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Plugin Alliance Release AMEK EQ 200
Old 19th May 2020
  #1
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b0se's Avatar
Plugin Alliance Release AMEK EQ 200

Just spotted this - from the PA website:



Based on the first parametric equalizers that started it all, the AMEK EQ 200 is a beautifully transparent plugin EQ, inspired by the classic sound of icons like the GML 8200 and vintage SONTEC EQs.

Plugin Alliance and Brainworx are proud to bring you the very first in a series of new plugins under the iconic AMEK brand, which has just joined the Plugin Alliance family. The first product under the new AMEK brand is the EQ 200, which is modeled after some of the most coveted hardware EQs ever designed.

Drawing on years of experience in analog modelling, Brainworx’ goal with the EQ 200 was to develop a plugin that captures the DNA and recreates the unique sound of the most legendary parametric equalizers of the 70s and 80s.

This era was dominated by new, paradigm-shifting EQ designs from brands such as SONTEC and GML, which offered groundbreaking new features, including parametric control: the ability to adjust the center frequency and bandwidth for each band. While this is a standard feature on EQs today, it was an absolute audio revolution back then.

The extraordinary resolution, extreme transparency, enormous headroom and surgical precision of these classic 70s and 80s mastering-grade EQs served as the inspiration for many later equalizer designs. And for many top engineers, these original parametric EQs are still considered unrivaled tools, even today.

These early high-end parametric EQs were born during an amazing era for pop and rock music and lived on to become true industry standards for the next 30+ years. Today, they can be heard on countless major recordings, as they are still actively used in many of the very best mixing and mastering studios on the planet.

The AMEK EQ 200 Plugin is inspired by the sound of Brainworx founder Dirk Ulrich‘s own GML 8200 EQ and vintage SONTEC EQs - some of his all-time favorite pieces of analog outboard gear.

But Dirk and the Brainworx modeling team decided to take things a step further, enhancing the original design with many useful plugin-only features, such as innovative Auto-Listen features, variable high-pass and low-pass filters, M/S processing, and their groundbreaking patented TMT (Tolerance Modeling Technology), to offer an unrivaled analog experience in the box.

With all these additional features, the AMEK EQ 200 offers everything you need to bring the glorious sound and intuitive workflow of the very best vintage EQs to your DAW.

The AMEK EQ 200 plugin is a complete 7-band EQ, with 5 parametric bands, plus added high and low pass filters. It operates in Stereo, Dual-Mono, Mono and M/S modes. Each of the five wide, overlapping EQ bands offers up to 15 dB of boost or cut and an adjustable bandwidth (or "Q") control from 0.4 to 4. The lowest and the highest bands can also be switched to shelving mode.

Brainworx included their well-known retractable “Extra Unit” which provides the following features, that cannot be found on any of the original analog idols: Brainworx ́s Tolerance Modeling Technology (TMT), M/S Processing, Mono-Maker, Stereo Width, Correlation, Balance, Input and Output Meters.

Brainworx Plugin-Only Features
  • Brainworx TMT inside: Patented Tolerance Modeling Technology (TMT) simulates channel-to-channel variances in electronic components for the most realistic analog sound possible inside a DAW
  • M/S Processing: A simple workflow enhancement to dramatically tweak the width and depth of your mixes
  • Mono-Maker: Sums your low-frequency content to mono, giving you focused, punchy bass response.
  • Stereo Width: Expand the stereo width of your tracks.
  • High Pass & Low Pass Filter: Continuously variable filters with a 12 dB per octave slope
  • Variable THD control: For adding extra analog mojo and tone
  • Correlation, Balance, Input and Output Meters: To better understand and control your EQ curves
  • Auto Listen: Available on all five bands to audition each change in isolation
  • Scalable User Interface: To perfectly suit the size of your screen

Features
  • 5 wide overlapping fully-parametric EQ bands
  • Additional High and Low pass filters, and Low and High shelving EQs
  • 15dB or 7dB switchable boost or cut for each band
  • Modeled after the brilliant, precise and beautiful sound of legendary EQs, like the GML 8200 and vintage SONTEC EQs
  • Includes Brainworx signature plugin-only enhancements, including TMT modeling, variable THD control, M/S processing, Mono-Maker mode, Auto Listen and more
  • Scalable UI to adapt to your screen size and workflow
  • Loaded with plenty of useful presets to give you a starting place for finding your sound, including presets from legendary mastering engineer Howie Weinberg (LA)

$349.99 Sale ($399.99 regular). Included in subscription.

-> https://www.plugin-alliance.com/en/p...ek_eq_200.html
Old 19th May 2020
  #2
Lives for gear
 
b0se's Avatar
$419 sans voucher in cart (UK VAT). Time to test vs Weiss and DMG...
Old 19th May 2020
  #3
Lives for gear
 
alibling's Avatar
 

WOW price is high. But since the last email I was suspecting something like that. Most likely they will send out a Email with a extra code.

But yea testing is needed.

Edit: I like the GUI!
Attached Images
Plugin Alliance Release AMEK EQ 200-bildschirmfoto-2020-05-19-um-12.22.42.png 
Old 19th May 2020
  #4
Gear Maniac
 
Digital Crush's Avatar
From the sound examples it has this vivid quality. Not quite level matched though. But still sounding beautiful in those sound examples
Old 19th May 2020
  #5
Lives for gear
 
nichttuntun's Avatar
 

I like and own many PA plugins...but 400 bucks???

With all those excellent MS / EQ (like VQA-154 Fuse Audio Labs) I can wait 2 or 3 years to buy it for 49 bucks. Chandler Limiter Curve Bender Mastering EQ from Softtube will be on sale upcoming weekend also.

The TMT is an argument for me, but if I chain for example the Shodow Hill Class A behind any other EQ on a 2-Bus, I have nearly the same result.
Old 19th May 2020
  #6
Gear Head
 

I haven't tested it yet but the $349.99 price introduces too much aliasing and truncation for me. To put that price tag being PA, it must sound wonderful but I don't like to test what I can't buy. I am curious about what pro people here thinks about it, though.
Old 19th May 2020
  #7
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kelvyn's Avatar
Mmmm! I’m a big fan of PA and have all their plugins except for two of the new ones and the guitar heads and stompers.
Looks like the roads have forked where one is signposted ‘5 miles to Softube/UAD town’ and the other that says ‘ Even less miles to the village of Subscription’
Either way I wish them the best but as things are at the moment, what with no gigs Corona, jobs being cancelled and general lock down stuff, money is tighter than normal. Seems a strange time to be heading upmarket after all the great deals they were doing. The intro price isn’t that tantalizing either.
Old 19th May 2020
  #8
Gear Maniac
 

And this is exactly how you force everyone to sub....first he announces that it will only be availible on the subscription, then he has to retract that because he got killed with emails/messages of people who buy stuff and dont subscribe!!! Then you send an email telling everyone you will sell it finally but it wont be cheap, but make this your most expensive plugin ever to be released! Great plan Dirk. I think your hanging around Steven too much!! He must have talked to you about how to get everyone to sub instead of buying! Increase your plugin prices 400% more then what you used to sell plugins at, never have sales anymore, make vouchers ahve a minimum purchase price, make liceses have a transfer fee, and that should about get everyone to sub! Shame on you!!
Old 19th May 2020
  #9
Demoing this now. Nice Eq smooth for sure. But when I a/b to my HDE250 there's still a big gap. It's not a 1:1 comparison but for depth and clarity the HDE250 still beats it.

Will get the Amek on sale for ITB duties for sure though.
Old 19th May 2020
  #10
Guess no one has used the hardware as it doesn't exist other than the one unit? I haven't used a 8200 in about 20 years but I remember it being quite forward and and almost sharp (but in a good way) sounding. My HDE250 is similar (altho based on Sontec from what I've heard is a it rounder than the 8200). I don't get that lazer focus I remember of the 8200 on this plugin.
Old 19th May 2020
  #11
Lives for gear
 

Yeah... Nice and all, but I'll just hang around for a sale, and pick it up for a song (no pun intended). I'm not giving Dirk 300$ for an intro sale.

As OP said, lets all try and get the fools to sub. Price hike... wink wink.

But each to their own.
Old 19th May 2020
  #12
I compared the plugin even running through the D/A A/D chain with the HDE250 just to compare the bands themselves and there's still a good difference (so the plugin is getting some of the hardware tone to try to close the gap). When I compare just fully ITB to the outboard chain it's a much bigger step up.
Old 19th May 2020
  #13
Lives for gear
 
nichttuntun's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sayt0n View Post
And this is exactly how you force everyone to sub....first he announces that it will only be availible on the subscription, then he has to retract that because he got killed with emails/messages of people who buy stuff and dont subscribe!!! Then you send an email telling everyone you will sell it finally but it wont be cheap, but make this your most expensive plugin ever to be released! Great plan Dirk. I think your hanging around Steven too much!! He must have talked to you about how to get everyone to sub instead of buying! Increase your plugin prices 400% more then what you used to sell plugins at, never have sales anymore, make vouchers ahve a minimum purchase price, make liceses have a transfer fee, and that should about get everyone to sub! Shame on you!!


Majority of people don´t want sub. Is PA trying to get subs like Sony with Playstation (exclusive games) or some pay-TV providers (exclusives shows)? It´s a pity to watch PA efforts and how far they go. People are fed up with that kind of stuff and can´t have too many things running side by side anyway. Time to make a change again, especially in those times, we will for sure live a long time in it still.

Still we are talking software here. Endlessly digitally reproducable code. Has no meaning in a few years anyways.

If I would be willing to spend so much money for one plugin, I won´t spend money on plugins at all. Instead I would save more money to buy hardware.
Old 19th May 2020
  #14
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Jantex's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jesse Skeens View Post
I compared the plugin even running through the D/A A/D chain with the HDE250 just to compare the bands themselves and there's still a good difference (so the plugin is getting some of the hardware tone to try to close the gap). When I compare just fully ITB to the outboard chain it's a much bigger step up.
To be honest, I hate any tone imparted by D/A A/D, no matter the converters used. Of course, it is less bad with better converters. But saying it gets closer to HW tone by doing a conversion loop is telling me it actually gets worse for the amount of the negative impact from conversion -> less transparent. I like maximum transparency with parametric eq-s to use them to their full potential.
Old 19th May 2020
  #15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jantex View Post
To be honest, I hate any tone imparted by D/A A/D, no matter the converters used. Of course, it is less bad with better converters. But saying it gets closer to HW tone by doing a conversion loop is telling me it actually gets worse for the amount of the negative impact from conversion -> less transparent. I like maximum transparency with parametric eq-s to use them to their full potential.
I didn't say it sounds more transparent ITB though . The hardware sounds clearer.

I did notice on Plugin doctor in the default mode the left and right are slightly different. This is probably what's causing it to sound like it has more depth than other eqs. But it doesn't sound cleaner to me. I'd maybe use this for a mix EQ to get a vibe but not for mastering.
Old 19th May 2020
  #16
Lives for gear
 
biksonije's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by b0se View Post
$419 sans voucher in cart (UK VAT). Time to test vs Weiss and DMG...
Where from are you getting this price? It's 399 sale price on PA web site. And less with a voucher (of course we all have different vouchers due to personal collections).

EDIT: sorry, could be VAT incl. in the UK.
Old 19th May 2020
  #17
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sayt0n View Post
And this is exactly how you force everyone to sub....first he announces that it will only be availible on the subscription, then he has to retract that because he got killed with emails/messages of people who buy stuff and dont subscribe!!! Then you send an email telling everyone you will sell it finally but it wont be cheap, but make this your most expensive plugin ever to be released! Great plan Dirk. I think your hanging around Steven too much!! He must have talked to you about how to get everyone to sub instead of buying! Increase your plugin prices 400% more then what you used to sell plugins at, never have sales anymore, make vouchers ahve a minimum purchase price, make liceses have a transfer fee, and that should about get everyone to sub! Shame on you!!
They are a for profit company, not the salvation army or a charity.

How much do you charge for your services?

Shame on you if you charge more than $10 an hour.

Any company is free to charge whatever they like for their products and everybody else is free to either buy or not buy that product. <modsnip - no politics please>

I wouldn't have a problem if they wanted to charge $999.99 for this plugin. I wouldn't buy it at that price, and I'm not going to buy it for $300 either, but that's ok, because I don't have any immediate need for it, and I'm certainly not going to get upset because of that.

Also, a few of your claims are just factually wrong. Many of their consoles are priced at $349 retail and it's false to say that they never have sales anymore, as there have been many sales recently. It wasn't that long ago that almost all of their plugins were on sale for $49 and with a coupon they were as cheap as $25.

I'll be demoing this later on, because I am interested in the actual sound of this plugin and how it compares to other comparable plugins.

Hopefully there will be more comments related to the actual sound and less comments related to whining about the price.
Old 19th May 2020
  #18
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nichttuntun's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jesse Skeens View Post
I didn't say it sounds more transparent ITB though . The hardware sounds clearer.

I did notice on Plugin doctor in the default mode the left and right are slightly different. This is probably what's causing it to sound like it has more depth than other eqs. But it doesn't sound cleaner to me. I'd maybe use this for a mix EQ to get a vibe but not for mastering.
Thats a big difference anyway (impression of depths and clearity). Often the MS treated material seems to be much better, but often loses the fundamental tightness, considering it on a 2-bus for example. The TMT-code is indeed a very nice thing to get the impression of a more deeper stereo stage. But can be reproduced with any stereo EQ with independent LR channels. Should be used carefully. Having little differences LR alone makes the listener think its more interesting and less static/sterile. A great thing to have. I wished the PA stuff with TMT would have a dial knob to choose the amount of tolerance differences. it´s too much sometimes for my taste.
Old 19th May 2020
  #19
Lives for gear
 
nichttuntun's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SBX-80 View Post
<modsnip - no politics please>.
No it isn´t. You really believe that?
Old 19th May 2020
  #20
Quote:
Originally Posted by nichttuntun View Post
Thats a big difference anyway (impression of depths and clearity). Often the MS treated material seems to be much better, but often loses the fundamental tightness, considering it on a 2-bus for example. The TMT-code is indeed a very nice thing to get the impression of a more deeper stereo stage. But can be reproduced with any stereo EQ with independent LR channels. Should be used carefully. Having little differences LR alone makes the listener think its more interesting and less static/sterile. A great thing to have. I wished the PA stuff with TMT would have a dial knob to choose the amount of tolerance differences. it´s too much sometimes for my taste.
One thing I noticed comparing to EQ1 is that on the same settings (say 10k shelf at +6db) the Amek seems a lot wider. Need to match the curves better. It's giving a lot more level at same settings.
Old 19th May 2020
  #21
M2E
Lives for gear
 
M2E's Avatar
 

I remember always using the GML-8200 after the SSL bus compressor.
Sound of the 90's & 2k. Plugin looks great.
I'm waiting. Something else is coming and will be amazing in this era/genre. Sorry can't say but I can almost guarantee it will be a better price than this. LOL.

Marc
Old 19th May 2020
  #22
DSK
Lives for gear
 
DSK's Avatar
Guess what. I’m saving up for a second Amek 9098 HW for stereo duties. A plugin has to be groundbreaking to get any money from me these days.

I think the bar has been set so high that even a $100 price tag is much harder to justify than usually.

Have been cancelling subscriptions left and right, paused Splice for 2 months, got out of EastWest after 5 years, and considering shafting the Relab one as well (got it pretty cheap, but since they are delaying new releases so much and using Nimbus so much, it’s also hard to justify)

PA shooting itself in the foot again with old users.

Could have been a nice thread about sound and usability, but instead the dialogue is about money... I blame the seller for triggering it in this case tbh
Old 19th May 2020
  #23
Lives for gear
 
nichttuntun's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jesse Skeens View Post
One thing I noticed comparing to EQ1 is that on the same settings (say 10k shelf at +6db) the Amek seems a lot wider. Need to match the curves better. It's giving a lot more level at same settings.
I am curious about your further experience and observations. Thank you for sharing this...
Old 19th May 2020
  #24
Gear Addict
 
smackmastering's Avatar
The EQ sounds great! It is smooth, but also a bit of color.

For me, its a tough sell. I pretty happy with the tools I got. For example, bx_Digital V3 is on par with this eq, but trade color for a few other tools.

No doubt this is a great EQ and if you were in search of a mastering eq, this has to be on the top end of the list. This one doesn't disappoint.
Old 19th May 2020
  #25
Gear Maniac
 
Robin Walsh's Avatar
 

Looking forward to testing this later! We've had such a good time with all the new compressors - now it's time for the EQ's!!!
Old 19th May 2020
  #26
Quote:
Originally Posted by nichttuntun View Post
I am curious about your further experience and observations. Thank you for sharing this...
Will need more testing for sure. I found at 26k a Q of 2 on the Amek compared to a Q of 1 on my hardware (when a/bing at this more correct setting the hardware still has more airy clear sound). On the widest shelf on the Amek a boost at extends all the way down to 200hz.

So I'd recommend trying at tighter settings. That might change with frequency though as a mid range boost sounds more resonant at 2 than my hardware at 1 (where as the upper freq range sounded more similar in shape). Will check on Plugin doctor more later when I have time.

Overall it just sounds less focused to me, even with putting it into the less stereo mode (that matches the two channels). Again I can see it as a mix eq to get a vibe and balance. I imagine this might be what people like about it as it could make a flat mix seem to come alive. But for precise clean adjustments not sure it's as useful as other offerings like Maat or EQ1 (which itself has some vibe to).
Old 19th May 2020
  #27
Gear Addict
 
msflsim's Avatar
 

No way this is worth $359.99 (in the UK) with the intro voucher compared to the Weiss complete collection upgrade for $348 which includes the excellent Console 1 gambit strip.

I am not a fan at all of subscriptions and what it means for long standing loyal customers.
Old 19th May 2020
  #28
Gear Maniac
Im gonna be blunt with this one
Compared it with Blue, close(ish) but Blue wins (more depth, better transient response, more curve flexibility, lets not even take in consideration the GUI)

Just for kicks, compared it to Orange... nevermind, sounds flat.

Compared it with HDE 250... errr nah, not even close.

Lots of graphics, hype and a high price tag doesn’t make a mediocre eq a “mastering eq”.

I have a ton of PA stuff but lately releases have been disappointing.
Meh

An btw, the gui is very dark, hard to read on a big screen.

Last edited by casiotone; 19th May 2020 at 02:35 PM..
Old 19th May 2020
  #29
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by M2E View Post
Plugin looks great.
I'm waiting. Something else is coming and will be amazing in this era/genre. Sorry can't say but I can almost guarantee it will be a better price than this. LOL.

Marc
Here hoping Pulsar is involved. Your opinions made me pull the trigger on MU and I don’t regret it!
Old 19th May 2020
  #30
Quote:
Originally Posted by casiotone View Post
Im gonna be blunt with this one
Compared it with Blue, close(ish) but Blue wins (more depth, better transient response, more curve flexibility, lets not even take in consideration the GUI)

Just for kicks, compared it to Orange... nevermind, sounds flat.

Compared it with HDE 250... errr nah, not even close.

Lots of graphics, hype and a high price tag doesn’t make a mediocre eq a “mastering eq”.

I have a ton of PA stuff but lately releases have been disappointing.
Meh

An btw, the gui is not resizable and its very dark, hard to read on a big screen.
Also compared to the Orange MAAT, that one is much closer to the HD250 to me if you want that kind of clean but smooth mastering EQ sound than the Amek (just a bit clinical sounding, plus it's LP so not the same topology)
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