Reviews

Reviews

By George Shilling

With many years as a recording engineer and producer George knows the good from the bad. In many cases it's a matter of taste, some prefer one EQ over another but George writes unbiased and objective reviews of the equipment tested to help you discover new or interesting gear.

ACME Opticom XLA-3 Leveling Amplifier
Dec 23 2011 Leveling Amplifier
ACME Opticom XLA-3

The Opticom is a 2U mono opto limiter which combines high speed photocells with all-valve circuitry. Designed and built in the USA, it provides three different Response modes which each

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AnaMod AM670 Stereo Limiter
Dec 23 2012 Stereo Limiter
AnaMod AM670

So, here we go again with yet another Fairchild 670 recreation. Only, hold on, this one really doesn’t feel quite right. Yes, they’ve made a good stab at the front

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AnaMod ATS-1 Two channel analogue tape simulator
Dec 23 2012 Two channel analogue tape simulator
AnaMod ATS-1

AnaMod was founded in 2006 by two industry veterans, Dave Amels (formerly of Bomb Factory, Voce and others) and Greg Gualtieri who is currently president of Pendulum Audio. The company

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Aphex 661 Expressor Tube Compressor / Limiter
Dec 23 2003 Tube Compressor / Limiter
Aphex 661 Expressor

A friend of mine has a theory that any audio equipment is guaranteed to be good if it is American and has an 'X' in its name. Well, Lexicon, dbx

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API 1608 16 channel recording console
Dec 23 2012 16 channel recording console
API 1608

The 1608 is a small format recording console based on the 1604 which API produced in the 1970s and early 1980s. Although I have never encountered one in the UK,

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Apogee Rosetta 200 Stereo A/D & D/A Converter
Dec 23 2008 Stereo A/D & D/A Converter
Apogee Rosetta 200

This high-end stereo converter usefully includes a FireWire option, George Shilling plugs in his red-hot cable. Founded in 1985, Apogee initially designed filters, and later, armed with this expertise, their

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Audient Zen Analogue recording console
Dec 23 2012 Analogue recording console
Audient Zen

It’s not often you get the chance to review equipment that is named after the editor of the magazine, so the email with the subject “Zen for review” initially led

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Audio Ease Speakerphone Speaker simulator plugin
Dec 23 2008 Speaker simulator plugin
Audio Ease Speakerphone

The clever Dutchmen who brought us Altiverb have been beavering away at Speakerphone for some time. It finally arrived proclaiming to be the ultimate speaker simulator plugin, and includes 5GB

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Cartec EQP-1A Mono valve equalizer
Dec 23 2012 Mono valve equalizer
Cartec EQP-1A

Surely the audio industry’s most copied product, in hardware and latterly in software, is the Pultec EQP-1A Program Equalizer. Developed at the beginning of the 1950s in New Jersey, the

EQ
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Chandler EMI TG12413 Compressor / limiter plugin pack
Dec 23 2008 Compressor / limiter plugin pack
Chandler EMI TG12413

A few years ago I was lucky enough to use an original EMI TG12345 console which was owned by Mike Hedges – seemingly built to military spec, Mike had acquired

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Chandler Limited EMI TG Mastering Pack Abbey Road EQ plugin bundle
Dec 23 2008 Abbey Road EQ plugin bundle
Chandler Limited EMI TG Mastering Pack

Whilst Chandler have painstakingly recreated and customised ancient EMI/Abbey Road circuit designs to great effect in hardware form, many DAW users have also been enjoying the TG12413 Limiter plugins. The

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CharterOak SCL-1 Stereo compressor
Dec 23 2012 Stereo compressor
CharterOak SCL-1

CharterOak have been making boutique microphones since 2002. Endearingly, rather than boosting his ego, founder Michael Deming, (an engineer and producer of some note), named the company after a local

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Chiswick Reach Stereo Valve Compressor
Dec 23 2008 Stereo Valve Compressor
Chiswick Reach

Chiswick Reach Studio has carved out a niche for itself in the London studio market as a provider of vintage recording technology. Apart from collecting and maintaining ancient equipment, the

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CLM Dynamics DB500s Expounder Stereo / dual mono dynamic equalizer
Dec 23 2003 Stereo / dual mono dynamic equalizer
CLM Dynamics DB500s Expounder

In the area of studio outboard, there is always room for a new twist on an old idea, and Scottish company CLM have popped up, seemingly from nowhere, with this

EQ
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Crane Song STC-8 Stereo compressor / peak limiter
Dec 23 2008 Stereo compressor / peak limiter
Crane Song STC-8

This is a sophisticated US-built stereo compressor, designed with attention to detail in both function and form. The unit's designer David Hill has taken a very scientific approach: the manual

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Crane Song Trakker Mono compressor / limiter
Dec 23 2003 Mono compressor / limiter
Crane Song Trakker

The Trakker is a new mono compressor/limiter from Cranesong. Although similar in appearance to the STC-8 Stereo Compressor, the designer has taken a somewhat different approach.   However, there are

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