The 73JRII is the 2021 update to the already classic 73JR, a true 73 style mic preamp in a single 500 series slot with some added features that will cover all the recording needs for engineers and musicians that don´t find the need to track with eq.
Employing only discrete circuitry and conventional components, the 73JRII is a faithful 3 stage all class A 73 preamp. Styroflex and tantalum capacitors have been used throughout. No corners were cut.
The useful all discrete class A hi pass filter has been updated, making it sweepable from 20 to 220 Hz. Now it is even easier to make your low end tighter without affecting desired frequencies.
The Line mode allows for reamping of prerecorded tracks and it´s perfect for adding some class A color to lifeless recordings.
The smart switched DI (automatically switches from MIC to DI mode when inserting a MONO ¼” jack) is an all discrete class A JFET circuit ahead of the MIC transformer, so all the juice is there. Since its introduction in 2013, it has become a classic DI for bass.
Finally, special care has been taken with power handling, implementing internal +24v slow turn on regulation (about 20 seconds to reach full voltage).This makes your 500 series enclosure´s power supply healthier and makes the 73JR independent of the rest of the slots.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN A 500 SERIES 73 PREAMP:
There are several compromises usually made when adapting a 73 preamp for the 500 Series, especially the following 3. You won´t find any of these in the 73JRII:
- Eliminate one gain stage and run only up to 70dB of gain. A “real deal” 73 mic pre must have 3 gain stages for a total of 80dB of gain. Taking the first gain stage out and maxing out the other 2 allows for up to 70 dB of gain, but noise figure and low end at high gain are seriously compromised. The 73JR II uses the full 3 gain stage circuit for up to 80 dB of gain with noise of -125dBu EIN all over the gain positions.
- Use the readily available +- 16v power from the 500 Series protocol. By doing this, the magic distortion of a 73 amp is compromised. The 73JR II uses a true 24volt on board power supply for identical performace and distortion point.
- Use of surface mount technology. Although there is no actual drawback in using SMD components, it should be reflected in the price, not merely to enlarge the manufacturer´s profit. No 500 Series 73 mic pre using SMD should cost more than $500. The 73JR II uses only discrete, through hole traditional components and hand labor for that great 70s vibe.
When looking for the ultimate 73 500 Series preamp, always make this fact check.
THE 73JR II TRANSFORMERS:
No 73 preamp is such without the correct transformers. For the 73JR II (and its predecessor the 73JR), Heritage Audio went a step further the competition. The output transformer, the same used all along the Heritage´s line of products, is a Carnhill gapped one made exclusively for us in the St Ives factory. The input one, again exclusive to our company, is made in Carnhill´s Oxord factory, and has a big impact on the extra mojo of the unit. It is the same one found in our higher end 80 Series modules and sets one of the main sonically differences in between the 73JR II and the competitors.
When looking for an exclusive sound, do not settle for non-exclusive transformers.