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$ 945 .25
Your Savings: $ 49 .75 Msrp: $ 995 .00
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Please note: this item is available for purchase in the United States only.

API 512v 500 Series Microphone Preamp

500 series mic/line/instrument preamp that expands upon the legendary sound of the original 512c preamp with some modern features
MFR# 512v

Product Description

Punchy. Open. Musical. These are the words award-winning producers and engineers use to describe the sound of the API 512v 500 Series Microphone Preamp. For over 50 years artists have been using API preamps to bring their recordings to life. Add the classic API tone to your 500 series rack with the 512v Discrete Mic/Line Pre.


The API 512v is a 500 series mic/line/instrument preamp that expands upon the legendary sound of the original 512c preamp. In addition to the standard controls of the 512c, the 512v also includes three new features designed for the modern engineer.

First, the 512v introduces a variable gain control knob just below the input gain knob for faster level matching. Say goodbye to clip gain automation and attenuator plug-ins! Next, the new 3:1 transformer output button allows you to reduce the output level and drive the transformers even harder for more analog warmth, grit and saturated goodness. Last but not least, the 512v features an updated front-panel combo XLR + 1/4” line input jack to quickly capture ideas, add new instruments and overdub when inspiration strikes.


With 500 series modules growing more and more popular by the day, it can be surprising for many to hear that Saul Walker of API invented the first modular signal processors in 1969. Shortly after the release of the their first console, API quickly became the leading console manufacturer for radio and television networks. It didn’t take long for recording studios to catch on, and soon API began receiving rave reviews from engineers and producers for the tonal quality of their preamps. To this day, over 700 API consoles are in use across the nation and around the world. Albums like Rumours by Fleetwood Mac, Wasting Light by Foo Fighters, and Van Halen’s eponymous debut are shining testaments of the quality and range of API preamps like the 512v.


  • Mic Preamp with 65 dB of gain
  • Variable Output Level Control from 65 dB to -∞
  • 3:1 Output Transformer Tap selection
  • Front and Back Panel Mic Input Access
  • Line/Instrument Preamp with 45 dB of gain
  • Front Panel Combo-style XLR + 1/4 inch Line/Instrument Input
  • LED VU meter for Gain Level Indication
  • 20 dB pad switch, applies to mic/line/instrument
  • 48 V Phantom switchable power
  • Traditional API circuit design

Product Specifications

Condition New
Tube or Solid State Solid State
Channels Single-Channel
Chassis Module
Module Type 500 Series
Module Slot Count 1 Slot
Direct Input Yes
Digital I/O No

Product Reviews

5 out of 5 stars.
Review Count (9)

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Sound Fantastic,Amazing Gear

By MARIA M on December 29, 2022

The classic, transient-forward sound of API in 500-series form factor. What is not to love?

By Brandt G on January 2, 2022

The best preamp ...vintage king top seller

By GIANMARIO C on July 27, 2021

Clean yet punchy mic pre.
Api nailed it again!

By Yehonatan S on October 2, 2019

We own 512b and 512c pres; however, this one is great with the addition of the fader. Classic API tone - especially when cranking the input. Thanks and love to VK and API!

By Eric J on August 19, 2019

Works perfectly...

By Gustavo J on February 14, 2019

Instantly become my fave pre's. I bought a pair and yes as drum overheads they are perfect. I have been using them mainly on a synth project right now, and they bring out a lot of character as a DI. Highly recommended.

By Charles B on January 9, 2019

Very good and flexible preamp! Punchy but natural sounding lows, mids and highs as they should be. Many options with the output stage and the 3:1 switch. Everyone should try it out...at least one time ;-)
Thanks to Vintage King, shipment was super fast to Germany.

By Benny K on January 1, 2019

I had some 512C's, which have always been my favorite on drums, but you could never really drive them into distortion where they sound their best. The 512V solves that with an output knob! So I can now put the output down 5db or so and drive the pre for more punch without clipping my interface. Brilliant!

By steve k on May 9, 2017

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I would like to thank VK for the wonderful sales assistance, service and prices. This was my first purchase with you and it won't be my last. I only wish I'd discovered you years ago!
Matthew R.
I had two Grammy wins this year - Ray LaMontagne & Carolina Chocolate Drops. Both made with help from Vintage King!
Ryan F.
In almost 20 years in Pro audio buying, never did I receive a unit so well packed and exactly as described. Works flawlessly. The whole process has been so smooth. I will never hesitate to do business with you guys in the future and will recommend you to everyone I know.
Martin C.
This was my first experience buying something from Vintage King (although I surf the "used" categories on the website frequently!), and, despite being on the other side of the world, I had absolutely no trouble and everything went very smoothly.
Phil T.
The speed of delivery exceeded my expectations! I was VERY pleased that my shipment arrived in time for a scheduled vocal tracking session. The packing insured that my order arrived safely. And the sales staff responded quickly to questions regarding the product.
James P.
Thank you so much! Vintage King has been so fair and easy to work with. I can't thank you enough. It feels good to trust such a hefty purchase to folks who are so helpful and knowledgeable. Vintage King is a sound designers dream store.
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You guys have excellent customer service and I am excited about the next upgrade I complete on my fifth recording facility. I've been in the studio business for forty plus years. The salesman I worked with at Vintage King was the best of the best. You all rock!
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My experience with Vintage King was excellent. The order was here fast considering it was out of stock. The sales person had SKB send it to me directly and I couldn't have been more pleased.
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From the minute I placed my order I was kept well-informed through each step in your process. Even though I was buying a comparatively modest piece of gear, your attention to detail made me feel like I was purchasing a six-figure mixing desk.
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