Thermionic Culture The EARLYBIRD 2.2

Thermionic Culture The EARLYBIRD 2.2
Weight: 25 lb
Brand: Thermionic Culture Inc.Thermionic Culture Inc.

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The Earlybird 2.2 is a two channel all valve pre-amp employing a balanced push-pull circuit, which as far as we know, is unique in this application. The use of this type of circuit gives very low noise and plenty of headroom with minimal distortion. These factors coupled with a switchable input impedance will mean the user can get a very natural interpretation of whatever sound the microphone is picking up, whether the mic is valve, ribbon, moving coil or FET.

After much dedicated development work in conjunction with Brian Sowter, we have arrived at the pinnacle of audio transformer design. Both the input and output transformers have been optimised for use in our unique circuit. This results in more headroom and lower distortion especially at low frequencies.

The Earlybird 2.2 retains all of the features of the previous Earlybirds. We have added an extra pair of inputs to allow permanent connection to a Pullet EQ. The Active EQ section has our own unique "Varislope" curves for both bass and top lift, where the extreme frequencies (ie. low bass and high top) are accentuated as the control is increased.      The mid lift is quite broad in operation and peaks at 800 Hz & 2.5 kHz.  When used in conjunction with top lift can provide some very useful results.  The 800 Hz "shelving" bass cut used in conjunction with bass lift can provide a mid cut if required.

The Earlybird 2.2 need not stand idle once the mixing process has begun. The line input facility means that the sonic haracteristics and EQ facilities of the Earlybird 2.2 can be fully utilised on any mono or stereo signals that the user feels may benefit from such enhancement. With this in mind the Pullet acts as a perfect companion for precision mid range EQ.

We believe that the Earlybird 2.2 is not only the finest mic amp available for todays recording environment but combined with its EQ and Pullet compatability, the most versatile.

Earlybird 2.2 Specifications:

Included are the figures for noise, distortion and EQ. They are all measured with the Earlybird set up for 44dB mic gain / 0 dB line gain and a 10k? load.

Input Impedance:






300 or 1200 ohms, switchable , balanced.




Output Impedance:


Maximum Gain:


Maximum Output Level (MOL)

+33dBm (36V RMS)

Phase Shift




16 degrees (4.5%) @ 10kHz

0 within audible range

Distortion (THD)






Frequency response

+/-0.5 dB

+/-1 dB


11Hz to 26 kHz

8Hz to 65kHz

Total Noise, unweighted, 30kHz filter

114dB below MOL

EQ, active controls @ max:

+17dB @ 50 Hz
+15dB @ 800 Hz & 2.5 kHz
+20dB @ 10 kHz

Mid frequency selector

800Hz & 2.5kHz

Gain settings (dB)




36, 44, 52 & 60

-8, 0, 8 & 16

High Pass Filter (Hz)

0, 40, 100, 800

Output trim

-18 dB to 0 dB linear reverse attenuator

Input and output connectors

8 x 3pin XLRs, wired balanced. ( 2x mic in, 2x line in, 2x pullet in, 2x line out )


115V: T1.25A

230V: T0.63A



ECC83 (equiv. 7025, 12AX7LPS)


ECC82 (equiv. 6189, 12AU7)

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