Aurora Audio GT4-8 by steveschizoid
This EQ is incredible. First off, it sounds wonderful. Any description of its sound will fall short; I invite you to visit the Aurora Audio web site or facebook page to hear it in action.
Second, it is unbelievably flexible. It has 5 options each for the low and high pass filters. It has 5 options each for high and low shelving. On each of these there is a switch that tells the gain knob to allow for up to +/- 8dB or +/- 18dB. Each of the two mid range bands (low and high) give you 10(!) frequency options, and a bell switch with 3 options. The gain knobs allow the perfect amount of change - the tiniest adjustment does makes an audible difference. This EQ allows subtle shading and tilting in a way that never fails to flatter, as well as the ability to totally reinvent the sound.
As far as I can tell, there are few gearslutz who've tried this one out. There is definitely some sticker shock involved, but when you look a little closer, you realize that this monster is actually an amazing bargain.
If, for example, you wanted to buy 8 AMS Neve 1081's or 1084's, you'd have to pony up $35,000 or so. The GT4-8 is designed to utilize the transformers in Aurora Audio's GTP-8 - an 8 channel mic preamp - so you'll need to factor that in. Aurora Audio will sell you the two for a total of $11,500 (They can build a GT4-8 with it's own transformers, but IMO that would be silly because there isn't that much of a price break - you still end up paying $8500 - and the GTP-8 is a wonderful device in and of itself.)
However.....The most wonderful thing about this bargain is that there is no compromise!!!
And, it's actually a poor comparison, because Geoff Tanner is by no means trying to recreate anything - he worked for Neve from 1971 to 1985 and understands how those revered devices could have been better. Browse the Aurora Audio forum for a glimpse of some of the details.
The GT4-8 and GTP-8 are meant to function as channel strips for Geoff's modular console, and I may end up there someday, but, for now, I'm just looking forward to adding another GT4-8 as soon as possible - 8 channels is great, but in a mix with keyboards and double tracked guitars played by multiple guitarists, background vocalists and percussion....let's just say 16 channels would get me to where I want to go a lot more quickly