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8801

The complete channel strip from the world’s most accomplished studio console – the 88RS.

Combining the iconic Neve® mic preamplifier, powerful EQ and the incredible 88R dynamics processor; the 8801 delivers Neve console sound in a convenient 1U rackmount design, with the convenience of Total Recall and digital conversion.

Front & Rear Inputs
Smart Switching
Independent Filtering
Gate/Expender
Compressor/Limiter
Audio Router
Powerful EQ
High Headroom Output

Marinair® Transformer Preamp

The 8801 microphone preamp uses an exclusive Marinair® specification transformer to deliver a high gain output and ultimate tonality across various signal sources.

Independent Filtering

The 8801’s sweepable high and low pass filters are independent of the main EQ section,  providing control of incoming signals before they hit the main processors. For further transient control, the filters can be added to the compressor sidechain.

Powerful Dynamics Section

The 8801 dynamics section features a supremely powerful VCA compressor/limiter with variable/auto release, switchable fast/slow attack times, stereo linking options and five-stage gain reduction metering. In addition, the 8801 dynamics section features a gate/expander with separate gain reduction metering, key input option, hysteresis control and an invert feature for use in broadcast applications.

Sound Sculpting EQ

The 8801 EQ section provides four bands of control across the frequency spectrum, ideal for sculpting sounds and perfecting the signal of any instrument. Two fully parametric mid bands with continuously variable pots frequency selection, +/- 20db of gain and Q bandwidth from 0.7 to 2.0, complement a high and low band with switchable bell curve/shelf options and high Q setting.

Variable Signal Flow

The 8801’s audio router feature gives users total control over their signal flow. The balanced insert, EQ, dynamics sections & sidechain filtering can be repositioned at the push of a button from either the front of the unit or from the digital audio routing matrix within the recall software.

High Headroom Output

Just like the 88RS, the 8801 topology uses a wide bandwidth/high output architecture. The main output gain, controlled by the rotary fader pot, delivers a maximum output of +26dBu, with an incredibly low noise floor. This system, complimented with switchable input & output 7-stage metering, is ideal for perfect gain staging before signals reach the DAW.

Total Recall Software

Every setting on the 8801 can be recalled quickly, ideal for working on multiple sessions in today’s fast-paced studio workflows. The 8801 can connect via a simple USB connection to any computer system (PC/Mac) to interface with the interactive Neve® recall software program. Routing and switching are handled automatically at the push of a button, while the 8801’s rotary pots are manually tracked to their stored positions in a matter of seconds.

Analogue & Digital Outputs

The optional A/D conversion card provides digital output from the 8801. This card uses premium, Neve® quality converters with switchable headroom settings to integrate with any digital system. The digital outputs are in SPDIF, AES 3 and DSD formats, with selectable sample rates of up to 192kHz and clocking options via AES Sync or word clock BNC connections.

8801

The complete channel strip from the world’s most accomplished studio console – the 88RS.

Combining the iconic Neve® mic preamplifier, powerful EQ and the incredible 88R dynamics processor; the 8801 delivers Neve console sound in a convenient 1U rackmount design, with the convenience of Total Recall and digital conversion.

Marinair® Transformer Preamp

The 8801 microphone preamp uses an exclusive Marinair® specification transformer to deliver a high gain output and ultimate tonality across various signal sources.

Independent Filtering

The 8801’s sweepable high and low pass filters are independent of the main EQ section,  providing control of incoming signals before they hit the main processors. For further transient control, the filters can be added to the compressor sidechain.

Powerful Dynamics Section

The 8801 dynamics section features a supremely powerful VCA compressor/limiter with variable/auto release, switchable fast/slow attack times, stereo linking options and five-stage gain reduction metering. In addition, the 8801 dynamics section features a gate/expander with separate gain reduction metering, key input option, hysteresis control and an invert feature for use in broadcast applications.

Sound Sculpting EQ

The 8801 EQ section provides four bands of control across the frequency spectrum, ideal for sculpting sounds and perfecting the signal of any instrument. Two fully parametric mid bands with continuously variable pots frequency selection, +/- 20db of gain and Q bandwidth from 0.7 to 2.0, complement a high and low band with switchable bell curve/shelf options and high Q setting.

Variable Signal Flow

The 8801’s audio router feature gives users total control over their signal flow. The balanced insert, EQ, dynamics sections & sidechain filtering can be repositioned at the push of a button from either the front of the unit or from the digital audio routing matrix within the recall software.

High Headroom Output

Just like the 88RS, the 8801 topology uses a wide bandwidth/high output architecture. The main output gain, controlled by the rotary fader pot, delivers a maximum output of +26dBu, with an incredibly low noise floor. This system, complimented with switchable input & output 7-stage metering, is ideal for perfect gain staging before signals reach the DAW.

Total Recall Software

Every setting on the 8801 can be recalled quickly, ideal for working on multiple sessions in today’s fast-paced studio workflows. The 8801 can connect via a simple USB connection to any computer system (PC/Mac) to interface with the interactive Neve® recall software program. Routing and switching are handled automatically at the push of a button, while the 8801’s rotary pots are manually tracked to their stored positions in a matter of seconds.

Analogue & Digital Outputs

The optional A/D conversion card provides digital output from the 8801. This card uses premium, Neve® quality converters with switchable headroom settings to integrate with any digital system. The digital outputs are in SPDIF, AES 3 and DSD formats, with selectable sample rates of up to 192kHz and clocking options via AES Sync or word clock BNC connections.

Expert Overview

Joe and Graeme discuss the 8801 Channel Strip

Gallery

More Information and Support

General Specification

  • Complete channel strip from the revered 88RS console in a single rackspace
  • Hand-built and hand-wired by Neve®  in Burnley, England
  • Genuine Neve®  mic preamp with High and Low Pass Filters
  • 4-band equalization with highly musical, full-range sound
  • 88RS-style compressor and gate
  • Insert send and return
  • EQ or filters to sidechain
  • USB port for direct connection to Mac or PC
  • Optional Neve analogue-to-digital converter

Preamp Specification

  • Microphone input impedance (balanced): 1.2k Ohms
  • Microphone input headroom: +26dBu (reference 0dBu)
  • Microphone input gain range: 0dB to 70dB (using PAD)
  • Line input impedance (balanced): 20k Ohms is able to encompass signals from sources referenced to +4dBu or to -10dBu
  • Line input headroom: +26dBu (reference 0dBu)
  • Line input gain range: -24dB to 24dB
  • DI input impedance (balanced): 750k Ohms
  • DI input headroom: +20dBu (reference 0dBu)
  • DI input gain range: -44dB to +24dB (using PAD)

Output Specification

  • Line output impedance: <50 Ohms
  • Main output Maximum output: +26dBu into 600 Ohms
  • Frequency Response: +/- 0.2 dB 10Hz to 20kHz,  +/- 0.5 dB 10Hz to 40kHz Line Input to Main Output
  • THD + N: < 0.005% Line Input to Main Output, 20Hz to 20kHz, using a measurement window of 10Hz to 80kHz
  • Noise: Line Input to Main Output: < -89dBu
    All the audio blocks in circuit: < -80dBu
    All noise measurements made between 20Hz and 20kHz using a measurement bandwidth 22Hz to 22kHz

Dimensions

  • Width: 48.2cm (19 inches)
  • Height: 4.4cm (1.75 inches) (1U)
  • Depth: 24cm (9.5 inches) – without the power socket plugged in
  • Weight: 3.0kg (6.6 pounds)

Frequently Asked Questions

How close is the 8801 to the 88RS channel strip?

The 8801 uses the same audio topology for its preamp, EQ, dynamics, and output stage as the 88RS channel strip; the sound quality is identical to that produced by an 88RS console channel. There are non-audio path-related changes, primarily associated with digital control via the recall software and soft switches. Still, these are enhancements upon the analogue channel strip design and do not affect the unit’s sound quality.

Can I use the insert loop for FX pedals?

Yes, depending on the pedal I/O specification. The 8801’s insert send and return are balanced connections at +4dBu line level. If your FX pedals are capable of sending & receiving professional line level, then they can be used as inserts into the 8801 channel strips audio path.

Can I use the Limiter/Compressor and Gate/Expender independently?

Yes! While there is only one switch to activate the dynamics processors, each processor can be deactivated independently. To deactivate the compressor, set the threshold to +20 and the ratio to 1:1. To deactivate the gate, set the range to 0dB.

How does the 8801 preamp compare to the 1073® preamp?

The 88 preamp uses a different design to the 1073® preamp, with one gain stage handling all levels from +20 to +70dB balanced through a uniquely designed Marinair® transformer. The 88 preamp has a reported ‘cleaner sound’ than the 1073 while still retaining Neve® colourisation & subtle harmonic overtones; it also has a faster transient response and detail, fantastic for modern recording of all instruments and microphone pairings.

How do I connect the 8801's digital outputs into my audio interface?

The 8801 has SPDIF 2, SPDIF 3, AES 3 and DSD digital outputs. Modern audio interfaces will likely have AES or SPDIF connections; the 8801 can connect to either of these digital inputs for the signal to appear into your DAW digitally with Selectable headroom of +14, +18 and +22dBFS for a range of digital systems. Wordclock and AES sync connections provide clock synchronisation points for any system.

Any questions on the 8801?

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