ART Digital MPAII Microphone Preamplifier

Record fat tracks with this tube preamp as your DAW front end! ART added S/PDIF, ADAT and AES/EBU outputs to the Pro MPA II, to create this Digital MPA II.
The ART Digital MPA-II delivers all of the same great features of the ProMPA with the added versatility of digital output. Like the ProMPA-II, each input circuit has 48v phantom power and features variable input impedance which can radically vary the overall performance of any high quality dynamic or ribbon microphone. The Digital MPA-II can be configured for dual mono or stereo operation with selectable mid/side mic support, summing the adjacent channel, to decode left/right signals.

Features:

- Variable input impedance for flexible microphone voicing (150 Ohms to 2400 Ohms)
- Selectable plate voltage
- Large VU meters
- Backlit function switches
- Discrete Class-A input microphone preamplifier
- Low noise at lower gain settings
- Extremely low total harmonic distortion (THD)
- Wide frequency response
- Additional front mounted instrument input jack
- Operates at +4dbm/-10dbv output
- Selectable stereo/dual operation of output controls
- Automatic instrument input selection
- 24-204KHz external sample rate
- 44.1K, 48K, 88.2K, 96K, 176.4K, 192K internal sample rates
- 24/16 bit switchable dithering
- Wide dynamic range A/D
- Rotary Encoder for quick selection of sample rate
- Separate analog and digital output level controls
- Digital Level LED meters display both Average and Peak level
- ADAT optical I/O
- Sync to incoming ADAT data rate
- Switch selectable optical output (S/PDIF or ADAT)
- AES/EBU and S/PDIF outputs
- Two wordclock jacks allowing loop through

The input section of the Digital MPA-II operates at either a read more low or high plate voltage applied to the two integrated hand-selected 12AX7 tubes for wider variation of preamp tone and performance. Large back-lit analog VU output meters display input or output levels while multi-colored LED arrays, with average or peak hold, show tube gain and digital output levels.

In addition to XLR and 1/4-inch analog outputs, the Digital MPA-II features a high quality A to D converter which offers digital connectivity on S/PDIF, ADAT, or AES/EBU outputs. A rotary control on the front panel allows selection of format and sample rates from 44.1 to 192 KHz and 16 bit dithering. There is also a push button for, and two wordclock jacks, allowing loop-through.

The Digital MPA-II comes in a standard 2u space rack-mountable steel chassis, with CNC routed black anodized aluminum face panel.
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Analog Section:
- Frequency Response 15Hz to 48 kHz (+0, -1dB) @ normal plate voltage 15Hz to 120 kHz (+0, -1dB) @ high plate voltage
- Dynamic range: >110dB ("A" weighted)
- CMRR: >90dB
- THD: <0.005% (typical)
- Equivalent Input Noise: -129dBu (XLR, "A" weighted)
- Maximum Input Level: +19dBu (cannon)
- Maximum Instrument Input: +17dBu
- Input Impedance: 150-3000 Ohms adjustable (XLR) >800K Ohms (Instrument)
- Maximum Output Level: +27dBu (XLR)
- Output Impedance:: < 47 Ohms (XLR)
- Maximum Gain: 75dB
- Meter Calibration: 0 VU = +4dBu output (+4dB mode) 0 VU = -10dBV output (-10dB mode)
- High Pass Filter: single pole, 10-200 Hz adjustable

Digital Section:
A/D Frequency Response:
- @44.1KHz sample rate: 10Hz to 21.25KHz (+0, -1dB)
- @88.2KHz sample rate: 10Hz to 42.50KHz (+0, -1dB)
- @196KHz sample rate: 10Hz to 81KHz (+0, -1dB)

- A/D Dynamic Range: >112dB "A" weighted (typical)
- A/D THD: <0.001% @1K (typical)
- A/D Input Sensitivity: +12dBu min
- A/D Insert Input Impedance: >10K Ohms
- Power Requirements: USA - 105 to 125 VAC / 60 Hz Export units configured for country of destination
- Dimensions (HxWxD): 3.50 x 19.0 x 8.75 in.
- Dimensions (HxWxD): 88 x 482 x 222 mm
- Weight: (lb/kg) 10.5 / 4.7
Dimensions and Weight in Packaging
Base Item
Shipping Weight: 13.25 lbs
Shipping Dimensions: 22 x 11 x 6 in
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): ART DIGITALMPAII
For support or warranty questions, please contact the manufacturer:
Phone: 585-436-2720
(12 ratings)
Submitted March 28, 2011 by a customer from gmail.com
"Buy this. If short on cash, get the non-digital version"
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
If I lost mine, I would replace it. Though, maybe not the digital version, depending on what converter I had at the time. But the preamp is best value for the money out there, if you are into the tube sound --which I am.
Sound
Over the past year, I have bought pretty much one of every make of cheap tube preamp out there, including this one. How does it rate? The best of the bunch. Of course it is the most expensive... But you do get two channels. I like this unit, but would urge readers to change the tubes. The Chinese tubes in it are not that great and really do not let the unit sing. I use Mullards and and am very happy, especially at high plate voltage. The unit has a fairly shallow noise floor and so is not totally pro gear, but for the price, it is better than anything I have found.
Features
Nice features, including the dual plate voltage. Have not fully tested out the digital features yet, though.
Ease of Use
Easy to use and a good manual.
Quality
It is a well made medium quality unit. I think the weak link in all Art products seems to be the power supply and I would encourage users to run it through a power conditioner/filter system.
Value
Solid value --this digital unit and the less expensive analogue sibling. If you have the cash, buy it.
Manufacturer Support
no experience
The Wow Factor
Looks fine. I mean, it's a rack mount unit --what do you want?
Musical Background:
lifelong amateur musician
Musical Style:
jazz
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