by Lyubomir Dobrev | 5,0 / 5,0 | Approximate reading time: 2 Minutes
Bettermaker SPE Stereo Passive Equalizer

 ·  Source: Bettermaker


With its new Stereo Passive Equalizer (SPE for short), Poland-based manufacturer Bettermaker promises an outstanding analog EQ with the advantages of digital connectivity. The Pultec-style passive tube equalizer can be connected to a Mac or PC over USB and controlled from a DAW plug-in. This enables save and recall of presets as well as parameter automation. That aside, the SPE is hardware in and out, with a 100% analog signal path and high-end audio quality.


Bettermaker Stereo Passive Equalizer

The unit looks classy and is also laid out quite clearly. The left part of the front panel covers the low frequencies and the right part covers the highs. As you may know, Pultec-style EQs are about simultaneous boosts and cuts in the low and high frequency ranges. This approach lets you simultaneously boost the good stuff and attenuate the unpleasantness. Thus, the SPE has Boost and Cut controls for each.

The Lo range offers four fixed frequencies (20, 30, 60 and 100 Hz), the Hit-cut offers three (5, 10, 20kHz), and the Hi-Boost offers ten (3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 10, 12, 16, 20, 28 kHz). Between the two sections is a control to adjust the hi-boost filter shape.


The frequencies are switched back and forth with push buttons. There’s also an additional gain button for the hi-cut section which changes its function and sets the output level to +/- 8 dB. If you press and hold it for two seconds, all settings are restored to default. There are also separate On / Standby and Engage buttons. The latter works like a Bypass button to let you run audio through the circuitry without engaging the EQ filters.

Bettermaker Stereo Passive Equalizer

The unit

USB connection and plug-in

The analog inputs and outputs use XLR connectors while the USB port on the rear is used to connect to Mac or PC. A specialized plug-in (AAX, AU, VST3) for macOS and Windows allows remote control from your DAW, presets and automation. You can also activate a high-pass filter with 24 dB/octave slope and use the built-in spectrum analyzer. I like this movement of digitally-controlled analog gear. I think it really makes for a “best of both worlds” type of arrangement.

Technical specifications

  • Maximum input level: +24 dBu
  • Maximum output level: +27 dBu
  • Nominal Output: +4 dBu
  • Frequency Response: 7Hz – 30kHz
  • Dynamic range: 101 dB
  • THD+N Ratio: 0.009 % (20 kHz Bandwidth, +4 dBu, 1 kHz)
  • THD Ratio: 0.0025 % (+4 dBu, 1 kHz)
  • CMRR: > 70 dB (20 Hz – 20 kHz, IEC 60268-3)
  • Crosstalk: > 88 dB (20 Hz – 20 kHz, +18 dBu, Channel to Channel)
  • Max LF Boost: 15dB (Set at 100Hz)
  • Max LF Cut: 16dB (Set at 100Hz)
  • Max HF Boost: 18 dB (for all frequencies)
  • Low Boost/Cut Freqs: 20, 30, 60, 100 Hz
  • High Boost Freqs: 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 10, 12, 16, 20, 28 kHz
  • High Cut Freqs: 5, 10, 20 kHz
  • Stepped controls: 101 Steps (Lo Boost, Lo Cut, Hi Boost, Bandwidth) and 34 Steps (Hi Cut)
  • Output Gain: +/- 8 dB (0.1 dB increments)
  • Size: 19 inch, 2U
  • Depth: 140mm
Bettermaker Stereo Passive Equalizer

Front & rear sides

Price and availability

The Bettermaker Stereo Passive Equalizer is available now from the manufacturer’s website, priced EUR 2379.

Learn more about the Bettermaker Stereo Passive Equalizer

Image Sources:
  • Bettermaker Stereo Passive Equalizer: Bettermaker
  • Bettermaker Stereo Passive Equalizer: Bettermaker
Bettermaker SPE Stereo Passive Equalizer

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One response to “Bettermaker Stereo Passive Equalizer: Analog EQ with DAW control”

    Erwin says:

    I really like the idea of digitaly controlled analog gear. This one is way out of my league, but I hope also more affordable brands will do this. Makes a way better daw integration with full callback functionality. Love it

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