Review: IK Multimedia T-RackS Deluxe

T-RackS 3 is a suite of high-quality digital and analog-modelled VST/AU/RTAS Dynamics and EQ processors, for mixing and mastering. T-RackS can also be used outside of your DAW as a standalone mastering application. Version 3.5.1 is the latest at the time of this review.
T-RackS Standard comes with the 4 ‘classic’ processors and metering suite as individual plugins also available within the T-Racks Shell or standalone.
T-Racks Deluxe has all the same functionality but adds a few more processors for a total of 9 including two analog modelled devices, the Fairchild Limiter and Pultec Tube Equalizer.
Each of the processors are also available for $99 each. The two newest additions to the T-RackS family – Black 76 Limiting Amplifier (modelled after Urei 1176), and White 2A Leveling Amplifier (Modelled after Urei LA2A Tube compressor/limiter), are only available as add-on purchases.
The decision to offer the individual processors was based on user feedback and common use. When T-RackS 3 was first released it was considered a mastering plugin, but users started liking the effects for mixing as well. Splitting up the system outside of the T-RackS Shell has made things much more convenient. Continue reading Review: IK Multimedia T-RackS Deluxe

Free Plugin Of The Week – Ignite Amps NRR1 – 3 Ch. Tube Preamp

Brand new tube amp simulation from Ignite Amps. It is Free. You can see the announcement in this thread on the Guitar Amp Modeling Forum. There are so many amazing free amps these days, the hard part is choosing one!

Main features
− Dynamic 12AX7 / ECC83 coupled triode stages analog modeling
− Three channels: clean, rhythm and lead, each with fully separated controls
− Selectable Mono / Stereo processing support
− Selectable oversampling rate (up to 8x)
− Global input / output level controls
− Double precision floating point operations support
− Fully automatable controls

Fully coded in C++ using the Steinberg VST SDK 2.4

Compatibility: Windows 32bit, VST

NOTE: remember that this plugin is a preamp simulator, so you’ll need to use a cabinet simulation after it. Best to use an Impulse Response based plugin, like LeCab from LePou.


Example of the amp in the mix (chain is Noise Gate > Screamer > NRR1 > KeFIR: s-preshigh)

[audio:|titles=NRR1 Test by Charlez]

Free Plugin Of The Week – Nasty DLA

Seems like it was just last week I listed my top 5 delay plugins, well now I’ve got a new favorite. Nasty DLA is the new chorus delay device from the ever awesome developer Bootsy.

Nasty DLA

This plug sounds as good as it looks. I’ve already used it with success for vocals in a mix. It sounds fantastic on my favorite synths like V-Station. This can be as clean or as dirty as you want it, it’s pretty flexible. Looks like this is going to be my most used delay.

I only have 2 small complaints with this and Bootsy’s other great effects. 1- No mousewheel control of knobs (yeah most fx are like that) and 2- No Mac version.

If you’re on a PC you’ve got to try this!

Get it here:

Plug-in specification:

  • input stage model including signal coloration and non-linearities (switchable)
  • classic chorus/flanger effect with amount and rate control which automatically adopts to the delay line configuration
  • frequency balancing filter for dead-easy overall tone adjustments in the feedback path
  • two different feedback color modes
  • feedback circuit and control which supports resonance up to self-oscillation
  • standard DSP 12dB high-pass filter
  • custom “tape style” low-pass filtering
  • sophisticated “tape hiss” noise simulation
  • negative or positive pre-delay
  • comprehensive tape dynamics simulation taken from the core of the award winning FerricTDS
  • the dynamics offers a slight audio ducking effect (switchable)
  • two independent delay lines with up to 3sec delay time and sync to host
  • delay time modulation with two different modes
  • additional phase distortion (switchable)
  • audio level metering display
  • dry/wet controls plus “wet only” option
  • power / bypass switch
  • all parameters available through host automation


Rotating Phase

I saw this posted on the REAPER forum today. I always wondered what a phase rotator does and this gif pretty much explains it, I don’t really care how but I know it makes a big difference. When the polarity button and delays don’t do the trick, a phase rotator like Phasebug comes in handy. What an awesome tool!

Get Phasebug VST for free here:
Hardware units that do this trick while recording are also available:

Little Labs IPB

Radial Phazer


Free Plugin Of The Week – KOMPLETE 7 PLAYERS

Native Instruments KOMPLETE 7 is out now and it’s a massive 90GB. There’s a smaller more affordable bundle called KOMPLETE 7 Elements with 12GB of content, and for FREE you can get the 1GB KOMPLETE 7 Players.

KOMPLETE 7 PLAYERS brings you four powerful audio platforms from Native Instruments for free, ready to use in your studio or on stage: REAKTOR 5 PLAYER, GUITAR RIG 4 PLAYER, KONTAKT 4 PLAYER and KORE 2 PLAYER. The included libraries provide over 450 high-quality sounds and effects ranging from futuristic synthesizers to edgy drum rhythms, stage-ready keys, versatile amp emulations, effects and much more. All Players are bundled into one installation file, making the setup as comfortable as possible.

Enjoy the sheer quality of Native Instruments products with 1 GB of sounds for free, and expand the included sounds at any time by selecting from a huge and constantly growing range of KOMPLETE Instruments and Effects, available directly in the NI Online Shop.

This is Mac and PC compatible in Standalone, VST, AU and RTAS formats. These are somewhat limited but you may get plenty of use from them. A really nice taste of what KOMPLETE contains.

I downloaded this on the weekend and played with them a little. I can see myself using some of the REAKTOR 5 PLAYERS for pads and loops. GUITAR RIG 4 PLAYER won’t get much use as a guitar amp, but should prove useful as an effects unit. KORE 2 PLAYER AND KONTAKT 4 PLAYER have been around for a while and see some use from time to time in my studio.


Free Plugin Of The Week – LiveCut

Here’s an old but still great plugin. Last weekend I had Georg over to make some music and one of the toys that came out was LiveCut. I never understood it before and he showed me his usual approach to using it. (I’ll share that on the next Podcast). Anyway now that I’ve started using it, I’m sure it will be come a tool I’ll be reaching for often.

What does it do? Play a drum loop through it, instant jungle style chopping, stuttering and glitching.

Get it here: (Mac/PC, VST, AU)

Free Plugin Of The Week: Elysia – Niveau filter

It’s been a while since I’ve come across a nice cross-platform FREE plugin so when I heard about this today I knew I had to spread the word. Elysia makes some very cool hardware & software so getting just a taste of that for free is fantastic.

Niveau filter is a balance control over bass and treble. Simple layout and operation with only a few controls. VST, RTAS, AU – Mac, PC

Here’s what Elysia have to say about the Niveau filter:

Get the niveau filter section of our famous mpressor plugin – it’s free! Add punch to muffled snares, reduce the harshness from active pickups, create some wonderful Dub and LoFi sounds… there are so many ways to benefit from this little tool. It’s fast, efficient, and most important: it sounds great!

This filter is a specialist in changing the overall sonic character of a signal with ease. It features two comprehensive controllers and is capable of producing convincing results in no time at all. Whenever a classic shelving filter would be too limited and a fully parametric filter would be too much, the niveau filter is the perfect tool.

Its main function is to change the proportions between high and low frequencies. The principle is quite similar to a pair of scales: Dependent on the gain setting around a variable center frequency, the high frequencies are boosted whereas the low frequencies are attenuated (or vice versa) at the same time.

The center frequency can be shifted continuously between 26 Hz and 2.2 kHz or between 260 Hz and 22 kHz respectively (when the x10 switch is activated). The characteristics of the filter change in the extreme positions of the EQ Gain controller: the fully counter-clockwise setting will give you a low pass filter; fully clockwise position will result in a high pass filter.

Get it here: