Rupert Neve Designs Portico 542 500-Series Tape Emulator
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The 542’s “True Tape” emulation circuit give you that smooth rounding and compression usually only achieved by the use of tape, and can offset the harshness often found in digital recordings. Unlike digital emulations, the “True Tape” drive circuit works by feeding a tiny magnetic “record head” which, in turn is coupled to a correctly equalized replay amplifier. As the voltage rises on the “record head”, saturation increases, and a soft clip circuit engages at higher levels to round off peak transients.
The sound of the tape circuit can be further modified with selectable 15 / 30 IPS modes and a pre/post-tape blend control. In addition to the tape circuit, the 542 also has the variable Silk & Texture circuitry found in the Portico II series of modules, which allows the engineer to fine-tune the harmonic ratio and tonality on the output transformer.
Tape machines' non-linearity was generally looked upon as more of a curse than a “feature”, the advent of digital systems that operate in a completely linear fashion has made many appreciate the quirks of non-linear audio processing. Unlike linear designs, non-linear devices require the user to actively experiment with gain staging to find the “sweet spot” of the circuit. When used properly, this can add a dynamic aspect to performances that can enhance the impact of a song.
Recipe for True Analog Warmth
Start with an input signal from around 2-10dBu and applying saturation, 15 / 30 IPS, Silk, and blend to taste. However, it always behooves the engineer to experiment with the balance between the pre-tape signal level and the level of the saturation control to personalize the sound.
- “True Tape” emulation circuitfor analog sound of tape
- Circuit works an actual tiny magnetic “record head”
- Head is correctly equalized replay amplifier.
- Sound of the tape circuit can be further modified speed modes
- Pre/post-tape blend control
- Variable Silk & Texture circuitry found in the Portico II series
- Soft-clip circuit tames the harshness & enhances harmonics
Things You Will Get:
|Model||542 Tape Emulator|