Thermionic Culture The Earlybird 4  From Thermionic

4-Channel Mic Preamp

Thermionic Culture

$6,699.00

"Experience the Difference"

Sound Pure's 3-Year Warranty

Close
Our Free 3-Year Warranty!
In addition to the standard included manufacturer warranty, virtually all new products carry our exclusive, industry-leading, absolutely free, Sound Pure 3-Year Warranty, which includes PARTS & LABOR. This high-value perk is our way of providing the ultimate in added value to enhance the unique personal touch our small, dedicated team contributes to each purchase.
Learn more »

Lifetime Support

Close
Free Lifetime Technical Support!
Our small team of dedicated experts is here to help the original purchaser for the lifetime of the product. Why? Because we care about building real relationships with our customers for life and stand behind every product we sell.

Free Shipping

Close
This Product Ships Free!
Products ship from our well-located, climate- and humidity-controlled warehouse absolutely free (inside the continental USA). Low-cost international shipping options exist for most products.
Contact us for details »

No Sales Tax Outside North Carolina

Ships Quick!
Usually ships 3 - 5 business days after order processed.
Payments as low as $152/mo.

Manufacturer's Description from Thermionic

The Earlybird 4 contains 4 channels of extremely high quality valve pre-amplification. Originally made in black in 1999, this is a special “revival” limited edition in red (limited to 49 only). The black edition is still available with the updated circuitry..

 

As the individual channel circuitry in this version of the Earlybird has been simplified in order to provide 4 channels in one 19” unit, so the individual channel specifications have risen. Thus making this the most natural sounding, high quality version of the Earlybird preamp to date.

 

Effectively giving the user the cleanest possible valve gain with a range from 3dB to 62dB and a switchable input impedance to help in matching the unit with different microphones.

 

This is one of Thermionic Culture’s all handwired products with point to point wiring throughout.

 

The circuit design utilises a ‘push pull’ ‘class A’ type of valve amplification in order to provide ultimately clean gain, giving the lowest noise and distortion figures possible in a microphone amplifier.

 

The input and output transformers have received special attention and by working together with Sowter transformers, designs have been created that bring better results than ever before. The lowest phase shift and highest headroom are both benefits brought by these designs.

 

It’s unusual to hear a mic amp with the Earlybird 4’s qualities and after years of improvements Vic Keary proudly declares this “The best, most real mic. amp ever ”. We hope that on hearing the unit’s beautiful results yourself, you will agree with Vic.

 

The pair of VU meters show the signal levels for 2 selectable channels. VU meter A is switchable between channels 1 and 3. VU meter B is switchable between channels 2 or 4. 4 red LEDs light up when the output of the amplifiers exceeds +10 dBm, though don’t worry – there’s still 20dB of headroom left in the Earlybird!

 

Features

 ♦ 4 Channels of extremely high quality push pull' 'class A' type of valve pre amplification.

 ♦ Clean gain, giving the lowest noise and distortion figures possible in a mic. Amp.

 ♦ Hand wired with point to point wiring throughout.

 ♦ Lowest phase shift and highest headroom.

 

Controls on each channel for:-

 

 • Switchable input impedance to help in matching the unit with different microphones.

 • Switchable 48V phantom power .

 • Switched gain 42 dB to 62 dB, 20dB pad.

 • 2 position high pass filter.

 • Variable output trim with phase inverter.

 • Vu meters switchable between channels.

 • Peak overload indicators.

 

Thermionic Culture

About Manufacturer

Thermionic Culture is focused on producing the very best all valve design audio products. In this day and age of mass-produced solid-state audio equipment it's a refreshing change for a company to constantly strive for the ultimate all valve signal path.

The owners/key people involved at Thermionic Culture are totally dedicated to valve audio equipment, all having many years experience in recording and working with valves. Company founder and designer Vic Keary built his first studio in the late 50's and went onto building Maximum Sound Studios which was later bought by Manfred Mann and renamed The Workhouse, Chalk Farm Studios, and the all valve based studio Chiswick Reach.

Jon Bailes, Thermionic Culture's co-founder is responsible for the mechanical design & visual appearance. Jon has a wealth of experience as a Chief Designer in the electronic manufacturing industry .

Nick Terry engineers on many current albums and singles working recently with artists such as McAlmont & Butler, The Libertines. All this 'real world' experience is an invaluable aid to creating all valve equipment that other artists will no doubt appreciate.

Audio amplification, compression, mixing and equalisation took a backward step when solid-state technology was introduced. Valves are much more real and natural when amplifying and processing audio. We use no transistors or ICs in the signal path. Solid state is relegated to where it works best - in power supplies, although we do use a valve voltage regulator in The Culture Vulture's HT supply.

Some of our circuits take ideas from the 1940s to '60s and refine and update them to produce the low noise and distortion which are expected now. Other circuits are really original! To achieve high standards we use modern components such as 1% metal oxide resistors and polypropylene capacitors where their use is a positive advantage, but we avoid Hi-Fi type gimmicks such as gold plated XLR connectors. We take pride in the construction and reliability of our equipment. To date it is all hand wired using the best quality components. We give a 2-year guarantee against manufacturing defects, though we can only guarantee valves for 1 year. Many valves we use, are Military/Industrial grade. Also, we select and match (where necessary) all of the valves that we supply so a far longer life span can be expected