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a-designs em-eq2 or Retro's 2A3 for electronic music Effects Pedals, Units & Accessories
Old 27th March 2011
  #1
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a-designs em-eq2 or Retro's 2A3 for electronic music

Hi there i'm looking for a stereo eq to go along with my api-2500. I mainly produce electronic music. I don't have any tube gear in my studio. I'm guessing both units are fantastic but thought i should get some opinions here.
Old 27th March 2011
  #2
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RCM - Ronan's Avatar
The EM-EQ2 is a solid state EQ.
Old 27th March 2011
  #3
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yep which is why i'm thinking it might be more suited towards processing electronic music
Old 27th March 2011
  #4
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RCM - Ronan's Avatar
OK sorry, I was confused.

Since you are narrowed down to Pultec type EQs I do not have to chime in with he pros and cons of that. I have not tried Retro's 2A3 yet (would love to) but I have experience with the EM-EQ2, and a lot of with their 500 series equivalent (EM-PEQ). They do a really great job of that pultec "make things bigger than life" thing, but the A Designs Passive EQs tend to run a little cleaner than the old Pultec, which makes the low end a little bit punchier. This is not good or bad, since the little bit of low end saturation is one of the things that many people love about the original pultecs (and good clones).

I have a pair of EM-PEQs that live on my 2bus.
Old 28th March 2011
  #5
500 series nutjob
 
pan60's Avatar
 

based on my love for the A-Designs EM-PEQ's, the EM-EQ2 is on my list of gear to have!
Old 28th March 2011
  #6
Gear Addict
 

I have the same question...would love feedback (as a Hammer owner already)
Old 28th March 2011
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RCM - Ronan View Post
OK sorry, I was confused.

Since you are narrowed down to Pultec type EQs I do not have to chime in with he pros and cons of that. I have not tried Retro's 2A3 yet (would love to) but I have experience with the EM-EQ2, and a lot of with their 500 series equivalent (EM-PEQ). They do a really great job of that pultec "make things bigger than life" thing, but the A Designs Passive EQs tend to run a little cleaner than the old Pultec, which makes the low end a little bit punchier. This is not good or bad, since the little bit of low end saturation is one of the things that many people love about the original pultecs (and good clones).

I have a pair of EM-PEQs that live on my 2bus.
Thanks Ronan. As i'm on the hunt for a nice stereo eq i had my eye on the 2A3 for a while now. I don't have anything with tubes in my studio so i thought it would be fun to add some good tube eq to my signal path. Recently i read a post by Tony Shepperd about the EM-EQ2 and i read something that got me thinking.

He wrote - "The EM-EQ2 sounds good, really good. Because there are no tubes in the entire box, it can take a punch from modern music (think heavy kick, bass) without collapsing like a lot of tubes do on the 2 buss. The EQ is smooth. At 60 Hz, it really gives balls to the bottom end without having to sound dark or mushy. It equally does that for the top end. Not brittle, just smooth with a sheen."

Of course the best thing to do would be to test both boxes for myself but unfortunately i'm one of those people that that's just not possible. Both eq's look fantastic though :D
Old 28th March 2011
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by radic View Post
Thanks Ronan. As i'm on the hunt for a nice stereo eq i had my eye on the 2A3 for a while now. I don't have anything with tubes in my studio so i thought it would be fun to add some good tube eq to my signal path. Recently i read a post by Tony Shepperd about the EM-EQ2 and i read something that got me thinking.

He wrote - "The EM-EQ2 sounds good, really good. Because there are no tubes in the entire box, it can take a punch from modern music (think heavy kick, bass) without collapsing like a lot of tubes do on the 2 buss. The EQ is smooth. At 60 Hz, it really gives balls to the bottom end without having to sound dark or mushy. It equally does that for the top end. Not brittle, just smooth with a sheen."

Of course the best thing to do would be to test both boxes for myself but unfortunately i'm one of those people that that's just not possible. Both eq's look fantastic though :D

FWIW

Tony Sheppard is the President of "Pete's Place Audio" (A designs sister company)

PAN60 is the designer of "The blast Pad" a product manufactured and distributed by "Pete's Place Audio" (A designs sister company)

RCM Ronan is a beta tester and long time "endorse" of A Designs and Pete's Place Audio

Not that there's anything wrong with that - but I would highly recommend taking what you read on Gearslutz with a grain of salt.
Old 28th March 2011
  #9
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Tony Shepperd's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by CeretoneAudio View Post
FWIW

Tony Sheppard is the President of "Pete's Place Audio" (A designs sister company)

PAN60 is the designer of "The blast Pad" a product manufactured and distributed by "Pete's Place Audio" (A designs sister company)

RCM Ronan is a beta tester and long time "endorse" of A Designs and Pete's Place Audio

Not that there's anything wrong with that - but I would highly recommend taking what you read on Gearslutz with a grain of salt.

I don't know how I got dragged into a thread I hadn't posted in, but since you brought my name up:
1. My last name is spelled Shepperd. That's two P's, E rd. Not the A that you misspelled it with.

2. In my signature it clearly says I am the President of PPA, but I know Gearslutz has changed their policy lately about signatures, so maybe people may not have seen it. If that's the case... talk to Jules about that, that's out of my control.
Old 29th March 2011
  #10
Jai guru deva om
 
warhead's Avatar
 

Both are excellent, but somewhat different. While both are tools you could reach for to do essentially the same things, their tone is certainly different. The RETRO is more of a wide and round, slightly softened tone, where the A Designs hits a bit more narrow and stays tighter. The top end of the 2A3 is a bit more of that wide splat, where the EM PEQ / EM EQ2 is more tingle / electric. I really love the way both work and sound, the 2A3 by design is certainly a more character piece overall but that does not mean the PEQ is clean or neutral as it brings size and depth to anything.

You can hear them both in my Clipalator gear page, as well as watch a video where I pretty much just push them to their limits so you get somewhat of an idea of the parameters a piece of gear has. For the videos I chose kick drum for low end focus (and the ability for an EQ to scoop low mids well here) and female vocals to show off upper mid and air frequencies more.

War
Old 29th March 2011
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Shepperd View Post
I don't know how I got dragged into a thread I hadn't posted in, but since you brought my name up:
1. My last name is spelled Shepperd. That's two P's, E rd. Not the A that you misspelled it with.

2. In my signature it clearly says I am the President of PPA, but I know Gearslutz has changed their policy lately about signatures, so maybe people may not have seen it. If that's the case... talk to Jules about that, that's out of my control.
Ok, no worries Tony sorry to misspell your name.
Old 29th March 2011
  #12
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StoneinaPond's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by CeretoneAudio View Post
FWIW

Tony Sheppard is the President of "Pete's Place Audio" (A designs sister company)

PAN60 is the designer of "The blast Pad" a product manufactured and distributed by "Pete's Place Audio" (A designs sister company)

RCM Ronan is a beta tester and long time "endorse" of A Designs and Pete's Place Audio

Not that there's anything wrong with that - but I would highly recommend taking what you read on Gearslutz with a grain of salt.
On the contrary. These people know more about the product than people like yourself precisely because of their affiliation. And in all these case they very clearly stated their ability to comment based on the OPs question.

So please, share with us your opinions of one or both pieces based on your usage.
Old 29th March 2011
  #13
Gear Addict
 
Peter Stengaard's Avatar
 

I've used both and completely agree with this. For in your face modern synth/electronic based music I'd go with the A - if ur looking for more of a squishy huge retro feel go with the...retro - brilliant how they name things :-)

Quote:
Originally Posted by warhead View Post
Both are excellent, but somewhat different. While both are tools you could reach for to do essentially the same things, their tone is certainly different. The RETRO is more of a wide and round, slightly softened tone, where the A Designs hits a bit more narrow and stays tighter. The top end of the 2A3 is a bit more of that wide splat, where the EM PEQ / EM EQ2 is more tingle / electric. I really love the way both work and sound, the 2A3 by design is certainly a more character piece overall but that does not mean the PEQ is clean or neutral as it brings size and depth to anything.

You can hear them both in my Clipalator gear page, as well as watch a video where I pretty much just push them to their limits so you get somewhat of an idea of the parameters a piece of gear has. For the videos I chose kick drum for low end focus (and the ability for an EQ to scoop low mids well here) and female vocals to show off upper mid and air frequencies more.

War
Old 29th March 2011
  #14
Man, the RETRO is seriously musical. Its an instrument. A Retro Instrument.

My experience with that box, is that if you are a fan of old PULTEC's for flavor but not a fan of spending vintage PULTEC $$$$, this box will make your wallet and your ears smile. I shot this thing out against a lot of P-tech like boxes, and without spending LOTS OF MONEY, this box sounded the oldest and most "preferred" for its "tone" and action to an older vibe. Man, it sounds huge with a really worthy character. A tone animal and when you give something simple balance, easily - there is this great life/presence to the bass that will make your tracks stick out and sail through a mix nicely. Overall, its hard to find this thing not useful everywhere, and if you favor weight and creamy type of density that makes things FAT, I'd bet you would get along well with it. The 1.5K on that box is STUPIDLY good too,
Old 30th March 2011
  #15
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big thanks for all the comments. Pretty much confirming what i had already thought/read. Definitely can't go wrong with whichever box i choose
Old 1st April 2011
  #16
500 series nutjob
 
pan60's Avatar
 

mine should be here any day!!!!!



don't tell the wife!
Old 2nd April 2011
  #17
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RCM - Ronan's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by CeretoneAudio View Post
FWIW
RCM Ronan is a beta tester and long time "endorse" of A Designs and Pete's Place Audio
True, but mostly a fan that has more experience with their stuff than most. I have no vested interest in, or get no payment from either of those companies (I do get sweetheart pricing on demo units from the beta testing), and I try really hard to be as objective as possible here on gearslutz (or at least make my personal biases obvious). I hope that comes through in my posts.

I actually have good close relationships with several other companies, and make a concerted effort try to offer the best advice to people even if it means steering people away from gear/companies that I personally like or have relationships with. If I ever act otherwise on the forums please do me a favor and call me out publicly for it.

Last edited by RCM - Ronan; 2nd April 2011 at 05:05 AM..
Old 4th April 2011
  #18
500 series nutjob
 
pan60's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by CeretoneAudio View Post
FWIW

PAN60 is the designer of "The blast Pad" a product manufactured and distributed by "Pete's Place Audio" (A designs sister company)

i was a fan of A-designs gear long long long time before the Blast Pad!
which has nothing to do with me and A-Designs, thats Peters business.

which buy the way does absolutely rock!

the others you mention, these guys use gear they know works!!!!!!!!!!!!
FACT!
Old 4th April 2011
  #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CeretoneAudio View Post
FWIW

Tony Sheppard is the President of "Pete's Place Audio" (A designs sister company)

PAN60 is the designer of "The blast Pad" a product manufactured and distributed by "Pete's Place Audio" (A designs sister company)

RCM Ronan is a beta tester and long time "endorse" of A Designs and Pete's Place Audio

Not that there's anything wrong with that - but I would highly recommend taking what you read on Gearslutz with a grain of salt.
Nothing you wrote was incorrect or attacking in any way- just putting it all in perspective. Then the referenced posters get defensive...

There is undoubtedly a small A Designs gang on GS. Flame on but it is what it is. Its amazing to see how much consistency you get on a designs posts from these guys and a couple others...

After trying both, I prefer the retro over all but bought neither. The A designs eq is nice, don't get me wrong, but this stuff is ridiculous... Far beyond fanboy posts.

The post I quoted wasn't out of line or incorrect whatsoever, yet it got some responses real quick... THAT says it all. If you get defensive about the truth...

And Tony... dragged into a thread? come on... Quoted.

I think they should consider changing the name from Gearslutz to Gearsalez...

But what do I know, I don't sell anything!
Old 4th April 2011
  #20
Lives for gear
 

Been missing you around these parts lately
Old 11th April 2011
  #21
500 series nutjob
 
pan60's Avatar
 

i am so stoked!!!!!!!
Attached Thumbnails
a-designs em-eq2 or Retro's 2A3 for electronic music-designs_rack_3.jpg   a-designs em-eq2 or Retro's 2A3 for electronic music-designs_rack_5.jpg  
Old 11th April 2011
  #22
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toneguru's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by CeretoneAudio View Post
FWIW

Tony Sheppard is the President of "Pete's Place Audio" (A designs sister company)

PAN60 is the designer of "The blast Pad" a product manufactured and distributed by "Pete's Place Audio" (A designs sister company)

RCM Ronan is a beta tester and long time "endorse" of A Designs and Pete's Place Audio

Not that there's anything wrong with that - but I would highly recommend taking what you read on Gearslutz with a grain of salt.
Thanks, I appreciate the heads up. Simply pointing things out as you did seems to be the right thing to do.

Please note that I have nothing but the utmost respect for RCM and his reply is a reminder of why. (the other two gentlman I don't really know).

- Cheers
Old 11th April 2011
  #23
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Audio Child's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by pan60 View Post
i am so stoked!!!!!!!
More fanboy evidence lol
Old 12th April 2011
  #24
500 series nutjob
 
pan60's Avatar
 

very big fan of A-Designs, make no mistake!!!!
and so what,
awesome company
awesome service
awesome products

thats way i save to get gear i want from those guys.

what more do you want?
Old 12th April 2011
  #25
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dbjp's Avatar
 

The Retro was absolutely great when I had a demo unit last year.
'...it can take a punch from modern music (think heavy kick, bass) without collapsing like a lot of tubes do on the 2 buss. ' is not something that applies to this tube eq.
The subsonic filter was a nice feature too for some stuff. Highs were really sweet. So sweet that you soon loose touch of reality and end up cranking it way too much as the session goes on. Only to realize what you'd done after lunch.

It's a great stereo eq for the mix bus but it's also incredibly useful on individual tracks too. Highly recommended.
Old 12th April 2011
  #26
Gear Addict
 

Has anyone (non dealer) actually heard both units?
Old 12th April 2011
  #27
Moderator
 
TonyBelmont's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by radic View Post
Hi there i'm looking for a stereo eq to go along with my api-2500. I mainly produce electronic music. I don't have any tube gear in my studio. I'm guessing both units are fantastic but thought i should get some opinions here.
It all depends what kind of qualities you are looking for in an EQ. If someone walked up to me and told me they did electronic music and wanted a good stereo EQ, I would probably tell them to try the API 5500 or the new Aurora Audio GT4-2 before going for a Pultec style EQ.
Old 16th April 2011
  #28
500 series nutjob
 
pan60's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by pianokeys View Post
Has anyone (non dealer) actually heard both units?
i am not a dealer, i do NOT work for A-Designs or Pete's Place ( contrary to what some my choose to believe ), i do think i hear a slight difference but nothing that would make me choose one over the other.
they are the same as the 500 version just place in a rack so as to allow for larger pots, knobs, and spacing.
i wanted the rack version to slap of my two bus rack just for the large knobs.
and yes i do consider Peter as well as a number of other manufactories i have worked with, a great friend!
Old 16th April 2011
  #29
AB3
Lives for gear
 

Please excuse this stereotype, but I think something for the wife would be nice, to soften things when it arrives. Perhaps an a designs necklace?


[/I]
Quote:
Originally Posted by pan60 View Post
very big fan of A-Designs, make no mistake!!!!
and so what,
awesome company
awesome service
awesome products

thats way i save to get gear i want from those guys.

what more do you want?
Old 16th April 2011
  #30
500 series nutjob
 
pan60's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by AB3 View Post
Please excuse this stereotype, but I think something for the wife would be nice, to soften things when it arrives. Perhaps an a designs necklace?


[/I]
LOL
i think a A-Designs neckless would be great, tell the wife i bought the neckless and they threw in a comp or eq for a promotional deal?

i like: )~
hehhehheh
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