Mercury Recording Equipment Company

EQ-P1 Mk. III

Studio Program Equalizer

I used the EQ-P1 and EQ-H1 extensively in mixing scenarios, and they performed like champs. I was able to dial in silky top-end on vocals and acoustic guitars and beefy lows on kick drums and mic'd bass cabinets with truly 'pro' results. There were many times when i hit upon a certain setting and found it was 'that sound' I had heard for years on 'that famous record' that didn't seem possible to get with 'other gear'. These EQs are so perfectly geared to music that - even with extreme settings - it's hard to get bad results with them.

Pete Weiss, TapeOp Magazine

The Mercury EQ-H1, EQ-P1, EQ-H2 and EQ-P2 are all based on the original Pultec equalizers which were tools developed to deal with the limitations of recorded music. Limitations that most often manifest themselves in the highest and lowest frequencies of the program material. The Mercury Studio Program Equalizers, like the family of original Pultec EQs, are originally designed to bring back the life and musicality lost in a recording. Whether by accident or genius, nothing has been able to do this better in music production than a passive equalizer with tube gain make up amplifier ('Pultec style') equalizer. The interaction of the passive boosting and attenuating shelving EQs (not relying on negative feedback), as well as the transformers, tubes and other amplification circuitry all add to the incredibly musical character of the product. Working engineers try other types of equalizers, but always end up coming back to the Pultec style as the equalizer of choice for those final touches while tracking or mixing and even mastering at times.


   

MERCURY EQ-P1 BACK PANELNow in this modern age of digital recording, where the source you put into the DAW is exactly what you have on the track, with no rounded edges, no slight compression and none of the “pixie dust” that came with analog tape, the Mercury family of equalizers are needed more than ever to help add the musicality, warmth and tone to your tracks that we have all treasured.

The Mercury EQ-P1 is based on the vintage ‘Pultec EQP1a’ circuit, which uses a passive EQ circuit with a fully balanced (push-pull) gain make up amplifier. This new Mercury production utilizes only the highest quality passive components, while remaining true to the original, and like all Mercury products, has transformer balanced input and outputs.

Mercury IST switch Mercury EQ-P1 Circuit (simplified)

Besides a much more powerful and stable power supply and running DC on the heaters, rather than AC, the only other modernization is one of Mercury EQP2’s most popular features: the Mercury I.S.T. Switch.

The Mercury I.S.T. Switch offers the choice to switch the Interstage Transformer in or out of the circuit. Giving engineers a choice with a flick of a switch between the standard Mercury warm, musical, "vintage" tone with the I.S.T. Switch not engaged (out) or a much more open and airy version of the same full, warm tone with the switch engaged (in). In the original Pultec EQP the Interstage transformer was always in the signal path. With the I.S.T. Switch engaged and the interstage transformer not in the circuit, there is slight widening of the sound and slightly more open top end. Many of today's engineers value this feature on the Mercury EQ-P1 and now the Mercury EQ-P2 Studio Program Equalizers to have choice between two great, but different sounds without changing their frequencies or setting and hearing the change instantly. Note: With the I.S.T. Switch engaged or not, the input and output transformers are always in the circuit.

The Mercury I.S.T. Switch makes it possible to change the characteristics of the tube by a simple flip of a switch. This flexible, modern feature can only be found in the Mercury EQ-P1 circuit. This provides engineers with the choice to use the 1:1 transformer in the middle of the circuit, or not.

Frequencies
  • Low Frequency Select (CPS; Cycles per second): 20, 30, 60, 100, 200 Hz
  • Low Frequency Boost Control: Shelf Boost, 0dB to +13dB
  • Low Frequency Attenuate Control: Shelf Atten. 0dB to -17dB
  • High Frequency Select (KCS; kilocycles per second ): 3, 4, 5, 8, 10, 12, 16 kHz
  • High Frequency Boost Control: Shelf Boost, 0dB to +16dB
  • High Frequency Attenuate Control: 10k Shelf Attenuate, 0dB to -16dB
SPECIFICATIONS
Tubes:    1x 12AX7 and 1x 12AU7
Rack Size:    2U
Weight:    19 lbs.
Shipping size:    24” x 16” x 8”



Mercury Recording Equipment products are not hybrid circuits, emulations of circuits, or "clones". We get the same sound, same tone and same musicality because we use the highest quality parts, all the tubes, and especially all the transformers in our products — like the vintage circuits we are paying homage to.

The Mercury EQ-P1 is one of the Fattest EQs I've ever used. But, what I like most about the EQ-P1 is the I.S.T. Switch. Having the ability to take the Interstage Transformer in and out has given me the power of two different sounding equalizers in one unit. Really smart.

Matt Knobel (Lenny Kravitz, Mika, Lauren Hill)

The Mercury EQs (EQH1 & EQP1) are a quite original. All the tone of a classic tube equalizer but without the noise and much more power... Nothing sounds quite like an old Pultec but Mercury EQs are one of the best sounding tube Equalizers on the planet.

Joe Chiccarelli, Grammy Award Winning Producer/Engineer/Mixer (The White Stripes, The Shins, Beck, U2 and more)

Mercury provides amazing build quality, a beautiful aesthetic and impeccable accuracy. I cannot imagine a better version of what they manufacturers.... Mercury will be the dominant force in our industry for years to come.

Brian Garcia, Producer/Mixer/Engineer (Avril Lavigne, Kelly Clarkson, Our Lady Peace, King's X and more)

Mercury EQ-P1 Mk. III Studio Program Equalizer
LIST PRICE: $3,350
US STREET PRICE: $2,850
US STREET PRICE (PAIR): $5,400

Mercury EQ-P1 Data Sheet
Mercury EQ-P1 Recall Sheet

EQ-H1 vs EQ-P1:

Simply, the key to the tone of these two circuits is its amplifier, and Mercury EQ-H1 and EQ-P1 have different amplifiers to make up the gain lost by the passive equalizer circuit, thus it has a different tone. Meaning the EQ-H1 and EQ-P1 sound different on the same application, and have a different reaction to the same instrumentation or voice.

The EQ-H1 is more punchy and robust and has a slight push in the low end and lower midrange. The EQ-P1 is more open and silky, and equally adds warm to highs, mids and lows of your source. Although both sound amazing on any application and are both multi-purpose tools (equalizers) in the studio, if you had both you could then choose between applications.

The Mercury EQ-H1 is warm and fluid but a bit "thicker" than the EQ-P1, thus shines on thickening (and pushing forward in the mix) your Vocals, Bass, Kick, Snare, and Acoustic Guitar etc... The Mercury EQ-P1 is great for Shaping and adding 'air' to your vocals, Acoustic instruments, Guitar, Piano etc... and is magical strapped across your two buss to add musicality to you mix.