The first of October has come, and Black Lion Audio already has two treats for us engineers. The first being the MKIII version of their B12A microphone preamp. Inspired by API mic pres, the B12A MKIII offers a fast transient response with a rich harmony character (thanks to the Cinemag input and output transformers), a nice crisp clarity, and 70dB of gain (enough for the ribbon mic fans).
The next update comes to their 1073 inspired B173 MKII. Now in it's second iteration, the B173 MKII also utilizes Cinemag input and output transformers, but with independent input gain and output trim, you have control over the amount of character you want. Less input and more output equals cleaner. More input and less output equals more transformer saturation goodness. The B173 MKII also provides a whopping 70dB of gain (here's looking at the ribbon mic folks again), as well as a revamped gain stage that gives a much lower noise floor.
Both pres have front plate instrument DI's, a new sleek all black finish and are offered in a compact half-rack format for easy portability, desk top use, or with a joining plate – easy side by side racking in a single rack space. With the quality that Black Lion Audio is known for, this is a pretty nice way to start off the month.