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Microphone Month 3

Maag Audio PREQ4 Microphone Preamp Reviews

5.0 stars based on 6 customer reviews
Questions about the Maag Audio PREQ4 Microphone Preamp?

Questions about the Maag Audio PREQ4 Microphone Preamp?

Or call us at (800) 222-4700

  • from Portland OR March 24, 2016Music Background:
    guitar, synth, post production, sound design

    So clean!

    I've been using these mostly on acoustic guitar and vocals lately, and they're amazing. So clean and transparent, but still warm - the air band is what really makes these special. Great company and fantastic product.

  • from Nashville, TN September 16, 2013Music Background:
    Recording Engineer / Producer

    The best

    It's funny to see Reid in the video for this pre, cause his is the one I've used. I borrowed it for a tracking session, and HOLY COW. Huge, clear, clean, but not "sterile" or boring. Just awesome. The pre is great by itself, but having the Air Band is just killer. It can really open up a track, without the typical artifacts of an eq. I turn to these more than API lately.

  • from July 8, 2013


    We've used it on everything so far and between this and the shadow hills mono gama, we haven't had much need of anything else.

  • from Salt Lake City, UT USA May 30, 2011Music Background:
    Producer, Arranger, Composer, Touring Keyboardist

    Best vocal pre in existence!

    Some of you may have heard of NTI/Night Pro from back in the 90's. They created a pre which has since been used to record vocals on countless Grammy award-winning albums including Barbara Streisand, Mariah Carey, Tim McGraw and Black Eyed Peas to name a few. Maag Audio is the continuation of the original PreQ3 and EQ3's

    The big thing that sets apart this pre is the internally linear-phase Air Band, meaning as you add or subtract "air" doesn't change the phasing of the electronics allowing vocals and instruments to pop out of the mix with clarity.

    Even tied to some of the most sought after vintage microphones like the C-12, the PreQ4 breathes new life into your tracks. I've also used these pres on piano, acoustic guitar, snare, and overheads with phenomenal results.

    I highly recommend this piece of equipment a 1000 times over.

  • from Miami, FL UAS May 3, 2011Music Background:
    Singer & music producer


    this preamp is the best of all it's used. "The Air Band" is great, when you record vocals, guitar, etc. etc. try it and see. Mr. Maag thanks.

  • from San Diego, CA December 5, 2013Music Background:
    Engineer & Musician

    Does What it Does Really Really Well

    Pros: Air Band offers great flexibility, rock solid construction, really shines on certain sources
    Cons: Core preamp sound not quite as detailed as some pres

    I needed another channel of mic pre and was interested in the Maag PREQ4 after seeing the demo videos and hearing a lot of buzz about the Air Band. When I received it I shot it out right away against a Millennia HV-35 and a LaChapelle 583 on acoustic guitar and vocals using a Miktek CV4. I tend to favor a clean signal chain and really love what I get from those preamps. I found the PREQ4 to be relatively clean but not quite as detailed as either of the other preamps. Definitely not night and day differences, but enough that I preferred the others consistently on first or second playback and would choose one of them over the Maag every time on those sources.

    The Air Band was surprisingly flexible, however, and really gave a wide range of sounds based on how it shaped the sound at each setting. I tried each frequency with the Air Band Gain setting at 1 and then again with the gain set at 2, and even at these mild settings the sound was noticeably different on each take. Still, though, I was ready to return it because it didn’t quite match the pres I already had on the sources I record most often, regardless of the Air Band settings. Again, we’re not talking big differences here, but enough for me to save my money if I wasn’t really impressed.

    But then I had a session that involved a variety of percussion instruments, and I found the PREQ4 really useful. With an Audix i5 on snare, just a little Air Band really opened up the top end of the sound and captured it nicely and with a little magic even. On tambourine and cabasa I used the PREQ4 with a Royer R101 four or five feet away, and it performed extremely well. The ribbon took the harsh edge off the percussion but was a tad dark. The PREQ4 – again with a touch of Air Band – evened out the high end perfectly and brought life to the signal. Combined with room mics the resulting sound was really great.

    The net result was that the Maag will be staying around for awhile. It may not perfect for all sources, but it offers a ton of variety and it does what it does better than most others – well enough to really make life easier on some sources and even add something special.

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