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Review of SP2016 Reverb plugin (VST/AU/AAX) by Eventide


Eventide is proud to announce availability of the SP2016 Reverb plug-in — perfectly recreating a classic collection of reverb algorithms from its history-making SP2016, pro audio’s first rack-mount multi-effects processor.

The new SP2016 Reverb is available as an AAX/AU/VST plug-in for Mac and PC typically priced at $249.

For more in-depth information, including a free and fully-functional 30-day trial, please visit the dedicated SP2016 Reverb webpage.

For fascinating historical context, check out Eventide’s legacy webpage.

The original SP2016 introduced the concept of ‘plug-ins’ to a perplexed pro audio world way back in 1982! Revered for its signature reverbs by mix and recording engineers like Mick Guzauski, Roy Hendrickson, George Massenburg, Dave Pensado, and Allen Sides, to name but a notable few, the SP2016 can be heard on countless hit records, from Madonna to Mariah Carey and Adele to Emimen.

“The classic Eventide SP2016 has always been my go-to reverb,” says legendary mix engineer Dave Pensado. “It has the unique ability to make vocals, instruments, and drums sit perfectly in a mix. The new SP2016 plug-in now gives us all access to this incredible reverb, and no one is happier about this than me!”

Precisely modelling every aspect of those hardware units was neither quick nor easy, but today the must-have sonic beauty bestowed by these reverb classics can be applied to anything — in-the-box or live.

• Three distinct reverb types, each available in two versions: Vintage and Modern. The Modern algorithms are brighter, more diffused, and use higher bit resolution.
• Room: Basic no-nonsense, no-frills ambient ‘room.’ The extreme pre-delay range makes it possible to use this effect for reverberant doubling and single echoes.
• Stereo Room: Recreates the ambience of a large concert hall, with very clear, natural reverberation.
• Hi-Density Plate: Plate reverb with dual pickups simulating the effect of a big, heavy plate allowing users to make vocals, guitars, and percussive instruments appear much bigger and brighter than they actually are.
• Unique Position control allows users to take their listeners from the back of the room all the way to the stage while retaining all of their other settings.
• Control the structure of the reverb by fine-tuning the controls — including PREDELAY, DECAY, POSITION, and DIFFUSION. The EQ section allows for simple high and low filtering of the reverb with adjustable filter ranges. The low filter can be used to cut or boost at the specified frequency.
• Boasts a variety of artist presets including some by Dave Pensado, Joe Chiccarelli, Richard Devine, Sasha, George Massenberg, The Butcher Bros., Buda &Grandz, Erin Tonkon, and more.

In-depth Review
The first thing you notice when loading the plug-in is that the interface has the look of an analogue effects unit. It’s a simple and easy to use interface with menu controls at the top, a large red led display and controls split into three sections – level controls on the left, parameter controls in the middle and EQ settings on the right.

The LED display shows values for the various parameters as well as the chosen algorithm that you select by clicking the program button that displays a drop-down list. There’s also a bypass button to the left of the display.


The levels section has controls for input and output levels (-inf to +10dB); peak meters and limit LEDs that you switch the active source between input and output by using the monitor button; the kill button removes the input and dry signal to the mix so you can hear the tail (reflections).


The parameters section contains controls for mix; predelay (upto 999ms); decay (reverb time); position is the listening position in the room from the front to the rear; diffusion alters the character of the space from flat, hard surfaces (low) to rough, irregular ones (high).


The EQ section has controls for frequency and gain for both low and high shelving. Low frequency range is 50 – 500Hz in 50Hz increments; low gain is -8dB to +4dB. High frequency range is 1000Hz to 8000Hz in 500Hz increments; high gain is -8dB to 0dB.


The menu bar has a number of options including the preset library and load/save options. The I/O lock is a handy function to keep current input / output settings when a preset is loaded and the mixlock works in a similar way keeping the same mix setting when a preset is loaded.


I’m a massive fan of Eventide reverbs, I’ve previously reviewed MangledVerb and Blackhole and use them extensively on my tracks, especially Blackhole.

SP2016 Reverb is another stunning reverb. The ease of use and sound quality are superb and I can see that it will be my go to reverb. There are effectively 6 reverb effects and it can do everything from small to massive spaces and is suitable for any instrument. You get the best of both worlds – a faithful recreation of the original unit along with modern touches. It comes with a large range of presets that are suitable for use as they are, can be tailored to your specific requirements or you can just start experimenting and see what happens.

I’ve used multiple instances on the two tracks embedded at the top of this post. The songs were created in MuLab 7 sourcing samples in Loopcloud (Loopmasters) and processing them with Convex (Glitchmachines) as well as SP2016 Reverb and Ultrachannel. The songs were mastered using Magnetite (Black Rooster Audio), Stage (Fiedler Audio) and Elevate (Newfangled Audio).

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