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API Ships 550A EQs?AgainAfter 20 years the next run of 550As roll off API's production line (October 05, 2004)
The 117th AES Show in San Francisco is the time and place for the long-requested re-issue of the API 550A discrete, three-band equalizer.
API's legendary Saul Walker designed the "timeless" 550A in the late 60s. Originally a modular OEM equalizer, the 550A quickly found it's way into many custom console designs by Frank DeMedio and other leading engineers, many of which are still in use today. This often-copied but never duplicated equalizer became API's standard channel module EQ when they started manufacturing consoles in 1971.
Providing a true replica of the famed API 550A equalizer was no small undertaking for API. Jeffrey Bork, head API engineer, comments: "We've gone to great lengths to ensure that the new 550As are exactly (and I mean exactly) the same as the original. For starters, API constructed exact duplicates of the metal work and circuit boards from the original artwork. We made silk screens from the same original artwork for the new front panels. The 550A uses the same output transformer that API has used throughout the years. And to keep everything exactly the same, we went to the original manufacturer for the exact same rotary switches and the same Schadow switches for the bypass. What you end up with is an exact replica even down to the gauge of the wiring and the harnessing - even the original documentation is included. Everything is so exact that people with older 550A EQs will now be able to buy matching units or purchase parts to refurbish and fix their older units."
"It's basically the next production run of API units from the early eighties. And its worth mentioning that we never even considered trying to make the 550A 'better,'" added Bork. "There just wasn't any need to do that. The industry holds the 550A in pretty high regard and wanted it "the same as it ever was." It's been an honor, and a tremendous amount of fun, leading up this project."
The 550A uses bridge-T filters (RC networks), two of API's 2520 discrete amplifier modules, a 1:3 output transformer, and provides up to +28dBm output level. All three of the frequency bands overlap and there is up to +/-12dB of boost or cut in 2dB steps available for each band. There are choices of shelving and peaking for the Hi and Lo Band and a switchable, 12dB/octave, 50Hz to 15kHz bandpass filter.
A very desirable feature and so important to the classic sound is the proportional Q design where the bandwidth (or Q) of the equalizer narrows as boost or cut is increased. The Q is three octaves wide at 2dB of boost/cut and narrows down to one octave with 12dB of boost/cut.
API remains the leader in analog recording gear, such as the groundbreaking API Vision Surround Mixing Console, the famed Legacy consoles, the TEC Award-winning 7600 Input Module, and award-winning 2500 Stereo Bus Compressor. The ATI Group is the parent company of Audio Toys Incorporated, API Audio, Uptown Automation and the newly formed ATI Group Distribution Division, which now distributes the full line of Audient products including the Aztec console. Audio Toys manufactures the industry leading Paragon II monitor console, the Paragon II production console and associated rack mount gear.
For more information visit www.apiaudio.com.
About The ATI Group
The ATI Group is the parent company of Audio Toys Incorporated, API Audio, Uptown Automation and the newly formed ATI Group Distribution Division, which now distributes the full line of Audient products including the newly introduced Aztec console. Audio Toys manufactures the industry leading Paragon II monitor console, the Paragon II production console and associated rack mount gear. Uptown Automation manufactures and installs moving fader and mute automation for analog mixing consoles. API remains the leader in analog recording gear, such as the famed Legacy console, the TEC award-winning 7600 channel strip, and the acclaimed 2500 stereo bus compressor.
COME VISIT US AT AES 2004 SAN FRANCISCO BOOTH #402
Related Keywords:API, 550A, AES, three-band equalizer, equalizer, Saul Walker, Frank DeMedio, Jeffrey Bork, Schadow, ATI Group, Audio Toys Incorporated,