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UAD-2 Massive Passive vs. real Massive Passive Equalisers (HW)
Old 18th March 2010
  #1
Gear Nut
 

UAD-2 Massive Passive vs. real Massive Passive

I have a semi-professional studio in Germany. I recorded some audiofiles for you to show you the difference between the UAD Massive Passive and the real hardware. There is another thread, but I did not find it useful, because many people were not able to see the differences.

I used the following equipment for the recordings:

MOTU HD192
Massive Passive, Standard Version
Vovox cables

I used the preset "Bass enhancer" and changed the 4th band to 8KHz and 3 o'clock. As you can hear in the attached files, the original hardware sounds completely different, especially in the highs. I am keen on your reactions.

UPDATE: I have recorded a second audiofile with a acoustic song, maybe this is easier for you to judge. I used the preset "Live Sound". I didn't change any setting, the UAD Massive Passive has the same settings as the hardware.

I've only used the presets of the UAD MP standard version, not the mastering version to show you a fair comparison. But I have tried some presets of the mastering version and it is always the same. The original hardware has a lot more highs and allows extremer settings and sounds a little bit smoother/warmer.
Attached Files

unprocessed loop.mp3 (493.0 KB, 8444 views)

real MP.mp3 (483.2 KB, 8830 views)

UAD MP.mp3 (502.8 KB, 8587 views)

acoustic Song, real MP.mp3 (1.58 MB, 7056 views)

acoustic Song, UAD MP.mp3 (1.64 MB, 6881 views)

acoustic Song, unprocessed.mp3 (1.61 MB, 6149 views)

Old 18th March 2010
  #2
Gear Head
 

the highs are too loud on the hardware making it hard to listen to something else ,it s too extreme almost painfull, but even on the source the highs don t sound that good,the eq just accentuate it, hard to judge...
Old 18th March 2010
  #3
Lives for gear
 
Warp69's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mental Fred View Post
the highs are too loud on the hardware making it hard to listen to something else ,it s too extreme almost painfull, but even on the source the highs don t sound that good,the eq just accentuate it, hard to judge...
Do you find it's hard to judge if there's a noticeable difference between this specific hardware unit and the UAD version?

The differences is quite clear, but it would be best if we could verify that multiple hardware units sound different compared to UAD and not just this single unit.
Old 18th March 2010
  #4
Gear Maniac
 

After having done a number of tests with my hardware it is apparent that the settings are a bit off especially in the low end. This is to be expected and needs to be tweaked by ear.

My opinion is that they haven't quite nailed the depth of the low end exactly.
On the other hand not having to go ADDA is an advantage that makes the plug in seem clearer.
One thing that bugs me is the way the filters don't resonate the same as the hardware. I always thought the filters were special on the MP

Overall I'm very happy with the plug in and will have lots of use for it , 5.1 stems being the most important for me.
Congrats to UAD for raising the bar. It's a great tool


posted a classical music shootout here
UAD2 Massive Passive vs Massive Passive
Old 18th March 2010
  #5
Lives for gear
 

Cool

Quote:
Originally Posted by Starstreet View Post
MOTU HD192
Massive Passive with Vovox cables

UPDATE: I have recorded a second audiofile with a acoustic song, maybe this is easier for you to judge. I used the preset "Live Sound". I didn't change any setting, the UAD Massive Passive has the same settings as the hardware.
in the acoustic file, the Hardware sounds 3D & transparent, verry musical.
the difference its so big i cant beleive it.

do you have a photo of you studio?
what serial number is your Real MP ?
Old 18th March 2010
  #6
Lives for gear
 

Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bruce Keen View Post
Congrats to UAD for raising the bar. It's a great tool

posted a classical music shootout here
UAD2 Massive Passive vs Massive Passive
UAD-2 lowered the bar.
the plugin sounds like crap.
Old 19th March 2010
  #7
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dubai View Post
UAD-2 lowered the bar.
the plugin sounds like crap.
being so clever you might want to have a shot at which one is the plug in then
Old 19th March 2010
  #8
Here for the gear
 

Poll UAD2 Massive Passive vs Massive Passive

Jeah Dubai: "everything I've heard I've preferred A"
An the unswer is.... hmm. go take a look
*
Old 19th March 2010
  #9
Lives for gear
 

Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bruce Keen View Post
you might want to have a shot at which one is the plug in then
#117
https://www.gearslutz.com/board/5198425-post117.html
#118 Answer:
https://www.gearslutz.com/board/5198478-post118.html

ive heard your files...
the difference its obvious, even with that source file, and that converter.
Old 20th March 2010
  #10
Lives for gear
 
tamasdragon's Avatar
 

Plugins getting better and better, but I agree with that with massive passive emulation uad did not grab the essence of the hardware, and sadly, this is very hearable.
Old 20th March 2010
  #11
Gear Addict
 

In the other thread, there didn't seem to be any differences. This is nuts, they sound completely different with these clips?
Old 20th March 2010
  #12
Gear Head
 

The UAD and Real MP sound completely different in these tests something is obvioulsy wrong with the settings/files (only checked the first soundfiles).

sounds/looks like a steep 16kHz filter employed on your UAD sample!? and, much higher boost on the hardware at 8k too...

I'm not familiar with either, but why did you use a preset on the software version as a starting point sorry? does the hardare MP have similar "presets" in the manual or something... It's a mastering EQ so can't imagine so! surely the starting point for a fair compraison (not considering externalities etc) would be to turn knobs to exact same positions on both hardware and software?

sorry but I'm just curious - thinking of getting this soon the other tests got me excited but this gives a lesser (false?) impression of the UAD. please do a repost with identical settings!

and yeah agree with earlier post the hats are a bitharsh on the real one too...
Old 20th March 2010
  #13
Lives for gear
 
Froombosch's Avatar
 

large differences....

I expected the MP to be darker, UAD also missed some of the 3-D sound
Old 21st March 2010
  #14
AvS
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by Starstreet View Post
the UAD Massive Passive has the same settings as the hardware.
They sound like different settings making it impossible to judge. I would be more interested in a test where someone try to match setting just by listening instead of matching knob settings.
Perhaps UAD did this on purpose, making the UAD MP sound "better" because the boost seems a lot less extreme and softer at same settings as the real MP.
Old 22nd March 2010
  #15
Gear Nut
 

The original hardware has more highs and sounds warmer than the plugin. I know, that in the soundfiles the highs are a little bit too extreme. This is just for demonstration. But with the original hardware it would still be possible to put in even more highs - no matter if this is useful or not. This is not possible with the plugin. The difference in sound has nothing to do with my special hardware unit. My unit is about 3-4 years old and has the new dark frontplate. The settings were exactly the same on the hardware and on the plugin!! It seems, that the difference between the plugin and the hardware is getting bigger, the more filters you use.

But I must say, that this plugin is first EQ from UAD, that makes the sound a little bit wider. The UAD Massive Passive is the best EQ they have ever made. If you have the original hardware, you can use the presets from the software and for the mix you transfer the settings to your hardware.

If you hear the difference between the plugin and the hardware depends a lot from your speakers. If I hear it over my ATC SCL50, the difference is obvious, if I use my Earthworks Sigma 6.2, the difference is getting smaller.
Old 22nd March 2010
  #16
Gear Head
 

Interesting, I hear pretty large and clear differences on my Adam P11s. not sutble at all in fact. It's not even a question of which sounds more 3D or subjectively better as they're not boosting the same levels.

Was the hardware unit a 'mastering' version or standard? Is there a chance that a standard hardware version was compared against a mastering version UAD plug. This would explain the apparent differences and the lack of highs left on the vst as you described.

standard model offers 20dB gain whereas the mastering version offers 11dB so obviously 3 o'clock on different models would give different boosts etc... just a thought... perhaps it's just the difference between $5k hardware and $300 software!?

Cheers

James
Old 20th July 2010
  #17
Gear Nut
 
Matej's Avatar
 

Thumbs down

If the difference was really that huge then I doubt good people at Manley would let this one pass. And it would also mean that Hans Zimmer can't hear! I seriously doubt it!

To me it sounds like something was set way off, by mistake or deliberately. I'm sure hardware owners would have hard time accepting that a plugin could compete with their expensive hardware... wouldn't be the first time...

Can anyone else with hardware compare the unit with the plugin?

Thanks!!
Old 20th July 2010
  #18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Matej View Post
To me it sounds like something was set way off, by mistake or deliberately. I'm sure hardware owners would have hard time accepting that a plugin could compete with their expensive hardware... wouldn't be the first time...

Can anyone else with hardware compare the unit with the plugin?

Thanks!!
Something is definitely off in this test. Here is an older thread containing two tests (the second test at the top of page 10).

UAD2 Massive Passive vs Massive Passive

In both tests the majority preferred the plugin prior to the results, it was only after the results were given that the table got more even and many said they preferred the hardware.
Old 24th July 2010
  #19
Lives for gear
 
miro's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by aleatoric View Post
Something is definitely off in this test. Here is an older thread containing two tests (the second test at the top of page 10).

UAD2 Massive Passive vs Massive Passive

In both tests the majority preferred the plugin prior to the results, it was only after the results were given that the table got more even and many said they preferred the hardware.

as usual! same goes for cheap vs. high end gear...
Old 25th July 2010
  #20
Lives for gear
 
Mark D.'s Avatar
 

The hardware file, as stated above, is so bright it's unlistenable. This sort of flattery lacking in the software might make the software seem deficient to those listening either on dull systems. Or, who have lost some high end hearing ability. There are some things I hope the OP could address on this.

1) Were the EQ changes made identical on both hardware, and software. Meaning, you cut both by 2db at (whatever) and 3db at (whatever) etc.

2) Would you consider re-posting with that made up for, by ear. Meaning if the hardwdare sounds 2db brighter, cut it by 2db more to make a wash of the results. This isn't perfect, but will show that if it's about emulating the hardware perfectly, it could fail set the same. But with adjustments I would like to see (rather hear) if such difference can be compensated for.

3) Did you drive the plug in. Despite all the hoopla if one clips the input of a plug-in, any plug-in (I've found). you will get a more smeared dull result. If so, backing off so a plug-in gets no more than -3db (ideally -6db) input you may get a cleaner sound. That could explain the dullness of the UAD.

4) If you are able to do that, or are already doing that, and you match by ear (so YOU can't tell the difference) the cuts/boosts/whatever for both, THEN post three files (original, hardware, software), and let us pick, that would be great. Maybe raise the original gain a bit to make it closer in its level to those, making it harder perhaps even to pick that out. But, do it blind. Once you reveal which is which, post the poll results at that point.

Post with that. Hence, if 2/3 prefer (whatever) see if you notice it going 50/50 or even 2/3 liking the others AFTER you reveal it. Then once all of the secondary results go to a trickle, note the total of all after revealed results. Meaning, subtract the prior to revealing numbers and post what is the resulting difference. This will not only show what people found to be better in truth (blind), but, how knowing the results will skew a poll.
Old 26th October 2010
  #21
Gear Nut
 

I have reposted new material and I changed the settings in both units, so that they sound equal. Look for the new comparison.

With equal settings, the Manley Massive Passive sounds brighter than the software. But if you change the settings at the hardware and try to match the sound of the software or viceversa, the result is very similar.
Old 26th October 2010
  #22
Gear Maniac
 
Fuseburn's Avatar
 

In both cases the original source sounds best. All the problems seem to originate from the EQ - hardware or plugin. Probably the wrong EQ with suboptimal settings for both examples ?
Old 10th September 2013
  #23
Here for the gear
 

UAD's Website Example

Just listen to the sample comparisons of three plug-ins in UAD's own promotional video. I hear a distinct difference in the high end in their own side-by-side comparisons. Watch the video on from the link that follows:

Quote:
UAD-2 Satellite DSP Accelerator (FireWire) | UAD Plug-Ins | Universal Audio



A FireWire 800/400-based DSP Accelerator Package featuring (4) Analog Devices SHARC processors, UAD Powered Plug-Ins and a $50 UAD plug-in voucher for UA\'s Online Store.
Old 14th September 2013
  #24
Lives for gear
 
Ben F's Avatar
Balanced or unbalanced outs? The UAD is based on balanced (transformer) outs of the hardware, unbalanced outs are cleaner and brighter.
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