Because the MA5’s gain is stepped, it makes a very accurate and great-sounding line amplifier to run mixes through. It will add its signature harmonic overtones to the low end. However it is important to optimize the input load and output source impedances.
The LINE PAD-Z is designed for mic pre’s without line inputs, such as the MA5, enabling you to plug a line signal into the mic input.
The LINE PAD-Z adaptor serves three important purposes: 1) It provides the proper load to your PT or other converters without overloading them. 2) It drops the level -35dB, to the range of a microphone. 3) Its output impedance “looks” like a microphone to the MA5 preamp, so source impedances appear normal.
With the use of the LINE PAD-Z on the input of the MA5, unity gain would be at the 35dB position on the gain switch, with the output turned all the way up.
IMPORTANT: When coming out of the preamp into the A/D converter, you must go into the LINE input of your digital converter, not the MIC input which would add gain; otherwise you will have headroom issues and a poor signal-to-noise ratio. Some inputs are both, so you must switch to LINE input or use the TRS part of the combo XLR – read the manual to find out.
The LINE PAD-Z works very well and can be used with other high quality, low noise preamps. Not recommended for unbalanced interfaces.
The LPZ is not specifically a microphone pad, however, it will work and attenuate the same amount. Putting phantom power through the LPZ is not recommended because the resistive network inside the LPZ will only lower the phantom voltage down and not provide enough current to the condenser microphone.
LINE PAD-Z SPECIFICATIONS:
May be purchased with the MA5 preamplifier, or separately here.
Made with Switchcraft parts
Input impedance = 10K ohms
Attenuation = -36dB
Output impedance = 150 ohms