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This B&H Kit includes the Radial Engineering Workhouse Cube 3-Module Desktop Power Rack for 500 Series Modules as well as a 500 Series microphone preamplifier module, a 500 Series DI/preamplifier/compressor module, and a 500 Series equalizer module. The three modules are designed to be installed into the three available slots on the 500 Series Workhouse Cube rack. The rack provides power to the modules and allows you to build a signal chain for recording vintage-style vocals.
The back of the rack features balanced 3-pin XLR inputs and outputs, as well as 1/4" TRS inputs and outputs for connecting the modules together.
Heritage Audio '73 Junior API 500 Series Microphone Preamplifier Module
The Heritage Audio '73 Junior API 500 Series Microphone Preamplifier Module is a 1U 500 series compatible 80 dB microphone and 10 dB line recording reproduction module based on the vintage 1073 designed by Rupert Neve. The remake is intended for recording engineers who want the classic Neve sound but do not need the equalizer functionality of the original module.
Using Styroflex and tantalum capacitors, the designers were able to fit all three 1073 discrete component Class A preamplifier gain stages in 1U of an API 500 Series lunchbox module.
The preamplifier supports selectable HI-LO minimum balanced and floating input impedances that accommodate a range of microphone types including vintage ribbons. You can also switch the module into line mode to re-amplify pre-recorded tracks and add color to a mix. Plugging in a mono 1/4" input into the DI port on the front of the unit automatically switches the module from MIC to DI mode. A discrete component Class A 3rd order 80 Hz high-pass filter with an 18 dB per octave slope has been added for recording sources without the effects of low-frequency coloration. An output control knob is included to prevent overloading the preamplifier.
The unit is powered by a +24V slow turn on power regulator that takes approximately 20 seconds to reach full voltage. This design improves the overall operation of your lunchbox PSU and makes the unit independent from the other modules in the lunchbox. To achieve the classic feel of the original 1073, the unit is constructed with Marconi-style knobs and vintage engraved pushbuttons.
Rupert Neve Designs 517 - DI/Preamp/Compressor with Variphase (500 Series Module)
The 517 from Rupert Neve is a 500 Series module based on the company's Portico 5017 Mobile Pre, and provides a transformer-coupled microphone preamp, opto-coupler compressor and DI input. As with the original, the unit includes Vari-Phase, Silk processing, and DI/microphone blending capabilities. The microphone preamp includes 66dB of gain and also incorporates a polarity-reverse switch and phantom power. The separate instrument amplifier includes 30dB of gain, a ground-lift switch, variable phase, and an instrument Thru connection.
As a single-channel device for instruments, the 517 can be used to phase align, combine and compress direct and amplified signals by using the Hi-Z input for an instrument's direct signal, and the microphone preamp for the speaker cabinet signal. A Blend control can mix the direct and amplified signals to achieve the desired tonal blend between the sources, and the Vari-Phase is used to minimize or extenuate phase cancellations between the two signals. This technique could also be used to create a single, mixed output of a guitar and vocals.
The opto-coupler compressor is based around a LDR (Light Dependent Resister) design that has been simplified to a single threshold control with auto make up gain. The compressor is set to a fixed 2:1 ratio with fixed attack and release. To set the compressor, dial the threshold control down until the desired amount of compression is achieved. An LED light indicates when the compressor is active.
Single-channel, transformer-coupled microphone preamp, compressor and DI circuitry housed in a 500 Series module
66dB of microphone preamp gain
30dB of instrument gain via balanced or unbalanced Hi-Z input
Silk feature provides an option to enhance sound quality with a vintage "feel" by reducing negative feedback and adjusting the frequency spectrum to provide a "sweet" and musical performance
Opto-coupler compressor with a single threshold level control - when signals exceed the "threshold" level, the gain is reduced at a controlled 2:1 ratio, with fixed attack and release time constants
Blend control can be used to balance the microphone signal and the instrument input to deliver a single combined output
Vari-Phase control can adjust phase incrementally, useful any time two signals derived from the same source are combined
Switchable phantom power and polarity reverse
Indicators denote signal presence and clipping on both the DI and microphone signals, as well as compressor activation
Solid State Logic SSL E Series EQ Module for API 500 Series Rack
The Solid State Logic SSL E Series EQ Module for API 500 Series Rack is an API 500-series "lunchbox" style rack module with circuitry from the classic SSL 4000 E Series console channel strip. This sound has been heard on countless recordings throughout the 1980s to the present.
The module features two different EQs that were found on editions of the console produced between 1981 and 1989, each with a unique response curve and tonal character. The two EQ designs include the "Black-242" and the "Brown-02". The unit includes a fully parametric LMF and HMF with Q control. Both the HF and LF sections include a bell curve option. As with many modules, the nominal input/output level is +4 dBu.
Brown Knob EQ
Features classic logarithmically symmetric design ensuring that the ±3 dB up/down points retain the same musical interval from the center frequency regardless of frequency and amplitude settings
Black Knob EQ
Features enhanced cut and boost ranges (±18 dB instead of ±15 dB) together with a different control law for tighter control of low frequencies