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Plugin Alliance Release AMEK EQ 200
Old 13th July 2020
  #751
Why do plugin developers insist on adding Rack Ears to their plugins?

I think with eq plugins it comes down to best ergonomics for the user and transparency. I find that digital coloration with a lot of the emulations wear thin after the honeymoon period wears off. It's like drinking diet soda...it's just not the same as real sugar.

In the end I find myself using the Sonnox Eq time and time again. It just works...

Mix Buss wise, its analog all the way for me.
Old 13th July 2020
  #752
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by engmix View Post

In the end I find myself using the Sonnox Eq time and time again. It just works...
The Oxford EQ is a true classic and still great, soundwise.

Regarding handling and featureset, the Maat Blue is a fantastic upgrade and leagues above anything PA has to offer...
Old 22nd July 2020
  #753
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by engmix View Post
Why do plugin developers insist on adding Rack Ears to their plugins?
How else it it going to stay up on the monitor? I hate that you have to supply your own virtual screws.
Old 22nd July 2020
  #754
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by dblock View Post
I have it. It doesn't have those silky airy highs like my AirEQ but it's got plenty of midrange punch for modern hip hop and electronic music which I think was it's main focus.
I have AirEQ and it's hard to beat that "Air" band but for midrange punch for modern hip hop and electronic music I turn to my Acustica Pensado EQ.
Old 29th July 2020
  #755
Gear Head
 
Chipirones's Avatar
 

I have used the amek eq 200 again and I have discovered how magnificent it is in the mix bus, when what you need is a small and smiling curve, playing with the gain scaling is essential there and it is what I like most about the eq. I love the tone(and be able to make variations in it too(TMT)) in the low end on electronic things (hip hop, trap, house, etc), which is what I do. I don't know if it's like the hardware or not, but It matters little here working in the box, the eq it does the job in an exceptional way. I can understand the criticism for the price, but the eq is top nocht. i love it.
Old 13th August 2020
  #756
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chipirones View Post
I have used the amek eq 200 again and I have discovered how magnificent it is in the mix bus, when what you need is a small and smiling curve, playing with the gain scaling is essential there and it is what I like most about the eq. I love the tone(and be able to make variations in it too(TMT)) in the low end on electronic things (hip hop, trap, house, etc), which is what I do. I don't know if it's like the hardware or not, but It matters little here working in the box, the eq it does the job in an exceptional way. I can understand the criticism for the price, but the eq is top nocht. i love it.
Thats a great sounding transparent EQ for sure, great on the master buss, well thats what it was designed for I guess. But it will work well on any source that can benefit from a transparent eq. Piano, acoustic guitar, orchestral instruments, etc...
Old 17th August 2020
  #757
plx
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by simon.billington View Post
Thats a great sounding transparent EQ for sure, great on the master buss, well thats what it was designed for I guess. But it will work well on any source that can benefit from a transparent eq. Piano, acoustic guitar, orchestral instruments, etc...
what exactly is a transparent EQ and why are not most (free with DAW) channel EQs transparent?
Old 18th August 2020
  #758
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by plx View Post
what exactly is a transparent EQ and why are not most (free with DAW) channel EQs transparent?
Even if an eq sounds more-or-less transparent, there are many details that still change the sound and might cause others to consider it non-transparent. For example check out this page: https://vladgsound.wordpress.com/201...alizers-draft/
or this video: ReaEq vs Pro-Q3

For me the worst offender is cramping (luckily most EQs do not have this problem, yet fixes do have other consequences), but one that is not mentioned there that I like to watch out is unwanted distortion when the EQ is being automated (not the most common usecase, but important for me). Even good EQs still have problems here , and my guess is AMEK is not an exception (but I don't know, did not test it).

Here for example are pictures from StudioOne stock eq (ok), Neutron (ok), Melda's MEqualizer (ok with high quality), TDR Nova Insane mode (strangely not ok) and bx_2098 (not ok, but I'm not sure this is a fair comparison, it behaves as if its controls were stepped). First half is gain modulation (0 ->+5dB), second half is frequency modulation (500Hz -> 700Hz).

Finally, don't get me wrong, I do not argue that AMEK is transparent (personally demos were so uninspiring that I didn't even bother testing it), just that there are differences between eqs and to some they might matter.
Attached Thumbnails
Plugin Alliance Release AMEK EQ 200-studioone-proeq.png   Plugin Alliance Release AMEK EQ 200-neutron3.png   Plugin Alliance Release AMEK EQ 200-mequalizer.png   Plugin Alliance Release AMEK EQ 200-mequalizer-high-quality.png   Plugin Alliance Release AMEK EQ 200-tdr-nova-insane.png  

Plugin Alliance Release AMEK EQ 200-bx_2098.png  
Old 18th August 2020
  #759
Lives for gear
 
Eigenwert's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by plx View Post
what exactly is a transparent EQ and why are not most (free with DAW) channel EQs transparent?
Minimum phase EQs change the phase (=timing) relationship between the frequency components of the signal as well as the frequency balance. So they are not exactly transparent.

Linear Phase EQs don't suffer from that, however they cause a pre ringing which is not exactly transparent either.

It's hard to retain the transients in the signal processed by an EQ very well which - in absence of a real definition - is what I guess makes an EQ "transparent".

In an EQ algorithm there's always some kind of tradeoff between unwanted features such as ringing, frequency dependent phase shifts and latency.
Old 18th August 2020
  #760
plx
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by random musican View Post
Even if an eq sounds more-or-less transparent, there are many details that still change the sound and might cause others to consider it non-transparent. For example check out this page: https://vladgsound.wordpress.com/201...alizers-draft/
or this video: ReaEq vs Pro-Q3

For me the worst offender is cramping (luckily most EQs do not have this problem, yet fixes do have other consequences), but one that is not mentioned there that I like to watch out is unwanted distortion when the EQ is being automated (not the most common usecase, but important for me). Even good EQs still have problems here , and my guess is AMEK is not an exception (but I don't know, did not test it).

Here for example are pictures from StudioOne stock eq (ok), Neutron (ok), Melda's MEqualizer (ok with high quality), TDR Nova Insane mode (strangely not ok) and bx_2098 (not ok, but I'm not sure this is a fair comparison, it behaves as if its controls were stepped). First half is gain modulation (0 ->+5dB), second half is frequency modulation (500Hz -> 700Hz).

Finally, don't get me wrong, I do not argue that AMEK is transparent (personally demos were so uninspiring that I didn't even bother testing it), just that there are differences between eqs and to some they might matter.
that's actually very insightful - i didn't think of that at all, the automation thing.
i'm aware of cramping, but i was under the impression that most DAWs already figured this out by now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eigenwert View Post
Minimum phase EQs change the phase (=timing) relationship between the frequency components of the signal as well as the frequency balance. So they are not exactly transparent.

Linear Phase EQs don't suffer from that, however they cause a pre ringing which is not exactly transparent either.

It's hard to retain the transients in the signal processed by an EQ very well which - in absence of a real definition - is what I guess makes an EQ "transparent".

In an EQ algorithm there's always some kind of tradeoff between unwanted features such as ringing, frequency dependent phase shifts and latency.
I'm aware of linear vs minimum phase (there are really rare cases where i prefer linear phase) however this doesn't apply to this particular EQ, as far as i tested it it's just a normal minimal phase design with an added xover distortion post processing. hardly transparent.
Old 19th August 2020
  #761
Lives for gear
 
Eigenwert's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by plx View Post
I'm aware of linear vs minimum phase (there are really rare cases where i prefer linear phase) however this doesn't apply to this particular EQ, as far as i tested it it's just a normal minimal phase design with an added xover distortion post processing. hardly transparent.
I didn't know, I just used it ^^

Thanks for sharing your findings.
Old 19th August 2020
  #762
Lives for gear
 
Eigenwert's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by plx View Post
I'm aware of linear vs minimum phase (there are really rare cases where i prefer linear phase) however this doesn't apply to this particular EQ, as far as i tested it it's just a normal minimal phase design with an added xover distortion post processing. hardly transparent.
Thinking about it, that's exactly what was to be expected, as this is supposed to be an emulation of an analogue EQ and there is no such thing as an analogue linear phase EQ.

The stock EQ in Logic has a very different sound to it than this one, though.
Old 19th August 2020
  #763
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eigenwert View Post
Thinking about it, that's exactly what was to be expected, as this is supposed to be an emulation of an analogue EQ and there is no such thing as an analogue linear phase EQ.

The stock EQ in Logic has a very different sound to it than this one, though.
Indeed you are correct.
Old 19th August 2020
  #764
plx
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eigenwert View Post
Thinking about it, that's exactly what was to be expected, as this is supposed to be an emulation of an analogue EQ and there is no such thing as an analogue linear phase EQ.

The stock EQ in Logic has a very different sound to it than this one, though.
stock EQ in logic is oversampled, and it doesn't have distortion built-in like this particular unit
sans that, i don't think there's anything particularly special about it, not even curves seem anything out of the ordinary.
Old 19th August 2020
  #765
Lives for gear
 
Eigenwert's Avatar
All of my favourite EQ plugins seem to attract a lot of haters... My three favourites are the Pensado EQ, the Massenburg EQ and probably this one (I only have been using it since a few days, though). Go figure...
Old 20th August 2020
  #766
plx
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eigenwert View Post
All of my favourite EQ plugins seem to attract a lot of haters... My three favourites are the Pensado EQ, the Massenburg EQ and probably this one (I only have been using it since a few days, though). Go figure...


i don't like acoustica in general. some people love it
i don't have UAD but Massenburg EQ looks ugly as hell itself

my fav EQs are FabFilter for clean stuff, Voxengo HarmoniQ for controlled saturation, and Black Rooster Audio for colorful stuff.

i recently bought Softube Vol 4 with a whole bunch of EQ's but i only really used the summit one so far (which i like!)

in the end, whichever tool brings you the sound you're after FASTER is the right tool
Old 20th August 2020
  #767
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by plx View Post


i don't like acoustica in general. some people love it
i don't have UAD but Massenburg EQ looks ugly as hell itself

my fav EQs are FabFilter for clean stuff, Voxengo HarmoniQ for controlled saturation, and Black Rooster Audio for colorful stuff.

i recently bought Softube Vol 4 with a whole bunch of EQ's but i only really used the summit one so far (which i like!)

in the end, whichever tool brings you the sound you're after FASTER is the right tool
I find Summit Audio really controlled on the bass end frequencies.
Old 22nd August 2020
  #768
Lives for gear
 
nichttuntun's Avatar
 

I am using this EQ since 2 days now and I´m really exited about it.

Made a short demo for it.

a) AMEK OFF
b) 1x AMEK, L/R procession
c) same as b) plus a second serial AMEK in M/S procession

TMT on all the time.

I overdid it for demonstration purposes. I really like this effortless EQ I even like how it sounds if you boost the unpleasant ranges like 1.2 khz or around 350 hz. I was very sceptical but I´m convinced it´s an awesome addition in the EQ arsenal and it sounds smooth and musical. The distortion is nice and a great way to glue things or tame transients in a very gentle way. It has many comfort features too and the abilty to scale your whole precession is great, as well as the listening feature or the buttom-range change for mastering. So easy to use. Great design and sound.
Attached Files

Loop1 AMEK OFF.mp3 (557.8 KB, 707 views)

Loop1 with 1xAMEK.mp3 (484.7 KB, 687 views)

Loop1 with 2xAMEK.mp3 (508.1 KB, 708 views)

Old 23rd August 2020
  #769
Lives for gear
 
nichttuntun's Avatar
 

New one...same L/R and M/S serial settings as above. New tweaks within the plugins of course. First Off, than L/R procession and than additional M/S processing in serial. TMT on on both plugins. Enjoy

What a great re-shaper that EQ is...amazing plugin even if tweaked brutally it still sounds cool in a way. But it´s a weapon when subtle used on master and stem tracks. Great job PA!
Attached Files

Loop2 AMEK OFF.mp3 (523.1 KB, 625 views)

Loop2 1xAMEK.mp3 (485.6 KB, 620 views)

Loop2 2xAMEK.mp3 (499.7 KB, 634 views)

Old 4 weeks ago
  #770
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by plx View Post
what exactly is a transparent EQ and why are not most (free with DAW) channel EQs transparent?
Basically what Random Musician said, but I admit the term gets used a bit ambiguously.

Digital eqs, that is, those that are simply designed to do the straight up mathematics without any form of enhancing or emulation could be considered to be transparent, especially with well designed filters. Linear phase could be argued to be even more transparent than minimum phase as well.

Then there is the analogue world where transparent essentially means the same thing but the expectations are a little bit different. As in the analogue world the mathematics of an eq or a compressor or any type of audio device really are realised by using different types of components in different types of configurations.

Yep, believe it or not, analogue devices are also about the mathematics.

The main difference being is that the application of running a current through physical components, which have manufacturing imperfections (tolerances), all surmount to larger, more noticeable mathematical inaccuracies. Which is why no two analogue devices sound exactly alike. Fortunately, these "inaccuracies" can lead to imparting pleasing harmonic distortion if the device is designed well enough.

Whereas transparent analogue devices would essentially exhibit these issues, but in a very minimal, early noticeable way. As with the Amek 200.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #771
plx
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by simon.billington View Post
The main difference being is that the application of running a current through physical components, which have manufacturing imperfections (tolerances), all surmount to larger, more noticeable mathematical inaccuracies. Which is why no two analogue devices sound exactly alike. Fortunately, these "inaccuracies" can lead to imparting pleasing harmonic distortion if the device is designed well enough.

Whereas transparent analogue devices would essentially exhibit these issues, but in a very minimal, early noticeable way. As with the Amek 200.
Amek 200 doesn't have a pleasant subtle distortion, the saturation is a horrible implementation of a crossover distortion (typically associated with garbage power amps) - without it, it exhibits no harmonics. And TMT behaves like the unit is downright broken, which is an issue with most PA plugins - the over-pronounced TMT.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #772
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by plx View Post
Amek 200 doesn't have a pleasant subtle distortion, the saturation is a horrible implementation of a crossover distortion (typically associated with garbage power amps) - without it, it exhibits no harmonics. And TMT behaves like the unit is downright broken, which is an issue with most PA plugins - the over-pronounced TMT.
It's a matter of opinion man. I put it on, I can hear the subtle harmonic distortion enhancing the upper frequencies. Whether it be crossover distortion or not, it's subtle and its pleasant.

And I'm not the only now here would say that. You've got stop staring at waveforms and start using your ears.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #773
plx
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by simon.billington View Post
It's a matter of opinion man. I put it on, I can hear the subtle harmonic distortion enhancing the upper frequencies. Whether it be crossover distortion or not, it's subtle and its pleasant.

And I'm not the only now here would say that. You've got stop staring at waveforms and start using your ears.
it's funny - i started looking at waveform BECAUSE of plugin alliance plugins, i didn't before. Because some of them sounded fishy AF.

anyway, without saturation enabled it does nothing, not even subtle, and the saturation is post-eq IIRC. So you can achieve pretty much the same thing by running a stock eq into a high-quality saturation plugin
Old 4 weeks ago
  #774
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by plx View Post
it's funny - i started looking at waveform BECAUSE of plugin alliance plugins, i didn't before. Because some of them sounded fishy AF.

anyway, without saturation enabled it does nothing, not even subtle, and the saturation is post-eq IIRC. So you can achieve pretty much the same thing by running a stock eq into a high-quality saturation plugin
You do realise analogue devices no mater how good they are are full of sorts of design imperfections. There is no ideology in the analogue world.

But go ahead... Illuminate us. Educate us.

My challenge to you is take us a video of you doing a precise emulation of the EQ 200 using a stock eq and a high quality saturation plugin. No video overdubs or trickery. Several demos. Show us some parts in isolation and then what happens when you apply it on every track in a mix. It's got to be precise too. I'd accept a barely perceivable difference.

Then I want you to show us how it can be just as fast and just as efficient as inserting an eq and using it.

Do this and you'll have my attention. I imagine you'll have many people's attention.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #775
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nichttuntun's Avatar
 

Yeah. What's the point? I often wonder what some people drive to just state such things with no action taken to show things, make audio files open to the public or do videos. And I wonder why they waste their time to state the same things over and over again, instead of just being glad that we live in awesome times, especially considering musicians or sound designers / audio engineers on a budget. I also ask myself if some people ever do actual use the plugins in a productive musical, creative and real-live situation, they are so eagerly trying to de-construct for obvious no constructive reasons. There are so many things today that weren't possible when I started early 90th and I think we creative musical people live in an awesome time most of us could only dream about in the earlier days. Why not appreciate the things avaiable today....and just using them and enjoying the process of using them building something with them. This is the real joy, the process itself. It's absolutely showstopping trying to prove things by doing measurements, watching wave forms and thinking being able to conclude something universal from that, isolate that result and trying to convince people from it with annoying repetitions...simultaneous leaving any creative and musical contextual situation and examples completely out of sight. That does do no one a favor in my opinion and it's just a waste of time and it's setting free so much negative energy which prevents from doing something enjoyable instead. So what's the real, actual motivation here? I don't want to discuss that part question, what is impossible. Everybody has to dig deep into himself and find answers there. That maybe would be an interesting aspect to discuss...as an honest to oneself inner dialog.

There are many theories about forums. One very popular is that forums are the worst places to be for creative people. I think there is much truth in that.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #776
Lives for gear
 

I just bought SPL Iron from PA for $17 with the E-Mailed Voucher and Monthly Loyalty Bonus added.

I have "heard" about all the so called "problems" with it on GS forums but I still like it when trying it out in my Mega Bundle Subscription and think it is pretty darn good and a steal for only $17.

If you go to the SPL Iron thread here on GS and read from the start, there are really respected members here on GS such as Jeezo, schmeete and Bose who highly rated it and suggested it should be kept for mix bus duties. However I do respect the views of some other long time respected members like vitocorleone123, WheelieR and profvonsok etc.

I also like this Amek plugin.

People will always have polarised views.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #777
Lives for gear
 
nichttuntun's Avatar
 

That's the nature of things.
Yes, I tested Iron yesterday first time ever and I do enjoy the results quite a lot on stems in a mix. I didn't make it too easy for Iron as it had to compete with Unisum, ShadowHill Class A, Chandler Zener. And yes, it stood out awesome on its own and that made it an instant keeper for me.

All those expert opinions are fine and good. They do have a thing in common. The possibility of not enjoying things or not even try them out and get a true own impression. Those opinions where the main reason I tried Iron or so lately. I missed an opportunity and if Mark Wingfield and Mike White didn't do indepth reviews of this beautiful plugin comp I never would have tried it out.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #778
Lives for gear
 
blaugruen7's Avatar
At some recent point I realised that for me the ergonomics/the handling start growing as factor for a plugin. Sound wise many plugins are great. But I don't have any nostalgic feelings towards a 100 percentage vintage hardware gui. Most of the time during testing I am turned down by fiddling with the "hardware" handling and just want to get the sound I am hearing Inside.
With other words I prefer when the possibilities of digital are worked out and the question is how good does the tool help me to find the sound and works good as a helper.
For example something like the Omni channel is just a phantastic tool to get easy and concentrated to where I want to be.
Or fab q3
Old 4 weeks ago
  #779
Lives for gear
 
nichttuntun's Avatar
 

I totally get that. I'm a bit chilled with that point, the excitement for sound quality over fiddly GUI still is stronger within me, but sometimes I wish a more comfortable interface too, especially having in mind that in digital plugin realm "everything" is doable. I can imagine you could like the Telefunken emulation which came out from Neold a few days ago. It's clearly laid out, functionally sparse and awesome sounding. Easy and delightful to use. The Amek also is very good laid out imo and easy to use with great optional comfort functions. I also do highly appreciate that - in contrast to the Chandler Curve Bender or the Fuse Audio American EQ - it has unstepped knobs. Bravo, I was looking very long for such an stereo / MS mastering grade quality EQ. I do like the SPL IRON much and what it does to stems, which I couldn't replicate with ease using other plugins. Having already amazing soft compressors sometimes an incredible surprise occurs, when actual results exceed expectations by far. The only position I liked to be improved for workflow reasons is the only stepped output gain control. A finer adjustment would be a great thing to have. In a way I'm a bit thankful now for the negative posts about IRON, as my surprise about how good I think it is never would have been so great. I can only encourage everyone to make hers or his own unbiased listening experiences. Unfortunately it's getting very hard sometimes for the mind to get in a state to just hear what's really there actually, especially when things have been discussed in a negative way before. Cheers

PS. I heard many good things about the OmniChannel plugin.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #780
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by blaugruen7 View Post
[...] for me the ergonomics/the handling start growing as factor for a plugin. Sound wise many plugins are great. But I don't have any nostalgic feelings towards a 100 percentage vintage hardware gui. [...]
Exactly!

Usability and reliability is currently a big part of what I look at. One can get good results with almost any recent reasonable plugin. But not all of them allow for a fast workflow, or have scalable gui, if you happen to be on the road. Or they distort when automated. Some have problems in particular DAWs or do not have good update policies and I am worried if the plugin will still work in 5 years. All these things matter.

We don't want to be held back by the gear that we use, but this is not limited to only sound. Yes, sound is the most important factor, but it's not the only one.

Plugins like ProQ3 or Neutron are just damn fast, and somehow mixing fast I get much better results that otherwise. It's a tradeoff. Sure I can spend a bit more time on the lead vocal, but if I want a fiddly gui, I will just go with AA. And of course, there's nothing stopping you from replacing the "fast" eq later if you want some specific sound (e.g., despite it's horrible usability, PA's Lindell TE-100 is still great).
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