ART Digital MPA II - Microphone Preamplifier

ART Digital MPA II - Microphone Preamplifier

ART Digital MPA II - Microphone Preamplifier

B&H # ARDMPA2 MFR # DIGITAL MPA II
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Expected availability: 7-14 business days

Product Highlights

  • 2-Channel
  • Instrument Input
  • Analog-to-Digital Converter
  • Phantom Power
  • Variable Impedance
  • Tube Gain Stage
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This item is noncancelable and nonreturnable.

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ART DIGITAL MPA II overview

  • 1Description

The Digital MPA II from ART is a 2-channel microphone preamplifier that delivers a total of 70dB of gain, and can operate in either stereo or dual-mono mode. Based on the same circuitry as the ProMPA II, the microphone preamp is perfect for any sized studio, production facility, or live sound environment where digital output is required. The unit outputs all 3 major digital standards with Wordclock input and output also included.

The signal path of the DIGITAL MPA II consists of a discrete class-A microphone pre-amp followed by a variable low-cut filter, a tube circuit with a 20dB gain switch and then a phase switch. At this point the signal passes to both the analog output and a pair of insert jacks. The insert jacks allow processing of the signal before it is passed on to the analog to digital converter. Simply inserting a signal into this insert point provides access to the A/D converters, allowing the converter to be used independent of the preamp's analog functions.

The preamp provides variable input impedance, and the dual-tube gain stage has selectable plate voltages (high or normal). The unit has the ability to process a mid/side microphone set-up, and can also function as a dual-channel DI box using the 2 front panel instrument inputs. Two backlit VU meters display output level, while multi-colored LED arrays provide a visual reference of tube gain for each channel. The Digital MPA II is rack mountable and housed in a sturdy, 2U steel chassis.

2-channel, variable input impedance microphone preamplifier
Tube based gain stage with selectable plate voltages
Instrument input on front panel with automatic input selection
Analog to digital converter supporting ADAT Lightpipe, coaxial S/PDIF and AES/EBU digital output
Selectable sample rates up to 192kHz with optional 16-bit dithering of the 24-bit converter
Wordclock input and output, along with ADAT input, allows for working with different synchronization requirements
Dual insert points provide access to the signal for added processing just prior to the analog-to-digital converter, or for providing external access to the converter
Selectable Stereo/Dual operation of output controls
Variable low-cut filter per channel
Switchable +48V phantom power per channel
Supports Mid/Side miking technique
Large, dual, back-lit VU meters
Phase reverse per channel
Switchable for either +4dBu or -10dBV output
UPC: 840402018353
In the Box
ART Digital MPA II - Microphone Preamplifier
  • AC Power Cable
  • Three (3) Year Warranty
  • Table of Contents
    • 1Description

    ART DIGITAL MPA II specs

    Number of Channels 2
    Inputs 2 x XLR
    2 x 1/4" TS phone Instrument (front panel)
    1 x 1/4" TRS phone Insert
    1 x TOSLink ADAT Lightpipe
    1 x BNC Wordclock
    Output 2 x XLR Line
    2 x 1/4" TRS phone Line
    1 x TOSLink ADAT Lightpipe
    1 x RCA coaxial S/PDIF
    1 x XLR AES/EBU
    1 x BNC Wordclock
    Phantom Power +48VDC, individually switchable
    Multi Function 2-channel analog to digital converter:

    44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4 and 192kHz internal sampling rates
    24/16-bit switchable dithering

    Gain Range 70dB
    Maximum Output Level +27dBu
    Frequency Response 15Hz to 48kHz, +0/-1dB @ normal plate voltage
    15Hz to 120kHz, +0/-1dB @ high plate voltage
    Noise EIN: -129dBu, A-weighted
    Power Requirements 105~125VAC, 60Hz
    Dimensions (WxDxH) 19 x 8.75 x 3.5" (483 x 222 x 89mm)
    Weight 10.5 lbs (4.7kg)
    Specialties Microphone impedance variable from 150Ω to 3kΩ
    Supports Mid/Side microphone recording
    Packaging Infotzvwzcdrrbxts
    Package Weight 13.35 lb
    Box Dimensions (LxWxH) 22.0 x 11.2 x 5.4"

    ART DIGITAL MPA II reviews

    Digital MPA II - Microphone Preamplifier is rated 4.8 out of 5 by 12.
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from Excellent features for its price! This product is perfect if you want to have at least two preamp channels to improve your sound over the typical preamps included with modern interfaces. There are plenty of connectivity options including analog and digital outputs which can be used simultaneously. The original tubes as many of you should already know, can be replaced to obtain a different character of that tube sound that might work better with what you look for in a tube preamp. Overall very nice features for the money. It does have a learning curve but it seems that after a short while it is possible to become used to all its possibilities and get the best sound out of it. Really pleased with it so far and cant wait to use it in a full album production.
    Date published: 2010-12-20
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from ART Tube Mic PreAmp: Digital MPA II I use this mic preamp for gig setup at home to preamp the SM87A and SM58 microphone before the mixer. Good XLR cables are used in the setup. So far, I have used the analog outputs portion. Not touching the digital outputs adn/or recording yet. Things that are great: -Pre-amp with no noise (if used with +20db button) Much better than the mixer preamp -The stock tube already sounds natural and nice adn realistic as real voice. I guess I'll use the stock tubes for a while (before upgrading the tubes later). -Setup is so smooth on the wireless SM87A. - The +20db button is magic! It boost up signal level with no noise at all. - No fan, so it is absolutely quite. - Great and so clear sound quality. Things that are not so great - Noise comes up if I don't use the +20db button and use the output level to increase level. - Noise is audible when turning output level pass 50% mark when +20db button is off In summary: Highly recommended mic preamp for either karaoke or live band
    Date published: 2012-07-23
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Product - You Won't Regret It I used an earlier version of this device extensively in the past (ART MPA Gold), and was always impressed by it. When it came time to add external pre's to my console, I purchased this unit without second thought, and man it was worth it. I've used it on bass guitar, electric guitar, vocals, and horns, and never been disappointed. The unit itself looks, feels, and sounds like a professional piece of gear, and you can replace the tubes later down the road if you want to further improve the sound. In short, if you looking in this price range for a good, solid pre-amp, this unit is definitely worth a look.
    Date published: 2011-01-13
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from Very good preamp So far I have used this preamp on a pair of Oktava mics and was very please with the outcome. I really like the variable impedance control and how it finds the sweet spot of the microphone. Very low noise and the high plate voltage is especially nice for vocals. It made a big diference for bringing the vocals out in the mix. I plan to see what I can do with a couple of SM57 on the snare. Definitely a nice preamp for the money.
    Date published: 2010-04-28
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great quality. Surpasses dbx 386 ART once was one of the first companies that brought a sensation on guitar effect rack system with control pedal in the 90's. These days, those who never had an acquaintance with such brand history, they almost always tend to neglect to take this brand into their consideration due to it's ridiculously low prices. I am not going to talk about the bells and whistles of this gear. But unless you are considering investing $2000-3000 preamps, this is by far the best quality twin channel preamp that surpasses way beyond its class and rivals much higher class preamps. Obviously, there are minor issues with consistency in quality as almost all gears are made in China these days. But I remember ART pretty much was the last company that tried to produce durable high quality gears made in USA until recently while most other brands already began to produce plastic-everything from Taiwan and China long ago. Great quality from top to bottom.
    Date published: 2011-03-14
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Worked right out of the box I use this in a ProTools LE 8 setup with a Rack+ interface (8 preamps), along with a Steinberg MR816X (8 preamps) connected through ADAT. This unit I connected using S/PDIF connected between the Rack+ and the ART Digital MPA II. This maxes out the number of inputs (18) the DigiDesign Rack+ interface can handle. I run a Cascade VinJet ribbon mic and a Rode NT1A condenser through it. Both sound great. The VinJet ribbon needs a lot of gain, and this unit provides that (it'd be nice to have a bit more, but it's fine). And it's nice to have these two mics already hooked up and ready to go all the time. The unit couldn't have been much simpler to set up and configure in ProTools. Just needed a single S/PDIF cable for the audio, and a BNC cable for the clock from the Rack+. Turned it on, set the levels as suggested in the manual, booted up the rest of the system, started ProTools, and was able to configure the I/O setup to use the two new S/PDIF channels. It was just real easy. I'm real pleased. I like ART hardware. It works well, and doesn't cost thousands.
    Date published: 2011-10-11
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from MPA II with JJ Tesla or Tung-Sol Tubes Put the right tubes in this puppy and it is a good as any digital tube preamp on the market. Very wide frequency response. Great ability to match impedance. Set the plate voltage to high for over easy smoothing of vocals. ADAT was easy to setup with my Protools control surface. Don't spend too much money on tubes. JJ Tesla or Tung-Sol sound great....
    Date published: 2010-03-01
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from ART's MPA Rocks * Using for vocal recordings * Like that Hi Z instrument jacks are on front * Inserts for compressor and/or EQ are great * The huge variety of digital output options at this price are unmatched * Very clean sound * It does take some experimentation to get a good output level on it, but I got it * User Manual could be better, but at least it has one!
    Date published: 2011-05-16
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