The very first HLT2A Review from German Internet Magazine BONEDO:
Last statement in the "Facit" part of the Review:
"The sound of the Tube-Tech HLT 2A is sensational! True enough, Eddie Van Halen nailed it when he said, ‘You can’t polish shit’, but any source with the slightest whiff of quality will sound better than before when processed through this machine…What I’ve accomplished here with two or three dB’s change, leaves me in grave doubt about the EQ’s that used to be my favorites…Whether or not I need the TUBE-TECH HLT 2A is no longer a question, because the sound is simply grandiose. The only issue is the necessary petty cash. So, off to the bank…”
" The HLT2A delivers what it promises in a smooth, coherent and unfussy manner. Other tools are available for fussing and fiddeling. This is a Rolls Royce of EQ's: an elegant solution for smoothly tilting things to suit the context and I'd love to have this in my recording chain all the time"
"Except for cases of "frequency surgery" where you need to delete a pinpointed frequency without collateral damage, the HLT 2A is extremely versatile. In the mix, it can remedy a poor decision by retrieving voice presence and brightness without aggression. Thanks to the magical TUBE-TECH tube electronics, the vocal easily finds its place in the mix and truly blossoms in a way even the official plugins validated by the brand can only approximate."
A totally new kind of analog equalizer that combines variable high and low shelving
eq and filters with an adjustable midrange T-Filter.
The midrange T-Filter "tilts" the entire spectrum around a selectable midrange frequency point. Frequencies above that point increase (or decrease) while frequencies below that point decrease (or increase). This unique topology, provides a powerful and uniquely efficient way to get beautiful-sounding overall equalization. As such, the Tube-Tech HLT-2A is destined to become a "go-to" equalizer in high-end mastering houses,smaller project studios, and everything in between.
Like all Tube-Tech processors, the stereo HLT-2A possesses a warmth and character that breathes life into a track and gives it an organic body that somehow manages to occupy real physical space inside a stereo mix,
However, the functionality of the HLT-2A is unique in the Tube-Tech line - and indeed in the world of analog processing. Users will find that the HLT-2A generates quick, intuitive results that can range from mild to extreme, and it sounds great on individual tracks or strapped across the drum bus or the mix bus."
Statements from Engineers who Tested the Prototype
François Fanelli, Sonics Mastering, France: "It's a great sounding unit, low noise, wide bandwidth, behaves very well at hot level, adding a nice and discreet warm tone. The unit looks beautiful and reminds me of the old pulse technique design. The quality of construction and sound is undeniable"
Oliver Lonien, Germany: "As a Tube-Tech fan and user for years, I must say, again a very well and very musical sounding product. The HLT-2A was perfect for adding beautiful lower as well as higher frequencies. I mainly used it for some guitar groups or in my main mix buss. I also used it in combination with my SMC 2B and in this case, it doesn't’t matter if it was routed before or after it. Both sounded great. I think this EQ would definitely be a tool for buss or summing processing in mixing as well as mastering."
Cenzo Townshend, UK: "It sounds amazing! I had the pleasure of trying the prototype, and I found it great on vocals and awesome for shaping the drum buss. I'm really impressed with the filter/tilt and, in thinking about it, as it's stereo, the price isn't outrageous! Thanks to Oliver Morley (TUBE-TECH UK distributor) for letting me have a play. I may well be after one in the new year."
Mike Wells, Mike Wells Mastering Los Angeles, USA: "The HLT2A can take care of stuff at the high frequencies better than any other unit in my racks. I’m buying one as soon as it’s ready! It sounds GREAT!"
Anders Schumann, C4 mastering Copenhagen: "Super cool and extremely good sounding with character! Adds nice color and quality to dead mixes from home studios. - I must say that testing the HLT2A was the best sex I had with a new outboard unit for a long time. - I want to buy it NOW!"
HLT2A Demo Video's
Here's a You Tube playlist featuring various HLT2A samples and settings
German Mondstein Records made this great HLT2A Demo:
Here's a Soundcloud playlist featuring various HLT2A samples
The samples can all be downloaded in WAW 44,1 Khz, 24 bit quality
More will come!
HLT2A Technical Description
TUBE-TECH HLT 2A is a stereo unit, featuring low and high cut filters,
low and high shelving filters and a T-filter.
The shelving filters are designed around a high gain tube amplifier.
The T-filter is a passive filter placed between the shelving filters and the output amplifier. All three sections are supplied with a in/out switch. The low and high cut filters are also passive with a slope of 6dB/octave.
A bypass switches the whole filter section out of the amplifier circuit, keeping the output stage in the circuit.
The T-filter is like a seesaw. When the low end goes up, the high end goes down and visa versa.
When the potentiometer is turned clockwise, the high frequencies are boosted and the low frequencies are attenuated.
When the potentiometer is turned counter clockwise, the low frequencies are boosted and the high frequencies are attenuated
The unit is all tube based except for the power supply.
Input and output have fully floating transformers.
All DC voltages are stabilized, except the anode voltage for the output stage.