Altec 1567A

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Reid:  This is an essential piece of vintage this-ain’t-really-high-end-but-it-sounds-amazing noisy fun. Known by many as a dirtbox, it’s got character (and noise) for days.  You’ve heard these all over a bunch of cool records, including a lot of Dan Auerbach’s magic.  This wasn’t designed for recording really – there’s probably one in a closet in your high school somewhere – but man, does it sound unique.  This is crucial because a lot of the fun of this thing is diming the inputs and turning the master output down.


DRUMS:  Mix drums to mono and blast it through this, slam the output with an 1176 and then blend that track into the drum mix. Crank the BASS for extra points.
ACOUSTIC GTR:  Take a ribbon mic track- for me, it’s always acoustic- and dime the TREBLE. Denoise and blend in, or just use to cut through dense arrangements. (NOTE: iZotope RX is your friend here. Get the 1567A sounding great, then bounce it down with a few seconds of the noise at the front of the file and use Spectral DeNoise to sample + erase it. I do this all. the. time.)
VOX:  Crank the input, overload + eq to taste. Turn down the MASTER.  Use as vocal parallel.  BONUS POINTS – use as a send to a (tape?) delay.
KICK OUT:  Don’t have a kick out mic? Crank into the 1567A, turn the TREBLE all the way off, boost the BASS and boom, you got one now, baby.
ELECTRIC GTR:  A little Altec distortion and some 1176 compression makes electrics quite spanky. ALSO try a direct guitar through this chain. Distort Distort Distort.


5-into-one mic/line preamp tube mixer with BASS and TREBLE controls and master gain
Tubes:  Yes
Transformers:  Yes
Character:  Dirty.  Noisy.