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Neve 1081 vs. 1073

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Are you constantly working in your studio and confused about what preamplifier you should get? Well, don’t worry; we’re here to guide you.

Well, compare multiple preamps such as Neve 1081 vs. 1073, Neve 1073 and 1084, etc. While we are at it, we will also answer some of the most basic queries regarding preamps.

Neve 1073Neve 1081
The shape of the 1073 cut filters isn’t precisely “textbook perfect.”The filters of 1081 are marginally more “textbook-like.”
The 107mid band almost always remains melodious and does not impart the typical harshness of extreme filter boosts when extreme boosts are required.081 is ideal for the extreme filtering that is often required in the genre to produce an explosive attack with a rapid decline.
Better Pre amp soundBetter and more versatile EQ Performance
Grittier Output, Good for Drums, Bass, and guitars.More detailed output, Good for Vocals.
More Sensitive OutputLess Sensitive Output

Neve 1081: 1081 was initially intended to be a combined mic/line preamp and equalization component for Neve modular consoles like the renowned 8048 console when it was created in 1972.

This confirms the 1081’s standing as a classic element in a recording front-end or mixing nature. These old consoles are still frequently employed to excellent effect on today’s platinum-selling records.

Neve 1073: 1073, which was introduced in 1970, is the first choice of top producers and musicians, providing the distinctive Neve® sound on some of the most well-known records of the previous six decades.

Despite countless attempts to imitate 1073, Neve’s modules are the only real ones available today.

Neve 1081 Reissue vs. 1073 DPX

Neve 1081 Reissue

1081 was initially intended to be a combined mic/line preamp and equalization section for the Neve modular consoles when it was created in 1972.

The fact that these old consoles are still often and effectively employed on today’s platinum-selling records confirms the 1081’s reputation as a truly classic element in a recording front-end or mixing environment. 

Neve is still hand-constructing 1081 modules in much the same way as the original modules, with the same parts, manually wound transformers, and time-tested assembly techniques.


  • Unique Neve MarinairTM transformers are used in the input and output phases.
  • HP and LP filters that can be chosen (18dB per octave).
  • A 48V phantom power source.
  • The solo button chooses the channel’s unbalanced output.
  • Exactingly made by hand and wired to original 1972 specifications.
  • Inputs are earth-free and transformer-balanced.
  • From 20Hz to 20kHz, the frequency response is -0.5 dB, and at 45kHz, it is -3 dB. EQ Out.
  • At all line levels, output noise is less than -80 dB.
  • The gain for the microphone input is +80 dB to +10 dB in 5 dB phases.
  • The gain for the line input is +20 dB to -10 dB in 5 dB phases.
  • 5 switches for EQ bands.
  • Output: output impedance 75 ohms at 1 kHz; maximum output >+26 dBu into 600 ohms
  • Maximum distortion is 0.07% at +20 dBu output.
  • Frequency response: -0.5 dB from 20Hz to 20kHz, and -3 dB at 45kHz. EQ Out.
  • Better than -80 dB output noise at all line levels.

AMS Neve 1073DPX

2-channel Mic/Line/DI Preamp & EQ rackmount equipment, AMS Neve 1073DPX. The 1073DPX is a potent, flexible network band that gives you a powerful tonal palette for making audacious statements with your music.

It was constructed to the exact descriptions of the original with matched elements to ensure sonic validity and updated with modern features to meet the demands of today’s studio workflows.


  • Channel-selectable, volume-adjustable headphone output.
  • Gain +80dB to +20dB in 5dB stages for the microphone input.
  • Each channel has 7-segment LED signal level meters that can be switched to display the Level of distortion at the mic/line/DI input stage, EQ stage, or output stage: 0.07% from 50Hz–10kHz at +20dBu output (80kHz bandwidth) into 600.
  • Frequency Response: 0.5 dB from 20 Hz to 20 kHz and -3 dB from 40 kHz (EQ out).
  • An optional external multi-voltage PSU is available, as is a digital I/O module.
  • Line Input: Gain +20dB to -10dB in 5dB increments, input impedance 10k bridging.
  • DI input: 1 m (Pad out), 10 k (Pad in) input impedance; gain that is +80 dB to +20 dB in 5 dB phases.
  • The maximum output is >+26dBu into 600, with a balanced transformer

Why Do You Need Both the 1073 and 1081?

The quick answer is that each is distinct and well-suited to a certain task since they truly differ from one another. In a blend, they can also be very complimentary to one another.

The 1081 and 1073 complement each other quite well, as mentioned. Given that both units are Neve, the tones they create are similar. They work incredibly well together in a combination.

We would suggest using only the 1073/1073 SE and 1081/1081 SE on a mix if you want to hear the quantitative effects of mixing exclusively with the Neve filter sound. 

Use only compressors from the same vintage to improve the sound, such as 1176 with the Plate 140 for reverb and the Space Echo for delays.

It may be quite enlightening and give your mix a discernible “Neve console feel.” Thanks to this, you can now mix a genuine early ’70s “period piece”!

Neve 1073 VS Neve 1084 EQ

Neve 1084:

1084 uses the same fundamental architecture as the well-known 1073, but it offers a much broader range of frequency options.

Additionally, 1084 has a “Q” switch that enables users to select between two alternative Q types, narrow or wide, about the parametric band.

The coveted Neve 1084 channel amplifier and EQ is the heart of a select number of expensive Neve 80 series consoles.

Its class-A preamp provides recognizable Neve clarity and character, and its vibrant EQ settings elevate it above the renowned 1073.

Neve 1073:

Top producers and artists choose 1073, which was released in 1970, to other models because it delivers the distinctive Neve sound heard on some of the most well-known albums of the preceding six decades.

Neve’s modules are the only authentic ones on the market right now, despite numerous attempts to replicate 1073.

Neve Engineers entirely handcraft 1073 in the UK. All of the modules constructed today were initially conceptualized by Rupert Neve using pen and paper.

This special method, which makes use of point-to-point wiring, fiberglass tracking, and original components, requires time to produce.

But it is crucial to make sure that the most caution is taken when constructing this legendary module.

What type of EQ is Neve 1073?

The most renowned preamp and EQ circuit ever created are the Neve 1073 Channel Amplifier.

This legendary class-A transistor mic/line amp with EQ, which was first released in 1970, perfectly captures the lovely “Neve sound” with unmatched clarity, gloss, and bite.

The Neve 1073 is constructed using a vintage “golden unit” channel module that was taken from an original Neve 8014 console along with the P&G output attenuating fader.

The class-A preamp and EQ circuit’s sole real, end-to-end circuit model is offered by UA’s Neve 1073. A Marinar input transformer model formed the foundation for the creation of an incredibly accurate replica of 1073. 

The Neve dual-transistor preamp, sometimes known as the “Red Knob” model, comes after the transformer stage and features non-clipped and clipped non-linear behavior, including recognizable asymmetric and dynamic duty-cycle clipping.

Along with the passive low-cut filter and the EQ’s loading of the preamp output, the filter interactions of the three-band active EQ and internal amp clipping characteristics are also represented.

The plug-in also accurately reproduces the non-linear characteristics of the output transformer, post-fader output amplifier, and other non-linear components of 1073. There are twelve distinct places on the circuit where a clip can occur.

How does a Neve 1073 work?


Let us tell you some of the most basic controls and functions of a Neve 1073.

Input Knob

The input gain control, sometimes referred to as the “Red Knob,” allows the user to adjust the input gain for both the mic preamp input and the line input.

The gain parameter being managed (mic or line) or the desired value in the other gain range is altered by selecting the MIC or LINE text buttons.

Neve invented the odd “negative value” numbering scheme based on sensitivity rather than Gain. For instance, to match the sensitivity of input, the 1073’s input sensitivity knob would be set to -80 dB.

Input Select

The Gain is controlling which input (mic or line) is determined by Input Select. Click the MIC or LINE text to switch to that input and modify the input gain that is being controlled.

Clicking any of the gain value labels or “dots” in the input type range will also toggle the input choice. The Gain knob only uses the input type’s range when Input Select is changed.

The Neve 1073 plug-in, like the hardware, makes it simple to feed Line level signals through the “virtual” Mic input, enabling the creative use of distortion to color signals.

A significant increase in Gain is anticipated because doing this is akin to putting a line-level signal into a mic-level input.

Line Gain

Line Gain has a 30 dB range and is accessible in 5 dB steps. Only when Input Select is set to LINE mode may Line Gain be changed.

Gain is increased by turning the knob in the plug-in interface counterclockwise, just like the original hardware.

Processor utilization is decreased when Line Gain is switched to the OFF setting.

MIC Gain

The Mic Gain knob’s 60 dB range is accessible in 5 dB steps. Increase the mic input gain by turning the knob counterclockwise. Mic Gain can only be changed while Input Select is set to MIC mode.

Mic Z (Impedance)

The Mic Z switch controls how the impedance of the microphone input. The modeled input impedances slightly impact the signal color and responsiveness.


The mic input impedance is 300 Ohms while it is in LO mode.


The Gain parameter determines the mic input impedance when it is set to HI. When the Gain is adjusted between -20 and -50, the mic input impedance is 1.2K Ohms; when the Gain is set between -55 and -80, it is 600 Ohms.

Note that Mic Z cannot be used for line input. The control cannot be changed in this situation.

Most studios leave this switch at the HI position while using the original hardware (the default value in the plug-in).

Engineers must crawl under the console to reach the switch on the back of the module if they want to access the LO setting on the hardware for a low-output microphone (such as a ribbon mic).


The amplitude of the mic input signal is reduced (attenuated) by -20 dB when activated. When unwanted overload distortion is present at low preamp gain levels, the Pad can be utilized to lower signal levels.

Note: Line input cannot be done using Pad. The control cannot be changed in this situation.

High Band

At 12, the High Shelf knob provides roughly 18 dB of evenly distributed fixed-frequency shelving equalization.

Middle Band

Dual-concentric knobs are used to adjust the midrange band, providing a fluid semi-parametric midrange equalization. The outside ring chooses the band frequency or band disable, while the inside knob regulates the band gain.

As the Gain is changed, the response for this band depends on the bandwidth. The Q increases for a more narrowly focused peak at higher center frequencies.

Medium Gain

The dual-concentric control’s inner knob is used to choose the Gain for the mid-band. To enhance mid-band Gain, turn the control clockwise; to decrease mid-band gain, turn the control counterclockwise.

About 18 dB is the range that is currently available. When the knob position indication is pointing directly down, the band gain is 0.

Midrange Frequency

The dual-concentric knob’s outer ring allows you to specify the intermediate frequency.

The midrange center frequencies that are readily available are 360 Hz, 700 Hz, 1.6 kHz, 3.2 kHz, 4.8 kHz, 7.2 kHz, and OFF. Drag the outside ring or click a numerical value label to alter the frequency.

Low Band

Dual-concentric knobs in the low band provide smooth low-frequency shelving equalization. The outside ring chooses the shelf frequency or band disable, while the inner knob regulates the band gain.

Low Gain

With the dual-concentric control’s inner knob, the Gain for the low band is chosen. Turn the control in either direction to boost low frequencies or decrease the low-end response.

Low Frequency

The outer ring of the dual-concentric knob specifies the low shelving frequency. The high shelving frequencies that are readily available are 35 Hz, 60 Hz, 110 Hz, 220 Hz, and OFF.

Drag the outside ring or click a numerical value label to alter the frequency.

To cycle among the available frequencies, click the “Hz” label or high shelving symbol (lower left and right of the low band knobs). To cycle backward, press Shift and click.

Low Cut

The low cut (high pass) filter’s fixed frequency is specified by this knob. The slope of this filter is 18 dB per octave. The available frequencies include 50 Hz, 80 Hz, 160 Hz, 300 Hz, and OFF.


The signal’s polarity is reversed by pressing the PHASE button. The phase is reversed when the switch is in the engaged state (the darker “in” position). Keep the switch in the disengaged (lighter “out”) position for the normal phase.

EQL When the EQL switch is turned on, the equalizer is activated (the darker “in” position). Disengage the switch to turn the EQ off (the lighter “out” position).

The disabled setting is the default. Toggle the status by clicking the button. Bypassing the EQ with this option lowers the amount of processing that is done.


The plug-in bypass control is power. Power is useful for comparing the original signal to the processed settings.

Emulation processing is disabled, and processor usage is minimized when set to OFF.


Level For this control, the circuitry of an original Neve console fader was modeled.

The available range is from -dB (off) to +10 dB. In the zero position, there is unity gain. Level increases over 0 dB may result in output amplifier clipping.

To reset the Level to 0 dB, click the text labels that say “0”.


Output modifies the signal level at the plug outputs without changing the sound of the signal. 24 dB is the available range.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which Preamplifier Should I get?

Both have pros; with 1071, it was simpler to incorporate a sampled kick drum into the mix. However, modeling a voice line and a snare drum with 1081 was simpler.

Which preamplifier is better for which purpose?

In a good way, 1073 has more grit than 1081 and is better suited for powerful instruments like guitars and drums.

1081 is best for more intricate material, such as voices. In fact, 1081 is a necessity if you want a truly professional vocal sound.