hardware analogue tube eq vs UAD plug differences

Discussion in 'The Rack Space' started by leftcoastal, Dec 20, 2017.


  1. leftcoastal

    leftcoastal Member

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    Looking at possibly building a small stereo eq and comp bus for fattening and processing electronic kicks,snares, samples and synth sounds. I'm also looking at moving from my Focusrite Scarlett 8i8 to a better sound card. After doing much research the UAD Apollo Duo looks appealing for it's onboard dsp and UAD plugs. Wondering how these plugs compare to say midrange priced outboard gear?
     
  2. italo de angelis

    italo de angelis Member

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    There is no software that can behave like tubes. It's just a fact of nature. Whatever is attracting you, cost, anything... you won't get the same thing.
     
  3. leftcoastal

    leftcoastal Member

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    But how do the UAD plugs compare?
     
  4. italo de angelis

    italo de angelis Member

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    Not close to my ears.
    But these online tests are all unfair as they are unreal, in their really bad bandwidth. You have to sit with the gear and feel the big difference in the way real circuits interact with power and signals vs. a fixed behaviour in software emulations... all sounding as a stiff curtain, a veil on sound rather than a part of it. Even when you get close in tone you are still far away from the dynamics and changing, living interaction of the real thing with sound... it's like real life vs. a frozen capture of it.... are they close? Yes... in the way they look like... but they ain't.
    I have created plugs... and the hardware they came from? No ****ing comparison... even though they use they same exact code. Nope.
     
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  5. chlorinemist

    chlorinemist Member

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    PSPAudioware's NobleQ is a good alternative. Cheaper than the UAD and many users prefer PSPs take on the Pultec. If you ever want to compare software to hardware for yourself and make your own decision, I'd suggest trying a software vs the Klark Teknik Pultec clone that's going for ~$300 or so online
     
  6. MarcoR

    MarcoR Member

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    UAD makes great plugins but no, they aren't going to be exactly like the expensive gear they are replicating. Although, compared to some midrange priced consumer gear? You're likely to get some great results with UAD for sure... with the benefit of not committing a particular sound to the recording and having potential of multiple instances of something that does work rather than one instance of what ever midrange priced preamp/compressor/channel strip you settled for.

    I'd love to own a Manley Massive Passive but for now, the UAD plug is quite wonderful and there's a lot of other more fun gear I'd rather spend that $5000 on.
     
  7. disconnector

    disconnector Supporting Member

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    I think they are 90-95% of the original. The problem with any tube device is that tubes themselves aren't the same - every tube is slightly different because they rely on physical structure for their function. UAD stuff isn't perfect - but it's the closest you're going to get without spending a mint.
     
  8. Leon Todd

    Leon Todd Member

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    They're fantastic. Here's a comparison clip I made with a Neve clone (JLM BA4) and the UAD 1073 emulation.

     
  9. tucsonsound

    tucsonsound Member

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    I run a couple of hardware bus chains and find they excel at making things larger. A pair of those Klark Teknik EQP-KTs are great for fattening low end, or a pair of ChiNeve 1084 clones. I use the A-Designs Nail as my Swiss Army knife bus comp, but for certain sources the Audient bus comp (SSL type - drums/gtrs), dbx (160XT/560A - kick/snare) or ART Pro VLA II (back-ups/overheads) are just the ticket.
    I don't UAD but do use IK's Pultec, Neve, API, SSL, Fairchild and Vari-Mu models on individual tracks, just prefer analog for "embiggening."

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2017
  10. italo de angelis

    italo de angelis Member

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    How good are those ACM84s? Who makes them?
     
  11. tucsonsound

    tucsonsound Member

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    They were purchased straight from the factory a decade ago in a group buy, never commercially available. They're solid Neve-a-likes, they did a good job on the knock-off iron. Kick and snare come through with the thickness and a ribbon through the pre set to 300 does good things for guitar.
     

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