HV-3 Series Microphone Preamplifier
"My jaws fell open when I first switched to the HV-3B. Its presence
and clarity were outstanding. A solo voice sounded extremely immediate,
and had an almost palpably "real" quality. The low end was very tight,
showed good extension and "slam," while the high end was detailed in the
extreme, without the least amount of harshness...I'll be saving my
pennies to replace my [current solid-state reference]."
Pro Audio Review Magazine, Feature Review, Dr. Fred Bashour Recording
"Of all the instruments we tested, the Millennia Media HV-3B was
the hands down winner in the category of accuracy. On acoustic guitar,
the HV-3B lent a clear, uncolored, neutral, and detailed sound. Piano
sounded the most realistic to our ears through the HV-3B. Furthermore,
the ride cymbal was more transparent and detailed... "The Millennia
preamp would be our hands down first choice for recording a classical
ensemble straight to two-track. It was the most accurate (i.e., it sounded
the least colored) on acoustic guitar, vocal, and piano."
Recording Magazine, Feature Article, Blind listening test of nine professional preamps.
"This is an outstanding mic preamp. I've never heard our mics sound
this clean on piano. We've been using our [52 channels of] Millennia
preamps on everything..."
Jack Renner, President, Telarc International
"Over a period of months, I used the HV-3 on all types of sessions,
ranging from stereo-miked chamber ensembles to multi-track pop sessions.
In all cases, the HV-3 provided an absolutely faithful rendition of the
microphone's sound, without imparting any coloration of its own...
An excellent value offering impeccable audio specs, first-rate construction,
and sonic transparency under any conditions. The Millennia Media HV-3
is...for those who seek absolute purity in reproduction."
MIX Magazine, Feature Review By George Petersen, Editor
"The Millennia HV-3B sounds best of the units evaluated. We found
the HV-3...to be transparent in the extreme. The security of such a
large dynamic range, excellent quality, etc. will be hard to beat...."
Studio Sound Magazine, U.K. Sam Wise Feature article comparing "accurate"
"The best-sounding piano recording I've ever done. The detail and
sense of immediacy was phenomenal. It was hard to believe that a set of
omni mics so far back from the piano could get such string detail, while
still sounding warm... the coolest, quietest vocal chain I've ever hooked
up in my studio. There was no end to the headroom."
EQ Magazine, October 1999, Mike Sokol
For sonic accuracy, transparency, and realism (i.e. least amount of
coloration), the HV-3B leads the pack. This is the unit I'd choose for
live stereo recordings of jazz, classical, or any other style of music
for which sonic realism is desirable. The precisely stepped gain controls
make it a snap to match stereo levels, and the high headroom allows for
dynamic surprises...the last word in clean, accurate, transparent audio.
Electronic Musician Magazine, 6/97 and 1/98 issues. Excellent in-depth
blind listening test on numerous mic preamps
"Just to let you know, the recording we did of the Penderecki Credo
won this year's Grammy for "Best Choral Recording". We used 16 channels
of Millennia pre-amps on stage." THANKS FOR THE GREAT SOUND!!
Don Harder, Chief Audio Engineer, Canadian Broadcasting Company (March 2001)
STT-1 ORIGIN Recording System with Twin Topology
"The Millennia Media Origin offers so many choices it is almost overwhelming
at first. But, like a fine musical instrument, the different sonorities
and sounds possible became more easily realized with each session, and
the STT-1 offers the user a convenient and high-quality tool that provides
both tube and solid-state sounds on demand."
Barry Rudolph, MIX Magazine, July 2001 Review
I can't get over how great the Origins are. I have to admit... I may
even like them better than the Eq and compressor separately... I think
it's the added gain stage. Just yesterday, I had some tapes from Fantasy
[Studio] with a bad choice of mic on a vocal. I ran in and out of the
Origin and YIKES!!!! Even the artist noticed how much better it sounded.
Pure gold! If only i had more $$$$$$ i'd buy LOTS of these things.
Cookie Marenco, (FIVE Grammy nominations: Jean Luc Ponty, Taj Mahal,
Alex DeGrassi, Windham Hill, etc..)
John: We have had the use of your Origin piece for several weeks
now, and I have to commend you on it. Each of the sections sounds good,
and as both an all-in-one and a "demonstrator" unit for the circuits it
is exemplary....Really, I think you've done a remarkable job with this thing.
Steve Albini, Recording Engineer (Nirvana, etc..)
Just a quick note to let you know how much I'm enjoying using the
STT1. I've already had the opportunity of using it on a variety of sources,
from vocals to electric guitar, and it has handled everything with dramatically
outstanding results. There is a very noticeable improvement in the clarity
and overall polish in my recorded vocal takes using the STT1 that I would
never have expected to be so significant, even if the path is practically
untreated. In addition, the ease with which a recorded signal can be
enhanced using the STT's impeccably transparent EQ and compression offers
a superbly powerful and flexible recording tool, without in any way detracting
from the quality of the source.
My preference for vocals is currently the Solid State pre-amp,
although I can see the benefits of the Telefunken tubes under certain
circumstances. I'm using the valve stages elsewhere in the chain and find
they add some very subtle but satisfyingly mellow tints to everything
I record. The transformer is simply wonderful for less 'mission critical'
tracks. I've used it extensively on guitar and love the 'umph' it seems
to introduce into the picture.
The STT is also being put to work on mixdown, often to give vocals
more dramatic processing when needed, and it handles this with almost
unidentifiable transparency and consummate ease. I've even used the EQ
on snares during mixing and can get sheen and bite that none of my other
Eqs will permit without sounding artificial.
Suffice it to say I am over the moon and already trying to allocate
funds for my next Millennia purchase!!
Kind regards, Jules Bromley, Trailermen, England http://www.trailermen.com
Hey John, A friend asked me to bring the STT-1 to a pre-production
meeting for a new artist on a major label here. She has a huge dynamic
range and they were having problems with the xxxxxx compressor not covering
it and having to ride the gain with the singer. They'd been trying a xxxxxx
pre amp and some refurbished Telefunkens. They loved the STT-1 on the
woman's voice. She said "It's not squashing me!!" When in fact it was
cutting 9db on her loud notes. We had to look over at the needle to verify
that it was compressing her. Very transparent. It retained the integrity
of her voice over the full dynamic range of the compressor. The engineer's
comment was "I've got to get one of these things." The change was dramatic
when we first switched on the STT-1 from the xxxxxx, very big and open.
We were trying the STT-1 with a U67 and a Shure SM7. It's kind of a folk
rock album. The engineer liked the xxxxxx for the 'in your face' presence
but it lacked 'front to back' depth, whereas the Telefunkens had front
to back depth but he was missing the presence of the xxxxxx. The STT-1
had both depth and presence. Anyway, just thought I'd pass on the continuing
Jim Mayer, Bass & Vocals, Jimmy Buffet Band
The equalizer is simply wonderful on everything we ran through
it, whether you¹re cutting or boosting. You might find a particular
character Eq (maybe a Pultec) you like better for a given application,
and there are digital equalizers that are more surgical, but it's hard
to imagine any processor on the planet that can shape the sound more unobtrusively
and sweetly than this one. You can crank bands way up (the range is ±15db) without it sounding the least bit electronic or harsh. Likewise subtle cuts, boosts, or shelving sound completely natural
The STT-1 Origin is a fantastic recording channel that can be amazingly
versatile. This level of gear requires a substantial investment, but in
this case the price is appropriate and it's an investment in something that won't become obsolete and lose half its value before you get it home. Nick Batzdorf, Editor, Recording Magazine Review 2001
Firstly I want to recommend that every recording school or university
with a recording program immediately purchase an STT-1. Nowhere else can
you get so many different signal paths and sounds in one box. The STT-1
is like some kind of educational audio science fair project on steroids.
First let's look at the signal path(s), which are almost all Class A.
The mic or line input preamp can be switched between either a tube or
solid state preamp, each with their own gain control. There's also a tube
instrument DI that can be used before either of the preamps. To add further
options, there is a transformer that can be switched in or out of the
signal path. Ignoring the instrument DI, that's four completely different
sounding mic pres that you can easily switch between and hear the differences
in how each type of electronics sounds. As a further option, there are
some "hot-rod" options on the tubes available from Millennia. The unit ships
stock with Sovtek tubes, which are super-clean and reliable. Our unit
was hot-rodded with Telefunken tubes, which are a bit dirtier for more
of a "rock" sound. Of course, 48 volt phantom power and phase reversal
is also available. If desired, you can stop right here as there's a direct
out that bypasses the rest of the unit and uses only the mic pres. Otherwise
you hit the four band EQ section next. All bands have (stepped) selectable
frequencies while the middle two also have a bandwidth (Q) control, while
the outer two can be switched between peaking or shelving. Like the preamps,
you can choose between solid state or tube circuits. Whichever path you
choose, it will also be the same for the compressor, which is the next
part of the chain. Actually, even that's an option as the EQ can be switched
to be either pre or post dynamics. The opto-compressor is next and has
the expected threshold, attack, release and ratio (1.4 to 30:1) controls.
There's also a de- esser with five selectable frequencies. Finally, there's
an output control. We've had this unit in our studio for a few weeks,
and every engineer who's used has been raving about it. I've used it on
kick, snare, vocals and acoustic guitars all with excellent results. The
many different signal routing possibilities put this into a class of its
own and actually being able to just hit a button and change the entire
architecture is great. Using the STT-1 gives you a better understanding
of how different amplification circuits sound in not only this, but other
pieces of gear. Whether you've got a bunch of nice pres or not, this is
very much worth checking out. If you're just getting started (and can
afford the hefty price), this would be a great first channel strip. The
price is steep ($2895 list), but the device is deep.
John Baccigaluppi, Chief Editor, Tape Op Magazine, Mini-Review, Sept 2001
I love my pair of Origins, John! Major league sound - clean, crisp
and the tubes are marvelous, just really love 'em! What a sound! Best
compressors and EQ I've ever heard! Blows away anything I've heard so far, no wonder Ludwig, Katz,
Jung and the rest of the bunch likes 'em. I'm truly very happy with them,
wouldn't trade them for anything! I also feel the fact that everything is in one box makes it better
than having to patch from one box to the other. The only drawback is having
to tweak a pair of knobs all the time but I'd rather that than having
to patch. For Classical Music, there couldn't be anything finer!
Dr. Alexander Lim, DMA / Musica Records, NYC
NSEQ-2 Twin Topology Parametric Equalizer
...this is an excellent machine capable of very fine results
irrespective of the of the technology in the amplification. Although,
like most sane people, I would normally find it difficult to enthuse
about a simple equalizer, this really is something very special and I
have only come across one other similar device which I found as audibly
exciting. I would expect [the NSEQ-2] to become a very common entry in
the equipment inventory of most mastering houses and top-end studios over
here once the word gets out."
Hugh Robjohns, Sound on Sound Magazine July 1999 Review
"I believe the NSEQ is, audibly, the most perfect analog equalizer
I have ever had the pleasure to use."
Dr. Fred Bashour, Pro Audio Review
"I have been using a prototype J-FET version of this equalizer
for some time now and believe it to be the most transparent equalizer
I've heard to date."
Tom Jung, DMP Records(who later purchased five NSEQ-2 units)
"...the transparency of the signal path is remarkable, and the
smooth musicality of the EQ bands as they are adjusted is something special.
[vacuum tube and solid state topologies] are astonishingly clean."
Richard Foister, Studio Sound Magazine
"...Since adding the NSEQ-2 to our mastering rack, about 90% of
our customers have preferred it against all other parametric equalizers
in our mastering chain..
Denny Purcell, Chief Engineer, Georgetown Masters, Nashville, TN
"Using the Millennia NSEQ-2 has made me completely re-think how
I use EQ. Where I used to avoid using EQ at all, the NSEQ-2 has been employed
to put just the right touch in a recording. The NSEQ-2's transparency
and musicality is stunning! I don't know of an EQ, digital or analog,
that could approach its qualities."
Michael Bishop, Multiple Grammy Award Winning Engineer, Telarc International
"The dearth of amplifiers in the audio path is no doubt one of
the reasons this box sounds so incredibly transparent and quiet. It's
a design philosophy you will wholeheartedly endorse as soon as you hear
the first strains of music through this world-class equalizer. And the
Twin Topology design gives you essentially two different units for the
price of one. The bottom line: For mission critical EQ applications where
transparency is a paramount necessity, the NSEQ-2 is king. Prepare to
Michael Cooper, Michael Cooper Recording, Sisters Oregon
"The NSEQ joins the ranks of the world's premier equalizers.
It has a top end like I've never heard before."
Bob Ludwig, Founder, Gateway Mastering
"You've heard of the mythical 'straight wire with gain.' Well,
the NSEQ-2 is as close to an analog 'straight wire with gain' as I have
heard in 27 years of audiophile and professional engineering work."
Bob Katz, Chief Engineer, Digital Domain Mastering, Florida
I receive the EQ, I bring it to my studio, and.... I'll never give
back to [our dealer], IT'S SIMPLY FANTASTIC !! We in studio are astonished
about the transparency of the sound comes out!!! We have a xxxx in
one room with xxxx and in the other room we have xxxx xxx, your EQ is
second to none !!!. We all are very enthusiastic about it. If I should
ever say something I would prefer with the same rotary knobs even for
frequencies and Q factor ( but this is our mastering crazy mind !!!).
Very compliments for the work !! We'll place probably an order for at
least 2 other units." [ed. which they did.]
FABRIZIO DE CAROLIS, Reference Mastering Studios, Rome, Italy
"You've made a believer of me, and redefined the concept of "neutral"
Eq. The clarity and transparency of your Eq is much greater than the AD/DA
converted DAT sources that comprise the bulk of our work today. It's truly
a breakthrough product, and redefines clean, neutral tonal control in
the analog domain."
Dave Davis, QCA Mastering / Ultrainteractive
TCL-2 "TWINCOM" Twin Topology Compressor / Limiter
"We've been using our [eight channels of] TCL-2 Twincoms for a number
of stereo and six channel surround mastering projects with great results.
The ability of each unit to sound either as transparent as the Class A
solid state electronics or as warm as the vacuum tube electronics is a
big advantage. The Twincom has become our reference analog dynamics mastering
Bob Ludwig, Gateway Mastering & DVD
"The Millennia Media TCL-2 sounded nothing short of fabulous on
voices (especially male voices), guitars (electric and acoustic), and
most keyboards. It does a great job of controlling the dynamics of sustained,
high energy programme material, and it bestows interesting dynamic effects
on more transient audio. I was often surprised that sources I expected
to benefit from the valve amplifier chain actually worked better with
the solid-state path, and vise versa."
Hugh Robjohns, Sound on Sound, Review, January 2000 Issue
"The Millennia Media TCL-2 is an amazing dynamics processor.
The subtle differences between the two circuit topologies allow me to
be much more precise when choosing the appropriate character for a signal,
and the purity of the signal path preserves more of the original signal
than any other compressor I've used. This is the way that high end audio
equipment is supposed to be -- well designed, well built and with a wonderful
Dave Martin, Audio Media Magazine (U.S. Edition), May 2000 Issue
This is a clean, great sounding compressor. The two topologies
both sound pure, transparent, and, in most circumstances, remarkably similar,
with the J-FET circuit sometimes marginally more detailed...For the purist,
this is a good value, high-performance compressor."
George Shilling, Studio Sound Magazine, Review, 9/99 Issue
The TCL-2 is beautifully constructed and is as sonically neutral
as anything I have heard.
Joe Palmaccio, Senior Recording Engineer, Sony Music, NYC
M-2 Series Microphone Preamplifier
The [M2A mic preamp] captured the variety, beauty and depth
of each ensemble without adding any sounds of its own. It is empirically
accurate yet musical. Compared to every other preamplifier I know, it
sounds clearer, gentle and beautifully warm without veiling or fuzzing
up the sound. It certainly sounds like the acoustic instruments on stage
-- the [M2A] is as transparent a preamp as I have ever heard... I think
the sound of the [M2A] is unbeatable.
Pro Audio Review, 3/97 issue. As reviewed by Bob Katz during recording
sessions for Chesky Records.
I've been using my M-2b mic preamps on just about everything, with
great results. Most recently the Academy Awards pre records. I used them on
vocals for four of the five nominated songs. The artists were Enya (Lord of the
Rings), Faith HIll (Pearl Harbor), Sting (Kate & Leopold), and Randy Newman
(Monsters Inc.). They just sound so great! Thanks again.
Bob Fernandez, Film Scoring Engineer, Hollywood, March 2002
MIXING SUITE Analog Mixing System
If you are looking for a console with any kind of coloration
whatsoever, look elsewhere. The virtues of this product are clean, quiet,
open, and natural. The balance of sonic purity and features is a very
delicate one, and it takes real design chops along with good ears to come
up with this kind of first class product. A no-compromise parts and design
philosophy coupled with a true passion for quality audio place the Millennia
Media Mixing Suite in a quality class by itself.
Pro Audio Review, 1/98 issue. As reviewed by Tom Jung, who used the
Mixing Suite for mixing the first Sony DSD recordings in late 1997 and
has recently purchased two bus-linked Mixing Suites for his Ambient Studios
TD-1 TWIN DIRECT Recording Channel
Succinctly put, the TD-1's DI input, when used on electric guitar, exhibited
a smoother spectral balance and far greater realism, warmth, body and depth than
that of any specialized DI box I've used. Comparing DI'ed electric bass tracks
recorded via the TD-1 and then using my [high end DI box], the TD-1 lent a slightly
bigger bottom and greater presence, clarity and depth... The TD-1's EQ is simply
the best I've heard. It sounds incredibly warm, full-bodied and silky... I've
never heard a mic preamp that sounds more pristine and revealing than the HV-3...
The TD-1 sounds truly superb, is highly versatile, looks gorgeous and has gobs of
headroom. Moderately priced at $1,495 list, this box sets a new standard for
recording channels and gets my very highest recommendation.
Michael Cooper, MIX
Magazine, Feb 2004, pg 110
"The TD-1 is one of the most outrageous (in a good way) devices I've run across:
a recording front-end that offers several different signal paths, an audio router
featuring REAMP technology, a world-class equalizer, a SPEAKER SOAK power amp input,
ultra-high quality headphone amp, [HV-3 mic preamp], and Class-A discrete DC-coupled
output section... For its relatively small size, it is packed with connections, controls,
and features... This gives you an extraordinary number of ways to route audio into
this machine... My first impression was 'solid' -- the sound was full and crystal
clear... Plugging in an electric bass was equally satisfying. [The HV-3 mic preamp]
was clear and ultra-focused, with a depth that was amazing... When you start adding
up all the applications handled with the TD-1, the price begins looking reasonable.
If you have the opportunity to hear it, the decision morphs into a no-brainer -- in
every application, the unit produces world-class results."
Darwin Grosse, Recording
Magazine, Aug 2004, pg 78-80