I recently went through some tracks I'd mixed on my computer over ten years ago. When A/B'ing them through the Warm Audio EQP-WA, I realized how lifeless and improperly EQ'ed the originals sounded. The Cinemag transformers in combination with the tubes added an extremely smooth, warm sound that not only gives me clarity I didn't know I was missing, but added an amazing, finalized, finished, mastered sound that is far more pleasing to the ear. How on EARTH did I ever live without this?
The EPQ-WA is my go-to equalizer for introducing a classic tube vibe to just about everything I record. Large knobs and stepped attenuators make dialing in the right amount of EQ quick and easy, and when I use other equalizers, the EQP-WA's bypass function still passes signal through its tube amplifier section, providing my tracks with the round fatness I love.
Makes a difference
I purchased the EQP a year ago and have found it to be a great addition. I was looking for an eq that I could use for tracking when necessary and found this pultec style eq to do the job very well. I run this with a Heritage Audio 73 which has two channels. After A/Bing, with one channel with the eq (in bypass and the second without), I found the channel with the eq to just have more character. Of course once you start using the eq features you will truly reap the benefits. I use it primarily on vocals and bass, Heritage 73>WA76>EQP. Just read in Mix magazine that this is the same chain Aerosmith used to track vocals and bass for Walk This Way. Only regret is not waiting longer for the newer units which have an attenuation feature but haven't had a problem without one.
Warm up your Ears
I was a little put off by the low price, when I first seen this unit. So I read reviews and compared different models in this price range with 500 series included and listened to all the examples that I could. So what the hey, I bought one! Now I wish I,d got two for stereo uses. I,ve got matched sets of NOS preamp tubes I could roll in, but the Tung Sol,s sound good enough to me. And, my plugins can,t touch this on tone, this has more clarity and 3D depth/weight. So do yourself a favor and get these before the price increases, I know I am! Now if they,d just make the mid range model? Excellent for the money.
There's a good reason Pultec style eq's are all the rage right now- they're definitely not like any other eq. Since I've never worked on an original I can only say that the WA version adds a sweetness in the top end and can dial up girth on the bottom. The cut/boost design is surprisingly powerful. I find the extra frequencies the WA has are must-haves for me. 800hz is a great punch for clean strats and some in-your-face presence for j-bass.
Build quality is very good considering the price. i picked up their 1176 and LA2A versions also, and I'm equally impressed with those. I'm old school and have yet to find a plug in that has all the magic of a good piece of hardware.
Hide you kids, hide your wife, cause there is EQ taking over!!!!!
Truly, A "No-Brainer". No lackluster/cheap EQP-1A hacks to be found here.
I've gained a bit of a reputation for myself around town recently. I own a studio in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area and I recently discovered I'm being fondly referred to as the "Warm Audio Guy". No, I don't work for them, but I'll wear that badge proudly.
Interestingly, I own all of their products, multiple units of some (2 pairs of WA76's, a pair of EQP-WA's, a pair of WA12's, and a TB12.
I also even own some of the Warm Audio unit's inspirations 1176's, API312's, Pultec EQP-1A/MEQ's and so on. See my reviews on the other WA products. I'm not bashful about my fondness for them.
The EQP-1A is no exception. Virtually indistinguishable from my original 1A's other than a noticeably quieter signal to noise ratio, and they seem to run a bit cooler.
So if you're a purist, sure - go ahead and spring $6k+ for a pair of original 1A's - OR if you're beyond name plate snobbery - Buy 8 of the formidable EQP-WA's for the same price. Better yet, grab a pair of the WA's and invest the savings somewhere that matters... seems like 75% of local studios leave something to be desired in the way of their converters, just saying...
I don't care what you have to do, open a credit card, ask your sugar-momma/daddy, cash your kid's college fund, blackmail your boss or even rob a bank (well, maybe not the last two...)
...but for the love of God, man: Buy a pair while you still can.
Killer For Sweetening
This box adds shimmer without harshness, low-end punch without mud, warmth (and other analog tropes, etc)… it's the real deal. Having sat on the fence about outboard processing for quite some time, I'm glad I dove in. My mixes are coming alive as they never have before; this EQ sounds great even on BYPASS (tube/transformer goodness). Paired with Warm Audio's WA76 and you have an outboard processing dream-team! Highly recommended.
Ok, So I've never used the real one, only plugins of this. ALL OF THEM. I got this unit for my front end. Mic is going to a Daking Mic Pre One, to this. On bypass it sound AMAZING. What it does to the vocals is incredible. Take it out of bypass and the thing just keeps on giving. Awesome unit. Totally worth more than the asking price.
Hardware aha moment
I've had this unit for a week or so. It's racked along with my other two units of outboard gear, the WA 1176 and the Manley Core. I have the UAD version of the EQP-1a so I definitely have a very well reputed plugin to compare against. Using the hardware, granted it isn't literally a Pultec, I finally heard, felt, experienced the extra whatever it is that I doubt will ever be truly captured by algorithms in a plugin. it just has that something that's hard to explain, a euphonic quality that just isn't quite capture by a plug in. Glad I bought this. the WA1176 seems to be a touch harder to distinguish from the software, but the might be a matter of locking in better settings for my applications. The manley core is amazing as well. Makes the mic's I have sound so much better than they ever did prior.
Amazing, everything they've said is true
I bought a pair of the EQP by Warm Audio. The reviews in trade magazines were so over-the-top glowing and the price SO LOW I had to give them a shot. W O W is an understatement. I have a large Bose PA with eight 802 and subs, for fun we patched the EQP on the stereo outs and the results were amazing, it was like the soul of the bottom-end was awakened but never got mushy or blurry. I ran a 414 through an API 312 into the EQP and love the silky high frequency capabilities, it can get that "hooky" sound in the upper mids that only an inductor-capacitor based circuit can possibly achieve, sounds amazing on our female singer. In the studio I patched the EQP to my Neve 8816/8804 mixer stereo bus and the results were fantastic. I'm an old-old school recordist, definitely out of the box type, I'm gonna need several more of the EQP to run as inserts during mix down. Sweetwater made this even sweeter, great delivery, I get stuff faster than when I was in California :-)
Toy Car Studios
We got a pair of these and are completely blown away! These EQs are perfect on everything! I did a vocal last night through a UA610 to Warm Audio 1176 to this EQ and it was vocal heaven!
warm audio eqp-wa
Thank you for making these!!! WOW!!!!!! For the last 3 weeks since my pair arrived, I hear myself saying over and over, "how the hell did I ever work without the eqp-wa?"
Definitely recommend.. one of the best in market with its price.
Great value for the money !
I owned 2 vintage EQP1-A, I own 1 new Pultec EQP1S3 and 1 new Pultec MEQ5... I'm telling you.. buy this unit .. you won't regret it !!! Very very near to the originals for a fraction of the price. Build quality is also great.. and on the low end it's pretty spot on w/originals!
Really cool to have .... I have a warm chain of tb12 w76 and now the eq . I prefer to have a tube in my signal path so it completes the sound for me . Just adds something .... Judicious use reveals sonic qualities of sources . I can't imagine spending over 3 grand on a pultec , but I guess studios have to compete , and it gives an edge .... But I think for serious recording . Can't wait to use on kick drum , albeit an Alesis sr 18!!! Warm is great with support, so you can buy with confidence . Sweetwater is definitely the best music company . And my sales engineer , who I have failed to mention yet in reviews - Clint Bransteter - is really kind and helpful and has always been patient and superb in his service for me ! Kudos to him and everyone at sweetwater for their dedication . And alas, I have been a jerk and impatient in the past so I apologize , just was frustrated . But sweetwater has been exemplary in customer service . No other company compares! And warm audio rocks !!! And thanks to clients associates for being super helpful as well . ...keep rocking to all !!!!
Having tracked with real ones, I know much easier your job becomes with the real thing. This thing is scary close, while somehow adding a touch of modern tone. Forgiving is the word I'd use for it. Smoothes out harsh signals, fattens and gives a girth to things while not making them too 'pillowy'. Also helps give clarity as well as bring things forward easily as well. Basically, if we were to use a scale from 1-10, with 1 being unpleasant and 10 being very pleasing to listen to and you had a source that was, say, at a 6...this thing would easily add a few notches, making it at least a 7 or 8 on the pleasant scale. Highly recommended. I want another for stereo use for sure.
Get a pair... have fun.
I have the warm audio EQP-WA in a rack with the originals. Really hard for me to tell the difference other than less noise. I would say buy as many as you can before the price jumps.
Great for the money, but...
I bought 2 of these. For Pultec-like EQ at this cost, it's a really a great deal. But, these units NEED an output/gain knob to achieve unity. They will increase your volume, even when bypassed.
Beginners look elsewhere, Part Deux: The Reckoning
This is basically the exact same review that I gave the WA76, but I found my experiences with each item to be very similar.
This review is directed towards the new guys/gals looking to buy one of their first outboard eqs. Get something surgical. Look elsewhere. $700 is too much for something that acts as a sweetener. My Daking Pre/eq doesn't make one say "Hmmm, I wonder if this is doing much to the sound?". My Kemper, dbx160s, and lexicon PCM80 and 90 have a profound impact on a signal. They are all tools. They work. I say "I need more of this, less of that" and the tools perform the operation. Also, you probably need to buy two EQP-WAs in order to get their full effect.
Perhaps for those who can afford to spend $700 on a sweetener find these to be great, but I could not justify keeping it in my rig. A single quality Eq plug-in, such as FabFilter, is ten times more helpful for half of the cost. I imagine that the hype for this unit is less about how exciting it should be for the new guy that this style of gear has come available at such a great price point, but instead how the old guys now have a much cheaper way to achieve an effect they could only previously accomplish with gear that is stupid expensive. Granted, I have also been working predominantly in the live sound world where I just need $h!t to work 5 seconds ago.
I also have two of their Tone Beasts as well. They are great.