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Author Topic: John Hardy M-1  (Read 5495 times)

Offline rvdsm

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John Hardy M-1
« on: May 27, 2004, 04:30:18 am »
I am in the market for some good preamps, but I don't have a huge budget ($4000) I'm looking at the 4-ch John Hardy M-1 as an option and I was just wondering if anyone out there in internet land has one and could lend me a few honest words on the device for consideration.
We walked along and talked along till we came to the levelest ground....then I picked up a stick of wood and I knocked that Boston bitch down!

Offline grock5

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Re: John Hardy M-1
« Reply #1 on: May 28, 2004, 02:02:28 am »
I had a two channel M-1 with no options (no output tranny, no meters, purchased new directly from the John Hardy Company)

It's a very well-made unit. Fairly fast-sounding preamp based around the 990 op-amp, good attack, good hi's and low's. beautiful midrange, but can still let an aggressive source through without mellowing it out or making it sound sterile. Has a tightness to the sound that is somehwhat like an api, kinda sorta. (A friend of mine liked these so much, he replaced the opamps on the 2-buss of a fairly capable API desk with Hardy 990's and loved it.)

It was a very, very versatile unit for my work (fast hardcore/punk, random classical remotes, hip-hop, acoustic "rock"). Kick, Snare, overheads, toms, bass guitar, electric guitar, acoustic guitar, hammond...vocals. It never sounded bad on a source, IMO, generally sounding damn good. For stuff i generally went to an API on like kick, bass guitar, It usually slaughtered it sonically, though the color of an API may be what you or the track would desire. For stuff where a slower pre may be more appropriate, I usually prefered the Hardy as well.

Sonically, it is damn good. Seems true to the source, in a better than average way. My biggest problem was deciding if color or sonics were more important to the source. I usually just caught it with the Hardy, and colored it somewhere else if it needed it.

As for the options...
I've used m-1's with the VU option, and it's the best metering system I've ever used.
I've used m-1's with both transformer and no transformer, but I haven't directly compared them. I think I prefer no transformer, but it wasn't a drastic enough difference to make me hold to it. The transformer may be worth it just for the sake of interfacing with unbalanced sources, like the eq input of an earlier Amek or something. It's failry easy to swap out, and these options, as well as channels, can be added later piece by piece.

John Hardy is a hell of a nice guy as well.

Hopefully I'll be buying one again soon.

They could sell for double what they go for...

Offline j.hall

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Re: John Hardy M-1
« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2004, 01:13:59 pm »
i used the 4 channel unit at CRC last year

it was really great, i'd buy one with out hesitation if i needed more pre's.

Offline oudplayer

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Re: John Hardy M-1
« Reply #3 on: June 04, 2004, 03:26:28 am »
We have a 2-channel at the studio I work - my favorite preamp, hands down. I do world acoustic music recording with it... and use dynamic, condensor, and ribbon mics with it.
"BTW. You don't REALLY believe digital sounds like "SOURCE".... do you?

Because that would make you a insuperable paragon of nincompoopery." -Slipperman

Offline rvdsm

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Re: John Hardy M-1
« Reply #4 on: June 04, 2004, 09:05:11 pm »
Well I'm sold.  Very Happy

Now all that is left is a super tough decision between buying a Great River MP2-NV or a new LDC................. Confused
I only have 3 now (Solidtube and 2 AT4050s) and I'm looking for a really nice for 2 grand. Yet again, I would really like to have as many primo mic pres as possible.

Decisions, decisions..
We walked along and talked along till we came to the levelest ground....then I picked up a stick of wood and I knocked that Boston bitch down!

Offline oudplayer

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Re: John Hardy M-1
« Reply #5 on: June 05, 2004, 06:52:25 pm »
my vote: new mics, new mics...
"BTW. You don't REALLY believe digital sounds like "SOURCE".... do you?

Because that would make you a insuperable paragon of nincompoopery." -Slipperman

Offline j.hall

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Re: John Hardy M-1
« Reply #6 on: June 07, 2004, 03:48:59 pm »
it's not a question of mic or pre

it's a question of what mic will make as much sense as the great river

the great river will be with you forever.

if you are going to choose between a mic and the great river you need the playing field to be equal

soundelux U-99
blue kiwi

now the playing field is leveled......

Offline rvdsm

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Re: John Hardy M-1
« Reply #7 on: June 08, 2004, 04:20:50 pm »
j.hall wrote on Mon, 07 June 2004 14:48


if you are going to choose between a mic and the great river you need the playing field to be equal

soundelux U-99
blue kiwi

now the playing field is leveled......


Funny you should mention that. Those actually are two of the three mics I was going to choose between once I decided which way I was going to go on the preamp/mic decision. The third was the Lawson L47MP mkII, but I've heard so many great things about the Kiwi that I started leaning more toward that.

If I wasn't in dire need of a good vocal mic I was going to get the MP-2NV and extend my budget enough to include a Royer R-121, but I just don't know how useful a Royer would be for voice. Having never heard any of these mics it's pretty much a shot in the dark for me.

Once I get close to my deadline I'll probably take a trip up to Chicago and see about sampling some of these mics. Then again, I might decide to forget purchasing mics until later, buy the MP-2NV and a Drawmer 1960 to accompany the 4-ch M-1 and just rent mics for upcoming sessions. Too many choices...
We walked along and talked along till we came to the levelest ground....then I picked up a stick of wood and I knocked that Boston bitch down!

Offline meverylame

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Re: John Hardy M-1
« Reply #8 on: June 08, 2004, 09:56:45 pm »
I used a two channel hardy on a chamber orchestra piece with some earthworks TC30s.... I'm still wiping the dung out of my pants. That good. I used it on an oboe and a bassoon, thusly producing some of the best sounds I've ever recorded.
Cheers!
Jason Kingsland

http://www.jasonruinsrecords.com

Offline schwabbl

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Re: John Hardy M-1
« Reply #9 on: June 15, 2004, 11:55:59 pm »
I own 8 channels and haven't found anything as versatile on almost any instrument.  I also have vintage Neve's and API's, have used Focusrite, Amek, Universal Audio, Avalon, Millenia...  Still the John Hardy's stand up.  And the best metering out there.

Also,  he's a hell of a nice guy.



Schwabbl
schwabbl

Offline theo mack

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Re: John Hardy M-1
« Reply #10 on: July 26, 2004, 10:59:39 pm »
IMHO the JH M1 is the best all around mic pre out there.

You might consider buying a single ch unit in the 4 space rack for about $1000 that will leave you some $$ for a nice mic.
Extra input cards can be had from JH himself for something like $575 each with the full options. You can instal them yourself.

I like the M1 with the full metering and output jensen.

JH is a super nice guy.
His pres are worth 3X what they cost.
really.

theo mack
theo mack
Freelance Audio Guy

Las Vegas, NV.