API 512v is a mic / line / instrument preamp, world famous for its ability to provide a low noise (-129 EIN) & unusually good sounding front end for all types of audio applications
Sonically, it delivers the instantly recognizable API sound at an affordable price, and in the scalable API 500 Series format. Offering an impressive 65 dB of gain, the 512v includes front panel Variable Output control, switchable 3:1 output transformer selection, phantom power, switchable polarity, -20 dB pad, and Mic or Instrument/Line selector. The front panel Combo-style XLR and 1/4 inch connector combined with rear panel mic access allows for additional flexibility when installed into an API lunchbox®, API's 10 position 500V vertical rack, or into an API console.
The API 512v remains faithful to the circuit designs of API's founder Saul Walker. Artfully combining those circuits with API's proprietary transformers and the incomparable 2520 op-amp, the 512v is a highly musical and rich-sounding analog mic pre, equally at home in commercial recording spaces as it is in smaller home studios. Fully featured and still hand assembled, the 512v exhibits the reliability, long life, and uniformity which are characteristic of all API products.
Mic Preamp with 65 dB of gainVariable Output Level Control3:1 Output Transformer Tap SelectionFront and Back Panel Mic Input AccessLine/Instrument Preamp with 45 dB of gainFront Panel Combo-style XLR + 1/4 inch Line/Instrument InputLED VU meter for Gain Level indication20 dB pad switch, applies to mic/line/instrument48v Phantom switchable powerTraditional API fully discrete circuit design with 2520 Op Amp
Rear Connector: Output on edge connector, MIC Input on edge connector, can be defeated
Front Connectors: XLR MIC Input, HI-Z 1/4" Unbal Input
MIC: 34dB to 65dB (14dB to 45dB w/PAD)HI-Z: 14dB to 45dB (-6dB to 25dB w/PAD)
Maximum Input Levels
MIC, +8 dBuUnbal HI-Z Input, +36 dBu
Input Impedance: MIC Input, 1500 Ohms (150 Ohm mic), HI-Z Unbal Input, 400 K Ohms (20 K Ohms with pad)
Output Impedance: Less than 75 Ohms, Transformer Balanced
Clipping Level: +30 dBu
Frequency Response: +0, -.3, 30 to 20 kHz
Noise: Equivalent Input Noise: -129, Mic In. -125, Un-Balanced In.
Actual Metered Noise: Mic, -95 dBu, Un-Bal., -90 dBu
Distortion: Less than .05% @ +4 Out, Less than .1% @ +28 Out
Power Consumption: 12/18 Volts/DC, @40 ma.
Size: 1.5" X 5.25" X 7" Deep
Size (Boxed for Shipping): 4.5" X 6.5" X 10.25"
Actual Weight: 1.41 lbs.
Shipping Weight: 1.94 lbs.
Manufacturer Part Number : 512V
May 26, 2020
There is a reason people want API mic pres!
Our studio has lots of mic pres including Neves... however we only had API EQs and Compressors so it was time to fix that problem and get an API Mic Pre... so happy with the purchase.
There is a reason everyone talks about Neve or API mic pres as the best out there... Read more
they are definitely both awesome, but they are drastically different. API is punchier and tighter... which you definitely want on certain sources and songs. I would have a hard time deciding between this and a Neve as my desert island mic pre...luckily I don't have to decide.
The 3:1 feature is going to be used a lot... that was a great upgrade by API and definitely worth the extra cost.
Gave it 5 stars because it is so awesome but I would have liked to see a TRS or Instrument button instead of a "mic" button... (The button switches between mic and DI input).. most people will be using this most of the time as a mic pre as opposed to a DI... so why not make that the default position?? And would have liked a Low Z button like on the Neves... that is a super cool feature on dynamic microphones.
As a final note we do have a couple of API clones ... and let's just say we are VERY happy with this purchase and would recommend this product to anyone.