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Is there still such thing as "British EQ"?


We sometimes hear debates on this one, so we decided to throw it out
there and see what all of you had to say.
Is there still such thing as "British EQ"? Was it a "real" difference at
one point, but is now no longer an issue because so many new, good EQs
are out? Or do all the great new EQs not measure up to the real deal
"British EQ"? Sound off on the Sweetwater forum.
DON'T SEND YOUR ANSWERS TO THIS E-MAIL! You can answer the question at
length on the Sweetwater forums. Follow the link below and tell us (and
the world) what you think.
December 7, 2001 @09:58pm

I vaguely remember an article somewhere about the BBC using a standard for equalization that diminished the 2Khz area to soften the "nasal honk" that sometimes happened with voices and symphonic music. It lent a "dignified" air to the programming and so became a standard operating procedure.
Can anybody corroborate my vague memory?
December 11, 2001 @03:43am

The early Mackie 1604 manuals claimed that the mixer's EQ had an "english style eq found on more expensive desks."
This leads one to conclude that 3 band, mid-sweeping EQ is equivalent to a "British EQ" standard but I would ask someone at the Beeb's engineering department to get the real skinny.
Regardless, the Mackie EQ speaks very good "English!"
December 12, 2001 @07:32pm
David Klausner

I'm not sure there ever was such a thing as "British EQ".  Most of the early EQ's that were musical just happened to come out of England (Neve, Trident, Calrec, Helios, and later Soundcraft, SSL, etc.).  Common characteristics, due largely to the limitations of components at the time, were low Q's (broad bandwidth) and stepped, but musically chosen, center frequencies.
December 13, 2001 @03:57pm

Check with John Oram...he is called the "Father of the British EQ".
December 14, 2001 @07:27pm

Working for a design/build company most all our client's still beleive in & want that "sound". We typicaly install Soundcraft in all our jobs. Most all clients do hear a huge difference over their typical mixers. To me Soundcraft & Allen & Heath (in their price range) sound more musical (warmer?!) then most US/Japan brands. Like anything elese the ears & the client know best!
January 1, 2002 @07:21pm

You'll realize the "British EQ" if you compared a Soundcraft to a Mackie console. I presently have a Mackie 24X8 and 32 X8 console. I was playing with a local band and renting my PA out when I wasn't playing. I found the Mackies to sound really good when I used em live even though they were made for recording. They had that honky nasal sound when I recorded with them. The bands kept hiring my PA so much Igot tired of rewiring the console back into my studio. I couldnt get the time to record.
I "secretly" purchased a Soundcraft Ghost and put it in my private studio.
Everybody was asking me why I wasn't upset anymore when the bands wanted to use both my Mackies. The Soundcraft EQ "BLOWS THE MACKIE AWAY" on everything! British eq rules. No doubt about it. Ask anybody who uses "British eq". It's different in a very good way. These days most people are using the console eq to separate the instruments from competing with the same frequency which causes the mix to sound "mushy". With the Soundcraft Ghost, you "dial in " the frequency you want. You're done and ready to master. No sittin around for days and second guessing yourself. No waking up the next day and wondering what the hell you were thinking.
February 18, 2002 @04:25am

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May 23, 2008 @03:14am

You DO realize that you're 6 years late in contributing to this thread, right?
May 23, 2008 @03:19am

I wonder how much of British EQ is the sound of the parts used. There are various circuit topologies that will generate a parametric EQ, but the electronic 'transfer function' will be the same. Don't know, just a stupid guess on my part.
May 23, 2008 @04:02am