Review: Behringer DEQ2496 Equalizer

Category: Preamps

I mostly listen to classical music, but occasionally everything except rock pop and rap.

I am a sucker for spatial sense, and an effortless sound during loud passages. Note the elaborate subwoofer system and many watts of amplifier power.

Intermodulation distortion drives me nuts. Unfortunately this is often from mics used for vocalists, and can't be eliminated on playback.

I have just installed this unit, and it replaces nothing.
When set flat, or with its BYPASS mode engaged, I can detect no change in sonics. Its purpose is room equalization, and its effect will be whatever the benefits of room equalization are.

I did not go shopping for an equalizer: I have three channels of pure analog parametric equalization capability. What I wanted was a RTA, and this is one of few available other than Pro units costing several grand.
It costs only $340, and the associated mic and cable will set you back another $70 or so. It was my intention to bypass this unit once I determined the appropriate settings for the analog equalizers, but I now think that this is probably unnecessary, but it remains an option for digiphobics. This Behringer model uses 24bit 96KHz AD/DA converters, and I think some Floating Point processors for the DSP job. Very impressive. (An older model is being sold off cheap: it has less resolution). The unit has many capabilities beyond the EQ and RTA functions, but it would be worth the money for the RTA alone. You can download the owner's manual from the website. It looks complicated, but once you have the unit and play around with the controls is it all very easy. It is ruggedly built, (as prosound equipment must be) with well laid out controls, and, IMHO, an attractive addition to the equipment rack.

I auditioned the unit in the 2-channel bypass mode of the prepro.

This is a very nice toy, and cheap enough to gain easy spousal approval.

Associated gear
Denon 2900 with Underwood mod
Rotel 1066 PrePro
Ashley electronic crossover
3 CarverPro ZR1600 power amps biamped for front speakers
3 Magneplanar MG1.6
3 multidriver custom subwoofer systems

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Hey Eldartford,

Well people have records and the A/D often have compression and limiting that keep records from clipping the digital circuitry because the at the basis of Suits_me argument is the one thing he has right. Its about the music and since I have nearly 2000 records, its something I have to deal with for my personal setup I'm afraid.

As many of my clients have LP's too, its a necessary evil....still ;)
>A properly-designed digital volume control works like a stepped attenuator

Well, properly designed. It is even hard to find properly designed analog volume controls. I think the remark about drawbacks of digital volume controls holds.

And yes, of course, all other things being equal, I would rather have a component with lower distortion at lower amplification levels if I were listening music. That's because music is quiet most of the time. This is such an obviously true generalization that I wonder why the questioning. The question of signal to noise ratios is technically different from that of distortion products, although it is certainly another valid consideration.

Anyway, I'm thinking of trying some of the new, cheap digital stuff - I own the ex-111, which has no low end response stock, although you would never guess this from the online raves - including maybe the Behringer.

I doubt it is a high end device, but it's cheap and we'll see.
Eldarford, I noticed that the Behringer DEQ2496 has a digital output on the back. Do you know if this allows it to feed a room-corrected signal to an outboad DAC? It would be great if the DEQ2496 allowed you to use it purely for digital equalization while offloading the DA conversion duties to the DAC of your choice. Thx!
Oxia...Yes. It can do that, if you think your outboard DAC is better than the one built into the Behringer. A more sensible thing would be to use the digital output directly into a digital power amp that makes provision for digital input.
Was wondering if you Knew anything about the DCX-2496...these are on sale at $250 shipped right now.

Was thinking about using one of these as a stereo X-over between my Pre and amp? I'm using balanced cables so this seems to be one idea that would save me a cable change while still giving stereo sub option.

Have you done any reading on the DCX-2496? It seems that the big difference between the DEQ-2496 and the DCX-2496 is an added X-over? Am I wrong?