I have been wondering (from time to time) just where our Neve fits into the whole Neve timeline/lineage. I know Robin told me it is class-A (as opposed to class A/B, B, D and so forth), and Jamie Woolford said his mentors called it a “Baby Neve”. Other than that, the only thing I know for sure is that the preamps have a lot of bite, crunchy mids/highs, slightly reduced bass response and just LOVE to be pushed. I personally love the sound it puts out (especially drums and egtr), but am constantly explaining to people that it sounds more like a germanium preamp (ex. Chandler) than a Neve, and isn’t my first choice for anything needing clarity or low-end… Why? I did a little research by looking up the module type (1D005) and here are some ‘thangs” I found-
-it is a NEVE MELBOURN ROYSTON sidecar or “broadcast” mixer with 1D005 channel modules.
-The closest “famous” Neve out there is the “1081”. The 1081 is recognized for being their main class A/B console preamp/eq and was featured on consoles throughout the seventies and into the 80’s. Our console is (verified) class-A, so obviously there is some differences. The 1081 has 4 bands of EQ, plus high and low pass filters, whilst our console has that weird, kind of limited EQ (which i have grown to love). By the way, our Chameleon Labs (7602) are “clones” of the Neve 1073 (their earlier, all class-A preamp/EQ). Our V-EQ4 (Waves) eq plugin models the 1081’s eq section, the UAD 88RS is totally different…
-Both the Neve 1073 and 1081 are famous for their warm, clear, slightly distorted tone (when pushed) and forgiving EQ. Because our console sounds quite the opposite, I think there could be a few things going on here (EVERY channel):
1) the console is old and needs the capacitors replaced (common on consoles over 10-20 years old). Although I think Robin had this done at purchase.
2) the console expects microphones with a lower (read- “older”) impedance, thus shifting the frequency response. Same thing with output impedance- it was designed to push hot levels into tape machines, and now it is instead running line level into pro tools HD.
3) The design differences (class A, limited EQ) create a whole different tonality than the 1081, 1073, etc.
-Everywhere I found info on these modules/consoles people were recommending AGAINST buying them, just because the correct parts are REALLY hard to find. Maybe when it was re-capped, they used the wrong parts? However, they/it are apparently worth a shitload! I’ll tell you this- Now that i have used them, I will be hard-up if i don’t have access to them, and a racked pair is $5,000- So i guess I’ll be at Uranus forever- Good!
If any of the above is inaccurate (tried my best) OR if you have additional information, please let us know!