Articles - PTC-2A Vintage Pultec style EQ

Using The PTC-2A Vintage Program EQ
PTC-2A Picture
The PTC-2A is a Vintage Pultec inspired EQ available as a VST or AU plugin for Digital Audio Workstations on Windows XP / 7 or Mac OSX.
Although it is possible to emulate the characteristic Pultec EQ curves using conventional equalizers, or other plug-ins, even small adjustments can then become time consuming and complicated. The [ PTC-2A ] emulates the Pultec circuitry behaviour and therefore also the control interactions, making it intuitive to set up and much easier to adjust.
This article details some of the signature sounds for these types of EQ including the famous Pultec 'low-end trick'. A short demo video, using the PTC-2A to EQ a simple drum loop can be found in the [ product demos ] section.

The Pultec 'low-end trick'
Vintage EQs such as those by Pultec often have separate controls for low-end boost and cut. This makes it possible to apply the boost and cut simultaneously. As the controls act on a slightly different range of frequencies, the effect is to boost the low-end and at the same time reduce some of the low-mid range. This emphasizes the bass, in a very tight and controlled manner, giving more 'kick' without losing detail. Setting the EQ in this way is often known as the Pultec 'low-end trick'.
Emulating the low-end trick with the PTC-2A
Like the Pultec EQs, the PTC-2A also has separate low frequency boost and attenuate controls, making it possible to replicate one of the 'signature' sounds for this type of EQ. More information about the controls and their functions can be found in the manual included with the free download.
PTC-2A LF controls
Set the Low Frequency selector switch to 30Hz initially - it may be necessary to switch to 60 or even 100Hz depending on the program material.
Next select the required amount of low frequency gain, by adjusting the 'Boost' control. On its own this will provide quite a broad increase in bass.
Finally, add a similar amount of low frequency cut by adjusting the 'Atten' control. As the control is increased, the 'dip' in the low-mid frequency range becomes more pronounced. The effect is to produce a much tighter bass boost without losing detail.
This effect can be applied either to a drum track, or across a final mix. It can also be used to enhance some acoustic instruments, giving them more 'body' or 'weight' without losing clarity.
[ Download the PTC-2A ] and try it out for yourself.