Avalon U5 : moosers's user review
The Avalon U5 is a high quality, single channel direct input box. It is an analog unit and just has two 1/4 inch connections - one is an input to plug your instrument or signal into and the other is a through output to send your signal someplace else if you so desire. The Avalon U5 is not in rack form and is a box that can sit on top of your rack space.
The configuration of the Avalon U5 is quite easy to follow as it just has a limited amount of parameters and options. It has two knobs - one for boost and one for tone, as well as buttons for high cut, and for choosing either speaker signal or active to input, and also has a button to put the tone in and out. It also has two LED meters for monitoring your signal and for power. I don't have a manual for the Avalon U5, but it is easy to use and you really don't need it if you don't already have one.
The sound quality of the Avalon U5 is really top notch as far as direct input boxes go. It has way more parameters available to control your tone than most DI boxes which adds to its versatility. The Avalon U5 is great for anything that you would want to capture with a direct input signal, but I use it most for bass guitar and keyboards. It definitely presents and accurate picture of the sound that you trying to capture and won't color your tone at all. The Avalon U5 is just about as good as it gets for a DI box.
I've been using the Avalon U5 for about two years and it is probably the best direct input box that I've used. It gives you a lot of options over your tone and I always find that I get great sounding results with it. The price isn't cheap, but it is really designed for professionals and for this reason I really wouldn't recommend it for home studio owners. Overall, the Avalon U5 is truly a great sounding direct input box.