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DBX 286s Microphone Pre-amp Processor
|Price:||$199.95 & FREE Shipping. Details|
|You Save:||$80.00 (29%)|
- Studio quality Mic Preamp/Channel Strip Processor
- Classic dbx Compression puts great sound within easy reach
- Frequency tunable De-Esser reduces sibilance and high frequency distortion
- Enhancer increases the detail and definition of the high and low frequencies
- Program adaptive Expander/Gate
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The dbx 286s is a full featured Channel Strip Processor that delivers a studio quality microphone/instrument preamplifier and four processors that can be used independently or in any combination. Why mic up vocals and instruments through a noisy, blurry mixer? The sonically pristine dbx 286s Mic Preamp has all the features you need, including wide-ranging input gain control, switchable +48V phantom power, and an 80Hz high-pass filter to remove low frequency hum, rumble or wind. Use the patented dbx OverEasy compressor to transparently smooth out uneven acoustic tracks or deliver that classic "in your face" vocal performance that only a dbx compressor can. Eliminate vocal sibilance and high frequency distortion from instruments such as cymbals with the frequency tunable De-Esser. Fine-tune the Enhancer HF Detail control to add sparkle and crispness to your tracks and make adjustments to the LF Detail control to add fullness and depth to vocals and bass instruments while cleaning up the muddy low midrange frequencies. And, the separate threshold and ratio controls on the Expander/Gate allow you to subtly reduce headphone leakage or radically gate noisy guitar amps. The dbx 286s offers a full compliment of metering and status LEDs to visually guide you to achieving the right sound. The floating balanced XLR Mic Input accepts balanced or unbalanced inputs to easily connect to professional and home studio microphones. The additional 1/4" TRS Line Input can accept balanced/unbalanced signals to process live electronic instruments or pre-recorded tracks at mix down. Use the Insert jack to interface between the Mic Preamp and the signal processing sections to "loop out" to external processors (such as EQ or delay unit) or to mix the Mic Preamp's signal out to an external destination.
Top customer reviews
It would be great if you could run multiple mics in and out using the same settings without having to buy one for each mic, but I understand the limitations of that.
And unless you're going to rack mount this with other audio gear, it is quite large to put on a desk or hide in a cabinet or drawer.
Now, I have very little experience with outboard gear, but the reviews are true. This channel strip did what years of fiddling with plug-ins couldn't do: give me a professional sounding recording. I almost could have cried. It sounds lovely and professional. It won't sound like a Neve, but it will give you a nice flat signal and silence your room's foibles.
I should say that the effect knobs are extremely powerful, so don't go ramping them up to the right. The compressor, for me, sits at 2 and 1/34 repsectively. I use the EQ boosts judiciously and they give a nice warmth on the bottom and a slight air on the top without being brittle.
All in all a beautiful sturdy piece of kit that I wish I had had years ago. In fact, I'm re-recording a whole album with this. It's that good.
The DBX 286s was an outstanding upgrade to my voiceover audio chain. The pre-amp does a marvelous job with my Sennheiser 416 (http://www.amazon.com/Sennheiser-MKH416-P48U3-Super-Cardioid-Condenser-Microphone/dp/B00030679K), but the standout feature -- worth the price itself -- is the Expander/Gate function. The DBX gives you quite a bit of control over downward expansion so you can eliminate background noise or problematic room tone without hearing a gate slam in the end result. (No channel strip is going to perform miracles -- work on your room acoustics first!)
The de-esser is also very effective; you'll need to spend some time "shhhshing" and "susssing" to find your own problem frequency. Once you have that dialed in, just start bumping the threshold until it's suppressed. Too much and you'll sound stuffed-up, so go easy. I've toyed with the compression settings and the low/high enhancement options, but for my purposes these are mainly tweaked in the DAW. These are powerful knobs; a little goes a long way!
Don't forget, you'll need cables and a way to get the analog signal into your computer. I use a special soundcard, but there are plenty of USB options too.
My audio chain: Mic > DBX 286s > Mackie 1202-VLZ Pro > Echo MiaMIDI
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This is awesome.
One major factor for me was that the unit had to function in the presence of high power RF fields. No worries there as all the inputs and outputs are RF filtered very effectively. Although the DBX over-easy compressor works well, it has always been my preference to have the compressor/limiter as the last component in my audio chain. Unfortunately, other than the side-chain insert jack, there is no patch-panel capability to allow you to move the position of the onboard processing modules as you can with more expensive units like the RANE VP-12. Although the De-Esser works well and tames most of the sibilance now and then a searing high can slip through with the EQ module at the end of the chain. This was not a big problem and all I did was disable the onboard compressor/limiter and use an old DBX-166A compressor/limiter behind the 286S.
The audio is very smooth and the shelving EQ works very nicely allowing a lot of control over lows and highs. The short story is that I am very pleased with the performance value of the 286S and have found it to be flexible enough to allow a tremendous amount of adjustment to cover pretty much any basic processing need. If you keep in mind that it is not a Symmetrix 528E you won't be disappointed with what you get in this box. It is a very agile and effective preamp and voice processing unit.
Most recent customer reviews
The compressor and noise gate are what I bought it for, those work very well.Read more