Klark Teknik EQP-KT Review

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Klark Teknik Tube EQ unit

Klark Teknik is an audio company that was founded in 1974. Now owned by Music Tribe (Behringer), they have made a name for themselves with affordable hardware offerings like the Klark Teknik EQP-KT. At such an affordable price, the EQP-KT is one of the most attainable tube hardware units out there.

Attempting to recreate the legendary Pultec EQP-1A, Klark Teknik has turned a lot of heads in the audio world. So the question remains, is the Klark Teknik EQP-KT worth buying, or is it a cheap piece of hardware that you should skip? We’ll answer this, and more, in our review of this tube EQ!

Overview – Klark Teknik EQP-KT

The Klark Teknik EQP-KT is well worth the price. While some hardware units in the price range are lacking in quality, the EQP-KT delivers professional results at a fraction of the price of a real Pultec EQ. If you’re looking to add a tube EQ to your signal chain, this unit is a great place to start. If you can swing it, go for a pair to add to your mix buss or mastering chain, or to record stereo acoustic guitars with amazing EQ.

Klark Teknik EQP-KT Classic Tube Equaliser
  • Single-channel, two-band equaliser based on the classic Pultec EQP-1A
  • Class A, all discrete circuitry for highest signal integrity
  • Premium selection 12AX7 and 12AU7 tubes
  • Custom-built MIDAS input and output transformers
  • Switchable frequency selectors with up to 7 frequency points

Who is the Klark Teknik EQP-KT for?

The Klark Teknik EQP-KT is a great addition to any home studio, or a commercial studio looking to add EQ to their signal chain without breaking the bank. If you’re someone who is looking to add an amazing tube EQ sound to your vocal chain, a single EQP-KT will do the trick. If you’re looking to add warmth and a musical tube sound to your mix buss or mastering chain, a pair of EQP-KT’s is a great way to do so! The reasonable price and high quality make this a no-brainer for anyone looking to level up their recording quality.

How Does it Sound?

The Klark Teknik EQP-KT is a modern take on the classic Pultec EQP-1A, boasting a fresh outlook with similar functionality, instead of claiming to be a clone of the original. It uses 12AX7 tubes as well 12AU7. It uses all discrete Class A circuity and custom Midas Input/ Output transformers. The controls function the same as any Pultec unit would, with independent low/hi boosts and attenuations. It also includes bandwidth and frequency control. It does have an expanded lo frequency selection of 20-800hz. That gives the EQP-KT slightly range compared to the original Pultec EQ.

The Pultec EQ is known for its amazing musicality even with extreme frequency cuts and boosts, and we’re happy to report that the Klark Teknik unit offers the same musicality. There’s something about a high quality tube EQ that most plugins just can’t replicate, and the Klark Teknik really nails that silky smooth, warm, analog vibe that you should be looking for in a tube EQ.

Overall, we are very impressed with the sound of the EQP-KT, and for its price, it’s one of the best sounding pieces of outboard gear around. Check out this comparison of the Pultec and Klark Teknik models to see just how similar they sound!

Build Quality, Fit & Finish

The EQP-KT is a high quality piece of gear. All of the knobs and switches feel solid, and while they don’t feel quite as expensive as other Pultec clones, it’s hard to complain about this when considering the price. At the end of the day, we’re purchasing hardware based on how it sounds first, so we can look past some of the smaller details.

While the classic Pultec and most of its clones are a recognizable shade of blue, the EQP-KT is a stark silver-ish grey. Which color you prefer comes down to taste, so some may prefer the sleek color scheme of the Klark Teknik, while others may enjoy a bit more color in their outboard gear racks.

Ultimately, the Klark Teknik is a well-built, solid piece of hardware that I would have no qualms about including in my studio. As with any tube equipment, over time you may find it worthwhile to replace the tubes, and they are made of glass. That does mean they are more delicate than solid state hardware, so I wouldn’t suggest throwing your EQ into the overhead bin of an airplane. Considering it will most likely spend its entire life in a rack, you should have no problem getting many years out of this EQ!

Final Thoughts on Klark Teknik’s EQP-KT

Overall, the Klark Teknik EQP-KT is a great value. If you’re looking to incorporate more hardware into your mixing or recording setup, the EQP-KT is a great place to start. Since the silky smooth, warm vibe of a tube EQ is something that is hard to capture with a plugin, this is a great addition to almost any studio setup. Considering the affordable price, good build quality, and great sound, you really can’t go wrong with this unit!

Klark Teknik EQP-KT Classic Tube Equaliser
  • Single-channel, two-band equaliser based on the classic Pultec EQP-1A
  • Class A, all discrete circuitry for highest signal integrity
  • Premium selection 12AX7 and 12AU7 tubes
  • Custom-built MIDAS input and output transformers
  • Switchable frequency selectors with up to 7 frequency points

Studio EQ Buyer’s Guide

When it comes to enhancing your audio recordings and achieving a vintage warmth and character, studio tube EQ outboard gear can be an excellent addition to your studio setup. These devices utilize vacuum tubes to deliver a distinct sonic flavor that is highly sought after by audio professionals and enthusiasts. If you’re considering investing in a studio tube EQ, here are some key factors to consider before making your purchase.

Sound Quality

The primary reason to invest in a studio tube EQ is the unique tonal coloration it provides. Different models and brands offer varying degrees of warmth, smoothness, and musicality. It’s essential to listen to audio samples and compare the sound characteristics of different units to find the one that best complements your recording style and preferences.

Tube Selection

The tubes used in a studio tube EQ greatly impact its sonic signature. Different tubes exhibit distinct harmonic content and saturation characteristics. Some units allow tube swapping, offering the flexibility to experiment with various tube types to achieve specific tonalities. Consider whether the unit you’re considering offers tube options and whether it aligns with your desired sound.

Controls and Flexibility

A studio tube EQ should offer a range of adjustable parameters to shape the audio effectively. Look for units with multiple bands of equalization, selectable frequencies, and wide-ranging control over boost and cut levels. The ability to bypass or engage each band individually can be beneficial for precise tonal sculpting.

Build Quality and Reliability

Outboard gear is an investment, and it’s important to choose a studio tube EQ that is built to last. Look for units constructed with high-quality components and robust chassis. Additionally, consider the reputation of the manufacturer for reliability and customer support, as this will ensure long-term satisfaction with your purchase.

Budget Considerations

Studio outboard gear can vary significantly in price. Determine your budget range and seek out options that provide the best value for your money. It’s important to strike a balance between the features, sound quality, and overall cost to ensure you’re getting the most out of your investment.

By considering these factors, you’ll be better equipped to make an informed decision when purchasing a studio tube EQ outboard gear. Remember to listen to audio samples, read reviews, and consult with audio professionals to gather as much information as possible. Ultimately, finding the right studio tube EQ will contribute to the sonic excellence of your recordings and enhance your overall studio experience.

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About the Author: Adam Sliger

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I'm the founder of makethatlouder.com, and a producer, musician, and songwriter based out of Orlando, FL. I have 10 years experience producing and owning a commercial recording studio. I write and produce music for artists, TV, and for my solo project, Night Winds. When I'm not writing and recording, I'm into food, coffee, and riding rollercoasters!

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