New Toys: Massenburg DesignWorks MDWEQ6 EQ plugin

Developed by the creator of the parametric equalizer George Massenburg, version 6 of the MDWEQ6 high-resolution parametric EQ for Pro Tools (both AAX DSP and AAX Native) was introduced in 2020 and is now available for VST and AU host applications for MACs and PCs.

Built on the venerable and unique MDW filter-form, the MDWEQ6 includes a new active spectrum display, new high and low pass filters, high Q shelves with sharper transitions, and for ease of parameter adjustment, you may click/drag directly on nodes on the display, type in values or click/drag any of the control knobs. This plug-in emulates the constant shape filter curves of the industry-standard reference for parametric equalizer: Massenburg's legendary GML 8200 equalizer.

I'm a long-time user of the GML equalizer both with this plugin in Pro Tools as well as the hardware unit when recording in the studio. The AAX-DSP version is my standard channel equalizer I use on nearly every track in my music mixing. Just like the hardware, the plugin performs as I expect and not something “close” or coarsely emulated.

I just love the new built-in spectrum analyzer and the Hi-Q shelving filters are especially good when I'm looking for a Pultec-style effect where you would boost with one band and cut with another both set to the same frequency! The MDWEQ6 uses double-precision, 64-bit floating-point math for all sample rates. For 44.1 and 48kHz audio, it up-samples to either 88.2 or 96 kHz.

Version MDWEQ6-AAX+ is a full version with both AAX-DSP and Native versions and both VST and AU formats—it is $329 as a download. MDWEQ6-Native+ sells for $199 and includes just the AAX Native, VST and AU formats. Upgrades are available for MDWEQ5 and MDWEQ6-AAX users.