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Thread: Cheerful Hamster's Utterly Subjective UAD EQ Chart

  1. #1
    Practically a UAD Expert cheerful hamster's Avatar
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    Cheerful Hamster's Utterly Subjective UAD EQ Chart

    I posted this chart in another thread, and someone requested that I finish it off after I ran the demos for the API, 31102 and Millenia, which I have yet to buy. Since I'm going to jump on the bundle deal, I've been running those demos for the past week, so here is the chart. (BTW, the APIs are a must-have; the Millenia is sort of like the Precision EQ with a little more control, but lacking its great HPF.)

    As the title suggests, this is totally subjective. The BX Digital I took as a baseline for neutrality, since it doesn't impose a definite color, and offers probably the most control; it's as gentle or as aggressive as you wanna make it.

    Last edited by DanButsu; 6th January 2017 at 04:38 PM.
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    Heavy UAD User Arionas's Avatar
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    Very nice and useful EQ chart. Thanks cheerful hamster.

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    Shareholder Zsarbomba's Avatar
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    Cool. But so in your op are the Cambridge, Oxford & CS1 Eq's close to neutral like the BX (since its close to the BX in chart) and can they swing from Aggressive to Gentle like the Bx since they is close to the BX in chart. Lol.

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    Nice. This is pretty much same way i feel about them too, except that imo Manley MP can be both extremely aggressive and gentle, but not in any way neutral... hehe
    Very useful chart
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    Practically a UAD Expert cheerful hamster's Avatar
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    Thx everyone. Yeah, the fully adjustable, fully parametric EQs cluster towards the middle, and their character depends almost entirely on the user. That's not necessarily a plus. The Manley I find to be rather unpredictable - what you set is not always what you get!
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    Yes, very subjective, especially the terms 'aggresive', 'neutral' & 'gentle'. In terms of options (number of eq settings & Q) and curves, I pretty much agree. As for coloration (harmonics, indutor modelling, etc), that is a trickier business. That is probably why musifalsk rated the Manley as both aggressive and gentle. The slopes are gentle, but the sound quality of the eq has a slightly aggressive tube quality if pushed, and the inductors are supposed to cause the frequency centers to drift depending on energy in the given frequency range. At least the hardware, though I think I hear the software doing it too.
    I also notice a difference between the Neve 1073 / 1084 vs the 31102. To my ears, the 31102 is 'silkier'. It is my go to eq for cymbals, especially hi-hats. The main difference I hear between the 1073 & 1084, aside from more options, is the high end boost. The 1073 is slightly smoother to these ears. Maybe it's the 12 kHz that the 1084 doesn't have.
    The API's - Holy S%*t; I had demo'd the Slate VCC, and I think the API's do a better job of getting that Console sound.
    The new Pultecs - wow. Nice. Oddly, the cut curves seem to be 'looser' and the boost curves tighter than the 'Legacy' version; I tried it on a track yesterday and didn't get the results I expected. But the way it sounds..... )
    I am kinda surprised with the Millenia, after all the ragging I've read on the Shadow Hills (which I am also demoing - the optical seems a little slow past .75 dB compression, esp. release). I find it (Millenia) is very useful for mastering and seems to have the quirks of Inductor eq circuits as well as the tube compression when set on Tube, and a hint of that JFET bite on JFET. I have a Demeter VTMP-2B pre (lush tubeness) and a Hamptone JFET pre w/ Greyhill stepped gains, and the Millenia topologies seem to match these, albeit more subtle. I think I'd use the Millenia more than the Manley in mastering work. Though I love the Manley, it's always been a b*tch to dial in on the kind of mixes I get these days (you know those M-B*x laptop mixes done on misplaced speakers that go down to 70 Hz).
    I'd get the Sonnox, but the Cambridge is very close already; maybe a slight bit harsher, but the Brainworks covers that ultimate in neutral, smooth & fully controllable EQ. I think the Neve 88RS is also pretty neutral. And it has the only UAD compressor I can hit a sine wave with 3 dB compression and get a clean sine wave 3 dB down (in Studio One Pro at 64 bit double precision).
    Sorry for the rant, but 'subjective' is a dangerous road w/ lots of twists and turns.
    P.S. Never liked the CS1. Too brittle. Though I once read a mixbuss compressor shootout that included the CS/EX comp and..
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    Practically a UAD Expert cheerful hamster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by virtualaudio View Post
    Sorry for the rant, but 'subjective' is a dangerous road w/ lots of twists and turns.
    Actually it's just the opposite. Subjective just means that I pulled this whole thing from my nether regions, and it can't be held to any objective, scientific standard. Now if I'd called it my Objective EQ chart, then I'd be in trouble.
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    I thought I remembered the Neve 1073 being a little less aggressive, according to the chart. I guess my memory isn't serving me well…?

    I've got only two things I disagree with:

    1.) In the months I've used it, I've, oftentimes, found the 560 to be considerably more aggressive than the 550a. It doesn't take a lot to really get bite out of it.

    2.) I think the MP is a little more on the aggressive side than neutral.

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    thanks! great work

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    Moderator DanButsu's Avatar
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    Great work cheerful . I seemed to have missed this thread, happy to see it now. I was just teaching the concept aggressive mic/micpre to students today. And matching them. Will show them your chart next class. Cool
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