API 560 inspired graphic EQ (free/stock REs)

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crimsonwarlock
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Post 28 Feb 2024

The API 560 graphic EQ is used a lot on drums by pro-engineers, so I made something like it. I don't have a real one, or a close emulation available, but listening to several demos on YT, it comes pretty close. Close enough to be very usable :puf_bigsmile:

Some specifics:
* Ten bands, identical to the API 560.
* A somewhat wide slope at low settings, getting more narrow at high boost/cut levels, somewhat similar to the API 560 behavior.
* Default range of +/- 12 dB, like the API 560, additional 6 dB setting for more gentle slopes.
* Additional saturation circuit (thanks to AudioMatic).
* Additional dry/wet knob: setup some extreme settings and dial it back a bit :puf_wink:

Devices used:
* Red Rock RE 302 graphic EQ - free: https://www.reasonstudios.com/shop/rack ... equaliser/
* AudioMatic (stock)
* Spider Audio splitter (stock)
* Pongasoft AB-switch - free: https://www.reasonstudios.com/shop/rack ... cv-switch/
* Groovy Melon Morfin Crossfader - free: https://www.reasonstudios.com/shop/rack ... rossfader/

I guess most users have those free REs already installed.

api-screenshot.png

I didn't do a graphic design, because the API 560 doesn't have that much graphics going on either. Maybe if I find the time, I do a graphic faceplate later.
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moneykube
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Post 28 Feb 2024

awesome... thank you very much sir. :thumbup:
https://soundcloud.com/moneykube-qube/s ... d-playlist
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crimsonwarlock
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Post 28 Feb 2024

moneykube wrote:
28 Feb 2024
awesome... thank you very much sir. :thumbup:
You're welcome :puf_smile:

I'm pretty impressed by how well it actually works, at least on drums (that is mainly what I tested it with). I'm already thinking about a dual-mono version, with independent controls for left and right channel, and capable of switching to mid/side processing.
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selig
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Post 28 Feb 2024

This must have been a pretty decent undertaking! So I don't enjoy saying this doesn't quite look/sound right, at least when comparing to my UA version (API Vision).

Side note, I always used the 550s for drums, for which they are legend - but the graphic was known for electric guitars in my (Nashville) circle of old farts.

What is your baseline EQ for the model? I compared it to the UA-API Vision and it is significantly different. I was wondering how you were going to get 31 bands down to 10 without each band being too narrow...

Screen shots: If you don't already have the amazing Bertom EQ analyzer plugin, go get it right now, it's pay what you want:
https://bertomaudio.com/eq-curve-analyzer.html

This is with the 1kHz band maxed out, the UA version in light grey and your version in green:
Screen Shot 2024-02-28 at 1.18.05 PM.png
Here is the same 1kHz band at +6dB in both versions, same colors as last time:
Screen Shot 2024-02-28 at 1.20.05 PM.png
I suspect you'll never get very close with a 31 band EQ at the heart of the system.
I'm using your template to build a version using two ColoringEQs, since it already does the proportional Q part (just not enough without some extra CV 'help'). But because of that things got complicated.
So I though of the SSL in G mode, and it's great match. But alas, there is no free lunch and the SSL doesn't cover the entire range with the G bands. But I built it anyway because overall, and especially in the mid range, it is almost exactly spot on with the UA API Vision EQ.
For comparison, here are the same two curves, 1kHz at +12dB and +6dB, with the API in light grey and your combinator (modified with SSL EQs) in the green:
Screen Shot 2024-02-28 at 3.27.11 PM.png
Screen Shot 2024-02-28 at 3.28.07 PM.png

Here's the SSL version, should all be working good - it is SO much closer to the original, but that doesn't mean your first version isn't useful - for all I know folks may prefer it to the API!
And note the even though it use the low and high BELL for a few bands, those bands are very similar to your version with the 31 band EQ, so maybe you'll still like the SSL version on drums?

Have fun:
https://www.dropbox.com/scl/fi/2kouj1vz ... pq6u4&dl=0
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crimsonwarlock
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Post 28 Feb 2024

selig wrote:
28 Feb 2024
This must have been a pretty decent undertaking! So I don't enjoy saying this doesn't quite look/sound right, at least when comparing to my UA version (API Vision).
I'm not sure, but it seems you missed a few obvious hints about this definitely NOT being an emulation in any perspective. Firstly, there is “inspired” in the topic title, and the first paragraph of my opening post is also pretty clear about this:
crimsonwarlock wrote:
28 Feb 2024
The API 560 graphic EQ is used a lot on drums by pro-engineers, so I made something like it. I don't have a real one, or a close emulation available, but listening to several demos on YT, it comes pretty close. Close enough to be very usable :puf_bigsmile:
The simple fact that I also implemented a dry/wet mix, and included the 6 dB option, shows that the focus is on usability and not on exact emulation.

Finally, I really don't care for close emulations of hardware, or even “other” software. As many famous engineers tend to say: if it sounds good, it is good. Who cares how it was made or what stuff was used. My main reason for building this was to simply see if this idea would deliver anything useful, and besides that, to have something that works differently from say a Pultec style EQ.

I really like what my setup does to a drum track. Very subtle but obvious at the same time. I haven't even tried it on other material yet, but I think it will work nicely on all kinds of material.
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crimsonwarlock
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Post 28 Feb 2024

selig wrote:
28 Feb 2024
Here's the SSL version, should all be working good - it is SO much closer to the original...
I downloaded your version. You basically use the SSL EQ to implement a static graphic EQ. The Q-factor of all the bands is fixed. I'm not sure which API model you are looking at, but the 560 has this specific character with proportional Q, where the bandwidth is wide at low boost/cut levels and gets smaller with higher boost/cut levels. This is from the API website:
The 10 precision EQ bands make the 560 ideal for signal sweetening and room tuning. A great companion to a parametric EQ, the 560 utilizes API's unique "Proportional Q" design introduced during the '60s. This design intuitively widens the filter bandwidth at lower boost/cut levels and narrows it at higher settings. Additionally, boost and cut characteristics are identical, allowing previous actions to be undone if desired.
https://www.apiaudio.com/product.php?id=108

The whole idea behind my setup is to emulate this kind of behavior. Your setup doesn't do this. Funny that your graphs show that my setup has a much narrower bandwidth at high boost level, which is conceptually exactly what the 560 does. And again, who cares if it is or is not the same curve as a real 560, if the result sounds useful :puf_bigsmile:
-------
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selig
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Post 28 Feb 2024

crimsonwarlock wrote:
28 Feb 2024
selig wrote:
28 Feb 2024
Here's the SSL version, should all be working good - it is SO much closer to the original...
I downloaded your version. You basically use the SSL EQ to implement a static graphic EQ. The Q-factor of all the bands is fixed. I'm not sure which API model you are looking at, but the 560 has this specific character with proportional Q, where the bandwidth is wide at low boost/cut levels and gets smaller with higher boost/cut levels. This is from the API website:
The 10 precision EQ bands make the 560 ideal for signal sweetening and room tuning. A great companion to a parametric EQ, the 560 utilizes API's unique "Proportional Q" design introduced during the '60s. This design intuitively widens the filter bandwidth at lower boost/cut levels and narrows it at higher settings. Additionally, boost and cut characteristics are identical, allowing previous actions to be undone if desired.
https://www.apiaudio.com/product.php?id=108

The whole idea behind my setup is to emulate this kind of behavior. Your setup doesn't do this. Funny that your graphs show that my setup has a much narrower bandwidth at high boost level, which is conceptually exactly what the 560 does. And again, who cares if it is or is not the same curve as a real 560, if the result sounds useful :puf_bigsmile:
Just thought you'd want to know what was going on, that's why I posted the graphics and suggested the Bertom plugin.

I'm not trying to be argumentative, but I must clear this up.
The Q I'm using is 100% proportional - this ain't my first rodeo you know! ;)
You can see it clearly on the display in real time if you have that plugin. If you switched to E series, you would be correct.
But it was the G series EQ that introduced proportional Q to the SSL and it matches the API version very closely! That last bit is the important part, it does exactly the thing that makes the API do it's thing, if you know what I mean!
;)
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crimsonwarlock
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Post 29 Feb 2024

selig wrote:
28 Feb 2024
Just thought you'd want to know what was going on, that's why I posted the graphics and suggested the Bertom plugin.
I didn't ask for that, did I? I posted this topic to share an EQ combi-2 that I made, and I think some people might like it.

So you barge in here, unasked, posting a lot of stuff nobody asked for, and basically not on topic. Now this topic is no longer about me sharing a Combinator, but instead it is now about you "showing off" here that you can do it better :( But "better" than what? Because I wasn't trying to closely emulate the 560 in the first place (which was clearly stated from the get-go). Your behavior here, and you tend to do this in other topics as well, is seriously off-putting. I am starting to think about not sharing any combinators anymore because of this, as I seriously don't need this :?
selig wrote:
28 Feb 2024
...this ain't my first rodeo you know! ;)
... and please stop this "call to authority", as it is rather condescending, as you know nothing about my knowledge and/or experience. But to give you a hint: Back in the days when using hardware, I used to build my own equipment. Several amplifiers, many small FX units, an analog step-sequencer and even my own synthesizer and a vocoder. That synthesizer now lives on in a free VST-synth, but you probably didn't know that because I'm not throwing around that stuff here. I'm here to have a nice conversation with like-minded people, not to show off my knowledge of who know what just for the sake of it.

[/rant]
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Loque
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Post 29 Feb 2024

crimsonwarlock wrote:
29 Feb 2024
selig wrote:
28 Feb 2024
Just thought you'd want to know what was going on, that's why I posted the graphics and suggested the Bertom plugin.
I didn't ask for that, did I? I posted this topic to share an EQ combi-2 that I made, and I think some people might like it.

So you barge in here, unasked, posting a lot of stuff nobody asked for, and basically not on topic. Now this topic is no longer about me sharing a Combinator, but instead it is now about you "showing off" here that you can do it better :( But "better" than what? Because I wasn't trying to closely emulate the 560 in the first place (which was clearly stated from the get-go). Your behavior here, and you tend to do this in other topics as well, is seriously off-putting. I am starting to think about not sharing any combinators anymore because of this, as I seriously don't need this :?
selig wrote:
28 Feb 2024
...this ain't my first rodeo you know! ;)
... and please stop this "call to authority", as it is rather condescending, as you know nothing about my knowledge and/or experience. But to give you a hint: Back in the days when using hardware, I used to build my own equipment. Several amplifiers, many small FX units, an analog step-sequencer and even my own synthesizer and a vocoder. That synthesizer now lives on in a free VST-synth, but you probably didn't know that because I'm not throwing around that stuff here. I'm here to have a nice conversation with like-minded people, not to show off my knowledge of who know what just for the sake of it.

[/rant]
Since this is a forum, it is about sharing opinions and having discussions.

I appreciate your sharing and the resulting discussion and other solutions.

Thanks all for contributing.
Reason12, Win10

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crimsonwarlock
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Post 29 Feb 2024

Loque wrote:
29 Feb 2024
Since this is a forum, it is about sharing opinions and having discussions.
I wholeheartedly agree with that. I even may have posted statements to that effect in the past myself :puf_wink:

But, mods including yourself AND Giles are often quick to point out that a discussion needs to stay on topic. And for good reasons, because otherwise the value of a discussion diminishes rapidly. I'm very aware of that, as I've been a board admin myself for many years. I owned the Orion-central.com community portal back in the day, which was sanctioned by Synapse (Sonic Syndicate back then :puf_wink: ).

Giles could simply have asked what my ideas behind this combinator are, and even why I pointed to the 560 for inspiration. THAT would have resulted in a worthwhile discussion. But instead, he posted this:
selig wrote:
28 Feb 2024
This must have been a pretty decent undertaking! So I don't enjoy saying this doesn't quite look/sound right, at least when comparing to my UA version (API Vision).
... and then going on to post a whole lot of comparison graphs that has nothing to do with my combinator here. Because I never stated my combi will compare closely to a 560. He could have stated that my combi doesn't work as a compressor as well, which I also didn't say it would, and would equally be off-topic :?

I'll leave it at that. This topic is ruined anyway as far as I'm concerned, so I won't post to it anymore. If possible, a mod can completely remove the topic. I might start a new topic when I do a revision of this combi, or maybe not.
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Loque
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Post 29 Feb 2024

crimsonwarlock wrote:
29 Feb 2024
Loque wrote:
29 Feb 2024
Since this is a forum, it is about sharing opinions and having discussions.
I wholeheartedly agree with that. I even may have posted statements to that effect in the past myself :puf_wink:

But, mods including yourself AND Giles are often quick to point out that a discussion needs to stay on topic. And for good reasons, because otherwise the value of a discussion diminishes rapidly. I'm very aware of that, as I've been a board admin myself for many years. I owned the Orion-central.com community portal back in the day, which was sanctioned by Synapse (Sonic Syndicate back then :puf_wink: ).

Giles could simply have asked what my ideas behind this combinator are, and even why I pointed to the 560 for inspiration. THAT would have resulted in a worthwhile discussion. But instead, he posted this:
selig wrote:
28 Feb 2024
This must have been a pretty decent undertaking! So I don't enjoy saying this doesn't quite look/sound right, at least when comparing to my UA version (API Vision).
... and then going on to post a whole lot of comparison graphs that has nothing to do with my combinator here. Because I never stated my combi will compare closely to a 560. He could have stated that my combi doesn't work as a compressor as well, which I also didn't say it would, and would equally be off-topic :?

I'll leave it at that. This topic is ruined anyway as far as I'm concerned, so I won't post to it anymore. If possible, a mod can completely remove the topic. I might start a new topic when I do a revision of this combi, or maybe not.
I know what I'm talking about and I know how you feel:
viewtopic.php?p=634025#p634025

In the end it is a forum. Just stay nice.
Reason12, Win10

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selig
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Post 01 Mar 2024

crimsonwarlock wrote:
29 Feb 2024
Loque wrote:
29 Feb 2024
Since this is a forum, it is about sharing opinions and having discussions.
I wholeheartedly agree with that. I even may have posted statements to that effect in the past myself :puf_wink:

But, mods including yourself AND Giles are often quick to point out that a discussion needs to stay on topic. And for good reasons, because otherwise the value of a discussion diminishes rapidly. I'm very aware of that, as I've been a board admin myself for many years. I owned the Orion-central.com community portal back in the day, which was sanctioned by Synapse (Sonic Syndicate back then :puf_wink: ).

Giles could simply have asked what my ideas behind this combinator are, and even why I pointed to the 560 for inspiration. THAT would have resulted in a worthwhile discussion. But instead, he posted this:
selig wrote:
28 Feb 2024
This must have been a pretty decent undertaking! So I don't enjoy saying this doesn't quite look/sound right, at least when comparing to my UA version (API Vision).
... and then going on to post a whole lot of comparison graphs that has nothing to do with my combinator here. Because I never stated my combi will compare closely to a 560. He could have stated that my combi doesn't work as a compressor as well, which I also didn't say it would, and would equally be off-topic :?

I'll leave it at that. This topic is ruined anyway as far as I'm concerned, so I won't post to it anymore. If possible, a mod can completely remove the topic. I might start a new topic when I do a revision of this combi, or maybe not.
Again, I wanted to let you know what was going on. I see now you don't want feedback and I apologize for not asking first.
Lessons learned. My point wasn't that you were "wrong", my point was (and I assumed you'd be excited to see) there were simple tools to provide another version of the combinator.
Most of the time that's what happens in threads like this, someone posts something and someone else adds to it or modifies is. I actually ask for this on my combinators, I see my mistake here was making assumptions about others.
Again, I'll ask first going forward because my intention is to spark more creativity, not to stifle it (which feels horrible).

Great work, I have no beef whatsoever with you or your work!
Selig Audio, LLC

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crimsonwarlock
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Post 01 Mar 2024

For anyone reading this: Selig and I have taken our discussion to private messaging, so enough said here about the matter :puf_smile:

Secondly, DON'T DOWNLOAD THIS COMBINATOR, as I will soon post a much better, optimized, and extended version soon. I'll start a new topic for that, so if a mod can lock this topic, that would be appreciated.
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crimsonwarlock
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Post 05 Mar 2024

OK, so I optimized this EQ, added some additional functionality, and made a graphic faceplate for it. I was going to share it here on the forum in a new topic, but somehow I felt compelled to do an in-deep write-up as to why I made this combinator and why I made it the way I did. I even made several frequency plots to explain why this approach has some validity. But then I realized that I shouldn't need to explain anything. Sharing a combinator is not about all this, at least not for me. It is about me building something that I want to use myself, and maybe someone else like to use it as well. Plain and simple. If you don't like it, or think you can do it better, just don't use mine. I think it should be that simple.

The discussion that happened here, makes me hesitant to share any combinators now. Seemingly, if we make something inspired by something else, you have to make damn sure that it is actually exactly like that something else. If not, some "expert" will come in and correct your mistakes :shock:

For me, this removes the fun of sharing a combinator, so I've decided not to share my combinators here on the forum anymore from now on. Maybe I'll find another way of giving people access to my combinators, outside of this forum.
-------
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Loque
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Post 05 Mar 2024

crimsonwarlock wrote:
05 Mar 2024
OK, so I optimized this EQ, added some additional functionality, and made a graphic faceplate for it. I was going to share it here on the forum in a new topic, but somehow I felt compelled to do an in-deep write-up as to why I made this combinator and why I made it the way I did. I even made several frequency plots to explain why this approach has some validity. But then I realized that I shouldn't need to explain anything. Sharing a combinator is not about all this, at least not for me. It is about me building something that I want to use myself, and maybe someone else like to use it as well. Plain and simple. If you don't like it, or think you can do it better, just don't use mine. I think it should be that simple.

The discussion that happened here, makes me hesitant to share any combinators now. Seemingly, if we make something inspired by something else, you have to make damn sure that it is actually exactly like that something else. If not, some "expert" will come in and correct your mistakes :shock:

For me, this removes the fun of sharing a combinator, so I've decided not to share my combinators here on the forum anymore from now on. Maybe I'll find another way of giving people access to my combinators, outside of this forum.
I would appreciate your contribution.

If you like, I can replace the first version with your updated version, add a link to a post with new version or just create a new thread, because maybe someone would also like to use the original version.
Reason12, Win10

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