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Anybody use a Soyuz Launcher or Launcher Deluxe?


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I have a friend with a studio in Fresno who likes the Launcher. 

I noticed that for the cost of 2 Launchers I could get the Launcher Deluxe which has 2 Launchers and also has a switch that allows phantom power to come through the device so you can use condenser mics or run line in - this feature turns off the +26db of gain so something is lost and something is gained but you still get 2 complete Launchers plus extra features for the same price as buying 2 Launchers. 

 

Anybody have either of them? How do you like them? Thanks in advance!!!

It took a chunk of my life to get here and I am still not sure where "here" is.
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I’m doing sound for a conference today, and can’t get deep into it single finger typing on my phone, but I have a lot of experience with the Soyuz, the Royer dBoost, and pretty much every model of Cloudlifter. 
 

I can chime in with thoughts on each later, but I can say I would get a Launcher Deluxe over two individual Launchers for the added transformer inputs. 

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Editor - RECORDING Magazine

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4 minutes ago, Paul Vnuk Jr. said:

I’m doing sound for a conference today, and can’t get deep into it single finger typing on my phone, but I have a lot of experience with the Soyuz, the Royer dBoost, and pretty much every model of Cloudlifter. 
 

I can chime in with thoughts on each later, but I can say I would get a Launcher Deluxe over two individual Launchers for the added transformer inputs. 

Thanks Paul, please do chime in later, I'd love to know your thoughts! 

It took a chunk of my life to get here and I am still not sure where "here" is.
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  • 2 weeks later...

Sorry for my tardiness...its been an insane couple of weeks.

 

So...I am a huge fan of the whole "inline signal booster craze" because I love using my SM7, and more importantly, my passive ribbon collection on delicate and quiet sources and inline signal boosters let me treat and process said mics like I would my condensers, meaning I don't need to push my amp, and its noise to get the mic up to level––none of this should be a surprise as this is exactly what the inline signal boosters are made to do.

 

I also love the fact that we are now entering a time when these boost-boxes are not simple clean-utilitarian devices, but many companies are offering a spin or a flavor. So now, just like you might pick between 2 or 3 different mics or preamps depending on the sound you are after, now there is a 3rd flavor option to add to the mix.

 

On to the discussion of the Soyuz Launcher, it is the most flavorful of the current crop of mic boosters, and that is by design––although these added weights and colors as it where are on the subtle and cumulative side––which is similar to most preamps when compared side by side. If you are indeed considering a pair of/2 channels of Launcher, then I would absolutely go with the Deluxe, especially because you get the added benefit of it playing double duty as a passive transformer box. I use this often to re-amp softsynths, digital synths and plugins to add a nice touch of analog "spice".

 

Just know if you are looking for clean, as in, this is my mic and preamp with no added color, then the Cloudlifter is a better bet, and if you need more gain and want a subtler transformer tone, the new Cloudlifter X is a contender as well. If you like to play with mic impedance (which also changes the sound of your mics) the Cloudlifter Z (or ZI) is a cool choice, and the Cloudlifter I use the most often with my SM7B and AEA 44CE as I can "dial -in" the best tone for the song and source on any given day. sE also makes a signal booster that has some stepped impedance options.

 

Finally, Royer makes a clean yet gently harmonically cool dBoost, and if you get the 2-channel dBoost 2, it also doubles as a high-quality classic DI Box. I have one of these and use it most often on my R-121 and my stereo AEA R88.

 

 

Here is a quote from my original 2020 Soyuz Launcher review:

 

"I compared The Launcher to a Cloud Microphones Cloudlifter CL-Z and a Royer Labs R-DB20 dBooster, all with a Telefunken M80 dynamic mic through a Millennia Media HV3-D preamp. After layering acoustic guitar, vocals, and percussion, I found the CL-Z offers the most gain of the bunch and the most 'not there' transparency. The dBooster was also designed to impart flavor to a mic through the use of bipolar transistors and op amps and is best described as harmonically excited. It fills out the lows like The Launcher, but its top end is much more forward than rounded. The Launcher was the most weighted and smoothest of the bunch."

 

 

 

 

Editor - RECORDING Magazine

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49 minutes ago, Paul Vnuk Jr. said:

Sorry for my tardiness...its been an insane couple of weeks.

 

So...I am a huge fan of the whole "inline signal booster craze" because I love using my SM7, and more importantly, my passive ribbon collection on delicate and quiet sources and inline signal boosters let me treat and process said mics like I would my condensers, meaning I don't need to push my amp, and its noise to get the mic up to level––none of this should be a surprise as this is exactly what the inline signal boosters are made to do.

 

I also love the fact that we are now entering a time when these boost-boxes are not simple clean-utilitarian devices, but many companies are offering a spin or a flavor. So now, just like you might pick between 2 or 3 different mics or preamps depending on the sound you are after, now there is a 3rd flavor option to add to the mix.

 

On to the discussion of the Soyuz Launcher, it is the most flavorful of the current crop of mic boosters, and that is by design––although these added weights and colors as it where are on the subtle and cumulative side––which is similar to most preamps when compared side by side. If you are indeed considering a pair of/2 channels of Launcher, then I would absolutely go with the Deluxe, especially because you get the added benefit of it playing double duty as a passive transformer box. I use this often to re-amp softsynths, digital synths and plugins to add a nice touch of analog "spice".

 

Just know if you are looking for clean, as in, this is my mic and preamp with no added color, then the Cloudlifter is a better bet, and if you need more gain and want a subtler transformer tone, the new Cloudlifter X is a contender as well. If you like to play with mic impedance (which also changes the sound of your mics) the Cloudlifter Z (or ZI) is a cool choice, and the Cloudlifter I use the most often with my SM7B and AEA 44CE as I can "dial -in" the best tone for the song and source on any given day. sE also makes a signal booster that has some stepped impedance options.

 

Finally, Royer makes a clean yet gently harmonically cool dBoost, and if you get the 2-channel dBoost 2, it also doubles as a high-quality classic DI Box. I have one of these and use it most often on my R-121 and my stereo AEA R88.

 

 

Here is a quote from my original 2020 Soyuz Launcher review:

 

"I compared The Launcher to a Cloud Microphones Cloudlifter CL-Z and a Royer Labs R-DB20 dBooster, all with a Telefunken M80 dynamic mic through a Millennia Media HV3-D preamp. After layering acoustic guitar, vocals, and percussion, I found the CL-Z offers the most gain of the bunch and the most 'not there' transparency. The dBooster was also designed to impart flavor to a mic through the use of bipolar transistors and op amps and is best described as harmonically excited. It fills out the lows like The Launcher, but its top end is much more forward than rounded. The Launcher was the most weighted and smoothest of the bunch."

 

 

 

 

Thanks Paul, much appreciated!

I have the Cloudlifter CL-1 AND an apparently rare (patent violation of the Cloudlifter) Cathedral Pipes Durham MKII. They both sound virtually identical or rather, they both boost the signal without changing the tone whatsoever. 

My primary interface right now is the SSL 2+, which has a "4k" switch on each of two channels so there is already 2 different tones on those mic preamps. I like the SSL, it sounds really good. AND, I have a Focusrite ISA One that I am going to use for a while and decide if I will keep it. That has its own sound, transformer AND variable impedance. I'll probably keep it. I also have a Blue Robbie which despite being a tube mic preamp seems pristine and clear. I think I'll be selling that one, I like it but I don't need it. 

After I figure out how I feel about the ISA One I'll decide what's next. I might only need one Launcher or two or maybe I don't need one at all. 

I have one more option that I plan on testing. I have a Tech 21 Para Driver DI which can accept a line in signal, there is a switch on it to accept and run on phantom power through an XLR output. I could run the output of the ISA One into the Para Driver (which is very quiet) and then into the SSL mic pre. That would allow a huge range of subtle tweaks, it has an EQ including an AIR button AND the Sansamp can be blended so you can not only adjust the level of distortion, you can adjust how much of it you blend with the clean signal. That might give me more flavors than I need, with stuff I already own. 

It took a chunk of my life to get here and I am still not sure where "here" is.
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18 minutes ago, Paul Vnuk Jr. said:

I used to own a pair of Blue Robbies...really great-sounding preamp, but inconvenient to use as far as where to put them, etc. Sold them a while ago.

Yeah, it's a nice pre. I just redid my studio desk and realized I can use the ISA One to raise up my computer monitor to a better height! 

So it could become a twofer - mic pre and monitor stand. The Robbie's footprint is a bit small to be stable for that purpose. 

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It took a chunk of my life to get here and I am still not sure where "here" is.
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