Golden Age Pre-73 MKIII Mic/line Preamp

Single-channel Mic/line Preamp with 80dB of Mic Gain, Phantom Power, DI, Switchable Impedance, and LED Output Level Meter
Golden Age Pre-73 MKIII Mic/line Preamp image 1
Golden Age Pre-73 MKIII Mic/line Preamp image 1

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Golden Age Pre-73 MKIII Mic/line Preamp
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Classic Mic Pre Performance at a Project Studio Price

The classic Neve 1073 wrote the book on characterful mic preamplification, so in designing their Pre-73 MKIII mic pre, Golden Age aimed high. Given its mild pricetag, it's amazing how well they succeeded. The single-channel Pre-73 MKIII is versatile, with 80dB of gain that lets you easily mic subdued sources with passive ribbons. Cranking the main gain stage imbues your tracks with tasty vintage-style coloration. Also onboard: phantom power, a broad gain-range DI, flexible I/O, switchable impedance, and an LED output level meter, all in a robust half-rack chassis. If you want a characterful pre with punch, Sweetwater recommends the Golden Age Pre-73 MKIII.

Golden Age Pre-73 MKIII Features at a Glance:
  • Vintage-style electronics with Tantalum capacitors
  • Simplified Gain control with Mic/Line switch makes all gain levels available for line input
  • 80dB of gain easily handles passive ribbon mics on quiet sound sources
  • Mic input with switchable 1200/300 ohm impedance on the
  • Switchable phantom power and absolute phase
  • High-impedance instrument input for connecting sound modules, electric guitar or bass
  • Sound-shaping highpass filter and two position high-frequency boost
  • Simple-but-effective 4-step LED output level meter
  • Overload the main gain stage and adjust output level control for more character
  • Combo XLR/TRS input jacks and separate output XLR and TRS jacks
  • Includes external power supply
Classic mic pre performance for studios of every size!

Additional Media

Studio Preamp Buying Guide

Tech Specs

Preamp Type Solid State
Number of Channels 1
Phantom Power Yes
Analog Inputs 1 XLR/TRS Combo, 1 x 1/4"
Analog Outputs 1 x XLR, 1 x 1/4"
Channel Inserts Yes
Rack Spaces Half
Height 1.75"
Width 9.5"
Manufacturer Part Number Pre73MK3

Customer Reviews

Based on 5 reviews
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A Beautiful Addition to Any Studio

This unit, based off the Neve design, sounds fantastic and makes a great addition to any studio. If you're looking for an outboard option for adding color and character to your signal, and within an affordable price range, this is it!
Music background: Recording, Performance

Great for instruments

I'm not much of an engineer but have been playing classical and jazz for a long time. I recorded my violinist at home in a well treated space and was able to get a very rich sound through a ribbon mic. He is very particular about his sound and I am happy to report the end result is ideal. This item does a great job of producing a warm, balanced and highly detailed instrument recording. Highly recommended!
Music background: Instrumentalist


Really impressed with the quality of this unit. I was unsure about purchasing considering the low price but It's well worth the money. Brings new character to my acoustic Gtr and vocals.
Music background: Professional Engineer

Warm rich sound for budget and high end studios

I never realized how much having a dedicated pre could improve my overall sound. I'm running this pre thru an Apogee Duet 2 and I'm using an Aston Origin microphone for vocals and I couldn't be happier with the results! Although the Golden Age pre made my AT4040 sound 5x better, the Aston Origin took it to the next level. This is pretty straight forward and easy to use with some great functions. I'm glad my sales rep Mike Harris suggested it to me.
Music background: Producer, recording artist, singer song writer

Mixed feelings

I've owned two of these units over the years. The first (which I purchased around 2010) was great - had the Carnhill transformer upgrade and sounded amazing on bass, guitar, vocals. More recently I purchased this recent version only to have the circuitry go bad after a month of use. I have since gone with the Warm Audio WA12 MKII and it sounds equally amazing and seems to be built a little heftier. The WA12 also has the POL and TONE option which add to your options of coloration. I really wish I could have kept using this unit but I was worried it would go bad again. Lastly, be careful of the paint - it scrapes off pretty easily.
Music background: Past studio intern and obsessive home recording nerd.

Sweetwater Advice

Tyler Berggren

I love the way the Golden Age Pre-73 MKIII brings classic British tone to my studio. I've used a lot of 1073-style preamps (some of which cost 10 times more) and this little red box holds up to the big boys! High output and moderate gain delivers balanced tone with a hint of transformer flavor, and when I drive the gain to the limits, I get totally fat, super-saturated overdrive. I don't know of a better option for old-school preamp vibe that won't break the bank.
See also: Golden Age, Golden Age Preamps