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The Premium Tube Series is made up of three individual effects – Passive EQ, Vari Comp and Enhanced EQ – available either individually or as a bundle.
As its name suggests, Vari Comp is a compressor with a flexible range of use cases, from instrument groups to individual tracks. Emulated to possess a clear and warm 'analog' sound, Vari Comp limits and compresses. In limit mode, it uses a unique automatic ratio and knee adjustment, altering the compression ratio from 4:1 up to 20:1 automatically in response to the input signal.
I bought this collection maybe a month ago after buying my complete 8 and hearing a lot of buzz about it on Youtube and trying it out myself.in all honesty i wish it was just slightly lower in price. but I feel like it is well worth the price paid.the quality of each plugin is incredible and very very nice to look at.now also they are all super stable and have given me no problems what so ever
lets start off with the passive eq.
The Passive eq from the looks and feel is a nice emulation of the massive passive.it even has how every band can be a shelf or bell. now what i find is impressive with this eq is how amazingly smooth it is. perfect for mastering and even great for mixing.CPU hit is from what I have noticed small not tiny but more like slightly more than small. that is on my macbook pro 2.9gzh with 8 gigs of RAM running pro tools 10,ableton live 8, reaper, and logic pro.(all legit might I add)and on my PC a custom built PC with 3.6GHZ quad core I7 and 16gigs of RAM.the hit is basically tiny and not a big deal at all. on the pc i have reaper, pro tools 10 and sequoia.the Mid Side controls are it are really nice and come in handy when needed. so far I find it impossible to really make this ever sound harsh or shrill. super smooth filters and just a dream to work with.
The enhanced eq.now I am taking a guess and saying its a emulation of a pultec because of the way the boost and cuts work. now this little power house is basic a boost for low and cut at the same frequency and a boost bell for high or mids. where it gets interesting is the high damp it feels like it should be called. its basically a filter super smooth and extra gentle low pass filter. I find this super nice on kicks or getting a nice final eq bump when needed. and often times really does get used more in my mixing on tracks more than anything else. CPU hit is pretty small and again does not sound bad easly but I find you can get thing to sound a little to sharp or muddy with to much of a boost.
Now for the Vari Compressor
this thing KICKS ASS
I just have to put that first. Now this compressor will never be great for that super fast super squashed sound if that's what you want. yes you can squash the hell out of something with the limiter switch. but its more a mastering or a smooth gentle compressor. a few db of reduction and i get a super smooth "gel" sound is great CPU hit is good. Now for the real reason I think this thing just kick ass is the side chain can be both internal and external with a low end or High Pass detector mode to it. now why is this awesome? well when you start compression and hitting it harder you can really get the bass end to pump or sound dope if you squash the hell out of it.(personally I don't like pumping bass but i don't do electronic music) now after you get the bass or just the normal signal compressed like crazy you can lower the output and use the dry knob to give the original signal back into it. what I like about it is that well its like using it for parallel compression but with more control. you have the dry knob to set the level to about where you would like it and you can gently add that compressed squashed beefy tone and body of the mix or tone back in just enough to add some energy and power into whatever you want the mix the kick the sound the mix. and keep your dynamics in tact but have that nice body to thicken the mix up.
Now for the scoreing
manual its there and easy to understand. not really needed though. 10/10
CPU Hit small not really much on my end but might not be great for older computers with little CPU to spare. and there is little latency on the compressor i think it was. 9/10
sound quality is amazing 10/10
ease of use 10/10
presets 10/10 now here is where its kinda cool they are usable ones actually in the ballpark of where a good recording might need it.
looks 10/10 basically looks super nice.
and that's about it i would say 9.8 out of 10
edit also one thing after testing is they all add some harmonic distortion except the enhance eq. weird to me so that is one thing i am actually going to email them and ask about but they sound great and work well.Read Review