Golden Age Premier PRE-73


1-Channel Microphone Line and Instrument Preamp

  • Discretely constructed
  • Carnhill input and line output transformers
  • Max. gain: 80 dB
  • Rasterized Gain control with 23 positions in 5 dB steps - Gain range 20 to 80 dB for microphone
  • Switchable impedance in microphone mode: 1200 or 300 Ωs
  • Hi-Pass filter: 80 Hz and 200 Hz adjustable
  • Switchable Air EQ boost function (3 or 6 dB at 30 kHz)
  • Switchable 48V phantom power
  • Phase reverse switch
  • Microphone/Line combo input XLR/1/4"jack balanced
  • Instrument input 6.3 mm jack
  • Line output XLR and 1/4"jack balanced
  • Design: Desktop
  • Format: 9.5" / 1 RU
  • External power adapter included
available since June 2018
Item number 441331
sales unit 1 piece(s)
Channels 1
Number of microphone inputs 1
Instrument input Yes
Tubes No
Compressor/Limiter No
Equalizer No
De-Esser No
Phantom power Yes
Phase Reverse Yes
External effect loops No
Analogue Outputs XLR, jack
Digitale Outputs None
Headphone connection No
Level Meter Yes
Design 9,5", 1 U
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Hanck 09.08.2019
Comparison Golden Age mic preamps: Premier PRE-73 and Project PRE-73 MKIII for e-piano and bass. Conclusion: the price differences translate to sound (and noise) differences which made me decide in favor of the premier series.
I ordered a Golden Age Project PRE-73 MKIII. I was not satisfied because of the noise that already appeared with gain and output volume both just over half way (I practice in an extremely noise free studio). For comparison I ordered a Golden Age Premier PRE-73. The noise level was lower, worked for me, though certainly not noise-free at higher volumes/gain.
I tried it on bass, the sound was a bit smoother than the MKIII. It was a rich, heavy and lively sound, only the highs lacked a bit sustain.
On e-piano the sound of the Premier was much better than the MKIII, I can only describe it as: there was restfulness in it. Also less deformation than with the MKIII. Now with bass it is just a matter of taste, but with piano the undistorted sound is important. So you don't get a messy sound when using a lot of polyphonies. Both preamps gave the piano-sound much more power, body, warmth, harmonics and (Premier only) detail and liveliness.
I bought the GAP Premier for the piano. For my Safran semi-acoustic bass I bought a Marleaux Tonwerk instead. A little less lively sound, but no problems with noise at high levels and it sounds sweet in combination with the piano (the eq helps to make the bass stand out whilst playing). Thomann was very helpful with advice and service. For more comparison see review of the Premier PREQ-73.


Expensive Vintage sound quality at a budget price!
Paul P. 657 01.08.2018
I bought this to record vocals and instruments in my home studio, specifically for use with my Warm Audio WA-47jr microphone.

I wanted to try and capture some of the more vintage sound quality you get from the Neve pre amps and Neumann/Telefunken microphones, but without busting my bank account. I have the Golden Age Project Pre 73 MIII already and was very excited to read that they had now had the Neve-inspired GAP Premium Pre-73.

On receiving the product, it comes in a very nice box with the usual GAP literature in the form of a nicely printed A4 card. Instructions for the full manual can be downloaded form the GAP website.

Installation and plug in is very straight forward. It sits very nicely on my desk.
In operation there is very little in the way of signal noise. I have used it for female vocals and it handles beautifully. The sound is smooth and certainly have that vintage colour you'd expect from a signal path that uses only discrete components like resistors, capacitors and transistors.

It sounds great: far, far better than anyone would expect of devices in this price range.

For thoseof you who want to venture into the use of vintage outboard equipment with out a huge budget I would highly recommend this product.

At a good 100 Euros less than the Warm Audio WA-73 or Heritage 73 preamps this is a dam good contender!


Lush sounding and have never second guessed the result.
soundsendreturn 03.05.2019
A fantastic sounding preamp ranging from pretty transparent to thick with larger than life colour. Not only does it make the source sound great with very little self noise, it will compliment the other preamps in your arsenal by providing a definitive variety in the arena of sounds in your overall mix.

Ive used it on bass, synth bass, electric and acoustic guitar and naturally on vocals and I have never been in any way second guessing the sound, the talent going into the preamp maybe, but never the sound.

When recording electric guitar before this preamp I have always found cutting as far as 200hz out was really damaging the source, but not with this baby, cut away with the high pass and still sounds rich and beefy and ballsy with plenty of room for your other low and low mid sources.

I have not been using the added Air EQ very often but that's not in any way stating they are not useful, I'm in-fact quite sure they will be very useful at some point but that point has not arisen for me yet personally.

If you don't have a 73 style preamp (with Carnhill Transformers) this one is really worth considering.

I am really really happy with this purchase, I love my GAP Pre 73 Premier and for whatever its worth, I would recommend it to everyone.


Awesome unit, finally I have 1073 in the studio )
Mike Kravets 21.03.2021
As you know, those preamps are great for almost everything. In my case - I'm recording through it bass DI, vocals, and acoustic guitars. Before it my workhorse was Warm Audio TB-12. Also great unit, but it has little to much saturation of mids, and overall sound is very unusual for my needs, imho. I'm Plan to make a video review soon, compare Pre-73 vs TB-12 vs Daking Mic Pre One.

Pros - great sound and look, for this price range definitely no reason to looking for something else. I'm happy :)
Cons - just two - would be cool to have LED's near each switch to see the current state, sometimes you can forget about them. And when phantom power is on, and you accidentally touch a Line button, it can cause an unwanted cracks, similar to bad contact on XLR. Not tested, but probably when unit is near bass combo or loud studio monitor - it can cause problems. But I've decided not to return device, I can fix it myself, and not to send pre-amp from Ukraine to Germany.

UPD. This issue with cracks on button almost gone, probably some dust was inside from factory.

Conclusion - perfect unit for it's budget, when i'll need some more channels of neevy sound - definitely would buy more !)


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