The Amtec PEQ-1A is a Pultec-style, tube-based EQ that doesn’t intend to be a faithful copy of the legendary original, but rather is an updated version of the design, with extended frequency response and greater signal control. The 2U device, which is hand-assembled in Poland – and could perhaps qualify for the title ‘Poletec’ – utilises military spec PCBs, soft-start filament supplies and high-grade components in its construction.
The unit is classically styled with large, plain white lettering on a black aluminium faceplate. The Amtec offers 11 positions on the high/mid frequency selector, unlike the Pultec’s seven, with the extra frequencies at 1kHz, 1.5kHz, 2kHz and 20kHz. The PEQ-1A also has an extra shelf frequency at a supersonic 40kHz and the same low frequency positions as a Pultec EQP-1A. Other design features include a high impedance (>1.8kΩ) balanced input that improves on the 600Ω input impedance of the original Pultec, which can cause loading problems when connected to some modern equipment. Matched pairs are also available and a mastering edition of the Amtec PEQ-1A featuring stepped pots for boost and attenuation functions can be ordered from the factory (at extra cost).
In operation, the PEQ-1A has a smooth and musical top end with warm and clear low frequency control. Like the Pultec, there’s an interaction between the boost and attenuation controls that’s well worth experimenting with to get just the right amount of bottom-end without affecting the lower mid frequencies. This also applies to the high/mid frequency section and it’s really a matter of using your ears rather than trying to interpret the boost/cut settings. I tried the Amtec on bass guitar (of course), vocals, acoustic guitar and on a mix. In each case the EQ enhanced the sound in a smooth, sweet-sounding way, especially in the lower frequencies.
The Amtec PEQ-1A would suit anyone looking to acquire a Pultec-style EQ that sounds great, overcomes the loading problems and high cost of an original Pultec, and offers greater signal control with extra frequency positions and response. – Robin Gist
Contact: Albert Zychowski
(02) 9940 3687