Channel Strips & Preamps

Channel Strips, Preamps & Direct Boxes

A channel strip is a convenient combination of common tools in a single strip. Instead of having to deal with separate preamp, EQ, and dynamics control units, many audio engineers prefer the convenience of channel strips, devices that combine two or all three of these functions into a single unit.

A microphone preamplifier, also known as a mic preamp, boosts the signal of a microphone or an instrument (such as an electric guitar) to the standard input level of most recording equipment. Using a mic preamp is vital. Depending on how your microphone works, without a mic preamp, you would barely be able to hear anything from your microphones.

A phono preamplifier, also known as a phono stage, is an audio component that amplifies the signal from your turntable to a level that allows you to connect it to your sound system the same way you would with any other audio source.

A direct box, also known as a DI (which is short for Direct Injection) is a tool to take an unbalanced, high-impedance signal and convert it to a balanced, low-impedance signal. This impededance matching allows you to run guitar and bass directly into microphone preamplifiers or to send unbalanced signals over extended cable runs without losing volume and significant high-frequency information.