June 12, 2024
Interview with FreqTube designer - by Qlyde (transcript)

In this interview, you will hear from qlyde, a music producer who voted the FT-1 as the “Best at NAMM” new product for music production. You will also learn how FT1 FreqTube delivers tube saturation with high-quality converters, low noise floor, and total recall.

Qlyde interview with the designer of FreqTube, Aran

Check the transcript or see the video-interview bellow!




"The FT1 FreqTube by Freqport received my vote for the "Best at NAMM" new product for music production. I'm hoping to get my hands on one in the near future to put it through it's paces on the channel, but for now, after a great trip to NAMM 2023, we got a chance to catch back up with the designer of the freqtube and Aran walks us through some of what makes this unit so special!"

-       Hi. I'm Clyde, and I'm here with Aran, the designer of FreqTube. I was lucky enough to catch up with them this year at NAMM, and their new product is something special! So I had to bring them on for a quick interview. So, welcome.

-      Thanks for having me.

-       So, Freqport is a new company, basically building in-the-box analog hardware. And I'd love to knowhow the designer like yourself would describe the product.

-       So what we've done is we're really bringing Analog into your DAW. And we're doing that by developing hardware that actually runs as plugins in your DAW. As traditional plugins are all DSP based, and they're just mathematical equations that are actually processing the sound. We're doing the processing on real analog hardware, that you use just like a normal plugin.

-       Okay, so, it's a true analog tube saturation unit. And how is it processing the audio?

-       Essentially, what we've developed over these several years of developing, is a kind of a stable platform that really gets the audio from your normal workflow out into the analog and then back into your computer again, after it's been processed in analog. 

Under the hood as it were, so it's invisible to you, all that's happening. There's no real special setup that's needed with your sound card or anything complicated like that. You just plug the box in, with USB. 

And our architecture is what we've developed to make that all happen.  

-       That was actually one of my questions, too, was how we're going to plug it into our system? Because it is four channels of saturation, right. So it can all just connect through USB. We don't need a bunch of cables or anything.

-       Yeah, that's right. So it’s quite simple. When you purchase the product, we just have an installer, you install the software. And then when you want to use the product, you just plug it in with a single USB cable into the computer.

Obviously, there's a power for the hardware as well. Other than that, you just load the plugin within the DAW, so you'll find it within your normal selection of plugins, you'll find our plugin. And you can load that up, multiple instances of that plugin.

Now, when that plugin's loaded, you can select which tubes you want to be associated with that particular instance that you've just loaded. And as you may be aware, if there's four tubes in the product, like our product, then you can have up to four instances running.  A one tube per instance or two stereo instances, or any other combination like two mono and one stereo, for example. It's really as simple as that.

And, of course, when you save your project, you get all the benefits of total recall on your analog equipment. So the ft-1 will recall all of the analog parameters that you've set aspart of your song, or you can save the presets and recall them later as well.

-       Yeah, that's amazing. It's sort of a game changer for in-the-box producers and especially at this price point. Something like this on mastering gear would normally be thousands of dollars. At the lowest at the lowest point. 

-       Yeah, that's right. And we absolutely haven't compromised on anything. You'll find the converter is a 32-bit ESS pro level converter. The noise floor on this thing is super, super low. We would suggest it's lower than any pro gear for tubes, and using any other method that you can almost find anywhere. And that's because we got the benefit of having all the conversion and the analog circuitry all within the one box, shielded box. So we get super low noise because of that. 

-       Yeah. Awesome. And the last question is with these four channels, are we able to automate the channels of the plugin and enter the hardware all separately?

-       Yes. That's right. So when you load an instance that's associated with a particular tube and all of the parameters for that one instance and that one tube then (or, if you've got two tubes, those two tubes then). They're all independent from each other. They're not shared across the global or anything like that, they are all totally independent, as though it was totally independent instance.

-       Wow. So it's basically like having four separate units, just available all at once? 

-       Exactly. And all the associated analog circuitry that you see within the plugin, all of that circuitry is duplicated four times in the product. So, there's no kind of weird conditional things that mean you can't do that if you've loaded that, or anything shared across, they can all be completely independent.

-       Well, a big thanks to Aaron. I hope you guys enjoyed this... I appreciate you taking the time, Aran, and I'm pumped for everyone to receive their units and see what they can do with them. Cheers!





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Video used with permission. Copyright @qlyde