The Pultec EQ has about as much prestige and heritage in the history of recording as any classic studio tool. We’re looking at some of the best Pultec alternatives to bring this famous EQ into your workflow.
We’ve discussed the design of the Pultec EQ in a previous post, so now we’ll focus on finding some solutions for adding it to your home studio.
As you can imagine, there is a wide range of options available, but we’ve done some of the leg work by picking out plug-ins, guitar pedals, 500-series modules, and 19-inch racks inspired by the legendary Pultec EQP-1A and MEQ-5 equalizers.
Ironically, the most common application of a Pultec-style EQ is in fact something the original designers specifically advised against. However, the practice of boosting and cutting at the same frequency band became the “Pultec trick” known throughout the industry.
The Best Pultec Alternatives
This is especially effective when using the Program EQ on low-register instruments such as kick drum and bass guitar. It enables you to isolate and remove nasty resonance while boosting the frequencies around it in the most pleasingly musical way.
Waves PuigTec EQs
If you need a Pultec-style EQ in plug-in form, the PuigTec EQs are designed in collaboration with acclaimed engineer and producer Jack Joseph Puig.
Now you have the flexibility of multiple instances of the EQP-1A and MEQ-5 and the power of presets to save and quickly recall your favourite settings to streamline your DAW workflow.
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Waves PuigTec EQs Download
Origin Effects M-EQ Driver
The M-EQ Driver pedal from Origin Effects puts elements from the MEQ-5 midrange EQ in the palm of your hand. With features like tube modelling and an HF attenuation band with Adaptive Circuitry, you get authentic tone shaping.
What’s more the variable frequency boost also offers an overdrive control. So you can add an extra degree of bite to your sound, and the transformer-based circuitry adds colour of its own.
- More from Origin Effects
Origin Effects M-EQ Driver Mid Boost/Overdr.
Lindell Audio PEQ-501a
The Lindell Audio PEQ-501a is a 2-slot module for the API 500-series format inspired by EQP-1A. It brings together all the essential elements from the classic EQ in a compact and far more affordable design.
In addition, the PEQ-501a provides a wider range of frequency bands to work with. This makes it a creative tool, perfect for shaping instruments on the way in, or using in a stereo configuration on the entire mix.
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Lindell Audio PEQ-501A
IGS Audio Rubber Bands 500 Mastering EQ
Polish manufacturer IGS Audio prides itself on authenticity and innovation, and the Rubber Bands 500 Mastering EQ is a prime example of this. It captures the magical contours of the original EQP-1A while adding plenty of additional frequency bands.
Of course, the fact that it’s stereo is a major feature as you can process individual channels, groups, or your entire mix with the analogue circuitry of the Rubber Bands, perfect for modern DAW-based production.
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IGS Audio Rubber Bands 500 Mastering EQ
The front panel design and control layout may be different, but the Tegeler EQP-1 has all the features of the classic passive EQ in a dual-channel format.
The ability to process two instruments, like your kick and bass, at the same time, is impressive, but the lack of a stereo-link feature is rather baffling. However, it’s still a versatile option for the price.
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More about the best Pultec Alternatives:
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- Waves PuigTec EQs: Waves
- Origin Effects M-EQ Driver - Overdrive with Pultec-EQ: Origin Effects
- Lindell Audio PEQ-501a: Lindell Audio
- IGS Rubber Bands Mastering EQ: IGS Audio
- Tegeler EQP-1: Tegeler