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Nebula Release- CupReels1 - Ax102
Old 30th August 2020
  #1
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Cupwise's Avatar
 

Software Nebula Release- CupReels1 - Ax102

https://www.cupwise.com/fx/shop/cupreels-1-ax102/

After long months working on my first reel to reel tape release, including several false starts, it's finished. These programs can be fairly subtle but they can also be driven to produce more harmonic saturation. They are probably best suited for mastering or processing things like sub-mixes, but they can be used on individual channels for mixing also.

I've also included 6 reverb programs which were created by 'resampling' some of my existing Nebula reverbs, onto and off of reel tape.

Max made some great skins, as usual, and they really help take this release to the next level.

Check out the site for all the relevant info about what's included, and be sure to listen to the audio demos. You can also check out the manual if you'd like (it includes some freq response graphs).

https://www.cupwise.com/fx/shop/cupreels-1-ax102/

Last edited by Cupwise; 9th September 2020 at 12:03 PM..
Old 30th August 2020
  #2
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congrats. gonna throw it on my mixbuss. I own the ik suite as well so this will be the perfect companion.
Old 30th August 2020
  #3
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denork's Avatar
We needed a modern ATR102 in Nebula, thanks!

Instant buy, this on the mixbuss brings you a smile from ear to ear.

And thanks to azzimov's skins, we are living a new phase in the world of Nebula.
Old 30th August 2020
  #4
Here for the gear
 

Really gorgeous, in every way.
Old 30th August 2020
  #5
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UltraByte's Avatar
love it !
Old 30th August 2020
  #6
Gear Nut
 

My interest is piqued. I assume there’s no way to demo.
Can anyone comment on the customary IK Tapes comparison? Is CPU usage better than IK?
Old 30th August 2020
  #7
Gear Maniac
 


Old 30th August 2020
  #8
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ericbridenbaker View Post

Nice one. I didn’t see those videos. The separate compression might be where it’s at for me. Really interesting to separate that out.
Old 30th August 2020
  #9
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ssamson View Post
My interest is piqued. I assume there’s no way to demo.
Can anyone comment on the customary IK Tapes comparison? Is CPU usage better than IK?
On a Windows 10, 3900x machine, IK tapes uses more CPU than the full Ax102 emulation in Reaper. 6.13. About 1.5% CPU for Ax102, 2.8 to 3% for an IK Tape instance.
Old 30th August 2020
  #10
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ssamson View Post
Nice one. I didn’t see those videos. The separate compression might be where it’s at for me. Really interesting to separate that out.
Super useful. Sometimes when just a light touch is required, the Flat and No Tape presets can be perfect.

Also, the dynamics by itself can act as a very good sounding, release adjustable compressor.
Old 30th August 2020
  #11
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ericbridenbaker View Post
Super useful. Sometimes when just a light touch is required, the Flat and No Tape presets can be perfect.

Also, the dynamics by itself can act as a very good sounding, release adjustable compressor.
Yeah I think I'm convinced. Thanks for posting the CPU hit too. This could be an excellent alternative to IK Tapes.
It's usually the compression part that's missing for me from most tape emulations so this is such a fantastic idea to have the compression separate. Just having the compression part before reverbs or on the drum bus is going to be really interesting. I've been meaning to buy some of the cupwise reverbs too, so that's a bonus.
If I hadn't just closed down the studio for the night (it's midnight here) I'd give it a whirl. Tomorrow! Especially interested to try it against CHOW tape and Airwindows.
Old 30th August 2020
  #12
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jsblack's Avatar
 

The dynamic section is also very good..
Old 30th August 2020
  #13
Gear Maniac
 

Here is an example of what the dynamics section can do on it's own. A bit of make up gain applied afterwards with Airwindows Bitshiftgain.

Old 30th August 2020
  #14
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b0se's Avatar
This sounds fantastic. Very quickly became my favourite tape for the master (previously IK Tape 24), it's what I've been looking—hoping—for. It smooths/tames the top and thickens/glues. I.e. Cream. Preserves the imaging too.

Be sure to read the manual, lots of important info in there. Deck 1 @ 15 IPS FLAT was perfect for the track I'm currently mixing, hitting -8VU max on the input meter. Try driving a high self into it :¬)

Knocked this one out of the park Tim, thanks. As did @ ceejay with the custom skin.
Old 30th August 2020
  #15
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Mercado_Negro's Avatar
This could potentially bring me back to nebula.

I'd like to hear a comparison between this and the UAD ATR-102
Old 30th August 2020
  #16
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b0se's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mercado_Negro View Post
This could potentially bring me back to nebula.

I'd like to hear a comparison between this and the UAD ATR-102
I believe @ ceejay has compared the two, perhaps he can elucidate.
Old 30th August 2020
  #17
Gear Addict
 

Deeply impressed based on sonics alone.

Never been on nebula although I love Acustica.

Sounds like a SERIOUS tool so whatever the learning curve might be; it must be worth getting your feet wet.
Old 30th August 2020
  #18
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ceejay's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mercado_Negro View Post
This could potentially bring me back to nebula.
I'd like to hear a comparison between this and the UAD ATR-102
As i previously mentioned in "Nebula Must Have" thread:
Quote:
Originally Posted by ceejay View Post
I also personally prefer it to UAD's version, which is always was hard thing to apply for me, resulting or "gimme more" or "over the top" results most of the times.
I bought UAD version at the release day for almost full price back in the days, but wasn't able to use it as often as i supposed.
Unfortunately can't do a direct compare now, because i sold UAD two years ago to upgrade my machine and use more Nebula instances!
Old 30th August 2020
  #19
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ceejay's Avatar
AD reel:
Old 30th August 2020
  #20
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Mercado_Negro's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by ceejay View Post
As i previously mentioned in "Nebula Must Have" thread:

I bought UAD version at the release day for almost full price back in the days, but wasn't able to use it as often as i supposed.
Unfortunately can't do a direct compare now, because i sold UAD two years ago to upgrade my machine and use more Nebula instances!
I never encountered those problems with the UAD ATR-102 because I use it with the ultra-linear presets and it's incredible how that tiny 5% of glue, coherence, high-end control and low-end solidity gives to the song on the mixbuss. I always mix into it. I bought the IK tapes because they're indeed pretty good and I think they're great for color, tonality and textures but the UAD ATR-102 gives that final touch of finesse that no other tape plug-in I've tried can.

I'll think more about this library. I moved from nebula a few years ago and don't want to go back for several reasons that don't need to be mentioned here but if this library ends up giving more than the UAD ATR-102 I think I'll just have to do it.
Old 30th August 2020
  #21
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ceejay's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mercado_Negro View Post
I use it with the ultra-linear presets and it's incredible how that tiny 5% of glue, coherence, high-end control and low-end solidity gives to the song on the mixbuss.
Yes, i also used ultra-linear presets provided by UA. But plugin just rarely hits the spot in my case. It was added something over the sound, not always what i wanted to be added, no matter how you tweak it (you may not notice that if you mix into plugin).

But with AX102 i have intimidate immersion with the source sound. It's not adding mojo on top, but blending with it smoothly. Also 3 pretty different machines sampled for this lib, gives broader palette to find sweet spot with your material (not counting "No Tape", "Flatten", and separate "Dynamics" programs).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mercado_Negro View Post
if this library ends up giving more than the UAD ATR-102 I think I'll just have to do it.
Yes, i'm personally think it is. But you can pass my opinion, as i was involved in AX102 development)
Old 30th August 2020
  #22
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Mercado_Negro's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by ceejay View Post
Yes, i also used ultra-linear presets provided by UA. But plugin just rarely hits the spot in my case. It was added something over the sound, not always what i wanted to be added, no matter how you tweak it (you may not notice that if you mix into plugin).

But with AX102 i have intimidate immersion with the source sound. It's not adding mojo on top, but blending with it smoothly. Also 3 pretty different machines sampled for this lib, gives broader palette to find sweet spot with your material (not counting "No Tape", "Flatten", and separate "Dynamics" programs).


Yes, i'm personally think it is. But you can pass my opinion, as i was involved in AX102 development)
Actually being involved in the development is what makes your opinion more valid. Been there and know what's to be a beta tester and get excited because something finally sounds sublime.

I'm very interested, seriously. I'll think about it. Thanks!
Old 31st August 2020
  #23
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Beatworld's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mercado_Negro View Post
Actually being involved in the development is what makes your opinion more valid. Been there and know what's to be a beta tester and get excited because something finally sounds sublime.

I'm very interested, seriously. I'll think about it. Thanks!
First up, I've never owned any UAD hardware so have zero experience with their ATR-102.
I've ALWAYS heard great things about it though.

I do have just about all the usual ITB tape suspects known to mankind.

I have to say I'm really impressed with CupReels.
Deck1 is superb.
The history of Matthew Gray's ATR-102 which was used to create Deck1 is fascinating.

I've kind of lost interest in Nebula generally (I have N4) but this has made me dust N4 off and get it cranked again. CeeJays instructions on making a setup for the AX102 are really helpful too.

I'm finding the Deck1 30IPS flat setup really works on two tracks I'm about to finish. The Flat version just knocks off a bit of the top end that 30IPS (on any tapedeck) is known for and brings it back to balance. I like the way 30IPS deals with the bottom end, less bump that 15IPS.

I was really happy with these two tracks before adding AX102. I'm using Airwindows Tape in the mastering session. I just strapped AX102 across what I already had, last insert before Limiter 6 GE. I'm using the Dynamics setup as well but really just passing sound through it rather than it doing any compression as the compression is already under control.

There is a very smooth creamy cohesion to the two mixes now.
Kind of brings everything to life in a subtle way that I like.
It is important not to overdrive it.
I found that I had to use the Trim control to make sure that nowhere in an entire song did I get the Overload LED coming on. I'm hitting the Input VU meter in the AX102 really low, around -10 to -12 max. Its unusual what sounds actually trigger the overload, not just typical high transients.

I recommend you give it a go Meracado

Last edited by Beatworld; 31st August 2020 at 04:29 AM..
Old 31st August 2020
  #24
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beatworld View Post
First up, I've never owned any UAD hardware so have zero experience with their ATR-102.
I've ALWAYS heard great things about it though.

I do have just about all the usual ITB tape suspects known to mankind.

I have to say I'm really impressed with CupReels.
Deck1 is superb.
The history of Matthew Gray's ATR-102 which was used to create Deck1 is fascinating.

I've kind of lost interest in Nebula generally (I have N4) but this has made me dust N4 off and get it cranked again. CeeJays instructions on making a setup for the AX102 are really helpful too.

I'm finding the Deck1 30IPS flat setup really works on two tracks I'm about to finish. The Flat version just knocks off a bit of the top end that 30IPS (on any tapedeck) is known for and brings it back to balance. I like the way 30IPS deals with the bottom end, less bump that 15IPS.

I was really happy with these two tracks before adding AX102. I'm using Airwindows Tape in the mastering session. I just strapped AX102 across what I already had, last insert before Limiter 6 GE. I'm using the Dynamics setup as well but really just passing sound through it rather than it doing any compression as the compression is already under control.

There is a very smooth creamy cohesion to the two mixes now.
Kind of brings everything to life in a subtle way that I like.
It is important not to overdrive it.
I found that I had to use the Trim control to make sure that nowhere in an entire song did I get the Overload LED coming on. I'm hitting the Input VU meter in the AX102 really low, around -10 to -12 max. Its unusual what sounds actually trigger the overload, not just typical high transients.

I recommend you give it a go Meracado
I had a similar feeling. I wasn't using N4 much lately, a bit of a hassle, other alternatives etc. Certainly the set up was quite involved for this (as it is for all Nebula's), but the Setup instructions were useful. There could be more clear instructions for installation in the manual. It's been a little while since I installed a Nebula and I had to refer to Tim P's site to make sure I was doing it correctly and it wasn't working properly after my first go. I got there though and this sounds really great, and the interface is great too.

I've not convinced yet that it'll replace the IK tapes on master bus duties. The stereo widening of L/R differences and "movement" of the IK tapes still does a thing that sounds great but in terms of tone this CupReels plug is excellent. Definitely an improvement on all the other tape emus I have (Airwindows, Softube, Waves).

Although IK tapes are top notch I always found them a little too bright for my tastes. I have experience with a bunch of high end tape machines, in particular Studer A827, and although at 30ips there can be a shimmer/gloss it never really feels like a top end boost in the same way that IK does. It's subtle and hands down the closest I've heard in plugin form but IK does sound a little too smiley face EQ sometimes for me. I did wonder if the IK frequency response had something to do with impedance load transformer ringing, but what do I know..

On individual tracks the AX102 sounds more like what I "expect" from tape. Maybe some subtle lifts and bumps in places but much closer to flat than not. In fact I just tried it on a vocal and I much preferred AX102 over IK. The fact that I can dial in just a touch of compression glue along with the tone will be super useful on individual tracks and groups. Sibilant vocals in particular will be all over this.

I will explore more but right now colour me impressed.
Old 31st August 2020
  #25
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Will The Weirdo's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cupwise View Post
http://www.cupwise.com/fx/shop/cupreels-1-ax102/

After long months working on my first reel to reel tape release, including several false starts, it's finished. These programs can be fairly subtle but they can also be driven to produce more harmonic saturation. They are probably best suited for mastering or processing things like sub-mixes, but they can be used on individual channels for mixing also.

I've also included 6 reverb programs which were created by 'resampling' some of my existing Nebula reverbs, onto and off of reel tape.

Max made some great skins, as usual, and they really help take this release to the next level.

Check out the site for all the relevant info about what's included, and be sure to listen to the audio demos. You can also check out the manual if you'd like (it includes some freq response graphs).

http://www.cupwise.com/fx/shop/cupreels-1-ax102/
Tim, I just wanted to say FANTASTIC job on this library, I appreciate you spending the time to do this one and do it right.
Old 31st August 2020
  #26
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The demos are really nice! I own UAD Ampex ATR102. I loved it but am using more Cranesong Phoenix II for the same purpose.

I've never been in the nebula platform, and quite clueless about it. I know @ b0se recommended a Pultec style eq on Nebula as well.

This is a bit OOT, but is nebula worth to try? For those of you who moved away from it, may I know why?
Old 31st August 2020
  #27
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b0se's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ribbonmicguy View Post
The demos are really nice! I own UAD Ampex ATR102. I loved it but am using more Cranesong Phoenix II for the same purpose.

I've never been in the nebula platform, and quite clueless about it. I know @ b0se recommended a Pultec style eq on Nebula as well.

This is a bit OOT, but is nebula worth to try? For those of you who moved away from it, may I know why?
Hey RMG. There's a bit of a learning curve but it's much simpler than people imagine. Once you know where to install the files (i.e. for this library), using Nebula is no different to using Kontact.

100% worth it. In all of my direct (1:1) HW vs SW comparisons (many I haven't shared here), Nebula was always the winner, and sometimes I couldn't tell them apart ($3000 Pulse Pultec HW vs Dual Tech for example).

My most used Nebula programs are TimP: U76, Opto 32 & Vari-Level (Sta), and TimC (Cupwise) C660 and now AX102, which will be on every single master from now on.

BTW - I only use Nebula on lead/key tracks and render/print them as to not use any CPU. Everything else is hand (ear!) picked algos and a HW mixbus.
Old 31st August 2020
  #28
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ribbonmicguy View Post
This is a bit OOT, but is nebula worth to try?
It really depends on how you like to work and how far you're willing to explore the nebula options. It can be expensive to buy into, but once you're in, the plugins are very affordable. I waited for a 40 or 50% sale before I pulled the trigger on Nebula. The sound quality is excellent across the board. In particular devs like Tim P and Cupwise have loads of excellent offerings. Once you have a few plugins it starts to feel like a worthwhile expense.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ribbonmicguy View Post
For those of you who moved away from it, may I know why?
So yes, the sound is excellent, however the workflow can be a bit of a pig. Things like menu diving for different sample rates; each section of an EQ being loaded in a new N4 instance; separate clipper and dynamics section with comps... It just isn't the most friendly way of working. However, it is getting more common to see 'Setups' and 'Skins' that simplify this process and make them act more like self contained plugins. The installation is still a bit of a headache too. Plus of course they're CPU heavy.

YMMV of course. Tim P comps and Cupwise reverbs would seem to be a good place to start. This Tape plug is currently top of the heap for me though.
Old 31st August 2020
  #29
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no genre's Avatar
I went to the web site to purchase this. The web site is not secure. I think I may be able to live with that, but the checkout is also not secure. That bothers me.

Perhaps I am overly careful because of way-in-the-past experiences, but an unsecured checkout disturbs me. Is this something that no longer should be a concern? Am I missing security improvements that have been made recently making it no longer necessary to have secure checkout (that could certainly be the case)?
Old 31st August 2020
  #30
Gear Maniac
 

Deck III flat. FTW.
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