Universal Audio LA610 MKII Overview
The LA-610 Mk II from Universal Audio brings vintage, “all tube” sound to the modern channel strip format. The unit combines a 610 Mic-Pre/EQ/DI section, based on the console modules developed by Bill Putnam in the 1960s, with a T4 Opto-compressor, and houses them in a 2U rack-mount enclosure. The 610-tube preamp, DI and EQ deliver a sound that is as timeless as it is legendary, and a hallmark of many classic recordings. The simple operation and program dependent nature of the T4 compressor provides extremely musical control.
The LA-610 MkII is sonically very versatile and can function as an ideal front-end for tracking into a digital audio workstation. The preamp is augmented with two bands of shelving EQ, followed a T4 based optical compressor. Although not an exact LA-2A clone, the compressor circuitry nevertheless shares its signature sound by utilizing its unique combination of an electro-luminescent panel and photo-resistors. Three 12AX7A tubes, a single 6072A and 6AQ5 tube combine to provide “warmth” and overall even tonal balance.
The Mk II delivers several enhancements over the original LA-610. A true compressor bypass switch is now available which completely avoids the compressor circuitry. Other changes improve the performance of the output signal, improved consistency with input gain values and feedback-style shelving EQ improves the EQ stability. An auto-sensing, universal power supply is included, along with larger and better lit metering.