd miss when I want to mix OTB.

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Post by vapour trail » Thu Feb 04, 2010 4:43 am

......and the winner is:

another 2882

8 more channels at 96k and 8 extra outputs for otb mixing and the weight made the decision vs the Audient (only 4 ch. @ 96k via adat). And still some cash to spend on an extra outboard comp.


thanks for the advice guys, be well.

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Post by chickenbop » Sun Feb 07, 2010 2:08 pm

The uln-8 is pretty awesome.I bought one for my own use a couple of weeks ago.I used to have a 2882dsp paired with a daking mic pre iv and that was a great combo too.
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