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Line Blur - Mask Audio Electronics

Oct 14 2022
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The Line Blur by Mask Audio Electronics is a studio grade equalizer and preamp.

Originally, when I reached out to Alec (MAE) to see if there is anything new he's about to release that I could demo, he replied something like "I've got something boring coming out". After trying the Line Blur and using it for a few recording sessions, I heavily disagree.

This is an exciting swiss army knife for my recording pedalboard. The controls are simple enough so that I don't have to think. I can literally just turn some knobs to quickly find the sound that I need for a track. Plus, knob labels like "Loud" and "More" are perfect for dummies like me.

An EQ to me is most valuable on bass. For guitar, I usually have an overdrive with some tonal options to shape the main sound.

That Low knob is key to add the right amount of oomph for my bass tone. I can also just pick any "guitar" overdrive, put it in front of the Line Blur and recover bass frequencies as needed. For guitar, I tend to cut lows to make room for bass and kick.

The Mid and Freq parametric EQ is also invaluable for having a great bass tone. I can boost upper mids to add presence to the bass line without getting in the way the guitars. Or I can cut some low mids to eliminate mud from the mix.

Hi is great for dialing in attack.

Loud is just the output volume. Slamming the frontend of the Iridium with Loud maxed out brings the Clang.

More adds a nice bit of saturation. The Line Blur can be pushed a little with another boost or overdrive in front of it.

I don't know if I'm biased by the super sexy enclosure design or the great, simple user interface, but the Line Blur is more than just a boring EQ. I feel it adds some vibe to my bass tone.

If you're looking for an EQ/preamp for your pedalboard, reaching for the Line Blur is really a no-brainer.

Recording Notes

Bass

  • JMJ Fender Mustang, played with pick, La Bella Deep Talkin' Bass flatwounds, tone 100%, with foam on the bridge
  • Keeley Compressor Mini, unity gain and medium compression to even it out
  • Line Blur
  • Strymon Iridium (round) with bass cabs, EQ pretty neutral and drive set to clean

Guitar Overdubs

The Line Blur together with Calamity Drive is a really nice tool set to shape different guitar tones for different parts in a track. I only used the "Screen" side of the Screen Violence for the guitar that starts in the beginning of the loop. I panned the stereo track center and right to add width but leave space for the other overdubs.

There are two more guitars that were recorded with just Calamity Drive and Line Blur, bone dry, just gain staging and adjusting EQ.

I put the lead line in the center of the stereo field but added some dark room reverb (preset from Valhalla Supermassive Reverb plugin) to pull it a little into the background.

Drums

  • Logic Drummer Gavin (indie rock) on the Brooklyn+ kit
  • whole kit treated with compression and the Softtube Saturation Knob plugin

The whole mix was "mastered" with exciter, limiter and mild compression in the DAW.

Links

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