The Mono GAMA is the single-channel API 500 Series version of the Golden Age Microphone Amp, with all the capabilities, features, and quality of the original.
The Shadow Hills Mono Gama is centered around our custom discrete op-amp. This no-compromise design exudes hugeness, fidelity, punchiness and depth, across the full frequency range, without becoming veiled or choked.
The preamplifier input is transformer balanced and utilizes an original Jensen input transformer. We couldn't decide which vintage output transformer we liked best, so we had our favorites perfectly recreated, and included them all. You can change the output transformer by cranking the knob, thus changing the tonal capabilities to compliment to whatever material you are recording. This allows you to audition different settings to find the perfect match for microphone or direct input without patching and un-patching other preamps, and possibly alleviating the need for EQ. Choose between Nickel, Discrete, or Steel settings. Each transformer position is stellar unto itself, but the capability of switching between them is like having three great pre's in one.
All the standard Mic-pre features are present: phantom power, phase reverse, a twenty dB pad, and direct input. We have also included the ability to pad and reverse the phase of the Direct Input.
Quality is unmatched. Engraved front panels, a twenty four position swiss made attenuator for gain control, custom made knobs, and engraved serial number plates, set the build apart.
Did a double-blind shootout with 8 of the most popular clean and coloured preamps using Neumann and AKG mics on acoustic guitar and voice. The Discrete setting was everyone's 2nd choice for pristine sound, behind only the Millennia. The Nickel setting was everyone's 2nd choice for a coloured sound behind only the Neve 1073 (NB -- No one could find any use for the Steel setting; SHI should replace it with Iron which is great for rock edge). Since I own pairs of Millennia and Neve, I will likely buy 2 or more of these to use as additional channels for both purposes. If you want superb should and 2 very different colours.