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Derr Parametric EQ Metering & Analysis Plugins
Old 16th December 2010
  #1
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Scott Anthony's Avatar
 

Derr Parametric EQ

Hi,

I've got a couple of parametric eqs I'm planning on wiring up and playing with over the holidays. I'm mostly interested in hearing if they can be incorporated into an analog mastering chain. They do not have stepped pots, and come from a very unique origin. They've served extremely well for mixing in the past, but it's been 4-5 years since I've used them.

I'm interested in forum thoughts on application, testing methods, and possible pitfalls. My initial thought is they may be useful as a M-S vibe EQ.

Now for some background:

Dave Derr had a wonderful studio in NJ where Empirical Labs was born. Much of the equipment in his studio was seriously modified, and results were consistent and fantastic. I used a prototype Distressor for a couple years on quite a few projects before it had a front panel or knobs...

After Empirical Labs took off (!), I've become custodian of two Derr modified Ashly SC-66a parametrics. Wonderful eqs. Dave used to say these things were rebuilt to spec similar to a Massenburg 8200 in noise floor and tone. He wasn't kidding, but one does have to get over the fact they look like they were salvaged from a fire in a rock club...

Thoughts? I know how to use my ears; more looking for practical testing advice (tones, calibration, measurement stuff).

Cheers,
-s

http://www.ashly.com/retired/manual/man-sc-63_66a.pdf


Last edited by Scott Anthony; 16th December 2010 at 03:28 PM.. Reason: english is my first language, but can be hard to tell..
Old 16th December 2010
  #2
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Waltz Mastering's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Anthony View Post
Hi,

I've got a couple of parametric eqs I'm planning on wiring up and playing with over the holidays. I'm mostly interested in hearing if they can be incorporated into an analog mastering chain. They do not have stepped pots, and come from a very unique origin. They've served extremely well for mixing in the past, but it's been 4-5 years since I've used them.

I'm interested in forum thoughts on application, testing methods, and possible pitfalls. My initial thought is they may be useful as a M-S vibe EQ.

Now for some background:

Dave Derr had a wonderful studio in NJ where Empirical Labs was born. Much of the equipment in his studio was seriously modified, and results were consistent and fantastic. I used a prototype Distressor for a couple years on quite a few projects before it had a front panel or knobs...

After Empirical Labs took off (!), I've become custodian of two Derr modified Ashly SC-66a parametrics. Wonderful eqs. Dave used to say these things were rebuilt to spec similar to a Massenburg 8200 in noise floor and tone. He wasn't kidding, but one does have to get over the fact they look like they were salvaged from a fire in a rock club...

Thoughts? I know how to use my ears; more looking for practical testing advice (tones, calibration, measurement stuff).
Dave's a super nice guy. Ashley on it's own doesn't ring hi-fi but I'm sure if DD modded the SC-66 and it has a relatively low noise floor that there wouldn't be any harm in giving it a go if you're using decent conversion.
Old 16th December 2010
  #3
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Scott Anthony's Avatar
 

Hi Tom,

Yeah, Dave is the bomb. I know the Ashly unmodified is probably best suited for a small PA circa 1980, but I suspect the only thing Ashly about this eq is the front panel.

Conversion is covered; I'm actually quite satisfied with my room/monitoring/conversion/digital tools after many years of slow steady growth. I'm hoping for experiences or advice integrating really funky stuff into an analog mastering chain...

-s
Old 16th December 2010
  #4
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loji's Avatar
as far as checking the unit ... any tech could do it for you for a pretty small fee. (and should provide you with print-outs) of the measurements. How flat/linear/noisey etc ... in absolute terms so you can compare.

Or if you mean how to integrate into your mastering workflow. . . yup Tones.

the biggie with unstepped pots is L/R matching. if you never ever touch the input trims (does that thing even have gain trim?) then it should stay relatively stable as long as the pots don't fluctuate. (ya know .. like with the weather, or moon). You'd want to use tones to set that up.

same thing with the freq gain .. you'll need to tone each side to make sure they match .. otherwise you may be compromising the stereo 'feel' if they are set slightly different. The hard part is matching frequency. But lots of good mastering gear can have that problem. (NS-EQ for instance). stepped gain, but not stepped freqs.

If you have Spectrafoo, you can use that to match gains/freq. I'd also check to see how close the front panel markings actually ARE to what really comes out of the unit. Put it on the narrowest bandwidth, and use the snapshot overlay feature to compare L/R channels with the same visual settings. . . see how close they are. If it's *under* .5dB it'll probably be ok. Any more than that, i'd think of having it re-calibrated or modified. At least the frot panel markings, so you can set each side to match the other.


Not sure of the design, but an option could be to supe it up with veneer dials. Not really any cheaper than subbing in stepped pots .. but if space is an issue it might be a solution.
Old 16th December 2010
  #5
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Scott Anthony's Avatar
 

Hi Tim,

Thanks, that's all really great info...

-s
Old 17th December 2010
  #6
Quote:
Ashly SC-66a
Ahsly is more a mixing equalizer, it will probably damage your mix.
Old 17th December 2010
  #7
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mastertone's Avatar
 

Verified Member
I have a sc-66, the version before yours.

Its a pretty nice eq, for tracking and mixing.
Its very hard to match sides, and the gain is just to broad.
Also i found mine to have a too low headroom.

You could have it modded with less gain and stepped controls but i wouldn't pour money into it.
Old 17th December 2010
  #8
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Verified Member
My brother has one of these in his studio, it's very very coloured, wouldn't use it over a mix ever.
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