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Helios 69 500 series
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houndog328
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#1
12th March 2010
Old 12th March 2010
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Helios 69 500 series

Anyone have these in their possession yet and used them?
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#2
15th March 2010
Old 15th March 2010
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With all the hype this announcement got I'm surprised nobody owns 'em ...
#3
15th March 2010
Old 15th March 2010
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First of all, I don't own one. Never heard one. I don't know someone, who knows someone, who knows someone who has one. Owners of the 69 are out there, but they're not talking.

My theory is that these things sound so friggin' awesome that the owners won't talk about them for fear that they'll become the new "fad-pre-gotta-have-it" of GS.

My other theory is that they sound so bad that no one wants to own up to shelling out the cash. But I doubt that that's the case. There's a topic about "Here's what a Helios console sounds like". The stuff has a very unique sound to it. It gives me the impression that a Lunchbox full of 69's may yield a better finished product than a Lunchbox with 6 different pres.
#4
15th March 2010
Old 15th March 2010
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If you read my thread, HELIOS console what one sounds like. Listen to my record: Angels at the Waterfront, by Sharelle That is the Helios is all its glory. The exact same mic preamps you are hearing (except for tracking of the vocal tracking) you can get with the Dave Amels REALIOS 9031 Mic Preamp; it's the exact same preamp. Dave worked on that board and the later one put in Lenny Kravitz's Bahamas studio. The pre's are identical.
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15th March 2010
Old 15th March 2010
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One other thing... the RELIOS is preamp only, no type 69 EQ.
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15th March 2010
Old 15th March 2010
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Thanks, but was wondering about the new 500 series ...
#7
15th March 2010
Old 15th March 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by houndog328 View Post
Thanks, but was wondering about the new 500 series ...
It is a 500 series module. The other one being made which has the EQ has been well documented on this forum and others.
#8
16th March 2010
Old 16th March 2010
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How is it possible that the Helios Type 69 500 format has been well documented in other threads? It has just been released. It is not the same as the original format as the 500 series has a balanced output xformer.

No disrespect to Dave as I'm sure he wouldn't hijack a thread to plug his own product, but the thread title says Helios NOT Relios.
#9
16th March 2010
Old 16th March 2010
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I've only had the Helios for a couple of days and only tried it on acoustic gtr with a KM84. Compared to API 312 the Helios tends to a have more shimmery top end which sounds great for certain acoustic gtr. sounds. However, I've found that the Helios does not have that smooth mid that the API seems to have IMO.
/Chris
#10
16th March 2010
Old 16th March 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris900 View Post
However, I've found that the Helios does not have that smooth mid that the API seems to have IMO.
/Chris
Which is the exact reason I like Helios straight wire style engineering. I'm tired of phasey smeary sounds and think the mids are exactly where the Helios shines!

One man's junk eh? Funny how it works.
#11
16th March 2010
Old 16th March 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kats View Post
How is it possible that the Helios Type 69 500 format has been well documented in other threads? It has just been released. It is not the same as the original format as the 500 series has a balanced output xformer.

No disrespect to Dave as I'm sure he wouldn't hijack a thread to plug his own product, but the thread title says Helios NOT Relios.
Hey Kats, sorry about that, I should have been more clear. To me there is a 500 series Helios that's been out for a while. Yes I'm talking about the Realios Dave Amels unit minus the EQ. As far as the other unit that seems to be a re-package of Arny's existing Helios Type 69 remake into a 500 series. So... to me... yeah that's been covered.

As far as the Realios, it is the preamp from Henry Hirsch's Helios console.
#12
16th March 2010
Old 16th March 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tubehead View Post
As far as the other unit that seems to be a re-package of Arny's existing Helios Type 69 remake into a 500 series. So... to me... yeah that's been covered.
Just so you know, the Helios 500 series is not the same as Arny's regular spec'd unit. As I mentioned earlier in the thread, it has a transformer balanced output whereas the originals (and his re-issues) did not. So they will definately sound different. Moreover, the EQ is a major major part of the Helios sound - you gotto have it! I can't live without that 2.8k boost

I bet Dave's pre is awesome too, I can tell he's a stickler for detail and if he says it's spot on, it's spot on!

Here's a other interesting note. Cyril Jones has also attempted to clone the xformer as well (he went to extreme painstaking measures). A friend of mine has already tried it in his re-issue and says he nailed it - I have one coming to try as well.
#13
16th March 2010
Old 16th March 2010
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Although they've removed this slogan from the Realios web page, it used to say:

REALIOS--More Swettenham, Less Dick.
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16th March 2010
Old 16th March 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tubehead View Post
As far as the other unit that seems to be a re-package of Arny's existing Helios Type 69 remake into a 500 series. So... to me... yeah that's been covered..
Yes this one, that original reissue thread had 148 posts and 9,300 views when the hype was building, now that they're available I haven't heard a thing ...
#15
20th March 2010
Old 20th March 2010
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Pardon my ignorance, but can you use the Helios for just the EQ? I'm sure you could do it outboard, but can you chain something like a MA5 into the Helios EQ?
#16
21st March 2010
Old 21st March 2010
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It's got a line input stage, so yes, I believe you can.
#17
29th September 2010
Old 29th September 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnkenn View Post
Pardon my ignorance, but can you use the Helios for just the EQ? I'm sure you could do it outboard, but can you chain something like a MA5 into the Helios EQ?
Dear John,
There are two unused pins on the output of the Helios Type-69 these are there ready for the Helios F760 Limiter/Comp, those two spare pins are to enable an engineer to Side-Chain the F760 with the EQ of the Type-69, this will then open up a load of new set-ups for recording direct into a Tape Machine or a DAW, it is all a matter of an engineers imagination.

The 1U X 19" unit will be made available with a Helios Type-69 on one side and a Helios F760 on the other thus giving a traveling or studio engineer a complete package for recording direct to their favourite recording medium.

Best Regards

Tony.
Tony Arnold (Director),
Helios Electronics Ltd,
www.helios electronics.com
#18
29th September 2010
Old 29th September 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kats View Post
Just so you know, the Helios 500 series is not the same as Arny's regular spec'd unit. As I mentioned earlier in the thread, it has a transformer balanced output whereas the originals (and his re-issues) did not. So they will definately sound different. Moreover, the EQ is a major major part of the Helios sound - you gotto have it! I can't live without that 2.8k boost
Dear Tony,
Sorry but the balancing of both the In & Out on the Helios Type-69 X 500 series, is not through utilising a transformer, it is an active circuit and does not change the sound whatsoever from our Helios Type-69 Standard Series, after many personal who were involved in the listening tests all were contradicting each other.

Best Regards

Tony.
Tony Arnold (Director),
Helios Electronics Ltd,
www.helios electronics.com
#19
29th September 2010
Old 29th September 2010
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Dear Re-issue Clients,
If you wish to have +4dB output, then replace R19 from 12k to 6k8.

Best Regards

Tony.
Tony Arnold (Director),
Helios Electronics Ltd,
www.helios electronics.com
#20
29th September 2010
Old 29th September 2010
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When I first discussed with my colleagues and Richard Swettenham about re-issuing the Type-69 while at the same satisfy RS’s demands to improve upon the original.
Not I or RS had the funds to warrant stripping down an Original Lustraphone TX, as today an Original can demand $5,000 plus and without an original Lustraphone $1000 on a good day, net loss $4,000,
BUT
Due to the skills and experiences of Brian Sowter we ended up with an improved spec regarding the Transformer with very little to almost no loss of the original Type-69 sound

So I have taken it on board for many years now, that maybe an original Lustraphone version could be a seller, to partner our currant very desired Re-Issue Type-69 that we manufacture today, which I and many others prefer the sound of.

Nevertheless each to his or her own, so I will announce here and now, that we have now the funds and have therefore instructed Brian Sowter to carry out the same task utilising both Brian’s 50 years of experience most being likely the longest in Britain, coupled with his skills most likely being the finest available in Britain, to strip our Lustraphone and make us our own clone of the Lustraphone.

Remember Brian was very active with Transformer Design at the same time as Lustraphone, and Brian was Richard Swettenham's choice in the final years of Helios Electronics Ltd Part-1, and Brian will continue to be of service with Helios Electronics Ltd, Part-2.

Brian has excepted the task to carry out a similar reverse engineering job by stripping down our Lustraphone to its bare parts using the same wire gauge, same size, and grade of lamination and specification, the size of the custom manufactured bobbin which will also be the same, as will the wiring techniques. to find out its secrets.

This new clone of the Original Lustraphone Transformer will be offered to all of our currant clients as an update with a small cost of around $40 per module it will also be available as a choice for any of our new clients as to which model they would prefer to purchase.
We hope to have this done within a couple of months

After one year we will Post our findings for those who may be interested.

Best Regards

Tony.
Tony Arnold (Director),
Helios Electronics Ltd,
www.helios electronics.com
#21
1st October 2010
Old 1st October 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arny View Post
Dear Tony,
Sorry but the balancing of both the In & Out on the Helios Type-69 X 500 series, is not through utilising a transformer, it is an active circuit and does not change the sound whatsoever from our Helios Type-69 Standard Series, after many personal who were involved in the listening tests all were contradicting each other.

Best Regards

Tony.
Tony Arnold (Director),
Helios Electronics Ltd,
www.helios electronics.com
My confusion, sorry about that!

Tony
#22
1st October 2010
Old 1st October 2010
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so the 500 series version is exactly the same as the console version?
#23
2nd October 2010
Old 2nd October 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iangomes View Post
so the 500 series version is exactly the same as the console version?
Dear Iangomes,
If you mean "Is the sound exactly the same as the Standard size Helios Type-69,"
then the answer is Yes they both sound the same

Best Regards

Tony.
Tony Arnold (Director),
Helios Electronics Ltd,
www.helios electronics.com
#24
2nd October 2010
Old 2nd October 2010
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Hey Arny, i remember watching a video of you discussing the unity gain on the helios units, anyway the question i was meaning to ask, now that i know that you can easily have these modules operate at +4dBu by just changing one resistor, is: by changing the module to work at a +4dBu output, can the this affect the unity gain/gain structure you were mentioning about?

The reason i ask this is because if the module is having a bigger output by working at +4dBu, then it sounds logical to me that the gain structure between Input/Output might not be the same. Correct me if im wrong, and now that we are at it, may i ask which is default nominal output of the module? -10dBV?

Best
#25
3rd October 2010
Old 3rd October 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dualflip View Post
Hey Arny, i remember watching a video of you discussing the unity gain on the helios units, anyway the question i was meaning to ask, now that i know that you can easily have these modules operate at +4dBu by just changing one resistor, is: by changing the module to work at a +4dBu output, can the this affect the unity gain/gain structure you were mentioning about?

The reason i ask this is because if the module is having a bigger output by working at +4dBu, then it sounds logical to me that the gain structure between Input/Output might not be the same. Correct me if im wrong, and now that we are at it, may i ask which is default nominal output of the module? -10dBV?

Best
Dear Jose.
You are spot-on, a lot of engineers are using a second piece of gear to bring the output of the Standard Helios Type-69 up by 4dB, usualy a compressor, so therefore will no longer be unity gain, it is the output being down by 4dB that is the problem for some engineers.

The Helios 500 series Type-69 is +4dB In/Out, so therefore does have unity gain working at those levels.

All of the original Helios Type-69's, as are the re-issues, run at .775V In/Out so .775V = OVU = 4dB down compared to todays standards of +4dB.

Best Regards

Tony.
Tony Arnold (Director),
Helios Electronics Ltd,
www.helios electronics.com
rft
#26
5th October 2010
Old 5th October 2010
  #26
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Hi, Can you say what amplification is being used to bump the helios 500 to +4 levels.
#27
5th October 2010
Old 5th October 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arny View Post
Dear Iangomes,
If you mean "Is the sound exactly the same as the Standard size Helios Type-69,"
then the answer is Yes they both sound the same

Best Regards

Tony.
Tony Arnold (Director),
Helios Electronics Ltd,
www.helios electronics.com
Thanks for getting back to me Tony. Do the 500 series modules differ in the audio path? Or is the difference simply in the power supply to boost the input voltage? Also, I hear that you have two kinds of transformers available to choose from. Do both fit into 500 series?
Thanks!
#28
6th October 2010
Old 6th October 2010
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Aside from the additional 4db, does this swap affect the tone in any way?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Arny View Post
Dear Re-issue Clients,
If you wish to have +4dB output, then replace R19 from 12k to 6k8.

Best Regards

Tony.
Tony Arnold (Director),
Helios Electronics Ltd,
www.helios electronics.com
#29
6th October 2010
Old 6th October 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rft View Post
Hi, Can you say what amplification is being used to bump the helios 500 to +4 levels.
Dear RFT,
It is only a matter of changing the PAD resistors at the Line input to accept +4dBu equals 1.23 Volts RMS.

The original Helios-Type-69 ran at OdB = .775V.

Regarding the Line output, R35 has been reduced from 12kΏ to 6k8Ώ.

None of these changes effect the sound what-so-ever.

Many thanks for your interest in our products

Best Regards

Tony.
Tony Arnold (Director),
Helios Electronics Ltd,
www.helios electronics.com
#30
6th October 2010
Old 6th October 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iangomes View Post
Thanks for getting back to me Tony. Do the 500 series modules differ in the audio path? Or is the difference simply in the power supply to boost the input voltage? Also, I hear that you have two kinds of transformers available to choose from. Do both fit into 500 series?
Thanks!
Dear Iangomes,
Changing the supply voltage would not effect the input or the output levels, both the Standard size Helios-Type-69 and the 500 series run on a single PSU rail of 32Volts DC.

What we have done is change the PAD resistors at the Line input to accept +4dBu equals 1.23 Volts RMS.

The original Helios-Type-69 ran at OdB = .775V.
Changing R35 has from 12kΏ = .775V = 0VU, to 6k8Ώ. = +4Db 1.23 Volts

None of these changes effect the sound what-so-ever.

The new type of transformer that we will be introducing soon, will not replace the
Sowter Transformer that we are using now, each client will have a choice as to which transformer they would prefer when ordering either the Helio 500 series Type-69 or the Helios Standard size Type-69.

see next page for more details.

Many thanks again for your interest in our products.

Best Regards

Tony.
Tony Arnold (Director),
Helios Electronics Ltd,
www.helios electronics.com
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