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ART Tube MP Preamplifier

You Pay: $39.99
Product Highlights
  • Single-Channel Tube-Based
  • Hand-Selected 12AX7A Vacuum Tube
  • Variable Input & Output Gain Control
  • Ideal as a Tube DI Box
  • XLR & 1/4" Connections
  • Inexpensive, Professional Performance
  • Exceptionally Low Noise
  • A Staple in Many Studios

Whether recording to 4-track cassettes or to multi-track digital recorders, the award-nominated design of the ART Pro Audio Tube MP Preamplifier allows users to obtain professional results at a fraction of the cost of comparable equipment. The hybrid design of the Tube MP allows it to add warmth and fatness to a signal, while maintaining exceptionally low-noise.

While it's primary function is as a microphone preamp, the Tube MP is also a great direct box - impedance matching, amplifying and improving the sound of any instrument. The usage of external mic/line preamps has become increasingly popular over the past several years. The unit offers better performance and sound quality over that which can obtained from the "on-board" preamps included in many of today's low-cost mixers and multi-track recorders.

Quality sound combined with features like a 12AX7a tube, variable input/output levels, phantom power, and phase reverse are what have made the Tube MP a staple in many studios. For a minimal investment, a Tube MP can provide the single largest improvement to the sound of a studio.

Single channel of tube microphone preamplification
Hand-selected 12AX7A Vacuum Tube
Variable input and output gain controls
Ideal for use as a tube DI box
XLR and 1/4" connections
Number of Channels 1
Inputs 1 x XLR, 1 x 1/4" TS phone
Output 1 x XLR, 1 x 1/4" TS phone
Phantom Power +48V
Multi Function No
Gain Range 70dB (XLR to XLR typical)
Maximum Output Level +28dB (XLR), +22dB (1/4")
Frequency Response 10Hz to 20kHz
Noise EIN: -129dBu ("A" weighted XLR to XLR)
Dimensions 5" x 5.5" x 2" heavy duty desktop enclosure
Specialties Phase reversal switch
ART Tube MP Preamplifier
  • External 9-Volt Power Supply
  • 1-Year Warranty
  • REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

    by PowerReviews
    ARTTube MP Preamplifier
     
    3.6

    (based on 5 reviews)

    Ratings Distribution

    • 5 Stars

       

      (2)

    • 4 Stars

       

      (1)

    • 3 Stars

       

      (1)

    • 2 Stars

       

      (0)

    • 1 Stars

       

      (1)

    60%

    of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

    Pros

    • Attractive (3)
    • Easy to setup (3)
    • Good power output (3)
    • Great sound quality (3)

    Cons

      Best Uses

          • Reviewer Profile:
          • Tech savvy (4)
          • Was this a gift?:
          • No (3)

        Reviewed by 5 customers

        Sort by

        Displaying reviews 1-5

        Back to top

         
        1.0

        so so toy only

        By kb

        from nyc

        About Me Tech Savvy

        Pros

        • Cheeeep

        Cons

        • Weak raison d'etre

        Best Uses

        • Super cheap systems toy

        Comments about ART Tube MP Preamplifier:

        its cheap...good for curiousity satisfaction
        and as a toy...
        but if you hav e downright cheapie recorders
        or what not...this might actually upgrade u a bit...
        esp for CHEAP dyn mics and CHEAP ribbons or
        cheap geetars, direct line in stuff...
        but
        if you have already spent fw hundred dollars on
        your mixers, mics or gear...this is a downgrade
        in both overall sound quality and guarantee of
        constant hisssss noise at all levels.
        too bad...
        but can be a fun toy to keep in back of closet.
        NOT for recording..and Not for condenser mics.

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

        Share this review

         
        4.0

        Good Product, Excellent Price

        By The Singing Programmer

        from Toronto, ON, Canada

        About Me IPhone App Developer, Tech Savvy

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Attractive Design
        • Good Power Output
        • Great Sound Quality

        Cons

        • No online manual

        Best Uses

        • XLR Mic with a PC

        Comments about ART Tube MP Preamplifier:

        I bought the ART Tube MP Preamplifier so I could use the Audio-Technica ATR-1300 Microphone with my PC.

        It functions very well, with very neutral sound reproduction. I noticed a forum posting which mentioned that if you're looking for the "warm" (ie not neutral) sound normally associated with the use of a vacuum tube, you simply need to replace the vacuum tube shipped with this unit with a more expensive one which can be obtained from a hobbyist store. I personally prefer the neutral sound produced by the pre-installed stock tube.

        ART unfortunately hasn't publish the manual for this product online. You can use either the XLR or TRS (mini-jack) input, but not both simultaneously. Both the XLR and TRS (mini-jack) outputs CAN however be used simultaneously. 48V phantom power can be enabled/disabled on the XLR input via a push-button switch. All TRS (mini-jack) ports are 1/4" female, and not the 1/8" expected by a typical PC sound card. I simply bought a 1/4" to 1/8" TRS adapter.

        There are separate knobs used to adjust the amplification of the input and output signal. You will definitely need to set the output knob to half power (white line straight up), or you won't get any perceivable output regardless of the input amplification (which is where most of the work is done). I found that I got the best results with my computer by setting the input knob to 25% and enabling the +20dB gain push-button by pressing it in. Because of the warnings given with regards to potentially blowing the pre-amp, I've taken the additional precaution of dialing down the input to zero when I'm not using the microphone.

        Overall it's a good product, and I'm very happy with the purchase, especially given the excellent price!

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

        Share this review

        (2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

         
        3.0

        A classic, if you're using cassettes

        By Volstag

        from OK

        About Me Recording Engineer

        Verified Reviewer

        Pros

        • Attractive Design
        • Easy Setup

        Cons

        • Poor Sound Quality

        Best Uses

        • Cheap piezo pickups
        • Outdoors

        Comments about ART Tube MP Preamplifier:

        Don't expect real tube sound from these things, they aren't actually tube preamps. The tube sits between two solid-state opamps, which do the actual amplification, to muddy up the sound and hide the flaws of the circuit.

        The consistency of the Tube MP's build over the years is pretty random, some are kind of great, most are really awful.

        If you're still using cassette tapes to record, then a good Tube MP will work wonders. But for even basic digital recording, say 24/44, then you're going to just have muddy tracks, with various other noise issues.

        Another good use for the Tube MP is with piezo pickups. The awful sound of one seems to cancel the awful sound of the other.

        Share this review

         
        5.0

        Does what it says and says what it does.

        By Meachamus Prime

        from Madison, AL

        About Me Audiophile, Tech Savvy

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Easy Setup
        • Good Power Output
        • Great Sound Quality

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Basic Systems
          • Home
          • Home Theater
          • Larger Rooms
          • Multiple Rooms / Whole House
          • Smaller Rooms

          Comments about ART Tube MP Preamplifier:

          Using between microphone and amp for a simple PA system in a large dining hall. Handheld recorder plugged into the high impedance line while feeding the XLR to the amp. Works great.

          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

          Share this review

          (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          Simply a Great Value

          By StefanoJ

          from Clemson, SC

          About Me Audiophile, Musician, Tech Savvy

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Attractive Design
          • Easy Setup
          • Good Power Output
          • Great Sound Quality

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Basic Systems
            • Home

            Comments about ART Tube MP Preamplifier:

            I use it for recording on a budget, and it works as a mic and guitar preamp. I would imagine that any other instrument you can plug into it would sound great as well. It has the distinctive sound that you'd expect from a valve. And with a guitar plugged up to it, any but the most picky audiophiles would be hard pressed to tell it apart from a tube amp. It also functions as a splitter as it sends signals through both the XLR and TS (1/4") outputs at the same time. It was so well worth the [$] dollars that I ordered a second one within minutes of receiving the first.

            Share this review

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