Waves and UAD SSL 4K vs SSL 4K Ananlogue Module

Paul Ashmore

Audio Animals Mastering
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#1
Digital Vs Analogue ( SSL 4k Eq Compression )

Today we ran audio through 3 different versions of the SSL 4000 e series eq and compressor. The 3 versions we used were the Waves Audio vst / rtas emulation, UAD 2 vst / rtas emualtion and the Solid State Logic SSL X-Rack module. We used the exact same settings on all 3 eq’s and compressors.

From listening to all 3 versions of audio this is our conclusion.

The Waves Audio emulation sounds a lot harsher in the upper frequencies and lacks all character that the 4k eq’s are known for in their low end.

The UAD-2 emulation sounds so close in every aspect you would find it hard to tell them apart from the analogue hardware. 10/10 for Universal Audio on this emulation.

The SSL X-Rack version sounds amazing. Has all the body and weight needed in a good eq and compressor. This module is what the over two emulations are based on.

Download all files here: http://downloads.audioanimals.co.uk/files/SSL4KESeriesEqCompressionAB.zip

https://soundcloud.com/theaudioanimals%2Fssl-4k-e-series-eq-compression
 

lostnthesound

Burns Easily in the Sun
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#2
Paul, your SSL module has caused me to drool on my keyboard. :) Such a beautiful bit of kit.

I'm not surprised by the results of the Waves emulation or the UAD for that matter. My one issue with UAD has always been the iLok requirement as I'm personally anti-iLok for many reasons. That said, their plugins are certainly well developed and produce lovely results sonically speaking. Waves has continually disappointed me with their newer releases of plugins (and their so called "synth" for that matter).

One Waves product I was interested in was the REDD Console emulation. Have you had a chance to try it out and do you have any thoughts you'd care to share? It peaked my interest simply because the original hardware is nearly extinct...sans that lucky bastard Lenny Kravitz who apparently owns one (and let Waves use during REDD development).

Cheers.
 
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Riisu

Not the Preacher Man
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#3
Will check this when I'm behind some monitors, big up's for doing this! I was in a studio where we A/B the UAD Massive Passive against the real thing and the difference we basically inaudible, so expecting great things from this.

Thanks!
 

Paul Ashmore

Audio Animals Mastering
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#4
Will check this when I'm behind some monitors, big up's for doing this! I was in a studio where we A/B the UAD Massive Passive against the real thing and the difference we basically inaudible, so expecting great things from this.

Thanks!
We did exactly the same test a few weeks back and in a blind test could not tell. Was having to concentrate so hard to get it. Uad are incredible when it comes to emulation. So spot on you just cant tell. When we use the UAD plugins were running out through a 24 channel SSL summing mixer so your getting that analogue feel when summing. The difference is so small I'd go with a massive passive over a hardware unit. Kills me to say it as I'm a serious gear slut when it come to hardware analogue gear.
 
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