SampleScience offers Rusty Piano, a freeware virtual piano in 64-bit VST plugin format for macOS and Windows. Rusty Piano is compatible with Windows 8.1/10 and macOS El Capitan to Mojave. Unfortunately, it’s not compatible with macOS Catalina or higher. This plugin looks to be right up my street, and I rarely pass up the opportunity […]
Manufacturer RODE has cooked up a serious upgrade for its NT-USB Mini microphone’s capabilities in the form of RODE Connect. The free Windows and macOS software offers the ability to connect up to four of the USD 99 NT-USB Mini microphones to a single computer for recording, podcasting, and streaming.
RODE Connect software for NT-USB Mini
RODE Connect combines recording, routing, mixing, and streaming in a way that pretty much recreates the experience from the manufacturer’s RODECaster Pro hardware unit. The user interface is streamlined and reasonably intuitive, made to simplify what used to be the daunting tasks of routing and mixing audio between several apps and input devices to record or stream without issues like latency and echo.
RODE Connect screenshot
Notably, RODE Connect lets you tap into the NT-USB microphone’s previously unannounced signal processing abilities, including noise gate, compressor, and APHEX Aural Exciter and Big Bottom effects emulations for that radio announcer sound. RODE somehow kept these a secret from the microphone’s last-year announcement until now.
A virtual device channel lets you setup chat and video calls applications like Zoom to get audio input from the microphone and route their audio output back into RODE Connect. Mix-minus is automatically applied to the virtual channels to remove echo and feedback. No more figuring out signal routing! Additionally, advanced settings in RODE Connect make it possible to send the application audio to external devices like speakers, interfaces, and recorders. So you won’t be tied to the microphone’s headphone output for monitoring.
While the app doesn’t offer audio editing, it does facilitate single and multi-track recording. The results can be exported in .mp3 and .wav formats at sample rates up to 48kHz. Plenty enough to take the recordings into a DAW for post-processing. Additionally, the app supports exports optimized for individual streaming platforms. The optimization includes file format and appropriate loudness in LuFS, so you might be able to get by without doing mastering for loudness at all.
Likewise, streamers will benefit from dedicated output controls for streaming apps like OBS and Xsplit. I’m really impressed with how well RODE learned its target customers and catered to their needs! With the software, the unassuming USD 99 NT-USB mic becomes a content creation powerhouse.
RODE Connect is free and available now as a standalone app for computers running macOS 10.13 or later and Windows 10 1803 or later. The software is only compatible with the RODE NT-USB Mini microphone. You can buy the microphone from RODE dealers worldwide, such as Thomann.de (affiliate link).
Developer KINDZAudio introduced DDpressor, a 4-band dynamics processing plug-in with some interesting frequency split options. Notably, you can define three frequency crossover points yourself and choose from four filter algorithms to control their “sharpness”.
As a dynamics processor with four bands, DDpressor can serve as a compressor, limiter, expander, and gate. You can precisely define three crossover frequencies and choose four filter algorithms – 1Pole, Butterworth, Chebyshev, and Chebyshev 2. These are all going to sound a little different, so there’s room for critical listening and experimenting.
Each band has various dynamics processing parameters to adjust. In addition to Threshold, Knee, Ratio, Attack and Release controls, you will also find a frequency-selective sidechain with adjustable filter quality, as well as external sidechain input. There are also input and output signal level controls, along with peak meters for each band. While there is no parameter link, holding down the right mouse button and adjusting a parameter anywhere changes the corresponding parameter for the other bands.
Above the bands, there are global controls for Look Ahead, Mix, Input and Output Gain, and Clip. So there’s a built-in clipper if you want that. The user interface is stripped of eye candy, clear and to the point. You can get quite involved with this processor so some more metering options wouldn’t have hurt. But you can always use external metering plug-ins. As a final touch, you can save presets and choose them from a drop-down menu. All in all, DDpressor is quite the workhorse, especially if you need purely corrective instead of ‘character’ processing. It will probably do really good handling dynamics on your master bus.
Price and availability
KINDZAudio DDpressor is available in VST, VST 3, and AU plug-in formats for macOS and Windows computers. You can find a free demo version on the developer’s website. The price is EUR 50.
Stone Voices releases Brandulator 2.0, a freeware multi-mode effect in 64-bit VST2 and VST3 plugin formats for digital audio workstations on Windows. Brandulator 2.0 is a complex sound processor that allows you to combine multiple effects in many interesting ways. The plugin takes the original signal and splits it into 16 steps/intervals based on the […]
In celebration of the company’s 10th anniversary, AudioThing is currently offering generous discounts on all of its products. They’ve also introduced a new plug-in: AudioThing Things Tilt is a tilt equalizer for quick adjustments to your tracks. And you can get it for less than 10 Euros or even for free during the promotion – that’s what they call a no-brainer!
AudioThing Things Tilt
AudioThing has expanded its Things series with Things Tilt, a tilt EQ effect. And it’s a steal: in celebration of the company’s anniversary, Things Tilt is now available for just €9.
A tilting EQ lets you adjust the high and low frequencies of an audio signal simultaneously. When you turn the tilt knob, the highs are boosted while the lows are attenuated, or the other way around. It’s a quick way to balance out the frequency content of any signal. You can adjust the tilt frequency (the boundary between highs and lows) using the cutoff knob.
What’s especially interesting is that Things Tilt offers a mid/side mode. This means that you can apply the effect specifically to the sides or the center of the stereo image, thereby affecting the stereo width. Give the high frequencies at the left and right edges of your mix a boost, or cut down the highs and boost the lows in the center. At the end of the signal path, you can activate a soft clip option to keep the levels in check.
Price, compatibility and anniversary deals
In celebration of the company’s anniversary, AudioThing is currently offering generous discounts on all of its products until April 30, 2021. Things Tilt is now available for an introductory price of just €9. You can also get the plug-in at Plugin Boutique*. And if you buy any other AudioThing plug-in during the anniversary sale, or have previously bought Things Texture or Things Motor, you get Things Tilt for free!
The plug-in runs on macOS 10.9 or higher and Windows 7 or higher in AU, VST, VST3 and AAX formats (64 bit).
Plugin Alliance and Brainworx have released bx_limiter True Peak. Designed from the ground up as a true peak limiter, Brainworx says that bx_limiter TP lets you achieve the desired loudness without introducing distortion through inter-sample peaks.
Plugin Alliance Brainworx bx_limiter True Peak
According to Brainworx, the new mastering limiter plug-in was created to overcome the shortcomings of other true peak limiters. The company says that unlike most other true peak limiters, bx_limiter True Peak was designed from scratch to avoid problems like an unstable low end, distorted stereo imaging, washed-out transients and other artifacts.
To achieve this, bx_limiter True Peak relies on ‘Selective Oversampling’ technology. It uses oversampling only where it improves the signal and avoids it where it might diminish the sound quality. Together with an advanced look-ahead design and high speed, the limiter delivers a tighter, more accurate low-end and better stereo imaging than the competition, Brainworx promises.
In addition to the essential controls of a limiter (gain, ceiling, release), bx_limiter True Peak offers integrated low and high pass filters and the proprietary ‘XL’ saturation algorithm. There’s also a ‘Foundation’ filter, which lets you dial in the desired amount of “heft, weight, tightness, or clarity”, according to Brainworx.
Next to the traditional level and gain reduction meters, you’ll find a customizable loudness meter that helps to hit a specific loudness target. There’s also a correlation meter for keeping an eye on phase coherence. And you can monitor the center, sides and L/R channels separately (including solo in place).
I think that bx_limiter TP is a very promising new option for a true peak limiter plug-in. If it sounds as good as the developer claims, it’ll quickly make its way into many mastering engineers’ plug-in folders.
Price and compatibility
Plugin Alliance Brainworx bx_limiter True Peak is now available for an introductory price of $249.99. The regular price will be $299. It’s also included in the Plugin Alliance Mega, Mix & Master, Essential and Brainworx bundles at no extra cost. A free 14-day trial version is available from the developer’s website.
The plug-in requires macOS 10.9 through 11.0.1 or Windows 7 through 10. It comes in VST, VST3, AU, AAX DSP and AAX Native formats.
Thinking about buying a new microphone for podcasting, streaming or vocal recording? Here’s your chance to grab some essential software for free! Buy any mic from this list at Thomann.de, and you’ll receive a copy of the iZotope RX 8 Elements audio restoration software for free. But hurry up: this deal expires May 17.
Buy a microphone and get iZotope RX 8 Elements for free
Are you in the market for a new vocal mic? Or do you want to step up your podcasting or streaming game with a new, higher-quality microphone? You’re in for a treat! For a limited time, you’ll receive a copy of iZotope RX 8 Elements for free when you buy any mic from the list below at Thomann.de.
iZotope RX 8 Elements includes everything you need to clean up and improve your voice recordings for a professional, high-quality sound. Its features came straight from iZotope’s acclaimed RX 8 audio restoration suite. You can reduce background noise and hum, remove clicks and pops and fix clipping issues in case the recording level was set too high. RX Elements also includes an audio editor with spectral editing, which is great for identifying problematic frequencies and surgically removing them. Say goodbye to noisy, distorted voice recordings!
iZotope RX 8 Elements
The list of eligible mics includes some tried-and-true classics, such as the AKG C214 condenser microphone or the dynamic Shure SM7B, a favorite for podcasting and live streaming. Other options include the Aston Microphones Origin, Lewitt LCT 440 PURE and Electro-Voice RE320.
If you record at your desk, a USB microphone such as the Shure MV 7, Rode NT-USB or Apogee HypeMiC is a great choice, as it eliminates the need for an audio interface. Just connect the mic to your computer and you’re good to go.
Deal: Buy one of these microphones and get free software
This week’s collection of free plug-ins starts off with a great spring reverb rack extension for Reason. We’ve also got an emulation of the input stage of a classic Mackie Mixer and a very useful reverse effect. Check out SPACEXPANDER, Mackity and Reverse Delay.
This free Rack Extension for Reason is a collaboration effort by Ekssperimental Sounds Studio and Past To Future Reverbs. It’s a spring reverb module based on impulse responses, which were combined with a tube amplifier and dual-mode filter to deliver classic spring reverbs straight to your Reason rack. There’s also a dry/wet mix knob and an output level control. You can choose from eight different IRs and the filter cutoff frequency can be controlled via a CV input on the back.
SPACEXPANDER is currently only available as a Rack Extension for Reason. The developer says that VST and AU versions are in the works.
Chris aka Airwindows has been on a roll recently. After Galactic, he’s now back with an emulation of the input stage of the original (pre-VLZ) Mackie 1202. This compact mixer shaped the sound of countless underground tracks throughout the 90s. The Mackity plug-in brings the raw punch of the 1202 to your DAW. This one’s not about emulating expensive high-end equipment, but about a tiny mixer whose “spongy slam and gleaming brain-fry overload” (Airwindows) had a huge impact on 90s underground.
Mackity is available for Windows and macOS in VST and AU formats.
Reverse Delay by Saschart is just what it says it is: a reverse delay effect. The delay rate can sync to the song tempo and offers various rhythmic subdivisions. In addition to the essential feedback, dry and wet controls, Reverse Delay includes a pan width knob for alternating left and right delays, and a low pass filter for shaping the sound. The developer says that it uses very little CPU power. If you like it, check out Saschart’s many other free plug-ins – there’s a whole bunch of them.
Reverse Delay is available for macOS and Windows in VST and AU formats.
IK Multimedia offers the MESA/Boogie Triple Rectifier Head and VIP presets for AmpliTube as a FREE download until May 2nd, 2021. After its initial release in 1989, the MESA/Boogie Triple Rectifier quickly became the benchmark for crushing, aggressive metal and rock tones. It offered a combination of aggression and precision that similar amps couldn’t deliver. […]
Spitfire Audio has released LABS Percussion, the latest addition to its series of free sound libraries for the LABS virtual instrument. LABS Percussion (like all LABS instruments) runs in the free Spitfire Audio app for macOS and Windows (AU/VST/VST3/AAX). The LABS series has grown pretty quickly since it was first introduced. It now includes pianos, […]
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