Black Rooster Audio has released the OmniTec-67A plug-in emulation of the classic Altec 1567A tube mixer circuitry.

Altec’s 1567A appeared in the early 1960s as a rackmount mixer with a simple two-knob EQ and a 97dB of gain. It heavily influenced the sound of Motown hits from The Supremes to The Temptations in the hands of engineers like Russ Terrrana and Matt Wallace.

Black Rooster Audio OmniTec-67AThe 1567A stuck around after the Motown era as the standard for achieving a cost-effective coloured sound. Beyond their technical excellence, the work of Motown producers proved influential across music genres, and is still in use.

Black Rooster Audio’s OmniTec-67A plug-in has been modelled to bring this sound to the modern-day DAW workflow, with Tube Type A, B and C options providing a variety of warmth and saturation models, each with a different frequency response, output gain and harmonic range. An accompanying Bias control influences how those ‘tubes’– too cold (over-biased), then the valve sounds thin; too hot (under-biased), then the valve oversaturates. OmniTec-67A users can choose between Low and High voltage options to find the optimal tone for their production.

The OmniTec-67A includes a Line/Mic level switch, allowing source selection with its own frequency response and behaviour. The mic input introduces the incoming signal into a microphone transformer, then into a premix amplifier, adding an additional saturation stage that users can control using the level of the incoming signal, while the line input is connected straight into the input switch. Since there is no level difference between the mic and line input in the digital world, Black Rooster Audio has compensated for the line input signal to reach the same boosted level as the mic input.

After the level switch, an input potentiometer acts as an attenuator before the single-stage booster injects the signal into a vintage three-band EQ with bass (50Hz), mid (400Hz), and (1kHz) frequencies to attenuate or boost between -12dB to +12dB for each selected frequency – providing users with more options than its hardware counterpart – and an output control that acts as an attenuator that, when combined with the EQ, makes it possible to saturate the last stage of the circuit in a variety of ways. With the Phase In/Out switch it is also possible to change the phase at the input level before any of the subsequent stages.

Other controls on OmniTec-67A’s photorealistic GUI include that ability to blend the wet (saturated) signal with the dry signal using a Mix control, and a vu meter with a 14dB reference that allows for the visualisation on the amount of ‘drive’ being generated.

‘With the release of OmniTec-67A, we not only wanted to create the most colourful and interesting preamp we could think of but we also wanted to shine the spotlight on a unit that has truly shaped the sound of so many wonderful songs, while adding the Black Rooster Audio twist that we are known for,’ says Black Rooster Audio CEO, André Kirchner. ‘From modelling this unit to adding our own feature ideas to it and designing its GUI, every step in the creation process of OmniTec-67A as an easy-to-use tool that is capable of creating that warm Motown sound, full of beautiful grit and saturation, has been a true blessing.’

The OmniTec-67A is available for US$99 as an AAX, AU and VST plug-in for Mac (OS-X 10.9 or newer) and Windows (7 or newer).

See also:
Our Infatuation with Saturation


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