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M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp

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The ultra-quiet M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-channel preamp offers the features and performance you need to track great-sounding music on your computer. Ea...Click To Read More About This Product

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OVERVIEW

Super-quiet dual mic preamp and direct box.

The ultra-quiet M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-channel preamp offers the features and performance you need to track great-sounding music on your computer. Each channel offers individually adjustable gain, balanced XLR with phantom power or a 1/4" instrument level input, and independent 1/4" outputs (unbalanced or balanced TRS). Use the M-Audio preamp as a direct box for high impedance signals from guitars, basses or other sources for recording with optimal results.

FEATURES
Ultra-quiet 2-channel preamp
Each channel offers individually adjustable gain
Balanced XLR with phantom power or a 1/4" instrument level input
Independent 1/4" outputs (unbalanced or balanced TRS)
Direct box functionality

Order today and put together a simple but great-sounding recording setup.

SPECIFICATIONS
Audio Buddy Preamp
Frequency response: 5Hz-50kHz, +0, -3dB
Mic gain: 60dB maximum
Mic input impedance: 1kÎ
Guitar gain: 40dB maximum
Guitar input impedance: 100kÎ
Size and Weight: 5-1/2" x 3-3/8" x 1-3/4"; less than 1/2lb.
Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
M-AudioAudio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp
 
3.8

(based on 24 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (11)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (5)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (5)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (1)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Perfect for Recording Guitar, Bass, Microphone

I have made many clean recordings with this device. However, I think it's worth noting that I don't use the signal/clip lights to set my gain, as the signal is much too...Read complete review

I have made many clean recordings with this device. However, I think it's worth noting that I don't use the signal/clip lights to set my gain, as the signal is much too strong that way. Plug your guitar, bass or mic into the device. Plug the device into your interface, then open your Recording Program (I use Cubase5). Set the gain while monitoring from your program and you'll get a nice, clean recording.For some reason, the sig/clip lights are too sensitive. Normally on a device, you turn the gain up until the signal light is solid, and the hardest (or loudest) note you hit just barely triggers the clip light. That would give you a distorted recording with this device. On this guy the signal light is more like a clip light. I set my gain so the signal light only turns on solidly on the louder notes.Again, just use your recording program (and your ears!!)to set your gain. You will be very happy with this simple, effective device.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Review

The good news:It's really cheap! Decent build on the box. Reasonably quiet, and the sound is quiet clean. It's works...The bad news:Firstly, it doesn't supply full 48v, which...Read complete review

The good news:It's really cheap! Decent build on the box. Reasonably quiet, and the sound is quiet clean. It's works...The bad news:Firstly, it doesn't supply full 48v, which limits it's use to dynamic and back-elect. mics. It's not well built - the box is fine, but the pots wobble, and feel fragile from the start. Same with switches. Also, the pots are definately not linear! Very sensitive, very erratic. Last thing; wall wart :( To be expected at this price, but still annoying.

Reviewed by 24 customers

Displaying reviews 1-20

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(4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Perfect for Recording Guitar, Bass, Microphone

By Guitar Sam

from Peoria, IL

See all my reviews

Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

I have made many clean recordings with this device. However, I think it's worth noting that I don't use the signal/clip lights to set my gain, as the signal is much too strong that way. Plug your guitar, bass or mic into the device. Plug the device into your interface, then open your Recording Program (I use Cubase5). Set the gain while monitoring from your program and you'll get a nice, clean recording.For some reason, the sig/clip lights are too sensitive. Normally on a device, you turn the gain up until the signal light is solid, and the hardest (or loudest) note you hit just barely triggers the clip light. That would give you a distorted recording with this device. On this guy the signal light is more like a clip light. I set my gain so the signal light only turns on solidly on the louder notes.Again, just use your recording program (and your ears!!)to set your gain. You will be very happy with this simple, effective device.

(2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
2.0

Distorts with my mics

By Mark-fQZrI

from Las Vegas

See all my reviews

Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

I have used both dynamic and condenser mics with this preamp. All of them distort the Audio Buddy's inputs, even when the gain controls are set to minimum. These are not 'high output' mics either. I had to open the unit and install resistors on the inputs to allow it to handle my mics. The phantom power suffers as a result.If you buy the Audio Buddy, immediately test it to see if it can handle the output level of the source you intend to use.

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

clean sound

By PoseMotion

from Indianapolis, IN

Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

I've had my M-Audio Buddy for about two years now. I bought it because I was looking for something simple and preferably clean sounding. It's been great so far. I have it hooked up to my M-Audio Revolution 5.1 sound card via 1/4" to 3.5mm cable. I've used both condenser and dynamic mics with it. Not one bad recording yet. Also, I have never had to turn the levels any higher then 2/5 of the way. As for features, well there's not a lot there. Just plug in your mic and adjust the level. Oh, I must add that I've only used this on vocals. Mainly for animation work. So I don't know how this would do with drums or anything like that.

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
2.0

Review

By Anonymous

from Undisclosed

Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

The good news:It's really cheap! Decent build on the box. Reasonably quiet, and the sound is quiet clean. It's works...The bad news:Firstly, it doesn't supply full 48v, which limits it's use to dynamic and back-elect. mics. It's not well built - the box is fine, but the pots wobble, and feel fragile from the start. Same with switches. Also, the pots are definately not linear! Very sensitive, very erratic. Last thing; wall wart :( To be expected at this price, but still annoying.

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

One Is Not Enough

By Mudlake Slim

from Northern Michigan

See all my reviews

Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

You have to have this or something like it for recording. I'd like to have one with eight channels if they could keep the price down. I'm going to order another after finding out that my Pod XT Live does not provide the proper signal for the M-Audio 1010 interface.

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

good product, but better alternatives

By DP-nMFdt

from Chicago suburbs

See all my reviews

Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

I've used mine for a few years now and get nice clean recordings to my computer. I use a fully balanced signal chain and the EMu 1212M is a pretty nice card, so that probably helps a lot. I really like the AudioBuddy in my setup because it's very small, I can leave two mic cables hooked up and out of the way all the time, it has balanced outputs, phantom power for my condenser mics, and I can always plug a guitar in the front jack (it overrides the mic input) and record direct at night. However, I would recommend buying an audio interface with decent mic preamps to begin with or getting one of the cheap Behringer mixers for about the same price. That's why I rate it low on value these days. I think anyone getting uncontrollable distortion out of this is probably not using it correctly. The gain knobs are pretty touchy, but I have always been able to match up my signals for XY stereo mic'ing without much trouble.

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
2.0

Not your buddy

By ChrisDotCom

from Boston, MA

See all my reviews

Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

I bought a couple of MXL mics the M-Audio Audio Buddy came along with it for free. I was pretty happy about that at first, cause I also needed a preamp. This thing was disappointing though. It's not very flexible, and often very noisy. I was using it for recording on my Zoom hard disk recorder. I have since switched to computer-based recording and the audio buddy is still unacceptable. I will be selling this soon.

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Work great for me.

By Rick12

from GA

Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

I needed 4 more boosted signals so I bought 2 of these to record drums with. I used 2)sm57s, a Neumann U87a, and a Shure KSM 44. Unbelievably, these units were quieter and had a bigger sound than my UA6176 pre/comp (a $2000.00 unit) Maybe it's because I'm using better gear but I love these things. I'm going back to buy 2 more tomorrow! It is slightly difficult to dial in the right volume but it only took about 12 seconds.

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
1.0

Not to be the bearer of bad news but ...

By THEY-SOUND-REALLY-BAD

from Magalia, CA

Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

I couldn't get these to sound good with phantom-powered mics or dynamic mics. They sound grainy, unnatural and distorted (distorted as in unclear). I did a side by side comparison of these preamps with a really cheap mixer. The preamps on the cheap mixer blew the audio cruddy away in both fidelity and signal clarity. If a mixer company put preamps like these on their mixers, they'd probably go out of business in a week. Save yourself from the disappointment and don't buy these. Yes, they're that bad.

(1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
2.0

Not for drums.

By Anonymous

from Undisclosed

Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

I'm a ProTools guy and the Digi002 has four line inputs that need preamplification to be used. I looked online and bought 2 of these guys so I could have the 4 pres I needed. Before going to my gig with them I tested them out at the studio and they noiselessly amplified my mic signal so I figured they'd work well. Stupid me. I looked like a dork at my gig when we found out that the SPL's from drums clip the Audio Buddy's inputs. No careful setting of input matters on these things, they cannot handle loud sounds. Even with the gain on 0, no amplification, the red clipping light went off every snare an tom hit. Strangely though, one of the 4 channels did just fine with the levels... I used all mogami cabling and MD421's on the 3 toms, but only one of them didn't distort on the input. This product is not loud noises.

(1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Good value for the money

By Andy-40ByN

from Fairfield, CA

See all my reviews

Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

I ordered the M-Audio Audio Buddy because I needed phantom power for my MXL 990/991 conderser mics. The audio buddy does it's job and it has worked for me so far without problems. I like that it has two channels XLR and 1/4 inch.

(1 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

amazing for its price

By bAsS_iT_uP

from bakersfield CA

Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

i have been using this for recording and for live sound, its pretty well balanced and i love the fact that you can use phantom power with it if you know anything about phantom you know its worth it, we use it for are pa system for live vocals because of the extra gain and we barely have to turn it up to give us the boost we need and and it runs soundless no feed back threw the monitors or anything its a great investment if your own a budget

 
5.0

Clean, quiet

By Jeff

from Washington DC

About Me Experienced

See all my reviews

Pros

  • Clear Sound
  • Easy To Use

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Amateur Recording
    • Home Studio

    Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

    I've been using this for years for home recording. I'm reviewing now because I recently bought the Behringer Mic-200 tube preamp just for fun, and for home recording I will definitely stick with the Audio Buddy. The Behringer tube preamp is too noisy for recording. I picked up the Audio Buddy at least 5 years ago for over 80 dollars, so now that it's even cheaper there's no reason not to go with this if you need something to power your condensor mics for home recording, or if you need a preamp for an acoustic guitar pickup or any other live need. One tip, you can even use this for stereo recording if you plug a mic into each channel and use a stereo 1/4" inch cable adapter from each output into your stereo audio input (of your laptop or soundcard, assuming you're using a basic setup for digital recording.)

     
    5.0

    Great Item For High Quality

    By HCM911

    from Evans, GA

    Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

    If you only need two inputs into your computer, this is the item to get. I've used mine a few years now; it's very quiet, offers great features for the price, and you don't need a degree in computer electronics to use it. But buy a cheap case to transport it; I wish it came with one.

     
    5.0

    Great For Vocals/Voice Overs

    By Moonunit

    from APO, AE

    Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

    After struggling to get an acceptable vocal level and a clean sound for voiceovers, I bought the Audio Buddy. This little piece of equipment has made my life much easier. I can now get clean vocal recordings. For the price, you can't beat it.

     
    2.0

    Can you say 'Audio Cruddy?'

    By zoodc

    from Santa Clara, CA

    Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

    This unit became a requirement at a recording job for me and I found it completely inflexible. It's really difficult to make fine adjustments to levels, and depending on your soundcard, it produced a lot of noise. An inexpensive, 2-channel powered mixer at the same price gives you better options to build the sound you want. Audio Cruddy sits in a closet unused and unloved. I can't even sell it.

     
    4.0

    good but has a MAJOR and HIDDEN flaw

    By Stefan-gVzXY

    from Los Angeles

    Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

    The Audio Buddy is a well known, agressively priced preamp. It's quiet, small, cheap, and reliable.However - the phantom power is not 48v. This is a biggie. I measured mine at 41 volts, which is beyond the +-4 volts that it is supposed to be.Where it gets even worse is if you plug two microphones in. Now, the voltage drops to 30 volts per mic. This is a big problem, and with good quality microphones which require 48 Volts +-4, the sound will be unusable. And I do mean unusable.M-Audio avoids this issue by simply saying they never claimed 48 volts. It's a biggie.It's a shame that there always has to be a fly in the ointment somehwere.

     
    5.0

    Best mic preampin the range

    By Wooooooo

    from South Dakota

    See all my reviews

    Ask me a question

    Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

    I can't say I've tried many mic preamps under this price range, but this little unit just SMOKES for what it's listed for. I got mine in the mail and I did a few demo recordings of it, and only one word comes to mind : CLEAN. This baby makes absolutely ZERO noise, and my recordings are really cleaned up and crystal clear. However, the only bicker I have about this unit is that I have to turn the preamp gain to the max in order for me to get a reasonable sound level on wave form. That could also be my soundcard too. The box says it has a high input level, but I can't get very high waves on the waveform in multitrack mode. Like I said, could just be my connections or my soundcard. But this thing has all of the gems...Phantom power, two XLR ins, two 1/4" ins, and two 1/4" outs for mono and stereo. PLUS, if you run a small desktop studio, like I do, this thing is less than 6" wide and 4" long!! It's the size of your typical UHF (cable) Box!!! All these features and a compact chasis for this price? You gotta be kidding me!! If you're a home studio artist, or you're just looking for a good back up preamp for an excellent value, don't hesitate!! I know you want one, so add it to the cart!!!

     
    5.0

    Great preamp / direct box for stage use/recording

    By OneKingTrain

    from Lexington, KY

    See all my reviews

    Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

    I use this as phantom power / preamp on stage in conjunction w/ my digitech vocalist and shure 87a condensor mic. I run the mic into the audio buddy and then into the digitech vocalist harmonizer. Very clean !!! That's what I need. Since this is two mic preamps in one, I also plug my Simon & Patrick acoustic/electric guitar's into this unit. Since there is only 1/4" outs, I run 12" cables (1/4" male to xlr male) and then run longer xlr mic cables to those. The unit is attached via velcro (on top) and is securely attached underneath my digitech unit (all of this right on my mic stand). It rocks!!!

     
    5.0

    Good for entry level

    By dannyguitar-ck9Ez

    from Huntsville, AL

    See all my reviews

    Comments about M-Audio Audio Buddy 2-Channel Preamp:

    This is good if you're just starting recording, the preamps are pretty quiet. With a decent microphone, you can make some good quality recordings. If you want to make truly professional recordings, look into getting a dedicated preamp and a good microphone. For the price, this can't be beat. I made some great quality recordings with it.

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