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Ingram Engineering EQ52

Ingram Engineering EQ52

Its combination of ‘See‑Saw’ band and filters make this classy EQ really versatile.

Eric Ingram runs Ingram Engineering from his home in Atlanta, and it draws on not only his passion for audio electronics but also his background as a musician. The company’s small but steadily growing range of studio hardware began with the release of a two‑channel preamp in the early 2000s, but in more recent years the main focus has been on 500‑series modules. Ingram offer a few different modules, covering preamplification, EQ and dynamics processing. Under review here is their latest release, which puts an intriguing set of EQ tools into the compact 500‑series format.


The EQ52 has three different sections, which are far more straightforward to use than first appearances might suggest. Working down from the top, an EQ In control toggles the entire EQ circuitry in/out of bypass. Next, a passive high‑pass filter provides a gentle 6dB/octave cut over a wide, adjustable frequency range. A push‑switch selects one of two frequency ranges: 45‑600 Hz, which you might typically use to filter out low frequencies when recording or mixing; or 640Hz to 5kHz, for more extreme tone shaping, or perhaps use as an analogue side‑chain filter EQ — for example, to focus a compressor’s sensitivity more towards the mids/high end.

Next, we have what Ingram call the See‑Saw filter, and others describe variously as a tilt or pivot filter. The see‑saw, with its straight‑line lever balancing and pivoting around a fulcrum, is a good visual analogy! You select the pivot frequency and then, as you bring one side of the frequency spectrum up or down, the opposite happens to the frequencies on the other side of this fulcrum. The result can be a drastic tonal rebalancing or subtle enhancement, but it always seems to be a very ‘natural’, smooth‑sounding tonal shaping. As with all sections of the EQ52, you can exercise this filtering over a very wide frequency range: the pivot frequency can be swept (in two stages; there are two range options selected with a button) all the way from 110Hz to 26kHz!

Finally, a High‑Cut Filter section offers passive low‑pass filtering with a 6dB/octave roll off, anywhere from 2.7kHz to a mind‑blowing 200kHz! Why on earth would you want to roll off frequencies so far above the threshold of human hearing? I put that question to Eric, and he explained that he wanted the EQ to be useful for rejecting unwanted, non‑audio content that can otherwise end up being folded back into the audio spectrum, and this obviously allows you to set the turnover frequency anywhere within the range captured by a 192kHz recording.

In Use

The gentle nature of the slopes used for the high‑ and low‑pass filters mean the EQ52 typically delivers a very pleasing tone‑shaping that feels like it’s doing something more useful than simply removing unwanted information. I found it often encouraged me to be a lot bolder than I might expect — I’d often end up with the high‑pass set comfortably above 100Hz on guitars and vocals, for example. The low‑pass filter was similarly effective and worked superbly for taming any source that was overly bright or whose transients seemed that bit too ‘spikey’.

I was very pleasantly surprised at just how much I found myself turning to it for use in real projects.

I think ‘tilt’ style EQs can be really under‑appreciated (simple solutions that just work are too often overlooked by music makers today!), and in the analogue domain in particular they’re great: they enable you to shift a part’s tonality in a very clean, natural‑sounding way, and to do so without having to adjust too many controls. Being able to ‘sweep’ such a wide frequency range at which the filter ‘pivots’ makes the EQ52’s See‑Saw section incredibly versatile: I found a number of effective uses for it over the review period, from dramatic tonal reshaping of ‘out‑of‑whack’ guitars in a mix project, through to adding a little sheen and air to a vocal or bringing out the snap and presence in a snare drum. I’d have loved to have tried a pair of these over a whole mix, and I think the options available here could work superbly for mastering jobs. Mastering engineers can (understandably) be fussy about using dual‑mono units, especially with unstepped controls as on the EQ52, but the EQ options available here would be fantastic in those situations where you need to get a bit more involved than is ideal. (If you are interested in exploring a pair of these, Ingram have some information on their website about matching up a pair for mastering.)

Final Thoughts

Over all, then, I was really impressed with the EQ52, and I wasn’t just ‘testing it’ either: I was very pleasantly surprised at just how much I found myself turning to it for use in real projects during the review period. I’m a big fan of putting in the effort during the recording stage to get sounds as close as possible to the way I think they’ll need to be in the mix, and the EQ52 is perfect for this way of working: not only can you make sounds leaner and more ‘mix ready’ by removing unnecessary information at either end of the spectrum, but you can also reshape the tone of a source, sometimes pretty radically, without much risk of it becoming too difficult to readjust during the mix, should you later change your mind.

The See‑Saw filter is a wonderful and wonderfully simple concept, and this one sounds great. Yes, I know there are tilt filters available in software, but it just doesn’t seem to sound as good to me when performed in the digital domain. I tried a couple of times to copy a setting on the EQ52 using FabFilter’s excellent Pro‑Q 3 plug‑in (which includes a tilt filter option) and I just couldn’t recreate the effect of the EQ52, for example in the way I was using it to smoothly brighten a snare drum and, separately, a vocal. As much as I enjoyed using the three sections of this EQ in isolation, though, it’s what you can achieve by using them in combination that makes this design really clever. If you have a spare slot in your 500‑series rack, I’m pretty confident you’ll get some value out of the EQ52.  


Notable 500‑series competition comes from, among others, Tonelux, who have built their Tilt EQ stage into their MP5A mic pre, and Phoenix Audio’s Pivot Tone Channel.


  • Passes the ‘nicer than software’ test!
  • Low‑ and high‑pass filters are surprisingly versatile.
  • See‑Saw band delivers excellent tonal shaping with minimum fuss.
  • Good value for money.


  • None.


A nicely conceived collection of simple yet high‑quality EQ tools in a single 500‑series module, and at a competitive price.


$400 plus VAT, duty and shipping.

Ingram Engineering +1 678 685 9838.


Ingram Engineering +1 678 685 9838.