One of the most recent releases from Waves is the F6 Floating-Band Dynamic EQ. The first thing I noticed about it was the immaculate interface with various parameter knobs along the bottom. But it goes far beyond just being eye candy, this is a truly flexible and high quality dynamic EQ.
Each of its 6 bands can be either a hi/low shelf or bell and have independent controls for frequency band, Q, gain, range, threshold, attack and release.
The range control is unique because it compresses or expands depending on the position of the knob. Turning the knob left will compress the signal, while turning it to the right will expand the signal.
The F6 can be used in either mono, stereo or mid-side mode as well so you could throw it on a bus or even on your master chain.
Personally I wish it had a frequency spectrum, but I guess you can’t have everything. Maybe we’ll see it in a future update perhaps?
At any rate, it’s still a fantastic tool to have at your disposal.
Waves Center Review- A simple solution for a complicated issue
I’ve been using Center on every mix since I bought it. It allows you to enhance the stereo width of your mix by blending the hi-end/low-end levels of your signal between the sides and the center.
You can also blend the transients to the sides or center of your mix to add punch.
Center is a one trick pony, but it’s the best plugin I’ve found for easily adding focus and punch to busses and overall mixes. It’s extremely easy to use and once you start using it, it’ll become an indispensable tool in your arsenal.
The iconic SSL E-Channel has been around for as long as I can remember and probably needs no introduction.
A couple of weeks ago I was one of the lucky folks that caught this baby being sold separate from the bundle of plugins it’s normally included in and it was a great find let me tell you.
Based on the Solid State Logic 4000-Series analogue consoles, the SSL E-Channel features the same all-discrete design and Class A, VCA chip as its hardware counterpart.
Additionally it has a 4-band parametric equalization section, Hi Pass/Low Pass Filters and a dynamics sectionwith a compressor/limiter as well as an expander/gate.
The equalization section is based on the Black Knob equalizer developed with celebrated producer, George Martin in 1983. As on the original hardware, the dynamics section can be placed pre or post EQ via the (CH. OUT.) button.
Automatic gain make-up, calculated from the Ratio and Threshold settings, is applied to maintain a steady output level.
Upon trying it out on a drum bus, I noticed a warm analog sound and it gave my drums a noticeable punch which I’ve read the SSL E-Channel is famous for.
The generous number of presets offer a great starting point with contributions from Grammy Award Winning audio engineers and mixing gurus such as Dave Pensado and Chris Lord-Alge.
Here’s a great video from Graham Cochrane showing how to turn your computer into a virtual SSL console by instantiating the E-Channel on every track of your mix:
Kramer Master Tape is an emulation of a rare ¼” reel-to-reel vintage tape machine. I haven’t seen any mention of which tape machine it models, but this plugin is surprisingly flexible and can be used for a variety of tasks.
It has adjustable parameters for wow & flutter, tape speed, bias, flux and noise. You would normally add a plugin like this when you need to eliminate some of the harshness that digital signals generate, making the mix sound cleaner.
While Kramer Master Tape delay excels at that, it also can be used for delay throws, slapback delay and noise saturation.
A good alternative to the Kramer Master Tape is the h delay, which is a great hybrid solution that works great on those old school sounding tracks. Check out the h delay user guide here.
The preamp section on the bottom left of the interface has adjustable knobs for input (RECORD LEVEL) and output (PLAYBACK LEVEL).
These knobs can be linked so that turning one knob will affect the other, so you can really dial in how much signal you want coming in while taming the output level.
Try using this on virtually any channel and go through the presets. Listen to what it does to the signal and tweak to your liking. I’m pretty sure you’ll be pleased with the results.
This is one of the best plugins to achieve a clean mix, and is surprisingly easy to use.