A Designs EM Red
500 Series Mic Preamp Module
The A-Designs Audio EM-Red is the "mid-forward" preamp of the EM family. Its sound derives from the combination of an A-Designs proprietary input transformer featuring a unique winding, and a 50/50 steel/nickel-wound output transformer (also a proprietary A-Designs alloy). The EM-Red has the extra kick you need when you have a mic that lacks present mids (such as the mid-scooped Chinese capsules), or if you want to bring an instrument forward in the mix.
The upfront mids of the EM-Red make it ideal for drums, guitar, bass guitar, and acoustic instruments. In fact, you will find the EM-Red particularly useful when recording acoustic guitar with a condenser microphone. It's also great for bringing out the resonance and character of rack toms and floor toms.
Custom Transformers. The secret of A-Designs 500 series sound
In order to achieve the quality of sound that brings a smile to your ears, a profound understanding of electronic components and how their inherent qualities affect sound is essential. Transformers hold a singular position in circuit design due to their ability to affect timbral quality. Apart from the utilitarian task of electronic isolation for noise-free operation, the alloys used for the transformer's winding along with the number of windings, will impart a distinct sonic quality. For example, nickel-wound transformers provide a more transparent sound with an airy high end, while steel can impart a thick "Neve-like" midrange or low-end "API growl."
To give each preamp in the A-Designs Audio EM-Series its own unique character, each has custom-wound transformers that employ proprietary A-Designs alloys that have been ear-tested to produce just the right sound for the right application. But that doesn't mean that the EM-Series preamps are one-trick ponies - far from it. What it does mean is that decades of collective experience between A-Designs Audio and highly respected audio professionals who beta test A-Designs products have taken guesswork out of finding the right preamp for the job. Think of each of the EM series preamps as the ruler of a specific domain in the frequency spectrum. For example, the EM-Silver rules the lower frequencies thanks to its steel-wound transformer, making it a perfect choice for bass or kick drum, while the EM-Blue's nickel transformer provides the clarity and highs needed to bring out the "crack" on snare drums