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Microphone Month

AEA Ribbon Pre Reviews

4.5 stars based on 6 customer reviews
Questions about the AEA Ribbon Pre?

Questions about the AEA Ribbon Pre?

Or call us at (800) 222-4700

Sweetwater Advice

  • Forrest Powell

    Good night! 83dB of gain is quite a lot, and yet this 2-channel ribbon preamp is totally clean. The noise is totally negligible; total harmonic is .005% at 1KHz. It is as quick in response as I have heard to date, but please don't just think this can only be used with ribbon microphones! Tube mics can profit greatly paired up with TRP!

  • Simon Picazo

    AEA mics with a Ribbon Pre are honest enough to be scary! But if you're an artist who can handle the truth and want to improve the quality of your tracks, give this a try. Wes Dooley and his engineers have imparted into every AEA product their respect for the sounds that musicians have worked years to craft. In AEA you get a microphone and preamp combination that will actually give you back exactly what you feed into it.

  • from Georgia January 10, 2017Music Background:
    Performer, Studio Owner, Local Producer


    I tried using a Beyerdynamic M160 thru a Neve 1073 (real deal) preamp on a subtle finger-picking acoustic guitar track, and the 'floor noise' rendered the track almost unusable. I quickly went back to the AEA, and the floor noise is now almost 100% obsolete. Such a simple, but effective preamp for more clean gain! Seriously thinking of adding another 2 channels to my studio in the future. Just had to write and share my updated experience. So impressed with the AEA pre, I'm considering an AEA R84 or R88 for the mic locker, as this preamp has really opened up some possibilities.

  • from Raleigh North Carolina December 7, 2013Music Background:
    Recording engineer, video production

    Great preamp and portable as well.

    I do event recording work, frequently for video. This preamp works superbly with the field recorders I use to provide the most natural sound I've been able to get out of my Royer. Live sound can be demanding, and the headroom on this is amazing.

  • from Georgia December 14, 2016Music Background:
    Studio Owner, Local Producer, Performer

    Great Pre

    Used this last night on my brand new Beyerdynamic M160 and M130 mics for an acoustic guitar tracking session in M/S configuration, and I definitely made the right choice. I was immediately smiling after hearing the first test run with the M160 and M130 - very natural sound with great dynamics and warmth with the M160, just a beautiful sound. I knew right away this was the acoustic sound for my client's project. After the guitarist really got into some strumming, the low end came alive - too much, really. You will probably end up using the hi-pass filter often. The gain is big and clear, and the layout is easy to work. Simple is good. This mic pre was everything I'd read in reviews, and I feel will perfectly compliment my Beyerdynamic M160 & M130 mics. Can't wait to try it with other mics. Just wish it came with rack ears.

  • from Sacramento CA USA March 27, 2012Music Background:

    AEA TRP Ribbon Pre

    I recently acquired an AEA R84, prior to which i owned one of the import ribbons which i thought was nice, albeit a bit 'woofy". It was an active ribbon and the R84 is not. While I could get a good signal from my Prism MXA-MM4 I had to turn it much much higher than with condensers and this (I felt) was probably not the best practice)... so saving up for a ribbon pre was my next 'goal'. I looKed at several other options, some more $, some less and decided upon the AEA TRP for 2 reasons:

    1) I figured as AEA made it and they made ribbon mics... therefore it would be well matched


    2) Tim Harrington at Sweetwater had never steered me wrong.

    This is a GREAT addition... I can't believe how the ribbon mic literally pops out of the mix. Plenty more headroom than I need, great clarity, no noise, and there is tonal variations depending upon how you set it.

    My one nit... no power switch! (at least I haven't found i) and plugging unplugging is a a bit of an incconvenience (hence the 4.5 instead of a 5)

    and rack ears would ne nice!

  • from Highland Lakes, NJ January 30, 2012Music Background:
    Recording Engineer

    Great Pre

    Sounds great. Clear with a ton of gain. Really opens up the AEA r84 nicely. Now i can hear the mic for what it really is. Its a great pair. Also used with the golden age mk2 ribbon mics. Completely different sounds. Mics are no longer extremely dark. Great purchase for those really wanting to explore the character of ribbon mics. Havent tried it with dynamics or tube mics but im sure it will open those up to. I gave it a 4.5 because i don't know if this is the be all end all of ribbon mics but its sure as hell pretty sweet.

  • from Mena, AR July 7, 2011Music Background:
    Musician, Producer, Recording Engineer

    TRP Ribbon Preamp from AEA

    It just works. I love the way I've gotten headroom for my Royer SF-12 stereo ribbon. It's a no brainer to use and it is very clean. I think the key to success with ribbon mic comes from the correct ohm load the TRP handles the Royer just fine. I'm very pleased with the purchase!

Questions about the AEA Ribbon Pre?

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