BLEASS Dragonfly: A new tremolo effects plug-in with dynamics

BLEASS DragonflyDeveloper BLEASS keeps bringing the goods with pleasantly innovative plug-ins. Its latest release is Dragonfly, a dynamic tremolo effects plug-in with some very interesting options. In short, the tremolo can be modulated via pitch tracking and MIDI note input, then waveshaped for added saturation. But that’s barely the gist of it – there’s more…

BLEASS Dragonfly

Dragonfly offers three choices when it comes down to modulating the tremolo effect. First, you can use the built-in pitch tracking on an input audio track or feed a sidechain input into the plug-in. Second, you can straight-up play MIDI into the effect and the tremolo will tune itself to the notes’ frequencies. Third – you can set a fixed frequency in Manual mode. In all cases, flapping butterfly wings visualise the tremolo’s workings.

There are plenty of parameters for shaping the sound of the tremolo. These include Fine (pitch offset), Factor (tremolo rate multiplier), Smooth (smoothing duration of rate variations), Stereo (set phase difference between L/R channels), Attack, Release, Mode (Simple / Wild), and Wildness (set waveshaping strength in Wild mode). These all beg to played with, rather than explained, so catch the free demo or watch the video below to get a feel for them. Finally, at the plug-in’s output stage, you can adjust Gain and Dry / Wet ratio.

Dragonfly seems to be another fresh release from BLEASS, right along the lines of Saturator, Slow Machine, and Granulizer.  I like the developer’s approach to enhancing familiar effects with clever features while maintaining usability and cross-platform compatibility. I think the French developer is certainly one to watch out for in the years ahead.

Price and availability

BLEASS Dragonfly is currently on sale for USD 19, down from USD 35. It’s available for macOS, Windows, and iOS in VST, AU, and AUv3 formats. The iOS version costs USD 4.99.

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2B Filter Friend: A quick creative filter plug-in with distortion and tempo sync

2B Played Music Filter FriendDeveloper 2B Played has lined up interesting takes on creative effects with its 2B series of plug-ins. The latest addition to the collection is 2B Filter Friend, designed for quick yet pleasing filter effects. Let’s dive in.

2B Played Music Filter Friend

Filter Friend is reasonably elaborate for an effect described as ‘quick’. The plug-in features 4 filter types with cutoff and resonance controls, 5 waveforms, a distortion filter, tempo sync with 20 modes, and other quirks. You can also change the strength of applied filter waveforms and use the position option to make the effect follow the DAW playhead. While timing can be adjusted manually with the rate knob in free mode, you can also sync the filter to parts of your track using classic sync. The rate knob’s range is determined by the set tempo.

There are 4 filter types currently available in Filter Friend – Low Pass, High Pass, Band Pass, and Band Reject. There are the classic sine and saw waveforms, as well as triangle, ramp, and pulse. The plug-in also features a low cut knob and a distortion parameter. So if the audio gets too rowdy after distortion, you will be able to tame the low frequency build-up without reaching for an external EQ.

2B Played Filter Friend

All in all, Filter Friend is a fun 2B plug-in that’s sold at a very affordable price.

2B Played Music 2B Filter Friend – Price and availability

2B Filter Friend is on introductory sale, priced EUR 14.92 (excl. EU VAT) down from EUR 21.31 (excl. EU VAT). The plug-in works under Windows 7 / macOS 10.14 or later in 64-bit VST, VST3, and AU formats. No demo version is available, no user manual either. 2B deems the manual unnecessary because there are explanations for everything when you mouse-hover parameters inside the plug-in.

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Deal: Get the AKAI MPC 2 software at a special 50% discount!

AKAI MPC 2 softwareManufacturer AKAI is reducing the price of its MPC 2 production software for Windows and macOS. Until November 2 2021, both versions – Standard and Premier – are being discounted by around 50% off the regular price. At this point in its evolution, MPC 2 is a full-fledged workstation which includes software instruments, samples, loops, and many ready-made sequences. MPC 2 also integrates into your DAW as a plug-in. Basically, if you wanted to try the MPC sequencer without going for the hardware, you can do that now and save a lot!

Akai MPC 2 Standard and Premier on sale

Until November 2 2021, AKAI is reducing the sales price of its flagship MPC 2 software. Both versions – Standard and Premier – are fully equipped with a sequencer, virtual synthesizers, instruments, sounds and MPC expansions (5 for Standard, 10 for Premier). Of course, you can also import your own loops and samples (with time stretching and audio warping) to make music out of. MPC 2 also connects with modern AKAI hardware, in addition to having support for Ableton Link and Bluetooth MIDI.

AKAI has been taking good care of its MPC offerings, releasing hefty updates for the MPC 2 software, its modern MPC grooveboxes (MPC One, MPC Live II, MPC X), and the Force unit. Version 2.10 added 14 AIR plugins and a ton of goodies you should be checking out.

AKAI MPC2 Price and availability

The AKAI MPC 2 software is on sale here at (affiliate link) at a special price of EUR 99 down from EUR 199 and EUR 149 instead of EUR 349.98. The offer is valid until November 2, 2021.

The MPC 2 software works under macOS 10.10.5 or later and Windows 8 or later – standalone, or in 64-bit AU, AAX, and VST formats. You need a free iLok account (or paid USB dongle) for authorization. A demo version and tutorial videos can be found on the AKAI website.

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