Useful Arts SFP-30 Single Channel Tube Microphone Preamp
The concept behind the Useful Arts SFP-30 Single Channel Tube Microphone Preamp is simple: Take the exact audio and power circuitry from the SFP-60, put a single channel into a tabletop format, and make it less than half the price of the SFP-60. Done. Everything about the SFP-30 signal path is identical to the SFP-60, except that the SFP-30 lacks the DI input. Other than that, you can now get the finest, most flexible tube preamp available. A better sonic toolkit for recording simply isn't available at this price. Anywhere.
- High voltage soft start power supply puts out over 270 volts of clean, regulated power to ensure maximum headroom and the lowest noise possible
- Each gain stage is single-ended, inherently Class A
- Audio Magnetics (Input and Output Transformers, Plate Inductor) custom wound by Cinemag
- Output Transformer with 50% nickel core
- Frequency response is flat within 2 dB from 20 Hz-30 kHz
- Each channel of the SFP-30 features 4 switches: High Pass Filter, Input Pad, Phase Reverse, and Phantom Power
- Front panel switches control sealed, gold-plated relays to ensure years of operation without pops and clicks
- The input and output levels of the triode stages of the SFP-30 are separately controllable by detented attenuators, and combined with the color control, the SFP-30 provides just over 55 dB of useable gain
- Voltage selector for 115/230 volt operation in the IEC fuse block on black panel, gold-plated XLR connectors are on the front panel
- The only active devices in the signal path are the three tube gain stages, consisting of 1 EF806 and 1 ECC82 per channel
- New-manufacture JJ tubes for long life and easy replacement
- Each channel features an output level VU meter, which is op-amp buffered to ensure that the signal is not loaded by the meter
- The audio power supply features a toroidal dual-primary transformer and linear regulation for lowest noise
|Tube or Solid State||Tube|
|Input Connectors||Analog XLR|
|Output Connectors||Analog XLR|
|Tube Complement||ECC82, EF-806|
What a lively preamp. Everything I record sounds great through the SFP-30, mostly using it on guitar cabs, vocals and snare. Wish I knew more about what kind of harmonics the “color” knob introduces but I can say that it does add good character to the recording. Mostly using Shure KSM313 and SM57 with it. Plenty of headroom to boot. If you’re looking for a killer preamp with natural tube sounds I would give the Useful Arts a go.
This preamp gives a focused, finished sound to vocals, whether you use cheaper dynamic mics or more expensive condensers. It's very versatile, making an array of colors and shades of sound available in one box. There's also really no competition in this price range. Finally, Peter at Useful Arts is extremely helpful, and answered my questions very quickly by email.
Above and beyond sound, and above and beyond customer service!
The Perfect tool to create definitive recordings home during lock down.
I use with the Sony C-100 ... it is the dream team.
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