I am wondering this because, as a rule, I swore off Cubase EQs as soon as UAD came out in 2000 (or '99, or whenever), because, back in the day-with Cubase VST 4 and 5-the EQs and reverbs, etc. were so universally despised, and UAD was clearly so superior, so I just switched and never looked back.
But lately, with Cubase having gone through so many obvious improvements I am now wondering if the EQ section deserves another look from me (I have already changed my tune with Steinberg’s reverbs: Reverence is beautifully sounding IMO.)
So, I’m wondering what everyone else out there does? Who uses what?
I’ve always used Cubase’s EQ. They’re clean and efficient. Great for “surgery.” They’re really quite boring, which is good when you’re looking to do simple notches and cuts. Especially when you can run nearly unlimited amounts of EQ without destroying performance!
Sounds to me that you’re looking for more coloration or personality from your EQ. Which is great. I use UAD’s Helios and Pultec EQ, and several other VST EQ, when I want that specific tone.
I’m especially fond of the pass filters, especially now that they have tweakable roll-offs!
No-I actually go to EQs for pretty much the exact same reason as you seem to use them: for “Surgery” as you aptly put it. If I want “Personality”, I either somehow add an Amp, or a Filter, a Compressor, or (my favorite choice, by far) I just try to infuse more “Personality” into my playing
I just got into the habit of using Cambridge as my “Scalpel” (haven’t touched Pultec in years-though it would probably be good to use it). But I used Cambridge because of it’s sound quality, and as well: remember 15 years ago when computers were still in the Dark Ages, and we had to worry so much more about saving room on the CPU? Well that was the other reason that I was an instant fan of UAD: you could pawn off so much of your processing to another card entirely!! Like installing another CPU in your PCI Slot!
But, your mentioned consideration about using Cubase’s EQs because they cost next to nothing of your CPU cycles is a good consideration, and I’d be up for switching all my “Surgery” to CubaseLand, as long as the native EQs were on a par with Cambridge.
I don’t use them, they’re no where near precise, deep or featured enough, nor enough of them, for the kind of sound design I do.
If they added a tilt shelf, I might find a use for them.
And since I need a dedicated eq anyway, I don’t bother cluttering my project with them.
They do have a nice, crisp, clean and distinct sound to them. I can always tell (or think I can) when someone does a Cubase EQ based filter sweep in electronic music. It does have a certain personality, I think.
I used UAD plug-ins almost exclusuvely until C7. After that I started to use the internal plug-ins for most things although for bottom end I nearly always resort to the UAD Pultec eq. Don’t know if it was in my head but I did feel that the Cubase eq’s improved quite a bit over time.
I don’t use the Cubase EQ’s since I already have amongst the best EQ plugins one can own: FabFilter Pro-Q 2 for the surgical stuff and UAD 2 EQ’s for color. I don’t even look at other plugins anymore. All set here
Since the channels EQs are (can be) always at hand in the Mixer since C7 I really use them. Bread and butter stuff.
Whenever I want the EQ to be somewhere else in the chain, look for color or need something special (M/S, superslim notches) I use something else from the palette (UAD, Fabfilter, Curve).
Cubase’ channel EQ is not bad at all. It has an intuitive workflow for me by using modifier keys and mousewheel. Now with the different slopes for hi/lo cut (I know, it’s not part of the EQ but the pre…) there’s not much left to ask for considering it as a simple, effective standard tool.
The Cubase eq’s are good for general stuff. However for more in-depth work I use a range of different eq’s as some are better suited for certain tasks than others. I variously use ProQ 2, ProMB as a dynamic eq - SonEQ - Solid EQ - UAD’s LA2A, Neve 1081, 1073, Helios, Maag EQ4 - Helios, Pultec and Cambridge.
It seems a lot but I have found with experience that sometimes you have to try a few eq’s before you find that perfect fit. I would also say the same of compressors.
For sure, I didn’t mean you were using EQ for a different purpose, one can use any EQ for “surgery” . Just trying to guess why you felt Cubase’s EQ was so bad, in your opinion.
I only mentioned “personality” 'cos you said UAD were so much “better” than Cubase’s EQ. And all those UAD EQs are running special algorithms to emulate non-linear effects of hardware EQs, i.e., “Personality,” “saturation,” harmonics, etc.
I just got into the habit of using Cambridge as my “Scalpel” (haven’t touched Pultec in years-though it would probably be good to use it). But I used Cambridge because of it’s sound quality,
Yeah, man. The Cambridge EQs are great. (I never bought the UAD ones though–got to pick and choose, unfortunately).
I definitely recommend, for “personality” EQ, the Pultec. It can do crazy magic with its low end boost / cut knobs (boosting and cutting at the same time = some of the coolest low-end management/mismanagement I’ve ever heard!), but, again, this is dirty, analog-emulation that costs latency/CPU.
and as well: remember 15 years ago when computers were still in the Dark Ages, and we had to worry so much more about saving room on the CPU? Well that was the other reason that I was an instant fan of UAD: you could pawn off so much of your processing to another card entirely!! Like installing another CPU in your PCI Slot!
Yeah man! UAD was the obvious choice when it was time to setup my hone studio, for those very reasons.
But, your mentioned consideration about using Cubase’s EQs because they cost next to nothing of your CPU cycles is a good consideration,
Overall, for me, with straight-up digital EQ, I gotta say, I can’t hear much difference between them. As long as they’re programmed tightly, math is math!
So might as well use one that’s pretty much free for CPU.
and I’d be up for switching all my “Surgery” to CubaseLand, as long as the native EQs were on a par with Cambridge.
In some ways, it’s apples-to-oranges. Cubase’s track EQ is pretty vanilla, whereas Cambridge is a fuller product that’s running some special algorithms under the hood to intentionally colour the sound. So it’s impossible to say that Cubase’s EQ can compare to it. Cubase EQ is accurate-but-bland, and it’s free. That’s about all I could give ya!.
Maybe take a day and only allow yourself to use Cubase’s EQ and see how that turns out for you?
I really wanted to use the Steinberg EQ and also bought a CC121 for that. But as they don’t even can match their own hardware to their own software I never really used it.
Since I bought console 1 I only use the softube chanel strip for nearly everything EQ and dynamics… Sometimes the Melda EQ for surgical adjustments… sold the cc121 in the meantime.