Acustica Audio tells us that RUBY is a VST/AAX/AU plug-in which faithfully replicates the operational mode and classy sonic imprint of the highly prized VT-5 vacuum-tube equalizer built by D.W. Fearn. Here's the story in their own words...
The VT-5 has been lovingly conceived, perfected, designed and finally produced by D.W. Fearn as a result of his long-standing experience as a recording engineer/audio designer who's used to working with the best existing audio processors. Over the years D.W. Fearn has come to know the sound he's after like the back of his hand: because of this, the task of producing a convincing digital replica of his processors has proven to be an impossible mission for a long time. Several past attempts have been discarded by the man himself, just because he felt there was something lacking in the various proposed digital emulations, so much that he didn't feel confident enough as to put his brand name (and his credibility) on those half-baked efforts. It took Acustica Audio's proprietary sampling technology to finally succeed in the difficult task of appeasing D.W. Fearn; only RUBY could convince him to release a digital replica of his stellar equalizer in a plug-in format with his name on it.
About Ruby Ruby is as an official endorsement and a faithful representation of the D.W. Fearn highly sought-after vacuum tube equalizer VT-5. The original hardware equalizer uses passive LC circuitry with class-A triode vacuum tube stages for the input and output. The input transformer is made by Jensen. The output stage utilizes the same custom Jensen transformer used on the VT-1/VT-2 mic preamps.
Acustica Audio's plug-ins are based on a unique for the market cutting-edge non-linear Vectorial Volterra Kernels technology. This means that they are build of dynamically captured samples of the original hardware gear. This approach delivers unprecedented sonic quality in the box with very similar micro-details and transient response to the original hardware.
Most of Acustica Audio plug-ins come with a "Preamp on/off" function. With it "on" the plug-in recreates dynamically the pass-through sonic coloration of the original unit (all EQ knobs at 0 gain). This includes the harmonic distortion behaviour of the hardware, the introduced phase shift and any frequency response deviations. With it switched "off" the plug-in offers a much "cleaner" and more linear sonic character than the hardware. As with the preamp on gain staging into the plug-in behaves similarly to hitting the original unit at different input levels, Ruby comes with an "Input Trim" control. This allows for a "one knob" internal gain control, by hidden linked input and output gain stages. When a positive value is selected the signal entering Ruby is brought up by the set amount in dB at the device's input, and it is brought down by the same level at Ruby's output. Contrary to this, negative values result in lower internal operational levels compensated at the output of the plug-in.The "Output Gain" control provided allows for matching the original loudness of the source material after applying equalization.
Granted, real analog hardware has still a slight edge over digital, but as far as software emulation, we at AA (and Mr. Fearn, for that matter) strongly believe that RUBY is simply today's state-of-the-art.
Pricing and Availability: Available for pre-order at $199.75