The original KLEIN & HUMMEL UE-100® EQs are extremely rare and expensive. But Rafa Sardina – who has 12 Grammy wins and 35 nominations – owns 10 of them! What is so special about this weird and wonderful device? For some time, hardware equalizers had to each be developed with a specific purpose in mind, requiring engineers to combine different EQ types in one signal chain in order to achieve the frequency response they needed on any given source. They would have to accept the necessary evil of the resulting phase and intermodulation distortion when treating these sounds. When released in 1961, the Klein & Hummel UE-100 Universal Equalizer changed all that. This all-tube minimum phase EQ used six discrete filter modules to create a collection of band-pass filters that could create dynamic curves for any application from source mixing to vocal tracking to mastering. While some earlier UE-100s were used to transparently filter out junk low and high frequencies when printing to tape and vinyl, it quickly became commonplace to take advantage of the unique pushbutton frequency selection; this provided an easy way to not only recall settings, but also alter them on the fly while recording a performance. The UE-100 became known for its musically warm curves and precise response, offering a myriad of possibilities for treating frequencies by boosting and/or cutting across the spectrum to shape sounds “like a Pultec on steroids.”
That tube-powered universal sound and innovative behavior from K&H is now available to you in plugin form. The Lindell TE-100 is an exacting emulation of all the sweet and savory frequency treatment offered by the original hardware EQ. Right down to the pushbuttons on the interface and the all-tube filter bypass, the TE-100 re-creates this piece of German audio history with immaculate realism. Only now, a stereo pair won’t cost you $10,000.
Hone in on your sound with low and high pass filters at each end of the TE-100, then boost at one of four critical frequencies with rounded or high-Q shelf bands to add body and presence. Create dual parametric band-pass filters in the TE-100’s mid section to quickly bring out the true character of your sound. The pushbutton frequency selectors offer a unique way to shape your frequency response by focusing on each corner frequency of a filter and moving those frequencies closer or further apart while letting your ears guide your mix decision.
The TE-100 plugin also adds a few useful extra features that help improve workflow in the digital environment: Maintain full control across a variety of mix situations by taking advantage of level calibration, internal oversampling adjustment, and an analog mode that adds additional tone coloration and noise floor taken from the original unit. Dial in precise gain adjustments in 0.5 dB steps, contrasting the 2 dB to 3 dB resolution available through the knobs of the original hardware. With the Lindell TE-100, the legacy of the original Universal Equalizer can be brought to your DAW in a convenient digital form that stays true to the hardware.