For this week’s edition of Gear of the Week, or what we would like to call “Ooh, look what’s on the bench!”, we would like to have a quick look at the Amek 9098 Dual Mic Pre.
The whole Amek 9098 range of gear (bus compressor, mic pres, EQ, channel, etc) were a collaboration between Amek and Rupert Neve. Many think that the pre design was utilized in some of the later consoles but unfortunately it wasn’t. The only console Amek ever made with the 9098 pre was the 9098 console! But design faults made the console extremely hot and it kept catching fire. Though there were attempts to redesign it, no actual successor was produced.
There are many stories and theories as to why Amek discontinued the 9098 range. The one that we hear the most is that the license for the designs ran out and Rupert Neve didn’t want to renew it. Simple as that. It’s a great shame because the gear sounds great, built really well and was fairly affordable. Many mic pres were sold to classical music engineers who liked the high-gain, low-noise, transparent, yet affordable nature of the pres. Today all we can say is “they don’t make them like they used to.”
Here’s what our engineer Mattia Sartori has to say about it:
“What a brilliant preamp, truly Rupert NEVE style. Very high quality stepped gain switches, LED meters, MS option. Output transformers with complemetary driver transistors. The very famous NEVE doughnuts transformers. Switch mode power supply with linear regulators to get the best of both worlds: universal connectivity between different countries and the clean regulations of linear PSU.
THD of 0.012% with 56dB of gain. How about that?!”