A Designs HM2EQ HAMMER Dual-Mono 3-Band Tube Equalizer
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Winner of Pro Audio Review's Par Excellence Award at the 2007 Audio Engineering Society Conference!
The HM2EQ is a world-class tube/hybrid 3-band equalizer with a dual-mono design. The A-Design's HAMMER is built to sound musical for larger EQ functions typically found on expensive mastering EQs. It features continuously variable boost and cut controls, but with fixed frequency settings. The HAMMER is engineered with a filtering system that allows the even harmonics to flow through the 12AT7 tubes, filtering out unwanted noise.
Some notable users who've dropped the Hammer on their tracks are "Golden Ears" Bruce Maddocks, who's mastered mastered Hans Zimmer film scores for Pirates of the Caribbean, The Last Samurai, and Batman Begins, and renowned engineer/producer Ronan Chris Murphy (King Crimson, Terry Bozio) who says, "The Hammer is all about gorgeous smooth top and high mids. It totally opens up the top and brings high mids forward in a really pleasing way. . . . I am just not used to being able crank the top on the rock cymbals so much and have them stay so smooth. Another engineer I really respect described the EQ as "the best EQ" he had ever used . . ."
The unit is housed in a 2U metal chassis with an aluminum faceplate and features a toroidal power transformer. Each channel features identical controls, including switches for bypass, high cut and low cut, as well as six large aluminum rotaries for the EQ section - knobs for the LF (30/50/100/200/300/400), MF (250/500/1.2k/1.6k/2k) and HF (2.5k/3.5k/5k/7.5k/10k/15k) bands, plus accompanying knobs offering ±13dB of boost/cut for each frequency range.
Connections to and from the product are accomplished on the rear panel via a pair of balanced Neutrik XLR input jacks and pair of balanced XLR output jacks.
The HM2EQ is designed for applying broad-shaping EQ across many octaves while sounding beautiful without adverse effects on tone. Very low noise floor. It also has hi-cut at 8Khz and lo-cut at 84Hz filters. There is no other EQ available quite like this.
Channel Strips of the Stars: Dylan "3D" Dresdow
Primarily a mixer these days, Dylan Dresdow's list of credits includes Black-Eyed Peas, Usher, Michael Jackson, Fergie, and Flo Rida. Dylan was kind enough to share his some of his gear secrets for processing background vocals and kick drum.
For my BG vocal chain, I typically use the Crane Song STC-8 compressor into the HAMMER EQ. Sometimes I'll run a high-pass filter pre compression. The (A Designs Audio) EM-PEQ (#241581) usually ends up on my "'main" kick drum track. I can get more punch and click out of it, versus a typical Pultec EQP-1. I used these setups for songs I've mixed recently for Usher ("Revolver", "What's Your Name?"), Michael Jackson ("Starting Something remake 2008"), Fergie ("Clubsy Remix", "Pick It Up"), and Flo Rida ("Ayer")."
Channel Strips of the Stars: Ted Perlman
Ted Perlman, renowned Grammy-winning producer, musician, arranger, engineer, and programmer, has a resume that reads like a who's who of popular music. His credits include Bob Dylan, Chicago, Burt Bacharach, Elton John, Dave Mason, Brian Wilson, Carole King, Albert Hammond, Jr. (The Strokes), Desmond Child, Young M.C., Dolly Parton, and, well, the list goes on. Ted was kind enough to provide us with his go-to recording vocal chain as well as his choice for guitar and percussion. Here it is, straight from Ted Perlman himself:
"I'm producing and writing with Sara Lumholdt of the mega-selling Swedish pop group A-Teens.
Her vocal recording chain is: Pearlman TM-LE condenser mic* > A Designs Audio Pacifica preamp (#189903) > Daking FET 2 Compressor (#482850).
ALL guitars go through the A Designs REDDI DI box (#189904) > Hammer EQ > Pacifica preamp > Toft DC-2 Compressor (#187025)."
- Continuously variable boost and cut controls, but with fixed frequency settings
- Very low noise floor
- Color: smooth and super-fidelity EQ
- Output tube: 12AT tube, transformerless
HM2EQ HAMMER Dual-Mono 3-Band Tube Equalizer Specifications:
- Low cut at 84Hz
- Hi cut at 8000Khz
- Gain: +12dB, cut: -12dB