Irish Luck? Or Irish Drunk?
Rated 4 out of 5
I read that lone 1-star review from Irish Luck and laughed - Funniest review Ive read in a long time.
The reality is that almost all new preamp tubes today come from China or Russia. The great tubes from USA and Western Europe stopped being produced back in the 70s and 80s. Any socketed tube can come loose due to vibration. Did Irish Crank even try reseating the tube? In any case ... The Presonus TubePre v2 consistently gets high marks in unsolicited consumers. Its a good Value based on design, features, and performance for its Price Point!
Some of the very best tube preamps cost over $1000.
At $130 the TubePre v2 is a bargain. The phantom power and 80 High Pass filter are handy for some Mic to phone applications, and a true analog VU meter instead of LEDs for signal Level indication is a welcome old-school design touch. For modders: you can easily change out the tube for a Vintage NOS 12AX7A, 7025, or ECC83 for around $20 to $60.
Very poor quality!
By Irish Luck
Rated 1 out of 5
I was anxious to try out the TubePre V2 to boost my acoustic guitar signal, as well as add some tube warmth to vocals, and record some drum, bass and guitar tracks. Wow, what a giant dissapointment! All I got as I turned up the gain was hissing and humming. Just horrible! I had to turn the gain down to 3 to make the signal OK not great, but the hissing and humming was lower. Not gone though, just not as annoying But not being able to go past 3 on the gain is unacceptable. It makes barely any difference at all at that level. It doesn't even register on the VU meter it's so weak of a gain increase. I'll tell you what did register on the VU meter....turning up the knob for the so-called tube gain. The pot is such junk, that the noise created by just turning the knob sent the VU meter into the clipping level!!! I've had 30 year old amps with scratchy pots, and know how to easily get them to be noise free. It's really very easy. This pot won't cooperate, it's noisy no matter what I do. And the worst part of it is that I cannot tell one bit of a difference in sound with it all the way up or all the way down. The manual claims it can change your signal to smokin' hot and it can change your tone from subtle to extreme. Ok, I suppose that it does the subtle part well, very well. It's so subtle I can't even notice anything, at all. And as far as the extreme, well...maybe the insane sounds from the junky pot is what they meant by extreme. Because it sure is. I'm not new to audio gear, and I've spent all day with countless cobinations of cords, five different amps and two acoustic guitars, two electric guitars, two electric basses and an acoustic bass, with no positive results. It's just beating a dead horse at this point. There is nothing I can do to make the sound any better. Oh ya, there was one thing I did that improved the sound dramatically. I put the TubePre back in the box, ready to ship back for a refund. All of the sudden the tone of my guitar was great again, and the unwanted noises are magically gone.. I've read countless reviews where people say you have to change the tubes because the Chinese tubes they use are noisy. No thanks! I refuse to throw good money after bad on a product that even though it's brand new, I have to replace things just to make it sound how it should right out of the box. That's Presonus' job to put working, good sounding tube in it when it's being made. Not after the consumer buys it. After 27 years of buying and using audio gear, I've yet to encounter that problem. If the tube is one of the major selling points of this tube preamp, and it needs to be replaced because the quality is so poor, what other parts in this unit are just as cheaply made? I'll bet quite a few. I've never bought something new, and told that I need to immediately replace a major part just to get it to do what it is already supposed to do, Hey Presonus, use quality parts and the poor consumers that buy this junk won't have to spend more money replacing parts that you should have used in the first place. Pathetic quality control. I'll never touch a Presonus product again. It is just a headache. I should have known better....if someone says it sounds noisy unless you replace the tube should have been a serious red flag, Lesson learned. You get what you pay for, sometimes (in this case) much, much less. I wouldn't pay $20 for this. I wouldn't even use it if it was given to me free. It's that bad. Maybe I got a dud? But I am just not impressed at all with this.. I'll just run the signal through my mixer with built in preamps and I'll be better off. It keeps my signal crystal clear without all the headaches of trying to get a good sound out of it. Plug and play. Just like I thought the TubePre would be. Plug and troubleshoot for two solid days with no positive results was my experience with this overpriced paperweight. Hey Presonus....use quality parts to begin with and the poor consumers that buy this won't have to replace them with actual quality parts. That is your job. But I guess it isn't? Pass it along to us to take care of. Stay away if you value your money. I would give it zero stars, but it's not an option.
I would buy this product again
Rated 5 out of 5
I absolutely love this preamp. I bought it and tried it and it sounds pretty good right out of the box, but I upgraded the tube to an American made RCA 12AX7 and it sounds absolutely terrific on my bass and on vocals as well. Haven't had a chance to try on anything else but I have no reason to believe I wouldn't get the same results on other sources as well. Its very well made as it has a nice metal enclosure and not a cheap plastic one.
Good for the price
Rated 4 out of 5
Got this to use as a (cheap) mic pre for a DAW. I don't often do audio, mostly use it for recording scratch track VO. Does the job, and certainly good for the price. Hard to get enough gain without adding a little distortion though. Fairly quiet, and for about one c-note, can't complain. After using it for 6 months, I'm looking to upgrade to a better channel strip for a cleaner sound.