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PreSonus Eureka vs Avalon U5

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Silent Fly, Aug 15, 2007.


  1. Silent Fly

    Silent Fly Supporting Member Commercial User

    May 8, 2006
    London - UK
    Owner/designer [sfx]
    I have a severe GAS attack! :help:

    I am looking for a pre with a clear sound and I am undecided between:

    - Avalon U5 (super-simple, clear sound, lots of detail, heavy)
    - PreSonus Eureka (swiss army knife, clear sound, light)

    Do you have any experience in comparing the two? Any other suggestion?
     
  2. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    North Dakota
    I've used all the parts of the Eureka, but not all at once. They were very good. I have had an Avalon. It is excellent. I think it works as a pre, others don't. It is bulky. I can't understand why Avalon won't or can't make a single space version.

    You can't go wrong with either. I guess you need to ask if you want/need the more extensive EQ options, the compressor, or even if you want a tube pre. The Avalon is not tube. Many poeple seem to think it is because it has such a warm sound.
     
  3. Silent Fly

    Silent Fly Supporting Member Commercial User

    May 8, 2006
    London - UK
    Owner/designer [sfx]
    Thanks Steve for your comments.
    ---

    Another way to put it is: how is the Eureka with EQ, compressor... bypassed compared to the Avalon U5? :confused:
     
  4. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2006
    I used to have a U5. While it was very nice, it was a bit awkward in it's shape and there is no power switch. I also found the tone bank choices a bit limiting. I found a blackface/red knobs Furman PQ-3 for really cheap and swapped out the original TL 072 opamps for much better LM833 opamps and added a top of the line Jensen line out transformer with a ground lift switch; after comparing the PQ-3 to the U5, I still have the PQ-3. :)

    'Nuff said!:bassist:
     
  5. joelb79

    joelb79

    Mar 22, 2006
    Lansing, Michigan
    Never got the Eureka, but I liked my Avalon.
     
  6. Silent Fly

    Silent Fly Supporting Member Commercial User

    May 8, 2006
    London - UK
    Owner/designer [sfx]
    "liked" as in sold it, I assume. Why did you sell it?
     
  7. Aram

    Aram

    Feb 2, 2003
    New York, NY
    I can't compare the two, but I do own the Eureka (though I haven't used it in a while). I think by 'swiss army knife' you're referring to the semi-para eq, and all the compressor settings. Though there are a lot of knobs for the EQ, you won't be able to get dramatic tone shaping from it. It's more subtle coloration. The main distinction with the compressor is the soft knee vs. hard knee, but in general, it's subtle as well (as a good compressor should be IMO).

    Having said all that, it's a great preamp for bass. I was using a Demeter --> QSC --> Bergantino HT stack, and it wasn't until I introduced the Eureka that the sound REALLY opened up. I liked it so much that I sold the Demeter. There's a ton of gain, and the tone is indeed very transparent. You might need some additional EQ, however...either onboard your bass, or another rack unit, or a floor pedal.
     
  8. sevenorchids

    sevenorchids Supporting Member

    I had a U5. Great recording DI. Not very flexible in tone shaping, you either like the curves or you record flat. If you are using it as a recording front end, that's not that much of a problem. You'll probably have outboard EQ options in the recording environment.

    The Presonus Eureka is nice. I used one with an IP310. Good EQ, decent compressor, clean sound. Much more flexible as a preamp than the U5.
     
  9. doctec

    doctec

    Mar 22, 2005
    Beaverton, Oregon
    I have a Eureka and used it in my live rig for a year or two. It is a great clean pre and I liked the compressor a lot. The only reason I moved away from it was because I was driving 2 1x15 cabs and couldn't get enough high-end boost (to suit my taste) from the eq.

    A minor issue for live use is that even though the knobs look very cool, it's really hard to see where they're set in dim lighting. I fixed that by sticking a little piece of masking tape on the end of each knob and drawing a "pointer" with a sharpie.
     
  10. Aram

    Aram

    Feb 2, 2003
    New York, NY
    Agreed. I thought about doing that, or getting some kind of glowy sticker (or even just a dab of whiteout) to indicate where the knob is set.
     
  11. Silent Fly

    Silent Fly Supporting Member Commercial User

    May 8, 2006
    London - UK
    Owner/designer [sfx]
    Interesting... According to the specs, it should have +/-13dB on every band of the EQ. In theory, it should be enough for some substantial tone shaping.

    I get your point but... if I have to buy an extra-eq unit, what's the point of a pre with an eq section? ;) Having said that, I understand why Presonus designed the Eureka with a subtle eq control. It makes sense for a channel strip.

    ...and when I though that the Eureka was what I was looking for, the EQ section let me down :bawl:
     
  12. The EQ is very subtle, it is ultra clean and great for a mic, maybe not as useful for a bass pre, but ive never had any problems using mine.

    Presonus Eureka into SVT-II power section = the most gorgeous clean sound!
     
  13. Aram

    Aram

    Feb 2, 2003
    New York, NY
    Yeah, but take a look at the spectrum where the EQ sweeps...I'm not looking at the manual right now, but IIRC, a lot of the freq's are out of the range of bass (since it's a mic pre). You really effectively only end up with two (albeit variable) bands of EQ...I think.

    You definitely might not have to buy extra EQ. If you like the sound of your bass (and/or your bass has some onboard control), and your speaker cabinets are good quality (I was using a Bergantino HT210 and HT115), you might not need any additional EQ at all. I guess my main point is it's pretty hi-fi, so don't expect to dial in Ampeg or anything like that...not that any mic pre really claims to do so.


    Seriously, don't let me deter you. I love my Eureka. If you think a mic pre will suit your needs, I'm sure the Eureka would be worth your while to check out. Don't be freaked out by a somewhat limited EQ section. If you like how your bass (and cabs) sound in your signal chain, then you shouldn't require a ton of EQ.
     
  14. Silent Fly

    Silent Fly Supporting Member Commercial User

    May 8, 2006
    London - UK
    Owner/designer [sfx]
    Low Band (+/-13dB) 20Hz to 300Hz
    Mid Band (+/-13dB) 200Hz to 3kHz
    High Band (+/-13dB) 2kHz to 20kHz

    Q (variable all bands): 0.4 to 2 (3 octave to 2/3 octave)

    Thanks for your comforting words Aram.

    :) (smile back on my face)
     
  15. Aram

    Aram

    Feb 2, 2003
    New York, NY
    You can see the high band is REALLY high...probably won't do much for bass, so you really only get two bands to fool with. I don't remember it being a problem, but I just wanted to point it out. I still highly recommend the preamp.

    Cheers,
    Aram
     
  16. greenboy

    greenboy

    Dec 18, 2000
    remote mountain cabin Montana
    greenboy designs: fEARful, bassic, dually, crazy88 etc
    If those are sweepable, a 2K center is not "really high" for bass. Actually you aren't even into Fosterx tweeter range yet ; }
     
  17. Aram

    Aram

    Feb 2, 2003
    New York, NY
    To me that's high, but I'm not a 'highs' kind of guy. I usually roll my tweeters mostly off, and my newest cab has a whizzer cone (sans tweet).
     
  18. Silent Fly

    Silent Fly Supporting Member Commercial User

    May 8, 2006
    London - UK
    Owner/designer [sfx]
    I checked my Sadowsky Outboard Bass Preamp:

    +13dB @ 40Hz
    +13db @ 4kHz

    The Eureka should be ok. :)
     
  19. Aram

    Aram

    Feb 2, 2003
    New York, NY
    Perfect! If you like the 4khz on the Sadowsky then you should be golden with the Eureka. I love the 40hz on mine, but have no use for the 4khz...for that matter I wish it had treble cut (and volume boost), but that's for another thread. ;)
     
  20. Silent Fly

    Silent Fly Supporting Member Commercial User

    May 8, 2006
    London - UK
    Owner/designer [sfx]
    So do I actually ;)
     

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