A Designs MP-2A

Classic Tube Preamp with Tone Switches, 60dB gain, 48V Phantom switch, Phase switch, VU meter, -20dB Pad, and hi-Z DI
A Designs MP-2A image 1
A Designs MP-2A image 1
$2,595.00
Sweetwater Savings: $300.00 MSRP: $2,895.00

Or just $109/month§ for 24 months

0% interest for 24 months*. 24 equal monthly payments required. Valid through 12/31/2018. Learn more

Special Order
Special-ordered from A Designs and usually arrives to you within 1-2 weeks. Please note: special orders cannot be canceled or returned.
Note: While most of the items we sell ship for free, this item does not qualify for free shipping due to special circumstances.

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A Designs MP-2A
Special Order

MP-2A Dual-channel Tube Mic Pre Offers Four Unique Colors

A Designs MP-2A Dual-channel tube mic pre - A Designs has recently emerged in the forefront of insider audio to rave reviews; "Stunning sound quality with serious bass response and a warm, airy top," "Adding the MP-2 to my Direct-to-Disk DAW was like finding the holy grail of warm analog sound. I use it on everything from bass to guitars to vocals to drum mics and more. Absolutely incredible." The A Designs MP-2A is an Input and Output transformer, classic tube preamp with tone switches that give you four unique preamp colors. For use with the modern crop of ribbon mics, the A Designs MP-2A provides 60dB gain along with a 48V phantom power switch, phase switch, a big VU meter, 20dB Pad, and a hi-Z DI instrument input. Bring the warmth and richness of analog to your recordings with A Designs MP-2A.

A-Designs Audio MP-2A at a Glance:
  • High-end tube, 2-channel preamplifier
  • Two Tone Switches, each with 2 positions (yielding 4 sounds)
  • Extreme sound quality for a reasonable price
  • Hand built in Southern California
  • High-end custom wound Transformers
  • Big VU meters for easy set up

The new MPA Series by A-Designs Audio sets a new benchmark in high-end performance preamps. Unlike traditional high-end tube units, the new MP-2A can change its sound to suit the application, via two switches delivering four different sounds. This is the first time that anyone has created a world class preamp that has more than one sound built in!

High-end tube, 2-channel preamp

The original MP-2 tube preamps have been a favorite of LA insiders for some time. Comparable to much more expensive tube preamps, A Designs now takes it a step further with the MP2"A" Series, adding tone switches to the same great sound they have become known for. It is now possible to get four distinct "world class" sounds from a single unit! This makes a single preamp much more useful in the studio and over time.

True Tube

The A-Designs Audio MP-2A is considered a "True Tube" preamplifier due to the fact that there are no ICs (Integrated Circuits), transistors, or and solid state design in the front-end or the back-end to color the audio signal path. The sonic signature of the MP-2A is composed of pure tubes, film capacitors and custom transformers, pure and simple. Handcrafted with point to point wiring the MP-2A a must for those that care about quality.

Custom wound transformers

Its surprising how few pro companies believe in transformers they way A Designs does. Transformers are the heart and soul of any preamp and greatly affect the sound. Careful attention is devoted to designing the transformer and its parts: changes in core material alloy yields different sounds; the windings, what wire, how many turns and how they are wrapped all affect the sound too. A Designs spends a lot of time to design a high end transformer that adds beauty to the sound. These special transformers are one of the key reasons the A Designs reputation has grown so rapidly.

Direct Instrument Inputs

One unique features of the MP-2A is the 1/4" "Direct In" for high-impedance instruments and sources. Unlike most companies, A Design Audio's direct input goes straight to the transformer for glorious tone! Vintage Guitars, basses, digital keyboards - everything including drum machines benefits from the unique character of the A Designs hi-Z input. This provides your with a valuable option of using the on board DI instead of purchasing an expensive tube/transformer based "Direct Box". If you are looking for that "Analog Tube Sound" for your instrument, the MP2A is ideal!

A Designs Audio MP-2A Features:
  • Dual channel XLR line inputs
  • Dual 1/4-inch hi-Z "direct to the transformer" inputs
  • Continuously variable gain control
  • 60dB Gain
  • Big VU Meters, Backlit
  • Switchable 48v Phantom power
  • Phase (invert) Switch
  • -20dB Pad Switch
  • Custom milled front panel
  • Two space Rackmount
  • Red Jewel Lamp Indicator for power
  • Balanced XLR outputs
  • Power supply with custom Toroidal Power Transformer
  • Rich full body analog tube sound

If you are looking for that "analog tube sound" for your instrument, the A Designs MP-2A is ideal!

What Does "Special Order" Mean?

A special-order product is one that we don't normally keep in stock. We order it from the manufacturer as soon as you order from us. We have great relationships with all the manufacturers we carry, so we can get your special order to you as fast as or faster than anyone else. Remember that special orders are non-returnable and non-cancelable, so make sure the item is right for you. A Sweetwater Sales Engineer can help you decide — call (800) 222-4700 for assistance!

Additional Media

MP-2A User Manual
Studio Preamp Buying Guide

Tech Specs

Preamp Type Tube
Number of Channels 2
Frequency Response 28Hz-60kHz
Phantom Power Yes
Analog Inputs 2 x XLR, 2 x 1/4" (Hi-Z)
Analog Outputs 2 x XLR
Rack Spaces 2U
Height 3.5"
Depth 10"
Width 19"
Weight 18 lbs.
Manufacturer Part Number MP2A

Customer Reviews

5/5
Based on 6 reviews
Write your review
5/5

Best I have used

I have had several mic pres in operation here for the last few years. This is a high RF environment and some were not up to the task. Even a few solid state pres could not handle it. I took a chance on the MP-2A primarily because of the isolation transformers and was totally blown away by the sound and performance. I had some setup issues primarily due to my environment and customer service was incredible. I cannot recommend this pre more highly.
Music background: Broadcast
5/5

Delicious 2 Channel Preamp

This is an exceptional preamp. I use it daily along with a UA 610 and while the 610 is a little more forward sounding, everything I run through the MP-2A sit right there in the mix. I have found it to be a wonderful tool for people who want to achieve a less "modern" sound with their recordings. The two "Tone" switches are also very helpful..giving you a wider palette of tones to choose from. The first tone switch is very subtle and only slightly alters the color of the signal. The second tone switch is much more overt. It completely changes the character of the preamp, giving it a more forward, aggressive sound. At higher input levels, the tube distortion is gorgeous and very musical. I use this regularly for drum overheads, electric and acoustic guitars, vocals, etc.... It is also a wonderful for processing stereo keyboard signals...warming up digital signals, and fattening analog ones. If you are looking for a warm, two channel front end for you DAW or just want to get some extra tube channels in your arsenal, I highly recommend this unit.
Music background: Recording Engineer
5/5

Wondermous......

I've had the MP2A for about 1.5 years and I couldn't be more satisfied. I have a Pacifica as well and I use the MP2A when I want to add that big vintage tube sound that has just the right amount of wonderful compression. The reviewer from Jamaican reviewer should get in touch with A-Designs. I can say from experience they will bend over backwards to make sure that everything is working correctly and you are completely satisfied. A true dedication to producing the finest product possible. I couldn't be happier with my MP2A and Pacifica and would highly recommend both.
Music background: Home Recording Engineer-esque person, Guitar Builder, Tube Amp and Pickup Builder
5/5

Just a great Pre

I must echo the sentiments of the previous reviewer. I've owned mine for a couple of years now and must say it's one of the best kept secrets around as it relates to mic pre's. It is one of the best pre's I've had the pleasure of working with. If you try one you'll buy it. If you buy one, you'll LOVE it. KUDOS TO A-DESIGNS!!!
Music background: Pro level tracking, mix engineer
5/5

The Most Underrated Secret Love Weapon Ever

This is the most underrated piece of gear ever. You never hear anyone talking about it. Even the Pacifica gets more press. (I have a Pacifica - it's good but there's a reason this one is $600 more!) This is the most versatile, best sounding tube pre I have ever worked with. Turn up the gain and it's a wall of saturated tube tone. Flick a tone switch and it's a glassy, breath-y, sparkle machine. Plug in a guitar or bass and with a slight twist of the dial you can go right to 1972 London or 1956 Nashville, or, if you want experimental, you can get track CRUSHING tube distortion. Honestly, I could waste the rest of my life just plugging different instruments and singers in to this thing and twisting knobs. The versatility is amazing. I'll usually run this direct in to a 2-1176 but it easily produces enough natural compression that, as long as you're paying attention, you can go right to the DAW. Honestly, I could go on and on about this pre. If you're looking to go big and not have any regrets - this will definitely fit the bill. But, be warned this one is not transparent. It has lots and lots of flavors - all of them good. I have yet to meet an A Designs product that I don't absolutely love but this one takes the cake.
Music background: A.L. G.O.R.E. (Alcohol Loving Gear Obsessed Recording Enthusiast)
See also: A Designs, A Designs Preamps