For those unfamiliar with Helios, Dick Swettenham was a maintenance engineer at EMI Abbey Road Studios in the early 1950s before moving onto Olympic Sound Studios in 1958. The engineer would start the Helios brand in 1969 and go on to create the "Type 69" console, a desk used by everyone from Led Zeppelin and The Rolling Stones to Bob Marley and Black Sabbath.
In keeping with the tradition of both Acme Audio and Q2 Audio, Al and Tim have painstakingly recreated the classic circuits that have made Helios consoles legendary. The Helios 2128 microphone preamp ($999) is an accurate recreation of the mic pre portion of the Helios 0011 "Type 69" channel module with 70 dB of gain, 20 dB pad, a phase control, 48V phantom power and selectable high pass filter. The EQ section is revived in full with the Helios 5011 EQ ($1095), which also includes an electronically balanced input and transformer balanced output with amp circuit.
We sat down with Al and Tim during NAMM's Believe In Music Week to discuss the new H2 Audio 500 Series modules. Watch our interview with them below and get your first taste of the Helios 2128 mic preamp and Helios 5011 EQ in action, as we put them to the test on a few sound sources.