Talkback Limiter plug-in recreates the SSL SL4000 E’s punchy limiting

Korneff Audio Talkback LimiterThere is a wealth of plug-ins emulating the punchy, cohesive sound of SSL consoles. But I can’t recall one that’s specifically modeled after the SL4000 E series’s limiter section. Not that there aren’t SSL limiters out there, but developer Korneff Audio’s Talkback Limiter plug-in may be the most detailed of the bunch. In addition to emulating the circuit, it gives you the freedom to manipulate each individual modeled component!

Talkback Limiter plug-in

In the original SL4000 E console, the limiter had the important duty of protecting the control room monitors and other listening equipment from loud peaks. More often than not, they originated from the talkback system. This, the plug-in is named Talkback Limiter. But here, the limiter is used as a mix and mastering effect.

Talkback Limiter features the following controls: Input volume, line/mic signal selector, dry/wet mix knob, and make-up gain. The analog switch lets you switch non-linear behavior on and off. There’s also a gain reduction meter, and under the hood, the plug-in lets you adjust Distortion, FET bias, low-pass filter, oversampling, and GUI zoom. This way, you can customize the limiter’s sonic character to obtain a smoother or more aggressive kind of sound. As far as I know, this is the only SSL-modeling plug-in that lets you toy with the components, not unlike some tube guitar amp modelers.

The compression ratio is set to 100:1 by default, while the Attack is very fast but not too fast. The resulting sound is aggressive and in your face, so if gentle or transparent limiting is the preferred application, you ought to look at a different plug-in.

Price and availability

Priced USD 40, Talkback Limiter is available in VST3, AAX, and AU formats for 64-bit Windows and Mac computers. A demo version is available for free download. A free iLok account is required for authorization of the full version.

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BeatSkillz SampleX: vintage sampler plug-in that’s yours to shape and tweak

BeatSkillz SampleX plug-inEmulating the sonic character of old samplers is essential for dialing in a nostalgic mood or imparting the crunch and vibe of old AD/DA converters and filters. Throughout the late 80s and early 90s, the sampler was basically your DAW. Computers could only sequence MIDI and maybe do basic audio recording and arranging.

Even if you had Studio Vision, a very capable audio and MIDI sequencer at the time, the sampler – likely an AKAI S series – had most of your sounds and all your sample instruments mapped in its memory. Therefore, it is crucial to the sound quality of 90s electronic and hip-hop records.

Beatskillz SampleX

Thankfully, you don’t have to wrestle with vintage samplers’ obtuse operating systems, maintenance costs and exorbitant prices (sometimes) to enjoy their sonic goodness. Modern computers are perfectly capable of emulating the sought-after grit and character of these coveted machines. SampleX, developer BeatSkillz’s newest plug-in, makes a case for this. Rather than emulating a specific unit in entirety, though, SampleX models the classic AKAI s900’s input section and the famous Moog ladder filter, then lets you run free with the controls to shape an old-school sound all of your own.

With SampleX, you are able to add as much “drive” as you want, explore the Moog filter’s resonance, create aliasing by reducing bit rate and sampling rate down to 2kHz/4-bit, and blend the processed audio with the dry signal. Having the fundamentals of the old sampler sound locked in, BeatSkillz went on to create presets that are ear-matched to various vintage samplers. You can use these as starting points for tweaking, or any other way you like.

All in all, I like the concept of giving users complete control over a sampler-like audio engine. It sounds more fun than delivering preset models with minimal tweaking potential.

Price and availability

SampleX is available in AU, VST, and AAX formats for Windows and Mac computers. The plug-in is on an introductory sale, priced USD 39 down from the USD 69 regular price. A free trial version is available for both operating systems.

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Overloud TH-U iOS: Pipped to the post by Mooer’s GE Labs?

Overloud TH-U IOSOverloud’s new TH-U iOS gives you a suite of guitar amp and effects for your Apple iPad or iPhone. The company is even offering a free version of the app to get you started. But how does it stack ups against the recent launch of Mooer’s GE Labs?


The free version of the new TH-U iOS comprises of a handful of amps, cabs and various effect pedals. More models can be purchased for EUR 5.49 via in-app purchase. A total of 239 models are available (for sale). That encompasses 89 guitar amps, 4 bass amps, 50 guitar cabs, 2 bass cabs , 77 pedal and rack effects, 18 microphones.

That’s plenty of choice to get you going. There are 1000 presets as well, if you aren’t into making your own virtual guitar rigs. You can create your virtual setups with the Rig Player. Or you can just go with a preset and tweak to taste.

Overloud TH-U IOS

Overloud TH-U IOS with in-app purchases


According to my colleague over at our German sister site, the app isn’t very intuitive, so you may need some help to get up and running. That said, he reports that the TH-U iOS app itself sounds very good. Be sure to check the video and website links below.

A slight niggle: there is currently no compatibility with Inter App Audio (IAA). If I want to record the amp in a DAW like Garage Band, then you’d have to do it via a third-party app like Audiobus. That makes it a bit unwieldy and I’d have preferred a seamless experience there.

Mooer GE Labs

Has Overloud been pipped to the post here by Mooer and its GE Labs, released in mid-April? That product is also free to download and uses in-app purchases. GE Labs is getting great reviews from users online in guitar forums. If you already have GE Labs, would you pay extra for this new virtual guitar rig setup? Perhaps not. However, if THU iOS sounds amazing, it could take off.


If you want to enjoy the full variety of tones available without limits, TH-U Full for iOS costs USD 49.99 Рif you already own TH-U Desktop. Otherwise you pay EUR 5.49 and up.

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Mooer R7 Reverb: A feature-packed, wallet-friendly reverb pedal for any guitar rig

Mooer R7 ReverbReverb is one of those guitar effects that every player will need at some point in their playing careers. Mooer has managed to squeeze seven reverb algorithms into its new mini-format R7 Reverb. Priced attractively, this dinky but effective pedal leaves you with no excuses not to add one to your board.

Mooer R7 Reverb

The new R7 Reverb mini-pedal has seven digital reverb effects in its compact enclosure: Room, Hall, Church, Cave, Plate, Spring and Mod. Each of the available reverbs is linked to its own LED on the side of the R7 pedal, so it is fairly simple to see what you are doing on a darkened stage. No menus, no fuss.

The selected reverb algorithm can be tailored to your own taste using the high and low cut controls. You can then go into deeper tweaking of each effect with Decay and Pre-Delay controls. You also have the option to let the reverb end naturally after switching off the effect, using the handy trail-on feature.

Mooer R7 Reverb

Mooer R7 Reverb with handy user presets

Simple User Presets

Once you have edited your reverb the way you want, you can save it to one of the free memory slots. Only one memory space is available per selected reverb effect. Sounds limiting, but it gives you quick access to seven different reverb modes. This pedal is designed for players that hate menus and just want to get on and make some music. For me, simplicity rules! When I want to create and play, the last thing I want to do is read a manual.

Reverb Quality

Quality is always subjective. But it often correlates to the price point of a new product. Having listened to the demo sounds, I think that for under a hundred quid, this diminutive digital reverb has an awful lot to offer. Especially when you take into account that you can store your tweaked user presets.

Take a listen to the two demo videos below and see what you think. I think this pedal can handle more than enough of the types of reverb I need when gigging or songwriting. If you need something to help give your guitar’s voice some depth and character, then a touch of reverb is often just the thing.

This pedal uses an external power supply, so no batteries here. It has a buffered bypass and it’s mono, enough for most players that only use the one amp when gigging.

A touch of reverb has helped some of the most famous guitar riffs ever seem even bigger. If you don’t already have a reverb pedal in your set.up, for this price you can’t go wrong.

RRP – EUR 99

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Best free plug-ins this week: Schroeder, Hanon B70 and Lattice Reverb

Best free plug-ins 05/24An iconic tonewheel organ and not one, but two unusual reverbs: That’s this week’s collection of the best free plug-ins. Download Schroeder, Hanon B70 and Lattice Reverb, and spend your Sunday checking out these great freeware plug-ins.

For even more free plug-ins, head over to our archives.

discoDSP Schroeder

discoDSP SchroederThis plug-in models the Schroeder reverb, an early concept for artificial reverberation developed by Manfred Schroeder in the early 1960s. A Schroeder reverb is based on a series of all-pass filters, a parallel bank of comb filters and a mixing matrix (you can read more about it here). Its distinct character is delightfully different from all the spring and plate reverbs out there. The only controls are decay and mix sliders.

Schroeder is a VST3 and AU plug-in for macOS.

Get Schroeder here

Lostin70s Hanon B70

Lostin70s Hanon B70Hanon B70 by Lostin70s is an emulation of the legendary Hammond B3 tonewheel organ and a Leslie 122 rotary speaker cabinet. It’s all there: two drawbar sets, percussion, chorus/vibrato and of course the Leslie speaker simulation. You can adjust the balance between the bass and horn rotors, and there’s an overdrive for the Leslie effect. Lostin70s has even thrown in a reverb. Now that’s the kind of free plug-in we don’t see every day!

Hanon B70 is available for Windows and macOS in VST, VST3 and AU formats (64 bit only).

Download Hanon B70 here

Uhhyou Lattice Reverb

Uhhyou Lattice ReverbI promised you two unusual reverbs ‚Äď here’s the other one. Uhhyou has released Lattice Reverb, a reverb based on a lattice structure. According to the developer, it features 16 delays per channel, each of which can be modulated by an LFO and passed through a low pass filter. Like all plug-ins by Uhhyou, this isn’t a plug-in that you just throw on a track and load up a preset. But if you like experimenting, Lattice Reverb seems to be capable of some great and unique sounds.

Lattice Reverb is a VST3 plug-in for Windows, Linux and macOS (64 bit only).

Get Lattice Reverb here


Audio demos

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UVI Drum Replacer: the next big drum trigger VST?

UVI Drum ReplacerThe art and science of drum recording sees a machine learning-powered extension with the release of UVI Drum Replacer. The French developer describes Drum Replacer as a real-time, program-adaptive drum replacement utility. But triggering samples isn’t all there is to this plug-in, as we shall see…

UVI Drum Replacer

Drum Replacer’s abilities also include bleed removal, VST hosting (so you can trigger drum samplers), and a sub-bass generator. Incoming audio is analyzed and spectral models of up to six components are created. These are brought to the trigger detection module with up to 8 internal audio samples or VST instruments. Samples can be triggered all at once, or sequentially and randomly. Thus, a welcome bit of variety is achieved and the dreaded machine-gun type sound is avoided.

Triggering is one thing, but the component isolation allows for other interesting applications like extracting specific drum sounds to side-chain them into external plug-ins or gear.

A cutting edge tool

Drum Replacer also features an integrated browser to let you locate and tag files and plug-ins. Sample controls include an AHD amplitude envelope, fade in/out to eliminate clicks, and tuning. Gain and pitch matching is a one-click operation, and an integrated waveform display lets you precisely align samples to the input audio.

Up to 8 tracks can be configured and saved as presets, complete with metering and detection settings. Each track can be individually named for orientation. All in all, Drum Replacer looks like a cutting-edge drum replacement and clean-up tool. Time will tell whether it truly stands up to industry standards like Slate Trigger and Drumagog.

Price and availability

Sold at an introductory discount (EUR/USD 59, down from EUR/USD 99) until June 30, Drum Replacer is available in VST, AU, and AAX formats for Windows and Mac computers. A free 15-day trial version can be downloaded and tested. A free iLok account is required for authorization.

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Let the UJAM Finisher VOODOO multi-effects plug-in add a touch of magic to your guitar

UJAM Finisher VOODOO.The new UJAM Finisher VOODOO combines a multitude of effects into one plug-in, with an interface that is simple and easy to navigate. It might just be the thing for guitarists looking to make their recordings stand out, but without having to dive into the esoterics of virtual effect-chains, or for those without a prior sound engineering background. 

Finisher VOODOO

UJAM has created a super friendly front-end for a series of effects that enhances your recorded guitar tone. Its simplistic layout practically does all the hard work for you. The new¬†Finisher VOODOO¬†combines convolution and modulation effects, dynamics, distortion and EQs, as well as multiband effects, that can go from granular manipulation of your audio through to the more out-there, ‘twisted’ effects.




Normally, to achieve some of these combinations you’d need a fair bit of knowledge in sound engineering, at least if you wanted to make them sound good. Fortunately, this plug-in does all of this, in the background, for you. All you have to do is choose a preset, then tweak the controls and adjust to taste.

Finisher VOODOO features:

  • More than 150 signature sound designer presets
  • 50 multi-effect modes
  • Finisher control and 4 Variation knobs ‚Äď each is macro-programmed for the effect configuration
  • 40 effect algorithms under the hood: amongst others multiband-compression and -distortion, convolution and modulation effects, Filters, EQs to envelope following, and granular effects
  • Automation and MIDI control to connect pedals and add extra articulation to performances.

Add a bit of sparkle

The Finisher VOODOO is available in VST, AU, and AAX plug-in formats for both OSX and Windows, and so should run in most DAWs without any problems. I tried it out in Logic Pro X and was able to dive straight in. There is no real steep learning curve with this plug-in, which is great.¬†If you’re looking to add a touch of sparkle and magic to your guitar signal within a mix, give this plug-in a try, especially if you aren’t confident with your way around a DAW and effects routing.


I also love that it has automation and MIDI control, as it lets you take it that extra bit further. Perfect for those of us who like experimenting with their ‘effects magic’ during a mix.

The Finisher VOODOO is currently on sale at a reduced introductory price until 31 May. If it sounds like something you’re interested in, you may want to pick up a copy now, whilst it is discounted. And if you’d rather try it out first, you can follow the link below to download a free trial.¬†You can also check out the official demo video below to hear the plug-in in action.

RRP – EUR 99 / USD 99 Introductory pricing EUR 69 / USD 69

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Positive Grid releases new BIAS FX 2 Mobile App: now with even more power!

BIAS FX 2 Mobile for Apple iPhone and iPadThe new Positive Grid BIAS FX 2 Mobile App just got released today on Apple’s iOS platform. This new¬†re-engineered, high-definition BIAS DSP engine for guitar is a powerful little tool that is free to download on your iPhone or iPad.

BIAS FX 2 Mobile App

The basic version of the¬†BIAS FX 2 Mobile App¬†is available to download for free from the Apple App Store on your iPhone¬†or¬†iPad.¬†In-app purchases will unlock more virtual equipment, if you find the basic version lacking. According to¬†Positive Grid, this latest version of the app has a “completely re-engineered” BIAS DSP engine with “hundreds of improvements”, all geared towards bringing more flexibility and realism to the rig.

HD Sound Engine

The company boasts that its¬†HD Sound Engine has “hyper-realistic and detailed tones”, which we all know may well be marketing spiel. However, having tried it out, I do think that it sounds better than its predecessor.

BIAS FX 2 Mobile

BIAS FX 2 Mobile

All that power!

The app gives you¬†101 effects, 35 amps, 25 cabs,¬†and¬†4 mics in your pocket virtual guitar rig. You can also create your own dual amp hybrid setups. If all that’s a bit too overwhelming and you’re not sure where to begin, you can always use one of the the app’s¬†77 pre-made virtual rigs to start off with, and take it from there.

Guitar Match & Loops

The Guitar Match function gives you the ability to turn your guitar into one of 20 virtual guitars on offer. So you may find yourself experimenting with different guitar tones way before you even begin to delve into all those amps and effects! There is also a handy built-in looper that you can use to either practice, record, overdub, or simply as a tool to develop new ideas.

With the BIAS FX 2 Mobile, you can now import custom cab IR files into the app, excellent for those wishing to further customise their virtual rig. For live playing, it has a Live View function that has zero latency. So your next gig could, in theory, be with your iPhone!

As is usual with BIAS software products, you have access to the ToneCloud. This allows you to save and share presets with other users, including some celebrities, whose rigs often pop up on there as well.

RRP –¬†Free with¬†In-App Purchases

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Oblik Lines Releases FREE Misty Valley For NI Reaktor

Misty Valley by Oblik Lines

Oblik Lines has released Misty Valley, a freely downloadable synthesizer ensemble for Native Instruments Reaktor (full version required). Misty Valley is an “unstable” synthesizer inspired by Boards of Canada, Aphex Twin, Rival Consoles, and similar artists. The instrument uses pitch modulation, layered noise, and a few other sound design techniques to generate sounds that can […]

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