Softube British Class A music gear review

Music Gear Review: Softube British Class A for Console 1

Softube has the British Class A Channel for their popular Console 1 hardware plug-in interface/controller. British Class A emulates processor sections of seminal British consoles and outboard gear dating back to the ‘60s and ‘70s. Right now it is available for Console 1 only. You get all the “girth” and dense tone of those Brit consoles due in part to the modeling of the analog characteristics of the input gain stage and transformer.

The British Class A EQ section is the ultimate version of a console EQ. It works like the channels from those days except there are two separate bands of overlapping mid-range equalization instead of just one. The compressor is modeled on the British diode bridge compressor, which first came out in 1968. But here there is more control over attack timing plus additional release time settings. Softube has included a “period correct” Class-A gate. It is not one of Softube’s existing gate/expander plug-ins; it’s brand new and, along with the compressor, comes with a side-chain input.

I opened an existing session I’ve been working on using my Console 1 and used the new channel for kick drum, bass synth, vocal and across the stereo bus to warm up a track mix. I especially liked the Dynamic Shape section—it’s more useful than a gate for most individual track processing. I also liked the British Drive control that offers a wide range of effective overloading reminiscent of those old Class-A channel strips. These are all the usual suspects for this thick and dense processing style.

British Class A For Console 1 is available for $199 MSRP at Softube’s own web store and Softube dealers.


BARRY RUDOLPH is a recording engineer/mixer who has worked on over 30 gold and platinum records. He has recorded and/or mixed Lynyrd Skynyrd, Hall & Oates, Pat Benatar, Rod Stewart, the Corrs and more. Barry has his own futuristic music mixing facility and loves teaching audio engineering at Musician’s Institute, Hollywood, CA. He is a lifetime Grammy-voting member of NARAS and a contributing editor for Mix Magazinebarryrudolph.com