The classic „Pultec EQ“ is among the best known equalizer designs.
There are many knock-off versions of Pultec EQ designs available. If you buy a Pulse Technique tube equalizer, you get the high-end, classic, original Pultec EQ. Needless to say, this pays off sonically.
And you have lots of options which Pultec to buy, as there are many models available. Pulse Techniques' prices start lower than you might think, as there are not only tube-driven 3U-versions!
There is not simply the Pultec equalizer. There are different general designs with varying frequencies.
• Pultec EQP is the equalizer design most people refer to when talking about the Pultec EQ. It allows the low band to be attenuated and boosted, the high band to be attenuated and another high band to be boosted with variable Q
• Pultec MEQ has a low and a high band that can each be boosted only. The mid band can be dipped (attenuated).
• Pultec EQH features a low and a high band that can each be boosted and attenuated.
There are mastering versions not only of the EQP available, but also the MEQM. The mastering versions offer stepped controls. Some Pultec units are being housed in 2U, but most in 3U/19“.
EQP and MEQ are available as modules for API's Series 500 systen („Lunchbox“).
Two EQP and a MEQ can be ordered as solid state units (with Saul Walker-designed API 2520 op-amp) instead of using tube amplification.
The abbreviation „cps“ stands for „cycles per second“. That means nothing else than „Hertz“ or „Hz“. A cyle of an audio signal can be defined for a periodic signal. Other than non-peridoic signals, the have a secific frequency or frequencies. You might have guessed by now that „kcs“ on Pultecs means „kilocycles per second“ – „kHz“! Pulse Technices could have just written Hz and kHz but obviously decided to stay true to the design.
To be able to boost and attenuate at the same time sounds weird. But the peak's and the trough's centre/cutoff frequency vary a little. So if both are dialled in, there is a bump around the centre frequency. The famous Pulteck trick works like that: Boost and simultaniously attenuation in the low band (typically 60 Hz) tightens the sub bass and adds a controlledbass boost at the same time.
Pulse Techniqes / Pultec EQs are definitely sweetening EQs rather than surgical ones. As with most equalizers, the Pultec sound is mainly originated less in the filter design itself and more in the transformers. Combined with the well-chosen curves, the Pultec sound is pure magic and suits 90% of all signals really well – from tracking to mastering.