Made up of some of the finest components in the industry, including Grayhill rotary switches for frequency selection, Carnhill inductors and output transformers, the H69EQ is a modern take on the legendary Helios modules. The Helios sound has been sought after by many musicians and engineers as it truly has a vintage vibe. The omnia:arts H69EQ holds true to the filter section of the Helios modules but offers options for the input and output stages based on the desires and needs of the customer. We believe that this is the best part of having legendary gear custom made as it offers options. A well made clone of vintage equipment is great. But take it one step further....
There are four variations:
Every H69eq is built with love by hand and needs a one month waiting time so that we ensure you are getting a great product. We want you to love these EQ's
The first holds true to the helios circuitry but replaces some of the obsolete components with their modern (and better) equivalents. Unlike the original Helios eq's the H69EQ uses output transformers so to fit in better with the modern studio and because Carnhill or Cinemag transformers sound really good. When compared to an original Helios eq, the H69EQ had much of the vintage mojo that engineers so loved with the originals. Input transformers are Edcor while the output can be Carnhill or Cinemag.
The second variation swaps out the traditional circuitry for a DOA/IC 312 type line amp and uses Cinemag input and output transformers. This gives the Helios a punchy warm sound that is vintage but clear or has a warm clarity. Acoustic guitars really come through in a mix when using the he69eq, but same could be said for electric as it has that 70's vibe that is similar to 312 type circuits. Tested with an electric violin it didn't take anytime for the EQ to remove the high brightness that many commonly have. Not that any one H692EQ version is our favorite but we found the DOA/IC 312 type the most versatile.
In the third version H69NVEQ uses Neve circuitry providing a harmonic smoothness that engineers have coveted for decades. A mojo making machine the eq can also be very surgical delivering natural boosts and cuts to the material. Bass, guitars, and vocals sound enriched after eq is applied especially in the mids of the frequency spectrum. Carnhill transformers are used for the input and output.
The fourth iteration is our mastering version; the H69MEQ. The highly respected THAT1240 and THAT1646 op amps are used for the input and output stages and offer a strong clarity and very low noise. We have also used the DOA's made by Sparko Labs and were very satisfied with the results as they too displayed a very similar hi-fi transparency as the THAT chips. Either THAT or Sparko Labs can be used. In addition the mastering version offers mid-side processing and true bypass, which are incredibly useful tools when mixing or mastering a track. Grayhill rotary switches take the place of the potentiometers to provide easy recall.
Wima, Ekos, and Vishay capacitors are carefully selected for the H69EQ. Much like a common parametric eq the Bass and Mid frequencies are selected through rotary switches with a gain knob to attenuate the region. A peak/trough switch offers a peak/scoop depending on what is needed. Highs are selected through rotary switch as well. Bypass takes the filter section out of the audio path so the user can get a different perspective with the eq on and off.
The original circuit by Dick Swetenham is not dissimilar to Neve circuits (and several others) from the same era. The original modules used Lustraphone transformers which were an off the shelf transformer back in the day. The H69EQ's output stage uses the same circuitry but adds two more transistors so to incorporate the output transformers, which in this case really adds to the H69EQ's mojo.
We had built a custom a tube version of the he69eq and it was really something special.
The tube version was designed by Ian Thompson-Bell. Ian thompson-Bell is a former Neve tech and builds custom tube mixing consoles. Much of these recreations were inspired by Mr Thompson-Bell and he has designed many great circuits well worth the time to look at.
Ian also helped with the filters and figuring out the original Helios circuit.
A portion of our sales of the he69eq goes to Ian whom is retired but very active in the DIY community.
We like Ian. A lot.
His incredible mixers and designs can be found here
When purchasing a H69EQ please specify which version.
Feel free to contact us with any questions. These are custom buids and while we have some available for direct purchase please allow a 1 month waiting time to ensure you are given a great product.