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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
INTRODUCTION: I recently got one of these for christmas :). I am using it as a preamp between my laptop/cd player and my pro amp (Behringer EP1500). I am running my two Technics SB-L71 bookshelves in front and my two KLH Model-17 bookshelves in rear, as well as my powered 15" DIY sub. The advantage of this device is I can 1) Increase my input gain to the levels a pro amp requires and 2) control my sub's volume at the same time as my overall volume with one knob


ONLINE PRICE: $70-100

REVIEW:

Initially I had some confusion as to hooking this up as I am not a professional musician. However, I had the device figured out in about 5 minutes.


I am running my laptop as my source. Its signal is from the 3.5mm line out split to stereo rca and then xlr. Therefore in theory, my source is dirty. However, there seems to be a 99% noise free soundfloor when the ULTRALINK is not used at all. With the ULTRALINK employed there is a slight whine and hiss but it is not a big issue.

Right now, I have the ULTRALINK's input from my laptop, using the cable described above, off of the MAIN INPUT. If I use the MAIN OUTPUT (which is stereo, L and R) I have noticed a significant right channel bias which is annoying. Therefore, I am using CHANNEL 1 as my left channel and CHANNEL 2 as my right, CHANNEL 5 is my sub as this channel and CHANNEL 6 are the only that offer 1/4 outputs. Unfortunately, I lose the ability to use one volume knob

PROS:
This is a great device for my situation for the following reasons.

1) I am not running a receiver at all, therefore this gives me a single volume knob
2) This provides the input gain that the pro amp definitely needed. (main reason I acquired the ULTRALINK)
3) This works alot better than a Y splitter for my sub channel because I can control the sub's volume better and simpler.
4) The LED level meters are easy to follow and intuitive. This allows me to set all my amps to match volume.
5) The device fits a standard 19" 1u rack-space unlike DJ mixers, offers stereo bias control on each output channel, and is a lot simpler to follow than a DJ mixer.
6) I find the design aesthetically pleasing.
7) Like all Behringer stuff, it is inexpensive.
CONS:
1) All outputs coming from the main input seem to have right channel bias.

This bias is really frustrating. Any ideas? Its about +5 db on the right channel, and of course its not as simple as setting one level higher than the other because it moves at different volume levels.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Ive decided to return this product. I am not sure if it is a flaw in its design or if it is just this particular unit but I will be going with a different solution.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
It bumped around a bit when I was moving it around and putting it in and out of my rack and seems to be kind of working. I guess Ill keep using it until the end of my 15 day RMA deadline and if it acts up again, who knows.

Nice unit when it works.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Its hard to say. I have also noticed that the bias is most noticable when the SPLITTER MAIN INPUT LEVEL (which is the overall volume control) is low. Therefore, I set my gains on my two amps lower and raised the gain using this control instead. This fixed some of the bias. I am using this in a really small room and its probably not meant at all for such a nearfield arrangement.
 

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Its hard to say. I have also noticed that the bias is most noticable when the SPLITTER MAIN INPUT LEVEL (which is the overall volume control) is low. Therefore, I set my gains on my two amps lower and raised the gain using this control instead. This fixed some of the bias. I am using this in a really small room and its probably not meant at all for such a nearfield arrangement.
Then it sounds like your main volume control potentiometer, which is a multi-ganged pot, has a pot that is substantially out of tolerance vs. the other. Not surprising. Behringer may use very high quality parts in many of their products(though I know nothing of this particular product - it may not), and even uses typically very good quality Alps pots, multi-ganged pots are going to have to be individually QCed to keep stereo volume bias correct. This just can't happen with the economy of scale involved here, IMO. So you get the luck of the draw. I would simply exchange it. If you bought it through zzounds.com they pay the shipping both ways and will exchange them until you are happy. That's what I would do.

As for noise floor - it's probably dead silent with pro level voltage signal inputs. You are feeding it from a laptop's line level output? The Behringer is having to apply a very high level of gain; more so than it would be doing in a normal application.

-Chris
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Then it sounds like your main volume control potentiometer, which is a multi-ganged pot, has a pot that is substantially out of tolerance vs. the other. Not surprising. Behringer may use very high quality parts in many of their products(though I know nothing of this particular product - it may not), and even uses typically very good quality Alps pots, multi-ganged pots are going to have to be individually QCed to keep stereo volume bias correct. This just can't happen with the economy of scale involved here, IMO. So you get the luck of the draw. I would simply exchange it. If you bought it through zzounds.com they pay the shipping both ways and will exchange them until you are happy. That's what I would do.

As for noise floor - it's probably dead silent with pro level voltage signal inputs. You are feeding it from a laptop's line level output? The Behringer is having to apply a very high level of gain; more so than it would be doing in a normal application.

-Chris
Ok, I got it from B&H and they are out of stock, this was last one. Ill try and see if they have more after the holiday.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Its definitely the pots. They seem to come and go.

Id rather have something rack mountable. Maybe I will just return this and get a Feedback Destroyer Pro. Does that have a preamp? I know they are popular for subs but rather I want something that will improve my laptops output.
 

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Feedback destroyer is a totally different piece of equipment. If I'm understanding correctly, have a single stereo source (your laptop) with a -10dbm output that you want to convert to +4dbm, and if it can incorporate a single volume control and be rackmountable, all the better?

If that's what you're looking for, the MX882 is exactly what you want. I'd look to get a replacement.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Feedback destroyer is a totally different piece of equipment. If I'm understanding correctly, have a single stereo source (your laptop) with a -10dbm output that you want to convert to +4dbm, and if it can incorporate a single volume control and be rackmountable, all the better?

If that's what you're looking for, the MX882 is exactly what you want. I'd look to get a replacement.
yeah thats exactly the solution I want. I guess ill call B&H and see if they have any in stock that they can switch.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Im about to give up. Got my replacement in from zzounds this time and it has the same issue. I might just say forget it and give up.
Gonna rma it and never buy another behringer product again.
 

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Hmm...try switching out your cables, and doing some general trouble shooting just to verify that it is in fact the behringer that's causing the problem 2 bad units seems very unlikely.

Also, the manual seems to indicate that the XLR's may not like unbalanced signals. Try using just the 1/4"
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Hmm...try switching out your cables, and doing some general trouble shooting just to verify that it is in fact the behringer that's causing the problem 2 bad units seems very unlikely.

Also, the manual seems to indicate that the XLR's may not like unbalanced signals. Try using just the 1/4"
Can't use anything but xlr in for the main in's. I think ill just buy a legit preamp instead, like a carver or nad, or rackmount a cheap small receiver.
 

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Gonna rma it and never buy another behringer product again.
That is what I did. I tried two V-Verbs last year. There was a different thing wrong with each one. A quality component from another manufacturer was 4 times the price though, so I decided to just do something different altogether.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
That is what I did. I tried two V-Verbs last year. There was a different thing wrong with each one. A quality component from another manufacturer was 4 times the price though, so I decided to just do something different altogether.
I only do 2 channel listening and I am in grad school right now so Ill just wait 2 years and when I get out Ill buy a nice hdmi receiver to use as my pre/pro.
I guess Ill keep using my laptop's soundcard as a pre for now, I dont want to spend more money on my audio system when I am using a 17" screen for my video lol.
 
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