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Pendulum ES-8
Old 24th May 2004
  #1
Lives for gear
 
davemc's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Pendulum ES-8

So I am seriously thinking of a ES-8.
I have done a few searches and seen that a lot of people like them on the mix buss. I have the DVD that Michael Wagener did and really liked it on that.

Just want to know how versitile it is on vocals, drums, guitar, bass etc.
I currently have a pair of 2254's, 1969, 1178,fatso and ISA430 comp in outboard comps and was looking for something for tracking as well as mixbuss duties.
Other comps I have thought of are a pair of trackers(or STC8) or a SSL comp.

Like most things in Australia, if I want one I have to buy one as I cannot try local hence this post..
Old 24th May 2004
  #2
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
hey there,
i just picked up an es-8 and so far i am loving it! i auditioned it against an api 2500 and drawmer 1969 and while i liked all of them the es-8 was the one for me. i also have a pair of trakkers and a distressor and the pendulum fit in nicely. i've been using it a bunch on vocals, acoustic guitars, 2 buss, drum overheads (sometimes), drum buss (depending on the track), front of kit (again, depending on what i'm after). it is really nice and open on top and tight on the bottom (with an eq on the sidechain you can get even more options with it). i think you'll be happy with it.... i love mine.
good luck,
joshua
Old 24th May 2004
  #3
Gear Head
 
🎧 15 years
I've had an ES8 (and 6386) for a while now, and I love it. Great for mix buss-it has a wonderful (and unique) "hit-it-hard-rock-on" sound, but does good subtle things, if desired, as well.

Wonderful on vocals (very hard to mess it up), bass, and guitars.

Easily among the best pieces of gear I've owned (and that's a lot of stuff).

Good luck!

p.s. For recalls, if necessary, it's very important that you do an i/o calibration with a tone for perfect "reset-ability".
Old 25th May 2004
  #4
Lives for gear
 
davemc's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by brownmouse
hey there,
i just picked up an es-8 and so far i am loving it! i auditioned it against an api 2500 and drawmer 1969 and while i liked all of them the es-8 was the one for me. i also have a pair of trakkers and a distressor and the pendulum fit in nicely. i've been using it a bunch on vocals, acoustic guitars, 2 buss, drum overheads (sometimes), drum buss (depending on the track), front of kit (again, depending on what i'm after). it is really nice and open on top and tight on the bottom (with an eq on the sidechain you can get even more options with it). i think you'll be happy with it.... i love mine.
good luck,
joshua
Hey Joshua,

I've read what you already said ES-8 vs the 1969, for mastering I find the 1969 to be a little soft if I am looking at more modern rock stuff.
I have the 2254's are nice on 2 buss although they do not have the attack and release I need often. The fatso is purley hit or miss..

Just picked up a E47 today and really interested in the ES-8 instead of the hd acell upgrade around the same $'s
Old 25th May 2004
  #5
Lives for gear
 
Ruudman's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Aah, ES-8

Wish I could afford it...
thumbsup

ruudman
Old 25th May 2004
  #6
Lives for gear
 
jazzius II's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Bobmix...i saw you say earlier that you prefer the ES-8 over the Manley Vari-mu..........i looking to get another comp that has that vari-mu sound but is a bit cleaner on the top/bottom..........what would you decribe the difference is between the two?
Old 25th May 2004
  #7
Lives for gear
 
Virtalahde's Avatar
 
13 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by jazzius II
.i looking to get another comp that has that vari-mu sound but is a bit cleaner on the top/bottom
Jazzius, definately check Gyraf Audio's G10. Great thing! Don't know if it's clear enuff for you though. I've never hear an ES-8 or 6386.

www.gyraf.dk

../products/gyratec x


Jaakko
Old 25th May 2004
  #8
Gear Head
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by jazzius II
Bobmix...i saw you say earlier that you prefer the ES-8 over the Manley Vari-mu..........i looking to get another comp that has that vari-mu sound but is a bit cleaner on the top/bottom..........what would you decribe the difference is between the two?
I will probably get a lot of flak for this, but to me, the Manley vari-mu has always been a sort of dark, sludgey piece. That said, I know others (many) who use it to wonderful ends!
To my ears, the ES8 has a very open top, and for me, more useful envelope controls/characteristics. Another plus of the ES8 is the "fast" setting - barely move the meters and still cut down 5-20 db of transient spikes (with a minimum of audible artifacts)-good for printing to digital.
I would definitely describe the ES8 as being "cleaner" on top, and for me, more defined on the bottom.
Old 26th May 2004
  #9
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Davemc,

You can send a track through an ES-8 here:

http://theoutboardrack.com/


Although the ES-8 and the Manley Vari Mu are similar, I rarely find them interchangeable on a given project, It seems like when one is a fit, the other isn't.

I agree with bobmix about the ES-8 being cleaner. You can hear the Manley working, its sproingier while the ES-8 is a lot more refined. I prefer the Manley on loud rock and the Pendulum on acoustic instruments.

One gripe with the Pendulum is it won't handle as hot a signal at its inputs compared to a lot of other components. There was a blurb about that in its Mix review but if you watch your levels its a great sounding limiter.

Duaneadam
Old 26th May 2004
  #10
Lives for gear
 
jazzius II's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Bobmix, thanks for that.

Ok, i want to put in a good word for the Vari-mu.....my favorite setting is this:

compressor mode........input volume all the way up......attack:slowest.....release:fastest.....then i turn up the input volume, usually with the STC-8......as you get into about 1db of GR (on the meter), you get an incredibly warm, euphonic sound, especially across the midrange...

...this can be amazing on cleanish, dynamic stuff....think well recorded but safe mixed......the downside is you get increased distortion on the hi-end and a mushy sub bass.....this can be ok on some stuff, but if there's already problems like excessive esses, this can push it over the edge.....in the future i want to experiment with doing some analog multiband stuff, only sending the midrange thru the vari-mu......i dont mix but i can imagine how the vari-mu could be killa in the mix.....'specially on vocals

The ES-8 sounds very interesting......i'm always on the look-out for boxes that will saturate nicely or cut off transients in a nice way.......i noticed recently that a Neve 1073 saturates/cuts off transients in a real cool way (with the line volume on maximum).....is this why people love these old pre's?

Duaneadam....that Outboardrack place is bizarre!......running your tracks thru a certain piece is one thing, but what about the small matter of geting the right setting?.........to be honest, the whole thing seems a bit idiotic.......but i can imagine how it could work really well in the future.......imagine a time when you can audition realtime over the net at 44.1 16bit quality......if they arranged motorized control of the knobs/switches, then you could tweak in realtime to optimize your setting......that would be cool.......
Old 26th May 2004
  #11
Gear Guru
 
thethrillfactor's Avatar
 
4 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by jazzius II
Bobmix, thanks for that.


i'm always on the look-out for boxes that will saturate nicely or cut off transients in a nice way
Check out the Inward Connection TSL1 stereo limiter.

The new mastering Vari-Mu is a whole different animal than what people remember.

Much more versatile than before.

Its actually has become one of my favorite comps.

This is coming from someone who owned the original version and the one in between.

Their latest version made me totally forget these 2.
Old 26th May 2004
  #12
Lives for gear
 
jazzius II's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by thethrillfactor
Check out the Inward Connection TSL1 stereo limiter.

The new mastering Vari-Mu is a whole different animal than what people remember.

Much more versatile than before.

Its actually has become one of my favorite comps.

This is coming from someone who owned the original version and the one in between.

Their latest version made me totally forget these 2.
Thrill'.......are you talking about different versions of the Manley vari-mu?....the so-called T-bar mod?.....or do you mean the detented version.....does this sound different?

I'm actually still waiting for my vari-mu....i paid for it 3 months ago but am still using the dealers demo unit......maybe i've got an old one.....i dunno......right, i'm calling those muther-f*ckers today......
Old 26th May 2004
  #13
Gear Guru
 
thethrillfactor's Avatar
 
4 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by jazzius II
Thrill'.......are you talking about different versions of the Manley vari-mu....the so-called T-bar mod.....are you talking about the detented version.....does this sound different?

I'm actually still waiting for my vari-mu....i paid for it 3 months ago but am still using the dealers demo unit......maybe i've got an old one.....i dunno......right, i'm calling those muther-f*ckers today......

The new mastering version has all of their latest bells and whistles.

Its funny even though its detented, i can get more useful sounds out of it compared to the regular one.

And i don't think i've ever used it with the input past zero. Its usually under. At zero you start to really hear its character and that can be a good or a bad thing.
Old 26th May 2004
  #14
Lives for gear
 
jazzius II's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
coolio, Thrill'........personally i don't like detented stuff.....i like the finer control of non-detented.

I think my next comp will be a Smart C2.......am also thinking about an Avalon 2055 eq.......you got any experience with these?....
Old 26th May 2004
  #15
Lives for gear
 
davemc's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Unfortunally Manley stuff is not really an option in Australia, the local distributor gave me a quote around AUD$8000(US$5700) for a vari-mu.
I can get a STC8 or ES-8 or even TG1 locally(around AUD$3k less) and they sell around the same price bracket in the US as the Manley stuff so I do not know why..
They crapped on about how much it costs in shipping,taxes,gst etc. I said I buy from O/S often and there is not that mark up.
There is not a hell of a lot hi-end sales in OZ although if I was one of a few manafactures I would look at why the local distributor marks things way way up.
waves, royer, Kurzweil etc etc just way to dear so you buy grey or second hand over the net.
Old 26th May 2004
  #16
Lives for gear
 
davemc's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
so back to the topic, so you think the ES-8 would be a good all rounder. Probably looking at vocals or bass and 2 buss more.
Old 26th May 2004
  #17
Lives for gear
 
adamcal's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
tony mantz here in melbourne has a STC-8 if you want to hear that one.
Old 26th May 2004
  #18
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Jazzius,

Thanks for the honest feedback. With 25 years of experience, we'll get the settings right. Not only that, samples are sent for approval prior to the final upload. Is there another way to get such a diverse selection of high end processing that inexpensively?

Anyway, I really do appreciate your honesty. As with any new idea, I'm sure there will be some growing pains.

Duaneadam
http://theoutboardrack.com/
Old 26th May 2004
  #19
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
I think my next comp will be a Smart C2.......am also thinking about an Avalon 2055 eq.......you got any experience with these?....
The C2 is definitely a niche compressor and sometimes I think it should have only come with an on and off switch. Its clean enough to send a mix through if your careful, and will add that SSL thomp but it's pretty easy to over do it. 1 to 2 db's with slow attack is plenty. The crush mode is too bright for the 2 buss but works on solo tracks like electric guitar and some percussion.
All of the settings are detented so its a little tricky to dial in the attack if you want to flirt with the transients.

duaneadam
Old 26th May 2004
  #20
Lives for gear
 
jazzius II's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Duane, i had no idea it was your shop!....i thought you were just posting a link.

Well, like i said, it's definately different....but if you're giving people a ref first, then why not. You've certainly got a nice selection of gear!.......and as bandwidth increases, you'll have a lot more possibilities. Good luck with it!

The C2.....yeah, i've heard it and know it's a one trick pony, but it's a trick i need!......if i'm gonna persuade the guys here not to use the appalling SSL 9k buss comp, i need to have something similar (but better) to replace it......the ES-8 seems very appealing but i guess it's too similar to the Manley to be my next purchase....

...davemc, sorry to slightly hijack your thread but it's all knowledge and information at the end of the day.
Old 26th May 2004
  #21
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Minus an ability to read minds, how do you know what the 'right' setting is?
Wouch...

We get a pretty good idea when the sender fills out their track request as to what they want us to do. We have half a dozen PC's that do nothing but upload and download so if a track isn't acceptable it's a matter of minutes not days before its changed.
Consider that anyone in the world can now access numerous colors of high end audio processing for really, next to nothing.

duaneadam
http://theoutboardrack.com/
Old 26th May 2004
  #22
Gear Guru
 
thethrillfactor's Avatar
 
4 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by jazzius II
coolio, Thrill'........personally i don't like detented stuff.....i like the finer control of non-detented.

I think my next comp will be a Smart C2.......am also thinking about an Avalon 2055 eq.......you got any experience with these?....
On the mastering Manley Vari-Mu i love the detents.

Everytime i use it it makes me yearn for the detented version of the GML 8200EQ.

Yes and yes on experience with the C2 and 2055.

I have owned both.

Kept the C2 and sold the 2055 a while back.

I have been looking at the ES-8 for other things though.

I am not a mixbuss comp guy.

But i do like to compress sub busses when i mix.
Old 26th May 2004
  #23
Lives for gear
 
syra's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by jazzius II
The C2.....yeah, i've heard it and know it's a one trick pony, but it's a trick i need!
I wouldn't say the C2 is a one trick pony. You can get many sounds from it and the crush function works amazing on parallel compression. Its a must-have piece, as you said, and it can be subtle or super aggresive...

peace
Old 26th May 2004
  #24
Lives for gear
 
blackcatdigi's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by davemc
so back to the topic, so you think the ES-8 would be a good all rounder. Probably looking at vocals or bass and 2 buss more.
IME, the ES-8 is a super all-a-rounder. Nice hi-fi (for lack of a better description), relatively transparent (for a toob unit), no dulling/sludging of top or bottom end. Definately not a 'drum bus squasher' - much too refined and well behaved. I would expect it to be beautiful on almost any other app.

FWIW, Way back when, at the great 2bus comp shootout @ WW, my personal favorites were STC-8, ES-8, and Smart C2, for various uses.

STC-8 was able to transparently control dynamics, and offered the ability to dial in 'a bit' of color.

ES-8 was almost the tube equivalent of the CS, (obviously with a bit MORE color).

C2 just sounded like an instant modern rock radio mix - TLA in a box.

To My Ears... YMMV

Presently, there is an original 6386 tubed VMu and a STC-8 in the rack here at the studio, and I LONG for the C2...
Old 26th May 2004
  #25
member no 666
 
Fletcher's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by duaneadam
Is there another way to get such a diverse selection of high end processing that inexpensively?
No offense intended [though it's probably gonna come out that way]... your price per track is right around the day rental rate for these units... and while you may have 25 years of experience... in my 25 or so years of experience I've found that diddling the knobs was a big part of the decision making process... especially with equalizers.

Best of luck with your endeavor...
Old 26th May 2004
  #26
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Okay I'm getting slammed by the big leagers. That's okay. FWIW, one of the first people I ran this idea by who moderates another forum responded with "wow, not even Fletcher is doing that.

Anyway, the site isn't aimed at pros who have a rack of this type of gear at their disposal. It's targeted at musicians who have a limited gear selection and a limited budget who want the sound of the good stuff on their recordings today. A lot of guys wouldn't get the best results in a days worth of learning from a Weiss or a Cranesong or a Manley Slam even if they did want to wait for one to be shipped. Certainly took me more than a day or two to learn how to make those units sing. We use these components every day so the per track price includes the cost of someone doing the processing with some expertise.

I honestly do appreciate the critiques. This endeavor took two years of planning not to mention a lot of $$$ but as in anything new there's always something you overlook.

duaneadam
http://theoutboardrack.com/
Old 26th May 2004
  #27
Gear Addict
 
CrazyBeast's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Seems like a cool idea to me! Best of luck.
Old 27th May 2004
  #28
Lives for gear
 
davemc's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by duaneadam
Okay I'm getting slammed by the big leagers. That's okay. FWIW, one of the first people I ran this idea by who moderates another forum responded with "wow, not even Fletcher is doing that.

Anyway, the site isn't aimed at pros who have a rack of this type of gear at their disposal. It's targeted at musicians who have a limited gear selection and a limited budget who want the sound of the good stuff on their recordings today. A lot of guys wouldn't get the best results in a days worth of learning from a Weiss or a Cranesong or a Manley Slam even if they did want to wait for one to be shipped. Certainly took me more than a day or two to learn how to make those units sing. We use these components every day so the per track price includes the cost of someone doing the processing with some expertise.

I honestly do appreciate the critiques. This endeavor took two years of planning not to mention a lot of $$$ but as in anything new there's always something you overlook.

duaneadam
http://theoutboardrack.com/

No it sounds like a cool idea..
How do you go about setting everything.
If I sent you a song that was say 8 bars solo bass, then vox, kick, snare, then stereo unmastered mix. Would that be cool to feed through a ES-8?

I know people who have a Vari-Mu and a STC8 local that I could try and see if I can get a little time with.
I hate to buy something like this without trying.
Old 27th May 2004
  #29
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
If you sent five different eight bar segments, you would receive 3 optimized versions of each segment with track notes to allow you to follow the settings (up to 5 minutes total).

For this "sampling" option, unless otherwise instructed we apply slightly more processing than we would in mastering so you can really hear the unit working. Lavry Golds or Weiss converters are included so you hear the processor and nothing else.

duaneadam
Old 28th May 2004
  #30
Lives for gear
 
davemc's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Thanks I will look at what tracks I have around to make this up.
Probably the closest I will get for a demo.
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