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Neve and SSL differences?

Nightowl

Active Member
Seems like many developers are recreating Neve and SSL gear lately. Having never used any Neve or SSL hardware, what is the difference in their sound? Would one style of music gravitate to an SSL console while another would go for a Neve?
 

BTLG

Established Member
Most jazz guys love the Neve consoles and won't work on anything else, as do a lot of rock engineers/producers (however, many rock guys loved the SSL G series, and don't like the sound of the J series as it's a bit cleaner sounding).

Most hip hop/r&b these days (unless it's done in the box) is mixed on an SSL.

Almost no one prefers the SSL mic pres.

Where the SSL consoles differ in functionality from the old neve boards is in the flexibility. The SSL's have dynamics on every channel and a ton of routing options. I *could* be wrong, but the earlier Neves (which are the ones every one prefers by the way) didn't have the dynamics on every channel and the routing options were nowhere near as numerous.

The Neve's however are known to have a much more pleasant high end and the SSL's are known to be more punchy sounding.

hope it helps

Matt
 
That was a gross generalization... I'm not sure any one got much wiser... But then again that's like trying to explain the difference in taste between lemon and lime... :?
 

PodBoy

Member
A generalization, perhaps - but I agree with the historical persrpective. Back in the day if you wanted \"the sound\" you went for NEVE.
SSL's claim to fame was automation. Much more convenient than taking polaroids of your 48 channel analog mixer!
 

BTLG

Established Member
starfighter -

I don't know if that was such a \"gross generalization\".

The guy asked what styles of music lend themselves to different consoles. Based on my experience with a broad clientelle base, I told him what I've seen and heard from clients.

I don't think the lemon/lime comparison is very accurate. The two consoles are very different, in both sound and functionality. I simplified it as best I could to someone who sounds like they've never used either.

Matt
 

Nightowl

Active Member
Thanks for the replies. Its easy to over generalize in the audio world ... I know there's a lot to be said about \"whatever is best for the job at hand\". I'm just curious as to what peoples experiences have been with both companie's gear. Again, thanks for the insight :).
 
BTLG said:
starfighter -

I don't know if that was such a "gross generalization".

The guy asked what styles of music lend themselves to different consoles. Based on my experience with a broad clientelle base, I told him what I've seen and heard from clients.

I don't think the lemon/lime comparison is very accurate. The two consoles are very different, in both sound and functionality. I simplified it as best I could to someone who sounds like they've never used either.

Matt
Sorry, Matt! I didn't mean to disrespect you. It's always hard (though it seldom seems so on these forums :? ) to explain how a certain piece of gear sounds....

And about the rap thing; most of the guys use a SSL to mix... But take a closer look to the pics of their studios and you'll find s¤%tloads of Neve outboard in their racks... Rodney Jerkins evens does an ad for the new Neve 1073DPA 8)

I track rock n roll drums through a 1073; rock vocals and guitars too if it sounds right... :twisted:

i guess you can never go wrong with a little bit of Neve in your rack... on the other hand I'd love to have a big ass SSL mixer; but hey! My mixes sound pretty damn good outta Nuendo too with them UA plugs... :D
 

imdrecordings

Venerated Member
Nightowl said:
Seems like many developers are recreating Neve and SSL gear lately. Having never used any Neve or SSL hardware, what is the difference in their sound? Would one style of music gravitate to an SSL console while another would go for a Neve?
IMHO.. this is a name game. I will give UA credit for hooking up with AMS and getting they're approval. That says a lot. UA stuff is great and I am amazed at just how much better their stuff sounds and operates. Why do people freak out about SSL? I wouldn't say they have a "sound". If you want "sound" go with API. I will say SSLs are great for automation and their Bus Comp. But who has the money,time, effort or opportunity to learn those monsters. I'll stick with my PC. And besides, which SSL are people saying is so great? Apples and Oranges. PLus 80% of the people buying the plugs don't even now what either hardware device sounds like. You could just as easily do the same models and throw another label, like Behringer *ZENYX*:lol: c on it and it won't change the way the plug sounds. Lets be real. This is totaly a name game. SSL mic pre compared to a 1272, 512C, UA-610.. gimmi a break. :lol:

sorry if I got off the topic there...

Scott
 

BTLG

Established Member
Starfighter -

No disrespect taken. It can be really tough to represent your ideas on here accurately.

Yeah I know that the neve pre's/EQ's do get used rather often on anything. We've got an SSL room with 24 1081's, and then an additional 3 floating buckets of 8. So there's obviously a demand for the Neve's on the front end. The SSL pre's are fairly transparent sounding (i.e. they do the job). The consoles, to me, are really beneficially in their flexibility and dynamics.

Speaking of API's I don't know why I don't see more of them around work. People use the EQ's, but I don't think there's a better preamp for drums or dirty guitar sounds.
 

imdrecordings

Venerated Member
BTLG said:
Starfighter -

No disrespect taken. It can be really tough to represent your ideas on here accurately.

Yeah I know that the neve pre's/EQ's do get used rather often on anything. We've got an SSL room with 24 1081's, and then an additional 3 floating buckets of 8. So there's obviously a demand for the Neve's on the front end. The SSL pre's are fairly transparent sounding (i.e. they do the job). The consoles, to me, are really beneficially in their flexibility and dynamics.

Speaking of API's I don't know why I don't see more of them around work. People use the EQ's, but I don't think there's a better preamp for drums or dirty guitar sounds.
Your speaking my API language.. Amen! Is the UA110 modeled after the 512C? I have a box full of OSAs and luv'm. Next purchase is a 2-610..
again.. sorry if this is off the subject. APIs turn me on. Especially API EQs
I'll stop.
 

Eric Dahlberg

Purveyor of musical dreams fullfilled.
imdrecordings said:
Why do people freak out about SSL? I wouldn't say they have a "sound". If you want "sound" go with API
The Duende EQ has nearly zero phase shift in G mode yet still retains character. I haven't found that balance in any other digital EQ. Besides, you can't sweep an API. ;)

And besides, which SSL are people saying is so great?
Fortunately, the Duende & Waves both have mode switches to go between E's & G's.

SSL mic pre compared to a 1272, 512C, UA-610.. gimmi a break. :lol:
We're not talking pre's here. Track with a Neve, mix with an SPL. That's the rule! [-X
 

imdrecordings

Venerated Member
Eric Dahlberg said:
imdrecordings said:
Why do people freak out about SSL? I wouldn't say they have a "sound". If you want "sound" go with API
The Duende EQ has nearly zero phase shift in G mode yet still retains character. I haven't found that balance in any other digital EQ. Besides, you can't sweep an API. ;)

And besides, which SSL are people saying is so great?
Fortunately, the Duende & Waves both have mode switches to go between E's & G's.

[quote:h42jm3de]SSL mic pre compared to a 1272, 512C, UA-610.. gimmi a break. :lol:
We're not talking pre's here. Track with a Neve, mix with an SPL. That's the rule! [-X[/quote:h42jm3de]
I agree, but how can you compare function with tonality. The 1073 is limited, in that catagory. SSL channel strip is a completely different beast than any Neve EQ. I was stating that I have never heard people choose SSL for their sound. Usually lack of sound.(transparency/automation). I guess that's where they differ and we might agree. Different tool for different app. Even then were talking plug-ins here, not the hardware. Big difference. Right? Is anyone preferring one plug to the other?SSL? NEVE? I wish duendo was available for PC. Owell.. I'll never know.
ah! I've just lost my appetite, from the virtual debate. To bad nobody ever talks about Sony boards. If I remember correctly, you could swap API, NEVE,Focusrite and I think SSL modules in and out of them.... :| sorry I'm getting off track again. My point is. SSL= control with transparecny (to me) Neve 1073, 1081 = well... Neve...sorry for the dumb comparison... and poor Neve discription (bring on the stones) :lol:
 

Eric Dahlberg

Purveyor of musical dreams fullfilled.
imdrecordings said:
I agree, but how can you compare function with tonality. The 1073 is limited, in that catagory. SSL channel strip is a completely different beast than any Neve EQ. I was stating that I have never heard people choose SSL for there sound. Usually lack of sound.(transparency/automation). I guess that's where they differ and we might agree. Different tool for different app. Even then were talking plug-ins here, not the hardware. Big difference. Right? Is anyone preferring one plug to the other?SSL? NEVE? I wish duendo was available for PC. Owell.. I'll never know.
ah! I've just lost my appetite, from the virtual debate. To bad nobody ever talks about Sony boards. If I remember correctly, you could swap API, NEVE,Focusrite and I think SSL modules in and out of them.... :| sorry I'm getting off track again. My point is. SSL= control with transparecny (to me) Neve 1073, 1081 = well... Neve...sorry for the dumb comparison... and poor Neve discription (bring on the stones) :lol:
That sounds like a decent assessment to me & you're right that we agree in the end. The idea is to have both Neve & SSL so you're covering most bases.

btw, since you've brought up Sony, it's worth noting that the Oxford Dynamics sounds extremely similar to the Duende bus comp. The Duende's EQ stand alone, however, & in my book shares a place next to the UAD 1073 as being one of the best digital EQ's available.
 

imdrecordings

Venerated Member
Eric.. Would you recommend getting PoCo just for the Sony Plugs? How many instances can you get out f PoCo, in comparison to Duendo(32 tracks) or UA. Does it work well in 88.2khz sessions? I've been thinking about. That sony Bundle looks great. The Sony guy demoed them at my work 2.5 years ago. He kept bragging about \"No look up tables\".. in their software. What ever that means. Any otrher plugs in PoCO worth it. Let me know.
Thanx, Scott
 

Eric Dahlberg

Purveyor of musical dreams fullfilled.
A PoCo is definitely worth having even if only for the MD3, VSS3, DVR2, NonLin2 (which I used to hate, btw, but now love after coming to understand its best applications), & Oxford Inflator. If you're solely interested in it as a host for the Oxford EQ & Dynamics, though, I might recommend waiting for the PC version of Duende, scheduled to arrive next month. A single Powercore PCI MKII or Unplugged seems to be able to run at least as many (perhaps more) of the Dynamics as Duende can run of the bus comp but Duende can run more EQ's. Also, the Duende EQ's are better & feature the channel dynamics.

Do keep in mind that Duende's plug-in count isn't 32 channels at 88.2.
 

BTLG

Established Member
The MXP 3000!

Yeah, that was a cool board. Very underrated. I think Pyramid here in NYC has one all tricked out with API's.

Speaking of the Oxford....

We've got an Oxford and a Neve VX collecting dust in the basement. I'm jokingly trying to convince the techs to create some wacked out frankenstein board out of it.

I'll stand by the oxford being THE most functional digital board.... now if only Sony hadn't shot themselves in the face by making it only go to 48k....
 

Trebor Flow 2

Established Member
Eric

I've got the Oxford EQ and Dynamics and Inflator (Inflator is fantastic) - I love the EQ to bits but ended up buying the Sonalksis compressor (from you) because I could never get the Oxford Dynamics to sound like a decent bus compressor - it's just so bloody boring sounding.

So are you saying the Duende SSL bus compressor is no better than the Oxford dynamics (which really I regret buying BIG waste of money IMHO)

That amazes me and gives an even bigger thumbs up to the Sonalksis which so far has survived as my bus compressor over

1. The Oxford Dynamics (crap)
2. The UAD 33609
3. The URS 1980
4. Voxego Marquis

Go Sonalksis - maybe to beat it I'll have to stump up for a real G384 ?

Trebor
 

Akis

Sadly, left this world before his time.
Moderator
Trebor Flow 2 said:
the Oxford dynamics (which really I regret buying BIG waste of money IMHO)
I agree that it sounds boring as a mix bus compressor (although I'm not a fan a of having a compressor on the mix bus in general), but I think it's an amazing compressor for individual tracks.
 
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