Selecting the Best Vocal Channel Strip for a Limited Budget

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Previously, engineers used to patch the vocal tracks to or from outboard processing systems before they hit the tape. Undoubtedly, the vocal track would venture away from the console strip. In the modern days, engineers believe that vocal channel strips are horizontal, multi-rack units that include a minimum of one equalization, preamp, and compression. Occasionally, it may also feature A/D converters and onboard digital processing.

Choosing the Best Vocal Channel Strip for a Limited Budget

There are a wide variety of features to be chosen from a vocal channel strip. Normally, professionals expect a strip to comprise of all the basic features like mic pre, compressor, equalizer, and a de-esser. Moreover, you should pick a vocal channel strip with advanced features that can cater to most of your needs.

Mic pre should be gratifying to the recordings; EQ should have the flexibility of being placed pre - or post - compressor. Accurate metering is in great demand; quality instrument level input is an added advantage to manage high-impedance waves. Engineers opt for vocal strips integrated with converters to provide digital outputs; they also ask for a method to connect it to their computer directly.

Drawmer MX60 Front End One

Drawmer MX60 Front End One

Drawmer MX60 vocal channel strip is one of the best offers on the market for a budget less than $1000. This single rack space system is featured with a preamp, compressor, gate, peak limiter, de-esser, and ‘Tube saturation’ controls. The concept of ‘Tube saturation’ controls is the best of all the features; it includes three controls: low, medium, and high which allows you to dial in the required quantity of tube saturation in the wave. The level of saturation is abundant and sounds amazing.

The dynamic options of MX60 will sound familiar to those people who have used few of the Drawmer line previously since every section is taken from the other Drawmer gear. It offers fabulous dynamics processing with no bank breakings. Drawmer MX60 is an ideal voice channel strip for any commercial or project studio; it is especially perfect if you are looking out for a strip that does almost everything for you in a studio. Used Drawmer MX60 can be found for around $400 on many websites.

Presonus Eureka

Presonus Eureka

Eureka from Presonus is a high performance voice channel strip that is available at a reasonable price of $700. The exceptional aspect of the strip is its open, detailed sound effects which makes it a perfect pick for a DAW as a front end.

Eureka is also designed with two jacks to insert outboard processor to improve and customize your sound. Presonus Eureka is amazing for vocals, re-amping, and bass tracking.

The adjustable microphone input impedance, an modifiable saturation control are the highlights of this vocal channel strip, which is available at a decent price.

The Bottom-Line

Drawmer MX60 and Presonus Eureka make excellent voice channel strips within a limited budget. The reduced cost does not compromise on quality of sound or inbuilt features. Both these strips are designed with abundant advanced features to cross over the standard quality for a budget less than $1000.