Acustica releases the Nickel FET suite – plus FREE Eminence channel strip!

Acustica Audio NickelJust in time for the holidays, Acustica Audio dropped not one, but two exciting new releases today. Nickel is a full suite of plug-ins built around an emulation of the legendary 1176 FET compressor. And as if this wasn’t enough, the developer has released the Eminence channel strip as a FREE holiday gift!

Acustica Audio Nickel

While there are countless emulations of the 1176 compressor available, the classic FET limiting amplifier was missing from Acustica’s portfolio until now. In fact, it was one of the most requested emulations by the user community. As of today, that’s changed. The new Nickel plug-in suite brings Acustica’s version of the classic to your DAW, and then some.

Acustica Audio Nickel

Acustica Audio Nickel

The suite is built around the Nickel Comp plug-in, which lets you switch between emulations of two versions of the original (rev H, rev LN). Acustica says that each one results from sampling two different units. They’ve also included their relative preamp emulations.

The Nickel Comp in itself would be a great new addition to Acustica’s line-up. But this wouldn’t be Acustica if the developer hadn’t included a couple of extra goodies. Also included in the suite is the Nickel Stereo EQ and Mono EQ, a 4-band fully parametric EQ derived from US-made units from the 60s and 70s, and the Nickel Pre plug-in which emulates no less than twenty preamps.

Price and compatibility

Acustica Audio Nickel is now available for an introductory price of €109. This offer is good through January 18, 2022. The regular price will be €169.

The plug-ins run on macOS 10.14 or higher (M1 compatible) and Windows 10 or higher in VST, VST3, AU and AAX formats.

FREE holiday gift from Acustica: Eminence channel strip

But there’s more. Acustica has also released the Eminence channel strip plug-in as its annual free holiday gift.

According to Acustica, the EQ section in Eminence is based on an “ultra-rare ‘60s British 3-band EQ”. The plug-in also includes a “Frankenstein” compressor that blends two solid-state dynamic processors from “a renowned U.S. audio company”. And since no channel strip would be complete without a preamp, Eminence also includes the preamp stages from all three units. What a great freebie for those long winter nights in the studio!

All you need to do to get Eminence is create a user account on the Acustica website (if you don’t have one already), and download the Aquarius application. Then you can download and install your copy of Eminence right from Aquarius.

Acustica Audio Eminence

Acustica Audio Eminence

More information


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Tape MELLO-FI: Get this vintage tape effect as a FREE gift from Arturia!

Arturia Tape MELLO-FIArturia has released the Tape MELLO-FI plug-in as a free holiday gift. As a “one-stop lo-fi toolkit”, Tape Mello-Fi bathes your sounds in flutter, distortion, saturation, filtering, and all sorts of analog goodness. Get it for free until December 31!

Arturia Tape MELLO-FI

Arturia’s wants to make your holiday season super warm and cozy. The French developer has released Tape Mello-Fi as its annual free holiday gift. Designed to “instantly inject beautiful nostalgic flavor and endless vibes” into your audio tracks, the plug-in is a retro tape emulation that lets you dial in any amount of retro flavor.

To the left is a preamp section with drive, tone and noise controls, so you can add anything from subtle saturation to crunchy distortion. Then comes a tape emulation section that lets you dial in flutter and wow and adjust the tape wear and mechanical noise. The result is a vintage tape sound that has a distinct Mellotron vibe to it, hence the name.

For authentic slow-down effects, there’s a tape stop effect that offers tempo sync options from 8 bars to a 1/4 bar. And if you’d like to add glitchy real-time effects, just grab onto the spinning reel.

If you’re looking for a tool to add characterful vintage vibes to your samples and audio tracks, this awesome freebie from Arturia should fit the bill nicely! Be sure to grab it by December 31, 2021, as it’ll only be free until the end of this year.

Price and availability

Arturia Tape MELLO-FI is now available for free on the manufacturer’s website. You’ll need to create a user account (if you don’t have one already) and download the Arturia Software Center application for installation and authorization.

The plug-in runs on macOS 10.13 or higher and Windows 8.1 or higher in VST, VST3, AU, AAX and NKS formats (64 bit).

More information about Arturia Tape MELLO-FI


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Instruo adds 3 new modules to VCV Rack 2

Instruo VCV Rack 2 CollectionAll of Instruo’s modules get updated for VCV Rack 2 and add the latest new modules for good measure and great patching.

VCV Rack 2

The new version of VCV Rack is one of the standout events of the year and we’re still discovering all the great things about it. In a video (below) by Omri Cohen on the new Instruo updates and modules for VCV Rack he shows how the modules and workflow have been improved. The key ones for me are the revealing of the routing of patch sockets by hovering the mouse over them and perhaps more significantly the bypass feature.

All version 2 modules can be bypassed with a keyboard shortcut or right-click and menu selection. The bypass keeps the signal flowing from input to destination by bypassing whatever process was happening in the module. It’s the sort of thing I’d love to see in hardware modular as is pretty awesome to find in VCV Rack 2.

Instruo virtual  modules

Completing the (almost) full Instruo VCV Rack 2 line up are the Neoni, eãs and [1]f modules. All three were recently released as hardware modules. Neoni is a through-zero oscillator that loves frequency modulation (from internal or external modulators) and wave folding. eãs is a logic module sporting all the classic gate functions and [1]f is a fader module for crossfading, attenuating, attenuverting and manual offset.

It’s quite extraordinary that these modules are available with all their functions for free. They released the bulk of them last Christmas and these additional ones plus the version 2 tweaks make them something everyone should be playing with this holiday time.

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