Michael Fossenkemper said:Jerry, let us here about it when you get it.
Our Forssell mod board for the NSEQ-2 arrived a couple days ago, and we installed it tonight after our sessions. Austin's venerable audio guru Chet Himes actually did the install back in our shop tonight as a gesture of friendship. Nick acted as the helper, and I "supervised"... which means I impatiently looked over Chet's shoulder and asked "whaddaya doin now ...are you sure the soldering iron is hot enough ...make sure you follow the wiring diagram... what does that green wire do... and being a general nuisance.
Reminds me of a story; many years ago back in Lubbock, I used to teach guitar at Perkins Music Company. Mr. Perkins was a fine gentleman and guitar repairman. He kept a sign over the workbench that read:
Guitar Repair - $10 per hour,
If you watch - $20 per hour,
If you help - $30 per hour!
He did some fine fret work, but didn't like anyone "supervising".
So taking my cue from Mr. Perkins, I finally left Chet & Nick alone to do the mod job, and went to my office to do paperwork.
After the mod was finished, we set it in the rack, made the connections, and powered her up. Opened the session I had done earlier yesterday, and went to a familiar song to test the EQ.
Set the "TT" switches out to Balanced, yoohoo! no more level loss!
Set the Range to 6dB, so each click of the knob yields about 1/4 dB of boost or cut, talk about your fine tuning!
And started EQing the song, a relatively thin acoustic guitar and vocal number:
Highs: added a dB at 16k... Nice and Silky sounding, not harsh on either bell or shelf... very kewl.
Low Shelf: added a dB at 100Hz on down... big warm and punchy without losing clarity or adding rumble.
Low Mid knob: added a half dB at about 120Hz on the very widest Q setting, nice, warm, and fat without being boomy or muddy. Very well defined!
High Mid knob: first added a half dB at about 2.8k on a wide Q, brought up some nice presence on the vocal and guitar, WITHOUT BEING HARSH or THIN! couldn't believe it!
Then I changed the setting to + 0.5dB at about 300-400Hz to fatten up the vocal... nice and warm without being clouding or murky!
Next checked the x10 buttons on the parametric knobs, works fine.
Set the Range switches to 12dB instead of 6dB, works great.
Tested the in/out hardware Bypass buttons, ...oh yeah!
Next chance I have, will shoot some tones & pink noise through her just to plot exactly what the settings yield. But that's really not even necessary, the mod transforms this EQ into a totally different beast... just turn the knobs till it sounds good. In fact, on the test song, I couldn't find a setting that sounded bad or harsh, or cloudy, different settings just change the character and/or color of the material to taste... Amazing!
The previous incarnation of the NSEQ-2 was excellent, a nice pristine sounding EQ, good for doing corrective EQ, but sounded slightly "clinical" and could get a little harsh or cloudy beyond a dB or so of change... and not all settings were complimentary to typical program material. Mine had the unbalanced inputs, with a 6dB level loss, which always bothered me a little because I'd have to make it up elsewhere in the chain. Also rarely ever used the Tube side... a bit too much color for most mastering work, and of course the resulting heat.
So it took us about an hour to do the mod, and we experimented with the knobs and sound for about an hour. As others have stated, this mod completely changes the NSEQ-2 into something totally different, surprisingly so. A great EQ for contour, shaping, all with a very musical character... and for about 800 bucks, HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
I ordered the mod via telephone, talked directly to Fred (a super guy BTW), he sent it out the same day, it arrived well packaged, undamaged, & came with complete installation instructions.
Over the next few weeks, as I use it on a daily basis, and as I learn more about what it does, will report back with more specific details.
First Impression... A Complete 10.