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STC-8 vs. STC-8/H vs. STC-8/M Dynamics Processors (HW)
Old 6th September 2007
  #1
Audio Alchemist
 
Lagerfeldt's Avatar
STC-8 vs. STC-8/H vs. STC-8/M

$4,450.00 STC-8

$4,700.00 STC-8/H
Detented output gain for utmost accuracy and resetability.

$5,450.00 STC-8/M
All pots with detented control. The ultimate Mastering version.

I'm feeling cheap, but convince (or don't) why I should go for the /H or the /M version.

Is it really worth it? Because of detents will it really be that much easier to recall? Are there any sonic differences or other differences?

I'm thinking of buying locally (Denmark) but any recommended places to get it in the US, as the dollar is low to the Danish currency.
Old 6th September 2007
  #2
Gear Addict
 
acorneau's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lagerfeldt View Post
Is it really worth it? Because of detents will it really be that much easier to recall? Are there any sonic differences or other differences?
We went with the "H" when we bought ours about 3 years ago. I felt like the cost (repeatable output for $250) was justifiable while the "M"s cost didn't add up for our budget.

Yes, it would be nice to have fully detented pots, but you'll have to decide if it's worth the additional $1,000.
Old 6th September 2007
  #3
Lives for gear
 

I also have "H" version. Detented outputs are useful to match stereo channels mainly but I think it's hard (but not impossible) to recall settings with those small steps anyway. Considering the fact that I have some other not detented tools, I wouldn't go for full detented version for additional $1000.
Old 6th September 2007
  #4
Standard version here.
Never have any trouble setting variable knobs .. on any gear btw.
How would you set those dials in the first place anyway; by ear/meters or scale ?

I don't wanna get smart here but i've always wondered about detents (except of cause for hard circuit-switching freq. selectors on eq's)

When would you need repeatability; To re-do a track that you feel you can do better?
Then why use the same settings if the goal is to make a change (for the better)?

Or to process a track that sounds similar to one you've done before;
No track IS the same and sould be approached fresh every time. For sure a starting point is nice but you're gonna tweak it anyway..

And what's the use of perfect synchrone output levellers if the track's balance is off?
Aren't you gonna check the levels (both L&R) everytime before printing a song?

Especially in mastering you would at least wanna have fine course detents. But then, the more steps, the more useless the divisions become.

Am i overlooking something?
Or is it just personal taste?

dare to go for that old school - no total recall - spur of the moment - exitement, just like mixing? heh

Peter
Old 7th September 2007
  #5
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MASSIVE Master's Avatar
 

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I had the regular version and "traded up" to the "M" in less than a week. I like and occasionally need "total recall" and once you take a bite, you won't want to give it up.
Old 7th September 2007
  #6
Audio Alchemist
 
Lagerfeldt's Avatar
Thanks everybody.

With indicators and large pots like on the Gyraf, recalling is a breeze.

However with the quite small pots and almost no indication points I'm fearing that the STC-8 is a nightmare to recall under all circumstances.

Perhaps the /H version is most attractive right now.
Old 7th September 2007
  #7
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gyraf's Avatar
 

An important question is also if we're talking detented potentiometers or real switched resistor chains.

With switched resistors you get complete precision - with detented potentiometers you still will be at the 5% (best case) component tolerance..

Jakob E.
Old 7th September 2007
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lagerfeldt View Post
However with the quite small pots and almost no indication points I'm fearing that the STC-8 is a nightmare to recall under all circumstances.
Definitely agreed.
Old 7th September 2007
  #9
Audio Alchemist
 
Lagerfeldt's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by gyraf View Post
An important question is also if we're talking detented potentiometers or real switched resistor chains.

With switched resistors you get complete precision - with detented potentiometers you still will be at the 5% (best case) component tolerance..

Jakob E.
Yes true, but that's quite alright with me.

What's in my G10? Input+output
Old 7th September 2007
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yareck View Post
I also have "H" version. Detented outputs are useful to match stereo channels mainly but I think it's hard (but not impossible) to recall settings with those small steps anyway.
Agreed. I've got the /H version too. It's not bad, but definitely the knobs, number of steps and faceplate marks make it a little bit of a job to match or recall the settings. However, the compressor sounds good enough to make it seem like it's not a big deal at all.

-dave
Old 7th September 2007
  #11
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gyraf's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lagerfeldt View Post
Yes true, but that's quite alright with me.

What's in my G10? Input+output
The standard G10 is built with detented potentiometers, selected to ½dB tolerance.

23-step switches is an (somewhat expensive) option, but allows for better than 0.1dB tolerance over the entire range - on the cost of less in-between settings.

Jakob E.
Old 7th September 2007
  #12
Audio Alchemist
 
Lagerfeldt's Avatar
I always considered it a bit like a human being, its mood varies slightly from day to day. I rub the meter, say "ohhmm" and light a few candles and its a happy compressor.
Old 7th September 2007
  #13
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Flying_Dutchman's Avatar
 

I got the standard version, but when i had to choose again, i would get the -H version.
Old 7th September 2007
  #14
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Any places in the US to buy you'd recommend for overseas buyers?
Old 7th September 2007
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lagerfeldt View Post
Any places in the US to buy you'd recommend for overseas buyers?
Mercenary Audio

Regards,
Bruce
Old 7th September 2007
  #16
Audio Alchemist
 
Lagerfeldt's Avatar
Right got my Great River stuff from them. Overcharged my VISA by mistake but I got it back instantly, and speedy delivery.

$4.000 for the /H version, that's $5.400 with import tax and VAT.

Okay, that looks sweet.
Old 8th September 2007
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by finetuner View Post
When would you need repeatability; To re-do a track that you feel you can do better?Peter
In the "olden days" a lot of mastering engineers had two banks of EQ. The idea was to avoid any extra storage generations, so instead of printing EQ to tape, they would decide on a setting for each song and log them. When it came time to cut the side (had to be done in one pass), the engineer would set up one tune while another played. Switching circuits made it a quick and easy way to get back what you wanted for each cut on the album.

Nowadays I don't think it matters much, except that you just make a choice of settings instead of minutely tweaking. In a way I think you can get deeper into the tone with pots than switches, on the other hand having detent switches allows you to set it and move on.

I get EQs with switches so I don't loose my settings when my shirt sleeve rubs the knob...
Old 8th September 2007
  #18
Audio Alchemist
 
Lagerfeldt's Avatar
A pretty cool EQ is the Summit Audio EQ-200

Analog EQ with digital controls and recall

EQ-200 Equalizer | Summit Audio

Ahem, getting away from the subject now.
Old 8th September 2007
  #19
Personally, i mostly use my stc8H in linked mode,
so the H version is fine for me,
if you want to use it unlinked i would say the M,

personnaly i don't like the funny things it do to the stereo image while unlinked,
but as usual it's a question of taste ....
Old 8th September 2007
  #20
Quote:
Originally Posted by djwaudio View Post
[Nowadays I don't think it matters much] ... [In a way I think you can get deeper into the tone with pots than switches]
That's what i was thinking

Quote:
Originally Posted by djwaudio View Post
I get EQs with switches so I don't loose my settings when my shirt sleeve rubs the knob...
haha.. whatever your reason.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lagerfeldt View Post
A pretty cool EQ is the Summit Audio EQ-200
Yeah, i've spotted that one and it seemed like a super neat thing. Analog eq with digital controls and (therefore) linkable. I posted a "who knows this one" question here a while ago Summit EQ-200 but as you can see, no response yet ... Do you own one ?

Cheers,
Peter
Old 8th September 2007
  #21
Audio Alchemist
 
Lagerfeldt's Avatar
No but it's on my wish list. I'm getting one on trial soon.

I know a guy who has the version without front interface (controlled via PC, unfortunately).

I'm thinking Neve + digital control, can't be that bad.
Old 9th September 2007
  #22
I'm running the STC-8/M here. Love having the detents - recommended if within the budget. I got this unit from Calistro Music. Definitely worth calling him to get a price.
Old 15th October 2007
  #23
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I have the M, got a great deal on it used or probably would have bought a standard one, but I must say I love having the detents. I use it for tracking too and the detents make it so easy to go right back to my basic mix/mastering settings after tracking. This compressor is so fantastic I can pretty much use it for anything. Thank you Dave Hill for your equisite audio designs and great people at your company!
Old 15th October 2007
  #24
Craneslut
 
Brad Blackwood's Avatar
 

Verified Member
I have the M here, too and recommend it for the mastering room - better channel matching and recalls...
Old 15th October 2007
  #25
I have the regular version. So far so good. But I'm no ME ok?
Old 15th October 2007
  #26
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Verified Member
I've had the "M" model for a few weeks now and just love it. You don't know what you're missing until you've worked with it for a while. I use it in the insert of my Masterpiece II thumbsup

Regards,
Bruce
Old 15th October 2007
  #27
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666666's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by livingstone View Post
Personally, i mostly use my stc8H in linked mode,
so the H version is fine for me....
I agree... the H works just fine for me... the H is probably the most cost effective option, especially if you'll often be using it linked. It's a very very nice compressor.

Be sure to get the special side-chain cable for the STC-8 too... and you'll need a stereo eq unit like an old Rane 302S (can be gotten cheap on Ebay) to go with that... this will allow you to do a level of surgery with an STC-8 thought only possibly via software... or you can just roll off the low-end to the detector in order to retain low-end punch (like you can do with the API 2500 "thrust" switch).
Old 15th October 2007
  #28
Gear Nut
 
defkong's Avatar
 

for sure the H is a great help by working on stereo sources, although I think the detendet steps are very small for quick recalls. But I bought the STC8-H from yareck and sold my STC-8 and think it was worth the change. Thanks again yareck

Quote:
Originally Posted by yareck View Post
Definitely agreed.
Old 16th October 2007
  #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by defkong View Post
for sure the H is a great help by working on stereo sources, although I think the detendet steps are very small for quick recalls. But I bought the STC8-H from yareck and sold my STC-8 and think it was worth the change. Thanks again yareck
You've replaced STC-8 with my STC-8 H? I saw your auction on ebay and I thought you didn't like the STC and you was selling this one from me ;-)
Old 16th October 2007
  #30
Gear Nut
 
defkong's Avatar
 

yes, I just replaced mine with yours Thought I get more for mine on ebay, but still worth the change. And how could I not like this baby, for sure one of my favorites

Quote:
Originally Posted by yareck View Post
You've replaced STC-8 with my STC-8 H? I saw your auction on ebay and I thought you didn't like the STC and you was selling this one from me ;-)
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