We're currently living in the age of digital audio. Compressor is an incredibly powerful tool that is essential to any music producer.

But there are so many different Compressor plugins in the music production landscape, so we decided to create the ultimate list of the top Compressor plugins today that will help you find the perfect fit.


Tube-Tech Compressor Collection

Compressor by Softube



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Description


The Tube-Tech CL 1B is a modern classic for a very good reason. As a vocal compressor in particular, its mixture of characteristic warm slow opto gain reduction and surprisingly versatile can’t-sound-bad operation have made it a staple across a wider variety of genres than perhaps any other optical compressor. Classic rock, cutting-edge pop, rap and hip hop, EDM… you name it. 

The CL 1B Mk II isn’t only a feature-update, adding side-chain low cut filters and parallel mixing. It’s a complete audio-visual overhaul as well. We’ve remodelled this luxury piece of studio hardware from the ground up, using our latest and best-ever component modelling and signal processing technology to give more detailed, punchier sound than ever. And it now has brand new high-resolution graphics which look gorgeous even on 4K and ultra-HD screens. You’ll want to reach out and grab the knobs the second you see it.

And when you do start to use it, you’ll be in control of a very special unit indeed – the tendency of an opto compressor is to grab hold fairly quickly but then take a while to fully reset, with a strongly exponential release curve. This means the transients are dealt with in a transparent way, but the larger body of the material benefits from a soft and musical levelling as the final ten or twenty percent of the gain reduction lingers before the next transient.

It’s a sound every mix engineer should have on lock-down for bass, acoustic guitars, vocals and much more.

The Tube-Tech Mk II Compressor Collection includes the CL 1B Mk II compressor and the original legacy CL 1B compressor.

In Short

  • Improved sound; a total remodel from the ground up using our latest technology.
  • New features – side-chain low-cut filters and parallel blend.
  • Spectacular new high-resolution graphics.
  • Characterful and yet still versatile compression.
  • Great for vocals.
  • The CL 1B optical compressor - a modern classic in a plethora of genres.
  • Legacy plug-in version included.



Video


Rating


Value For Money

Sound Quality

General Ease of Use

Number of Presets


  • Mac OS X 10.13 or newer (older OS versions will not work) (64-bit only).
  • Windows 10 64-bit (older Windows versions may work but are not tested) (64-bit only).
  • Mac: Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7 / Xeon - M1 support pending.
  • Windows: Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7 / Xeon / AMD Quad-Core or newer.
  • Screen resolution 1280x800 or larger.
  • Supported sample rates: 44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4 and 192 kHz, in both mono and stereo.
  • 8 GB RAM or more is recommended, as well as at least 8 GB hard disk space for installation (individual plug-ins take less space, while sample libraries may require additional disk space).
  • A Softube account is required to register and install the software.
  • An iLok account is required for authorisation of the software.
  • Internet access for downloading installer and managing licenses.
  • iLok generation 2 and up, if you intend to use a physical iLok dongle for authorizing your plug-ins (note that an iLok dongle is not a requirement).
  • In theory, any 64-bit VST, VST3, AU, or AAX (11.0.2 or higher) compatible host application should work.
  • The most recent maintenance release of the DAW application is recommended.

However, due to plug-in host differences between DAWs - and Softube's own rigorous testing standards - Softube only officially test their plug-ins and instruments in the most recent versions of Pro Tools, Logic Pro, Cubase, Live, Studio One, Digital Performer, Reaper and Sonar. Softube plugins are not tested in the non-listed systems, but they most likely work as long as the system requirements are met.

Important note: make sure that you always use the latest iLok License Manager. It is not included in the Softube installer but can be downloaded from www.ilok.com​

OS Compatibility



Chandler Limited® Germanium Compressor

Compressor by Softube



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Description


Musically Fine-tuned, Meticulously Re-created.

A highly versatile mojo machine, capable of replacing multiple plug-ins in a chain – EQ, distortion, transient designer, you name it – the Germanium Compressor is so much more than gain reduction. Engineered with an ear for music before mathematics, this is a trusty companion for producers, recording engineers, and creative musicians of all kinds.

This is a meticulous model of the Chandler Limited® hardware, tested in Softube's lab to ensure it performs like the hardware does, for the same excellent sound quality and inspiring vibe.

Everything in the Germanium Compressor is designed with an ear for music first. Ratios, knee settings, and more are all fine-tuned for use in the real world. The FET gain reduction unit allows for delicious distortion and colour. Control the harmonics with a choice of clean or dirty compression and multiple different diode combinations allow for a ton of styles and options.

Unique Character

The Germanium Compressor’s unique character comes from a blend of several innovative approaches. The ratio settings are tuned by ear rather than arithmetic. The dial takes you from less to more rather than fixing on especially precise numerical values. And what does it matter as long as it sounds fantastic? Knee settings are similarly artistic, named as they are after the different combinations of diodes which achieve each colour of the curve.

Clean or Dirrrty?

With a FET gain reduction element, the Germanium is capable of fast and heavily-saturating compression. So there’s a choice of clean or dirty compression, toggling between modes which compensate to varying degrees for the harmonic excitement naturally brought about by the unit. It’s never transparent, but you have a lot of control over Total Harmonic Distortion (THD) in this compressor.

And every track this thing touches will benefit from the drive and feedback on output – this is the real secret sauce. A gain circuit which can gently caress a signal as easily as it can sizzle and sear it into submission.

Punchy, Creamy... Pick Your Flavour

You also have control over the speed of operation – the attack and release times can be combined to extremely musical effect. Ease off on the attack and the Germanium Compressor becomes a punchy powerhouse for drums. Slow down the release and creamy, smooth tones can be introduced to vocals or bass. Acoustic guitar can be brightened and tightened, or rock axe heated and seated in a dense mix.

Added Fun and Features

Using the Germanium in software means you can take advantage of features that are exclusive to the plug-in version: Mid/Side Processing and External Sidechain allow you to make better-sounding mixes than ever before.

All the character, the musicality, the fun of the original hardware Germanium Compressor from Chandler Limited® is right here. Whatever flavour of music you’re making, add this sound to the recipe.




Features

  • A meticulous model of the Chandler Limited® Germanium Compressor that performs just like the hardware.
  • Far from just a compressor, it’s a mojo, colour and character machine that almost feels like a musical instrument.
  • Capable of replacing many other plug-ins used in a chain, like distortion, EQ/filter, compression, and transient designer.
  • Perfect for tone shaping, sound tweaking and sound designing when tracking, producing, mixing and, in some cases, even mastering.
  • Clean Comp / Dirty Comp settings with the ability to control the Total Harmonic Distortion (THD).
  • Comp Curve with its unique combination of diodes.
  • Attack and Release work in a musical and inspiring way, making an average drum kit go from dull and flat sounding to tight and crisp or to fat with long decay.
  • Gain / Germanium Drive and Feedback give you the ability to feedback signal to the input and control the gain the distortion and tone-shaping capabilities.
  • Unique tones not found in any other compressor – not only in plug-in format, but in general.
  • Software-exclusive features: External Sidechain / External sidechain Gain / Mid/Side Processing / In/Out: Left/Mid | Right/Side / Output Gain.
  • Console 1-ready: can be used within the Console 1 mixing ecosystem.

Video


Rating


Value For Money

Sound Quality

General Ease of Use

Number of Presets


  • Mac OS X 10.13 or newer (older OS versions will not work) (64-bit only).
  • Windows 10 64-bit (older Windows versions may work but are not tested) (64-bit only).
  • Mac: Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7 / Xeon - M1 support pending.
  • Windows: Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7 / Xeon / AMD Quad-Core or newer.
  • Screen resolution 1280x800 or larger.
  • Supported sample rates: 44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4 and 192 kHz, in both mono and stereo.
  • 8 GB RAM or more is recommended, as well as at least 8 GB hard disk space for installation (individual plug-ins take less space, while sample libraries may require additional disk space).
  • A Softube account is required to register and install the software.
  • An iLok account is required for authorisation of the software.
  • Internet access for downloading installer and managing licenses.
  • iLok generation 2 and up, if you intend to use a physical iLok dongle for authorizing your plug-ins (note that an iLok dongle is not a requirement).
  • In theory, any 64-bit VST, VST3, AU, or AAX (11.0.2 or higher) compatible host application should work.
  • The most recent maintenance release of the DAW application is recommended.

However, due to plug-in host differences between DAWs - and Softube's own rigorous testing standards - Softube only officially test their plug-ins and instruments in the most recent versions of Pro Tools, Logic Pro, Cubase, Live, Studio One, Digital Performer, Reaper and Sonar. Softube plugins are not tested in the non-listed systems, but they most likely work as long as the system requirements are met.

Important note: make sure that you always use the latest iLok License Manager. It is not included in the Softube installer but can be downloaded from www.ilok.com​

OS Compatibility



Empirical Labs Mike-E Comp

Compressor by Softube



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Description


Delightfully brash.

Precisely modelled in close collaboration with Dave Derr, Empirical Labs Mike-E Comp offers high-calibre, one-of-a-kind saturation/compression based on the famous ELI Distressor. A punchy preamp that's available before the CompSat circuitry, and three different emphasis modes—plus NUKE!—enable multi-stage distortion and quick changes to the character of the saturation/compression behaviour. Available for the first time as a native plug-in, Mike-E makes it a total blast to go overboard. And when you do, you’re rewarded with nary a hint of harshness—no matter how far you push it to the extreme. Excess without consequence? That’s rock & roll. And it's what makes Mike-E your man in the box.

Designed by Experts, Built on Legacy

Softube has a long history of modelling professional gear. After nearly two decades working in collaboration with premium pro audio brands like Tube-Tech, Solid State Logic, Chandler Limited®, Weiss Engineering, and Trident, Softube have a solid track record recreating indisputable classics in software form that sound precisely like their hardware counterparts.

Empirical Labs Mike-E Comp is built on this legacy, and Softube took the same meticulous approach they always do – everything needs to be exact, with skilful recording, precise testing, and fine-tuning to sound exactly like the hardware that inspired it or even better. Nothing less.

Them Bones: The CompSat Section

The core of Mike-E is its class-leading CompSat. The bones of the compressor are those of the legendary ELI Distressor, one of the most-beloved contemporary compressors in existence. With its huge control range, novel feature set, and longer attack time, Mike-E employs a custom-designed gain control circuit to give a warm and toasty analogue sound. The killer multi-stage soft-clipping circuit saturator is never harsh. And Emphasis—a multi-stage circuit that emphasizes the high-frequencies before the CompSat circuit, and then cuts the frequencies after it—is there to enhance the tone. Plus, NUKE!

Houdini: The Preamp

The punchy preamp, with its bold and crunchy distortion, is precisely modelled on the line input section of the original hardware. With a unique stepped gain control, it lets you push the CompSat section harder for increased compression and saturation. It also offers the option of distortion before the CompSat section. Mike-E makes it easy to create tons of different types of sounds on as many different sound sources, and it always sounds analogue and musical. It’s those magical elements that make Mike-E so different and so super effective.

Machine Head: The User Interface

Those chunky white knobs. They let you know what you're working with: an intuitive interface—labels to switches. Everything is perfectly placed and dead-simple to use. Everything is right where you know it will be. Softube authentically modelled not only the appearance of Empirical Labs Mike-E but also the care and thought that goes into making it easy and damn fun to use.

Jar of Fly: The Amp Room Module

Included as a module for Softube’s pro audio guitar and bass platform, Mike-E blows the lid off sound creation possibilities in Amp Room. It's a completely unconventional character tool that makes it an unusually excellent addition to the Amp Room toolset. Use it on bass sounds where it's especially bomb.

Say Hello to Heaven

Empirical Labs Mike-E has sharp elbows. It offers in-your-face analogue attitude in a straightforward, modern interface. Of that, there is no doubt. But Mike-E isn’t all cocksure swagger. It boasts a high-performance preamp, a one-of-a-kind compressor/saturator circuit that delivers classic knee compression and varied tonal colouring which replicates the best traits of analogue recording gear, Wet/Dry, and added External Sidechain. To name a few. Stunning sound quality and meaty specs give Mike-E bark and bite.

What it gives you is beefy, punchy drums where you can hear the decay in a dense mix. Fat and harmonically sweet-sounding bass. It will smooth out and warm up an inferior acoustic guitar recording. And can lend credence to vocals in a mix with soft-knee compression and warm, triode-type saturation. Use it to add bite to your electric guitars without any fear of brittleness. Or take the super steep, limiter-like NUKE mode—with its different Attack/Release shapes—and smash drum room mics or anything else that needs the full NUKE offensive. There's so much you can accomplish with Mike-E because Mike-E is so divinely versatile.

Superknown

Raised by a family of engineers, Dave Derr has gone from a chance encounter at Radio Shack to having his gear used in every major studio and on thousands of records. A rocker in his own right, his name is now synonymous with analogue warmth, but he's not resting on his laurels. On the contrary. The humble genius behind Empirical Labs continues thinking and tinkering and incrementally improving on the already amazing array of products he’s gifted the music industry. Products like Fatso, DerrEsser, and Distressor. It's that work ethic and empirical spirit that has made ELI so well-regarded in the pro audio sphere. Its products are real-world tested and built to get the better of obsolescence. Softube couldn’t be prouder to be part of the Dave Derr and Empirical Labs legacy with their authentic emulations of their modern analogue classics: Mike-E, Lil FrEQ, Trak Pak, and the Empirical Labs Complete Collection.




Features

  • An expert component modelled native plugin version of the Empirical Labs Mike-E hardware
  • Warm and punchy preamp up to +18 dB of gain
  • Hi-Pass and Phase, vintage style 18 dB/octave at 80 Hz
  • Multistage soft-clipping saturator in CompSat section with Drive and Toasty/Warm meter
  • Three emphasis modes in CompSat section (HF, HF2, LF)
  • Compressor in CompSat section based on the Distressor
  • The famous NUKE mode in compressor
  • Ratio presets: BYP, 1:1, 2:1, 4:1, 8:1 & NUKE
  • Attack times in ms: 0.9, 8, 12, 20, 100 • Release times in s: 0.05, 0.1, 0.25, 0.5
  • External Sidechain
  • Dry/Wet mix

Video


Rating


Value For Money

Sound Quality

General Ease of Use

Number of Presets


  • Mac OS X 10.13 or newer (older OS versions will not work) (64-bit only).
  • Windows 10 64-bit (older Windows versions may work but are not tested) (64-bit only).
  • Mac: Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7 / Xeon - M1 support pending.
  • Windows: Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7 / Xeon / AMD Quad-Core or newer.
  • Screen resolution 1280x800 or larger.
  • Supported sample rates: 44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4 and 192 kHz, in both mono and stereo.
  • 8 GB RAM or more is recommended, as well as at least 8 GB hard disk space for installation (individual plug-ins take less space, while sample libraries may require additional disk space).
  • A Softube account is required to register and install the software.
  • An iLok account is required for authorisation of the software.
  • Internet access for downloading installer and managing licenses.
  • iLok generation 2 and up, if you intend to use a physical iLok dongle for authorizing your plug-ins (note that an iLok dongle is not a requirement).
  • In theory, any 64-bit VST, VST3, AU, or AAX (11.0.2 or higher) compatible host application should work.
  • The most recent maintenance release of the DAW application is recommended.

However, due to plug-in host differences between DAWs - and Softube's own rigorous testing standards - Softube only officially test their plug-ins and instruments in the most recent versions of Pro Tools, Logic Pro, Cubase, Live, Studio One, Digital Performer, Reaper and Sonar. Softube plugins are not tested in the non-listed systems, but they most likely work as long as the system requirements are met.

Important note: make sure that you always use the latest iLok License Manager. It is not included in the Softube installer but can be downloaded from www.ilok.com​

OS Compatibility



Drawmer 1973 Multi-Band Compressor

Compressor by Softube



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Description


More control, more versatility, more definition—the Drawmer 1973 plug-in lets you micro-manage the dynamics of your sound with ultimate precision. And you can do it with the unmistakable analog feel of a modern Drawmer classic.

Make your mixes wider and louder, shoehorn a piano into a dense mix, or curb the temper of an unruly bass guitar. The Drawmer 1973 Multi-Band Compressor lets you dive into the details—analog-style.

The Drawmer Sound and Softube Science Solution 

Carefully modelled on the original Drawmer 1973 hardware in collaboration with the Drawmer research and development team, and approved by Ivor Drawmer himself, the Drawmer 1973 plug-in brings the award-winning three-band compressor bang up to date.

Micro-Manage Your Dynamics 

Mastering with the Drawmer 1973 gives you independent control over three frequency bands, often a miracle-cure for problem mixes. Pull out individual instruments, brighten the mix, or tighten the lows—or of course do it all! But the Drawmer 1973 is equally useful on single sound sources in a mix. Take away the boomy character of an acoustic guitar in a perfectly natural sounding manner. Control the low frequency dynamics of a bass but leave its top end alive and kicking. Or remove sharp consonant sounds from a vocal track without eliminating detail and clarity.

The Original Drawmer Hardware and Then Some! 

Staying faithful to the look and sound of the original Drawmer 1973, we've added some extra up-to-date features to the plug-in, including Mid-Side processing and sidechain, giving even more versatile compression and dynamic control. So the Drawmer 1973 plug-in lets you play with the mid portion of a sound without affecting the rest of that frequency, or link the gain reduction to an external sound source.

The Drawmer 1973 has a great looking GUI echoing the look of the hardware original, is CPU friendly, and comes with useful presets to kick-start the creativity, but with enough control to add your own unique touches to any mix.

Ultra-versatile, sleek-looking, and with the sound quality of an analog classic. Designed by experts for experts: an indispensable tool for the modern studio.

Features:

  • Three band FET compressor
  • Gives you precise control of the sound source's dynamics
  • Additional Mid-Side mode and sidechaining, not available on the original hardware
  • Plug-in model approved by Drawmer
  • Each and every component carefully modeled
  • Presets from the Drawmer S73 are included, and more added



Video


Rating


Value For Money

Sound Quality

General Ease of Use

Number of Presets


  • Mac OS X 10.13 or newer (older OS versions will not work) (64-bit only).
  • Windows 10 64-bit (older Windows versions may work but are not tested) (64-bit only).
  • Mac: Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7 / Xeon - M1 support pending.
  • Windows: Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7 / Xeon / AMD Quad-Core or newer.
  • Screen resolution 1280x800 or larger.
  • Supported sample rates: 44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4 and 192 kHz, in both mono and stereo.
  • 8 GB RAM or more is recommended, as well as at least 8 GB hard disk space for installation (individual plug-ins take less space, while sample libraries may require additional disk space).
  • A Softube account is required to register and install the software.
  • An iLok account is required for authorisation of the software.
  • Internet access for downloading installer and managing licenses.
  • iLok generation 2 and up, if you intend to use a physical iLok dongle for authorizing your plug-ins (note that an iLok dongle is not a requirement).
  • In theory, any 64-bit VST, VST3, AU, or AAX (11.0.2 or higher) compatible host application should work.
  • The most recent maintenance release of the DAW application is recommended.

However, due to plug-in host differences between DAWs - and Softube's own rigorous testing standards - Softube only officially test their plug-ins and instruments in the most recent versions of Pro Tools, Logic Pro, Cubase, Live, Studio One, Digital Performer, Reaper and Sonar. Softube plugins are not tested in the non-listed systems, but they most likely work as long as the system requirements are met.

Important note: make sure that you always use the latest iLok License Manager. It is not included in the Softube installer but can be downloaded from www.ilok.com​

OS Compatibility



MTurboComp

Compressor by MeldaProduction



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Description


MTurboComp is the ultimate (not-only) compressor, which emulates most of the classic vintage analogue compressors. Unbelievable sound, uniquely fast workflow, tons of additional features. And you can design your own super-compressors with it!

Compression Reinvented for Easier and Faster Workflow

MTurboComp obviously speeds up the workflow tremendously by providing access to so many classic compressors in a single click. But it doesn't stop there. Compressors are one of the most overused tools of any audio engineer, yet they are still based on designs and controls decades old, making them so hard to use. How about controlling the amount of compression? Such a basic task, yet almost impossible without changing output level making any decisions almost impossible.

So we took the liberty to set a new standard. All of the compressors MTurboComp emulates have almost the same GUI, so that you always know what to do. They do have the controls the originals did, but they have far more than that: Compression to control amount of compression with minimum changes to output level, Saturation to get additional character, Dry/wet control for parallel compression, and finall, side-chain input, detector high-pass, low-pass and a peak filters, so that you can easily tune the compressor to your audio material. The classic Melda goodies such as automatic gain compensation, safety limiter, mid/side processing and A-H snapshots are included of course.

Emulations Designed by Machine Learning

Developers usually simulate the vintage compressors by analyzing the circuits and test signals. That way it takes a long time to emulate a single compressor and it is prone to all kinds of errors. We took a very different approach - we designed a dynamics processor so versatile, that it could simulate almost anything. And we definitely didn't dare to set it up manually afterwards - we let the computers do that for us!

It took the computers a long time and didn't spare us days of listening tests and manual work, but it still got us to a great emulation of more than a dozen classic compressors in a record time :). They don't sound exactly the same, after all not even the originals don't sound exactly the same to one another. But maybe MTurboComp sounds better then the originals. Just try and listen for yourself.

Design your Own Super-Compressor!

Well, perhaps you don't like something about the vintage tools. MTurboComp lets you change them. Or even better, it lets you invent new dynamics processors. With 4 level detectors running in parallel, each following the input or side-chain and having all kinds of settings and transformation curves, a fully featured dynamic equalizer and 2 saturators you can do a lot... almost anything if you count in the modulators. So how about listening to both the input and the side-chain at the same time? Or following different parts of the spectrum with different settings? Perhaps you can come up with much better ideas!




Features

  • The most advanced user interface on the market - stylable, resizable, GPU accelerated
  • Dual user interface, easy screen for beginners, edit screen for professionals
  • Unique visualisation engine with classic meters and time graphs
  • Unique generalized dynamic detector
  • Parallel compression using dry/wet control
  • Unique temporary gain feature
  • 8 exceptionally versatile modulators
  • 32 multiparameters
  • M/S, single channel, up to 8 channels surround processing...
  • Automatic gain compensation (AGC)
  • Safety limiter
  • Adjustable up-sampling 1x-16x
  • MIDI controllers with MIDI learn
  • 64-bit processing and an unlimited sampling rate
  • Extremely fast, optimized for newest AVX capable processors
  • Global preset management and online preset exchange
  • Supports VST, VST3, AU and AAX interfaces on Windows & Mac, both 32-bit and 64-bit
  • No dongle nor internet access is required for activation
  • Free-for-life updates

Video


Rating


Value For Money

Sound Quality

General Ease of Use

Number of Presets


Windows

  • Windows Vista / 7 / 8 / 10 (32-bit or 64-bit)
  • VST / VST3 / AAX compatible host (32-bit or 64-bit)
  • Intel/AMD processor with SSE2 support

Always use 32-bit plugins in 32-bit hosts, or 64-bit plugins in 64-bit hosts!
 
64-bit plugins can't work in 32-bit hosts even if the operating system is 64-bit. Do NOT use 32-bit plugins in 64-bit hosts. They would have to be bridged and can become slow and unstable.
 
Mac OS X

  • Mac OS X 10.9 and newer (64-bit only)
  • VST / VST3 / AU / AAX compatible host (64-bit only)
  • Intel/AMD processor with SSE2 support or Apple Silicon processor

Note: Please check your product PDF documentation for more information and installation instructions.

OS Compatibility



Summit Audio TLA-100A Compressor

Compressor by Softube



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Description


This classic compressor is all about gentle and natural sounding gain reduction. It effortlessly keeps your material's dynamics controlled without ever strangling the sound. Everything you put into the TLA-100A comes out the other end big and compact sounding.

The Summit Audio TLA-100A works in a program dependent manner, meaning it does a lot of the thinking for you. It's tremendously easy to use and basically impossible to make it sound bad. It will however give you some soft and warm distortion if you drive it really hard. For ease of use, Softubes TLA-100A plug-in has a Saturation knob that the original unit lacks. This lets you blend in just the right amount of distortion to your signal.

The TLA-100A shows the same basic behavior on any type of material. Its transparency and strong but gentle grab of the sound source makes it a popular choice for placing vocals and bass just where they need to be in the mix. The TLA-100A is also well suited for tasks like softening a spiky acoustic guitar that demands too much attention, or providing some 'glue' on a drum buss or a full mix.




Features

  • Controls your audio dynamics with mild authority
  • Easy to use
  • Built-in parallel compression and detector filtering (Low Cut filter switchable to signal input)
  • Each and every component carefully modeled
  • Modeled output distortion, easily controlled with the Saturation knob
  • Extremely analog behavior of frequencies, phase, distortion, attack, release, etc
  • Softube makes the only Summit Audio plug-ins

Video


Rating


Value For Money

Sound Quality

General Ease of Use

Number of Presets


  • Mac OS X 10.13 or newer (older OS versions will not work) (64-bit only).
  • Windows 10 64-bit (older Windows versions may work but are not tested) (64-bit only).
  • Mac: Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7 / Xeon - M1 support pending.
  • Windows: Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7 / Xeon / AMD Quad-Core or newer.
  • Screen resolution 1280x800 or larger.
  • Supported sample rates: 44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4 and 192 kHz, in both mono and stereo.
  • 8 GB RAM or more is recommended, as well as at least 8 GB hard disk space for installation (individual plug-ins take less space, while sample libraries may require additional disk space).
  • A Softube account is required to register and install the software.
  • An iLok account is required for authorisation of the software.
  • Internet access for downloading installer and managing licenses.
  • iLok generation 2 and up, if you intend to use a physical iLok dongle for authorizing your plug-ins (note that an iLok dongle is not a requirement).
  • In theory, any 64-bit VST, VST3, AU, or AAX (11.0.2 or higher) compatible host application should work.
  • The most recent maintenance release of the DAW application is recommended.

However, due to plug-in host differences between DAWs - and Softube's own rigorous testing standards - Softube only officially test their plug-ins and instruments in the most recent versions of Pro Tools, Logic Pro, Cubase, Live, Studio One, Digital Performer, Reaper and Sonar. Softube plugins are not tested in the non-listed systems, but they most likely work as long as the system requirements are met.

Important note: make sure that you always use the latest iLok License Manager. It is not included in the Softube installer but can be downloaded from www.ilok.com​

OS Compatibility



FabFilter Pro-MB

Compressor by FabFilter



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Description


Powerful and Intuitive

Multiband compression and expansion are powerful tools, but notoriously difficult to set up and control. Enter FabFilter Pro-MB: making multiband dynamics processing intuitive yet powerful at the same time.

A New Approach

Instead of conventionally splitting the entire spectrum with crossovers, Pro-MB enables you to directly create a new band at the frequency range you want to work on. Think bands, not crossovers!

The interactive multiband display clearly shows that the rest of the spectrum stays untouched. And if desired, you can easily snap bands together to recreate a traditional crossover system. 

Lifesaver and Timesaver

FabFilter Pro-MB introduces a unique Dynamic Phase processing mode. It has virtually the same frequency response as traditional multiband processing, but doesn't introduce latency or pre-ringing, and only introduces minor phase changes when the gain actually changes. Of course, we have also included an excellent Linear Phase mode and a traditional Minimum Phase mode.

The powerful combination of high quality processing, optimized workflow using the interactive multiband display and all the expert features you need, makes Pro-MB both a lifesaver and timesaver!

FabFilter Goodies

Of course, you also get all the usual FabFilter goodies: perfectly tuned knobs, MIDI Learn, Smart Parameter Interpolation for smooth parameter transitions, an excellent help file with interactive help hints, SSE optimization and much more!

Key Features

  • Up to six processing bands, freely placed anywhere in the spectrum
  • Bands can be easily snapped together to form a traditional crossover system
  • Unique Dynamic Phase processing mode featuring zero latency, no static phase changes and no pre-ringing artifacts
  • Excellent Linear Phase processing mode, eliminating audible artifacts when quickly changing crossover frequencies
  • Minimum Phase processing mode
  • Handles any form of dynamics processing, from highly transparent compression, limiting and expansion to pumping upward compression and punchy gating
  • Fully customizable per band: threshold, range, attack, release, output gain, ratio, variable knee, lookahead (up to 20 ms), variable stereo linking, mid- or side-only processing, external side chain input, triggering on a separate frequency range
  • Steepness of each crossover slope can be freely adjusted between 6 dB/oct and 48 dB/oct
  • Intelligent, highly program- and frequency-dependent attack and release curves
  • Global dry/wet mix from 0% to 200% to easily scale the total effect of the plug-in
  • Unique interactive multiband display, designed for an optimal workflow
  • Accurate and smooth real-time frequency analyzer with pre- and post-processing options and 'freeze' feature
  • High-quality audio processing algorithms with 64-bit internal processing where needed
  • Up to four times linear-phase oversampling
  • Band solo/mute and bypass options
  • Precise output metering
  • GPU-powered graphics acceleration
  • Double-click text entry of parameter values
  • Stereo and mono plug-ins available
  • Supports common Pro Tools hardware control surfaces
  • MIDI Learn
  • Undo/redo and A/B comparison
  • Smart Parameter Interpolation
  • Sample-accurate automation of all parameters
  • Extensive help file with interactive help hints
  • Available in VST, VST3, Audio Units, AAX Native and AudioSuite formats (all both 64-bit and 32-bit), as well as RTAS (32-bit only)



Video


Rating


Value For Money

Sound Quality

General Ease of Use

Number of Presets


Windows:

  • 64-bit: Windows 10, 8, 7 or Vista
  • 32-bit: Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista or XP
  • VST 2/3 host or Pro Tools

macOS:

  • macOS 10.10 or higher (64-bit only)
  • AU or VST 2/3 host or Pro Tools
  • Intel or Apple Silicon processor

Plugin Formats:

All FabFilter plug-ins are available in VST, VST3, Audio Units, AAX Native and AudioSuite formats.

OS Compatibility



FET Compressor

Compressor by Softube



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Description


The FET Compressor is an impressively faithful modeling of one of the most iconic compressors of all time. FET Compressor is loved for its aggressiveness and its tendency to add some tasty distortion to the sound source when driven hard. This compressor loves to be slammed and abused. But few things are so good they can't be improved, so we added a couple of nice features that makes it even more flexible than the hardware original.

In general, the FET Compressor can be used for deeper gain reduction than you would normally use with any compressor. The reason is that even at extreme settings, the FET Compressor shows no trace of the pinched sound many other compressors make when you push them hard. This ability for strict gain control is not least useful on lead vocal tracks that need to be kept in the listener's face. The distortion also adds a nice grit to the voice, highly useable in rock mixes but in no way limited to that.

Another common use for the FET is in drum mixing, where many engineers use it on room microphones, overheads or across the entire drum buss. Used this way, the FET Compressor has a way of bringing out a large, explosive sound in the Led Zeppelin vein. This is also an application where parallel compression is a useful technique, so we added the Parallel Inject control to facilitate this. To reduce kick drum pumping or let the bass guitar's low end bloom, use the side chain filter.

But there are still many more uses for the FET. Bass, acoustic guitars, pianos - bring out some edge or use the compressor's fastest attack setting to round off any transients.

Features:

  • Sweet input and output stage distortion.
  • Super fast attack time (just like the original)
  • Lookahead (in case you don't find the original's attack time fast enough)
  • Modeled "All buttons in" mode
  • Continuous ratio (even between 20:1 and ALL) - but if you want the fixed ratios of the original, just click the ratio labels around the knob.
  • Parallel compression.
  • Detector low and high cut filters
  • External side chain
  • Stereo with synchronized gain reduction
  • Very CPU friendly
  • Meticiously modeled analog compressor. Each single stage of the analog unit has been modeled separately to achieve the exact sound and behavior of the original analog unit



Video


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Number of Presets


  • Mac OS X 10.13 or newer (older OS versions will not work) (64-bit only).
  • Windows 10 64-bit (older Windows versions may work but are not tested) (64-bit only).
  • Mac: Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7 / Xeon - M1 support pending.
  • Windows: Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7 / Xeon / AMD Quad-Core or newer.
  • Screen resolution 1280x800 or larger.
  • Supported sample rates: 44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4 and 192 kHz, in both mono and stereo.
  • 8 GB RAM or more is recommended, as well as at least 8 GB hard disk space for installation (individual plug-ins take less space, while sample libraries may require additional disk space).
  • A Softube account is required to register and install the software.
  • An iLok account is required for authorisation of the software.
  • Internet access for downloading installer and managing licenses.
  • iLok generation 2 and up, if you intend to use a physical iLok dongle for authorizing your plug-ins (note that an iLok dongle is not a requirement).
  • In theory, any 64-bit VST, VST3, AU, or AAX (11.0.2 or higher) compatible host application should work.
  • The most recent maintenance release of the DAW application is recommended.

However, due to plug-in host differences between DAWs - and Softube's own rigorous testing standards - Softube only officially test their plug-ins and instruments in the most recent versions of Pro Tools, Logic Pro, Cubase, Live, Studio One, Digital Performer, Reaper and Sonar. Softube plugins are not tested in the non-listed systems, but they most likely work as long as the system requirements are met.

Important note: make sure that you always use the latest iLok License Manager. It is not included in the Softube installer but can be downloaded from www.ilok.com​

OS Compatibility



SSL Native X-Comp

Compressor by Solid State Logic



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Description


Mastering Grade Compression

X-Comp is a sophisticated and extremely versatile stereo compressor that cuts through the mass of freeware and bundled plug-ins available with genuinely professional features, results and interface. The audio performance, specifications, analysis tools and depth of control offered by X-Comp are exemplary.

Delivering mastering grade audio fidelity with a distinctly analogue feel, X-Comp can be used for everything from ‘invisible’ subtle dynamic control for mastering, to dramatic ‘brick wall’ effects that inject raw energy and power that competes with the legendary SSL Listen Mic Compressor.

Between these two extremes, X-Comp can reproduce the characteristics of a wide range of modern and classic vintage compressors, including much sought after OPTO, FET and Vari Mu types. In X-Comp, SSL haven’t just modelled a particular compressor, but have provided a set of features and controls that allow the emulation of a broad range of compressor designs.




Features

  • Flexible dynamics processing for classic and modern compression styles
  • Mastering-grade audio fidelity
  • Excels at subtle dynamics-shaping and smashed, brickwall-style limiting
  • Dual symmetrical knee design for detailed compression shaping
  • Advanced sidechain architecture for ducking, pumping, and de-essing
  • Intuitive interface with click-and-drag controls
  • MIDI compatibility for real-time parameter manipulation

Video


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Mac

  • macOS Sierra (10.12) or higher (64-bit only)
  • Intel Dual Core Mac running at 2.4GHz or higher
  • 4GB of RAM minimum, 8GB preferable
  • AU, VST2, VST3, AAX Native

Windows

  • Windows 7, 8, 8.1, and Windows 10 (64-bit only)
  • Intel Core 2 (or comparable) CPU running at 2.4GHz or higher
  • 4GB of RAM minimum, 8GB preferable
  • VST 2, VST3, AAX Native

Please note: A FREE iLok Account is required for authorisation of this software.

OS Compatibility



FabFilter Pro-C 2

Compressor by FabFilter



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Description


Incredible Sound and Character

FabFilter Pro-C 2 is a high-quality compressor plug-in for the most demanding engineers. Whether you need subtle mastering compression, an upfront lead vocal, that magic drum glue or deep EDM pumping: Pro-C 2 gets the job done with style!

Everything You Need

Pro-C 2 offers eight different, program-dependent compression styles with beautiful sound and character. But there's more! Apart from the classic compressor controls, you also get smooth lookahead, up to 4x oversampling, intelligent auto-gain and auto-release, a variable knee, hold, range, external side-chain triggering, variable stereo linking and mid/side processing, all packed in a beautiful Retina user interface.

Beautiful Interface and Optimized Workflow

The fully redesigned interface in FabFilter Pro-C 2 offers insightful metering with real-time displays that will greatly improve workflow. The large animated level/knee display visualizes exactly when, why and how compression is applied to incoming audio. Accurate level meters show the exact peak and loudness values, while the circular side-chain input meter turns finding the perfect threshold setting into a trivial task. And the large side-chain EQ controller makes it easier than ever to filter the trigger signal any way you like.

FabFilter Goodies

Of course, you also get all the usual FabFilter goodies: perfectly tuned knobs, interactive MIDI Learn, undo/redo and A/B switch, Smart Parameter Interpolation for smooth parameter transitions, an extensive help file with interactive help hints, sample-accurate automation, advanced optimization and much more!




Features

  • Eight different compression styles, of which five are new in version 2: Vocal, Mastering, Bus, Punch and Pumping
  • Gorgeous Retina interface, with (optional) animated level knee displays and accurate peak/loudness metering
  • Side-chain EQ section, with customizable HP and LP filters, plus an additional freely adjustable filter
  • Program-dependent attack and release curves
  • Smooth lookahead (up to 20 ms), which can be enabled/disabled to ensure zero latency processing
  • Intelligent Auto Gain
  • Hold (up to 500 ms)
  • Custom knee, variable from hard knee to a 72 dB soft knee (to enable saturation-like effects)
  • Auto Release
  • Super-fast attack times
  • Up to 4x oversampling
  • Variable stereo linking and mid/side processing, with mid-only, side-only, M > S and S > M processing.
  • Audition Triggering option, which enables users to hear on which parts of the audio Pro-C 2 is triggering and how much compression is taking place
  • Multiple interface sizes: Small, Medium and Large
  • Range setting, which limits the maximum applied gain change
  • Mix setting, which scales the gain change from 0% to 200%
  • Full Screen mode, offering a large level display and side-chain EQ controller
  • Accurate, large level and gain change meters, with peak and loudness level visualization. The loudness level complies with the Momentary mode of the EBU R128 / ITU-R 1770 standards
  • Retina support on OS X and High DPI support on Windows
  • External side chain triggering
  • GPU-powered graphics acceleration
  • Stereo and mono plug-ins available
  • Optional MIDI triggering
  • Supports common Pro Tools hardware control surfaces
  • MIDI Learn
  • Undo/redo and A/B comparison
  • Smart Parameter Interpolation
  • Sample-accurate automation of all parameters
  • Extensive help file with interactive help hints
  • Available in VST, VST3, Audio Units, AAX Native and AudioSuite formats (all both 64-bit and 32-bit), as well as RTAS (32-bit only)

Video


Rating


Value For Money

Sound Quality

General Ease of Use

Number of Presets


Windows:

  • 64-bit: Windows 10, 8, 7 or Vista
  • 32-bit: Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista or XP
  • VST 2/3 host or Pro Tools

macOS:

  • macOS 10.10 or higher (64-bit only)
  • AU or VST 2/3 host or Pro Tools
  • Intel or Apple Silicon processor

Plugin Formats:

All FabFilter plug-ins are available in VST, VST3, Audio Units, AAX Native and AudioSuite formats.

OS Compatibility



MDynamicsMB

Compressor by MeldaProduction



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Description


MDynamicsMB advanced multiband dynamics processing module plugin is an advanced multiband dynamics processor with clear sound, designed originally for mastering. However due to its high performance and zero latency it is also suitable for any mixing purpose.

It features up to six fully configurable independent bands. In addition, starting with two compressor/expander units and finishing with an advanced custom processing shape editing feature enabled by our incredible MeldaProduction Envelope System (MES) technology, MDynamicsMB becomes a total multiband dynamics processing solution!



Video


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General Ease of Use

Number of Presets


Windows

  • Windows Vista / 7 / 8 / 10 (32-bit or 64-bit)
  • VST / VST3 / AAX compatible host (32-bit or 64-bit)
  • Intel/AMD processor with SSE2 support

Always use 32-bit plugins in 32-bit hosts, or 64-bit plugins in 64-bit hosts!
 
64-bit plugins can't work in 32-bit hosts even if the operating system is 64-bit. Do NOT use 32-bit plugins in 64-bit hosts. They would have to be bridged and can become slow and unstable.
 
Mac OS X

  • Mac OS X 10.9 and newer (64-bit only)
  • VST / VST3 / AU / AAX compatible host (64-bit only)
  • Intel/AMD processor with SSE2 support or Apple Silicon processor

Note: Please check your product PDF documentation for more information and installation instructions.

OS Compatibility



Blue Cat's MB-5 Dynamix

Compressor by Blue Cat Audio



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Description


Blue Cat's MB-5 Dynamix is an extremely powerful all-in-one multiband dynamics processor: it can be used as a multiband compressor, limiter, gate, expander, waveshaper or all combined at once, on any part of the spectrum. The unique dynamics processing section of the Blue Cat's Dynamics plug-in has been streamlined and integrated in this plug-in to process each one of the 5 bands separately. The plug-in provides unique envelope detection capabilities that let one band trigger the dynamics response on others (internal side-chain). Combined with the advanced stereo features including mid/side processing and independent channels activation, it gives you full control over the dynamics of the signal for a wide range of effects. An additional brick wall limiter/clipper protects the output for complete control over the dynamics response.

The plug-in provides comprehensive visual feedback to let you know what's exactly going on at every step of the dynamics processor: for each channel, monitor the spectrum, the in/out levels, dynamics response, compression ratio and in/out level of each band... The user interface has been designed to streamline the workflow, and despite the wide range of functionalities offered by the plug-in, it is extremely easy to use. Inter-bands controls (copy/paste, link...) lets you create complex treatments with a few clicks. Thanks to its advanced MIDI and automation output capabilities, Blue Cat's MB-5 Dynamix is capable of advanced side-chaining features: you can control other plug-ins with the output of the dynamics processing stage for simple side chain dynamics effects or more advanced signal-dependent effects. Check out our MB-5 Dynamix Tutorials for more details. If you are looking for a broadband dynamics processor, check out the Blue Cat's Dynamics plug-in.




Features

  • Full-featured multiband dynamics processor: compressor, gate, limiter, expander, waveshaper.
  • Up to 5 bands, with crossover filters from 12 to 120 dB/Oct for optimal separation.
  • Unique envelope routing capability for cross-band dynamics effects (one band may trigger another).
  • Dry/wet control for parallel processing ("New York Compression").
  • Stereo or mid-side processing with multiple channels linking options.
  • Post-brick-wall limiter or waveshaper.
  • Comprehensive Visual feedback with real-time response curves and levels display.
  • Easy copy/paste settings between bands.
  • Side chaining made easy: a unique way to perform multi-band side chain compression, ducking, gating and much more.
  • Plug-in window transparency management.
  • No latency.
  • Fully redesigned algorithms with improved performance and precision.
  • External side chain input.
  • Control the maximum gain reduction or increase for each band using the new "Depth" parameter.
  • Brand new GUI design, with improved usability and touchscreen support.
  • The GUI can now be zoomed from 70% to 200%.
  • Lock the GUI state to prevent changes when loading presets.
  • Faster GUI loading / instantaneous GUI display after it has been opened once.
  • Adjust contrast for spectrogram display.
  • Spectrogram now keeps history when resized.
  • Brand new presets manager with MIDI program and bank messages support, copy/paste.
  • Added presets managers for individual bands and dynamics curve settings.
  • Now supports retina displays on Mac (text and graphs using high resolution).
  • VST3 plug-in format support.
  • New installer on Mac.
  • Changed demo limitations: up to 5 instances allowed, bypass time changed to half a second, and bypass parameter is not affected anymore.
  • License is now shared between plug-ins types (register only once for all formats).
  • Dropped support for Windows XP and Mac OS X 10.6 and earlier.
  • Dropped support for legacy RTAS and DirectX plug-ins formats

Video


Rating


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Sound Quality

General Ease of Use

Number of Presets


  • An Intel or Apple Silicon processor (M1)
  • Mac OS 10.9 or newer
  • Available as: Mac-AAX, Mac-AU, Mac-VST, Mac-VST3, Win-AAX, Win-VST, Win-VST3, Win x64-AAX, Win x64-VST, Win x64-VST3.
  • Native DSP code for optimal performance.
  • Full MIDI control and automation support with silent, zipper-free parameters update, advanced response control and MIDI Learn.
  • No CPU load on idle: when the plug-in is fed with silence, the processing smoothly shuts down, to optimize the CPU usage of your Digital Audio Workstation.
  • Customizable user interface with transparency management and zoom.
  • Automation and MIDI output: record output parameters as automation curves or send MIDI CC messages to other plug-ins for powerful side chain effects.
  • Smooth Bypass: activate/deactivate the plug-in with absolutely no noise.
  • Undo/Redo.
  • Full featured integrated presets manager.
  • Copy/paste the state of the plug-in between instances using the system clipboard.
  • Any sample rate supported.

Supported Platforms

  • Mac-AAX
  • Mac-AU
  • Mac-VST
  • Mac-VST3
  • Win-AAX
  • Win-VST
  • Win-VST3
  • Win x64-AAX
  • Win x64-VST
  • Win x64-VST3

OS Compatibility



U73b Compressor V2

Compressor by Audified



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Description


Faithful and unique emulation of an old German broadcast compressor/limiter unit U73b. Second generation of the famous plug-in.

The device was often used for mastering between 1960 and 1980. It is an all tube vary-mu compressor/limiter with adjustable release time option. We kept the circuit exactly as it was originally designed and only added input and output gain (before and right after compressor circuit) to help with proper adjustment of the compression. The plugin effect has been also supplemented with a VU meter and selectable side-chaining. U73b is great for mastering, mixing drums, bass, guitar, vocals and voice overs.




Features

  • External side-chain added
  • Auto Output parameter added
  • Plugins built in newer IDEs with more effective code
  • Color settings dialog added
  • Default calibration parameter value mechanism added, calibration parameter range changed
  • English language added
  • Oversampling added
  • GUI improved, retina support
  • Software can be used on 2 computers per ID simultaneously (User gets 2 licenses)
  • The compressor's controls are very easy, but the effect of this unique device is audible at the same moment you turn it on.

  • Compressor/Limiter switch - is the upper U73b knob and it switches between Compressor mode (Kompr), Bypass (Durchschalt) and Limiter mode (Begr). The compressor mode has lower threshold setting and very gentle increasing ratio, in opposite, the limiter mode provides higher threshold setting with higher ratio but still with smooth knee.

  • Release time - the first three positions offer fixed release time, the other three positions (marked red) provide adjustable program content dependent release time option.
  • IN - adjust input gain before the compressor/limiter circuit
  • OUT - adjust output gain after the compressor/limiter circuit
  • Key input - selects the signal source used for controlling the gain reduction
  • HPF - U73b is a vintage device and as such it may not meet present mastering demands. We added a bass management button that simply switches between original sound and desired modern sound (without low frequencies bypass

Video


Rating


Value For Money

Sound Quality

General Ease of Use

Number of Presets


MAC:

  • OS X 10.9 - Mac OS X 10.14

Formats:

  • AAX for Pro Tools (32/64-Bit) 
  • Audio Units - AU (32/64-Bit)
  • VST2 (32/64-Bit)
  • VST3 (32/64-Bit)

PC:

  • Windows 7 - Windows 10

Formats:

  • AAX for Pro Tools (32/64-Bit) 
  • VST2 (32/64-Bit)
  • VST3 (32/64-Bit)

Note: U73b Compressor is iLok protected. The hardware key is not necessary, only the License Manager, which is available at iLok.com

OS Compatibility



Mu

Compressor by Pulsar Audio



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Description


An Industry-standard Tube Compressor

The most faithful emulation of a modern yet legendary tube compressor/limiter – perfect glue for mixing and mastering.

There are several reasons to use a variable-bias tube compressor. One is the exceptional compression transparency that this kind of compressor can achieve, even when pushed into extreme gain reduction. Another – and perhaps the most common – is their ability to add cohesion or “glue” to buses, whole mixes and masters.

Unfortunately, the original hardware is expensive and difficult to integrate with “in-the-box” workflows. Software emulations exist but most owners of the hardware agree that they cannot be compared to the original unit, as there’s always “something” missing.

With its unique Topology Preservation Technology, Pulsar Mu sounds objectively identical to the hardware in every production context, and even makes improvements such as an increased signal-to-noise ratio.

Improving on a Classic

Pulsar Mu is a stereo compressor operating in either Left/Right or Mid/Side modes, designed with mixing and mastering applications in mind, but also flexible enough for tracking. It can be used for levelling, limiting, or just to add a bit of analog warmth with its emulated tube signal path.

While reproducing the accurate SIFAM metering of the original unit, Pulsar Mu also provides a more modern visualization mode for fine-tuning compression settings, representing the waveform and gain reduction both over time and instantaneously.

Pulsar Mu also offers various options that apply to the sidechain signal. A popular mod of the original device was to add a high-pass filter, but Mu goes even further, offering a more complete equalization section, enabling to precisely adjust the compressor’s response to bass, midrange and treble using only four knobs.

Another addition is the possibility of advancing (look-ahead) or delaying (look-behind) the sidechain signal. This enables you to take ultimate control over transients, letting the compressor start to react before they happen, over even after they happen, opening up all kinds of creative uses.

How Does It Sound?

  • Transparent but musical: The sound of Pulsar Mu is impressively transparent with a touch of warmth. It manages transients in a soft and musical way, even with extreme settings, unlike a FET or VCA compressor. With Mu, you can add movement while respecting the natural dynamics of a source.
  • Mastering: The most classic use of Mu is in mastering: it brings the discreet "polish" and "glue" to subtly warm up any mix. It can be used either transparently as a leveller (with long attack and release), as a compressor to add glue (slow attack with fast release), or as a limiter (fast attack and fast release). Using Mu in Mid/Side mode gives you another way to increase the stereo image, or to curtail an overly wide mix.
  • Drum buss: Pulsar Mu can quickly create the “glue” needed for cohesive drum buss processing, while still respecting transients – even those of a kick drum. Depending on the chosen gain reduction and release time, it can restore the room ambience essential for certain styles of music – especially when used as a parallel compressor.
  • Acoustic guitar: On an acoustic guitar, with a relatively low gain reduction setting, Pulsar Mu creates a nice organic groove, while respecting the transients of the instrument. This subtlety is useful for livening up a dull, stiff guitar track, giving it edge and personality.
  • Snare drum: Pulsar Mu can give body and consistency to thin snare drums sounds, even while preserving their transients, which are essential for helping them break through the mix. When pushed a little harder, Mu can help you recover sustain, harmonics, or even ambience.
  • Vocals: Pulsar Mu sounds particularly good on vocals – especially with fairly high input and medium attack and release. It gives them the analog-style warmth to help them sit naturally, even in a dense mix.

Main Features

Topology Preserving Technology

Pulsar's modelling technology guarantees a perfect emulation of the behaviour of the original device. From the saturation of the magnetic flux in the transformers to the precise response of the tubes, to the effect of the tiny calibration defects, everything is perfectly reproduced. If you are curious, take a look at the technical article on the subject.

External Sidechain

The Pulsar Mu, as all compressors should do in the digital age, allows you to define an external sidechain input. This opens a very wide range of applications: ducking, de-essing, filtering the sidechain signal with your favourite EQ, or even applying dynamic processing.

Mid-Side Processing

The Pulsar Mu comes with built-in optional M/S encoding and decoding, that enable to process separately with different settings the sounds panned to the centre and those panned to the sides. Additionally, the “Listen” buttons simplify the setting by allowing you to listen only to Mids or Sides, and the modern visualization can be set to monitor only the channel you’re working on, so you will always know what you’re doing.

Look Ahead, Look Behind

This innovative feature enables to shift the timing of the gain reduction signal with respect to the input. The look-ahead enables the Mu to start reacting to transients even before they are played, ensuring a perfect limiting. Conversely, the look-behind delays the gain reduction, so that fast transients can be left unprocessed, the corresponding GR peak occurring too late. This opens up various possibilities like clipping to the transients after the Mu for example.

Flexible Sidechain Equalizer

The sidechain equalization section is simple but efficient. You can let your mix breathe by preventing low frequencies from triggering compression with the High-Pass filter, adjust the response to vocals or other instruments thanks to the parametric bell filter, and keep the influence of the top-end under control with the positive or negative High-Shelf filter.

Low CPU Consumption

The Pulsar team spent a ridiculous amount of time optimizing the processing so that it consumes very few system resources despite the very complex algorithm inside. The Pulsar Mu takes full advantage of the CPU’s features to do more with less. But if your computer can stand it and you enjoy making it suffer, you can always turn over-sampling on and process at up to 384 kHz!



Video


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Value For Money

Sound Quality

General Ease of Use

Number of Presets


Windows

  • Windows 7 with SP1 / Windows 8.1 / Windows 10 (all 64-bit only)​
  • CPU: Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7 / i9 / Xeon or AMD Quad-Core minimum
  • Memory: 4 GB RAM & 1 GB free disk space​
  • GPU: OpengGL 2.0 compatible GPU​
  • Monitor: Minimum 1024×768 Resolution (recommended 1920×1080) & 60 Hz Refresh rate

Compatible Plugin Formats (32 & 64-bit):

  • AAX Native
  • VST 2.4
  • VST 3

Mac

  • macOS10.10 - macOS 11 Big Sur (M1 Apple Silicon supported) (64-bit only)
  • CPU: Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7 / Xeon
  • Memory: 4 GB RAM & 1 GB free disk space​
  • GPU: OpengGL 2.0 compatible GPU​
  • Monitor: Minimum 1024×768 Resolution (recommended 1920×1080) & 60 Hz Refresh rate

Compatible Plugin Formats (64-bit only):

  • AAX Native
  • Audio Unit
  • VST 2.4
  • VST 3

Activation:

  • You need to have an account at ilok.com to be able to use Pulsar software.
  • The Mac version of this software is 64-bit only and will not function on 32-bit systems.

OS Compatibility



Manic Compressor

Compressor by Boz Digital Labs



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Description


Manic Compressor was designed from the beginning to be more than just a compressor. It was designed to unleash the power of parallel compression without requiring complex routing in your DAW.

Even with 6 different compressor modes and a comprehensive parallel routing setup, Manic Compressor uses an intuitive interface to get you way more power from your compressor than you’ve ever had before.

Maximum Parallel Power

Parallel compression is a key ingredient that has been used by top mixers for years, but up until now, it has always required complex routing and increased clutter in your mix project to be able to utilize it on every track. Many compressors have a mix knob for blending the compressed signal with the dry signal, but we have found that this just doesn’t give enough control to really make use of the extensive power of parallel compression.

With individual wet and dry faders, along with an intuitive yet powerful EQ section, it won’t take long to recognize how much you’ve been missing out on. After using Manic Compressor on our projects, we realized that we have been missing out on a whole new world that we didn’t even know existed with compression.

6 Different Compressors

Even with so many good compressors out there, we find that it’s cumbersome to switch back and forth between different compressors with different settings trying to find the exact match for your track. With Manic Compressor, you can quickly switch between 6 different compressors without having to match settings.

Because Manic Compressor was designed from the ground up to be used in parallel, we were able to make some compressor modes that really shine in parallel.

Built for Abuse

With Manic Compressor’s innovative parallel design and Loudness Relief, this compressor was built to be abused.  Subtle compression is a thing of that past (unless you want it, of course). Manic Compressor lets you put your settings to maximum carnage and then ease it off with its unique Loudness Relief knob, which softens the compression artifacts even under super heavy load.



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  • This plugin was crafted to be as light as possible on your CPU, enabling you to put this on many tracks without eating up your processing power. For Mac, you must be running OSX 10.5 or greater. For windows, you need Windows XP or greater.

Available Formats

This plugin is available in both 32 and 64 bit versions of each format (except RTAS, which is 32 bit only). It is available in the following formats:

  • Mac VST2, VST3, AU, RTAS, AAX Native
  • Windows VST2, VST3, RTAS, AAX Native

OS Compatibility



Pulsar 1178

Compressor by Pulsar Audio



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Description


The most versatile FET compressor

A compressor that eats transients for breakfast, the 1178 is a rare and expensive legend of the recording studio, cleaner and more versatile than its older brother, the 1176. The 1178 has been used by great producers including Chris Lord-Alge (My Chemical Romance), Bob Clearmountain (Rolling Stones, Christina Aguilera), Yvan Bing (Phil Collins) and Nigel Godrich (Radiohead).

The Pulsar Audio 1178 software meticulously recreates the original 1178 hardware in its tonal colour and compression character.

But Pulsar Audio have taken the 1178 further than the original unit, adding all the features you would expect from a modern, versatile plug-in, including a full sidechain EQ for added control, an optional saturation stage for warmth and character, and precise metering.

Improving on a classic

Pulsar 1178 has a fast and bright character, making it great for dealing with unruly transients in tracking and mixing. While these qualities make it the ideal choice to smash the transients of a drum room to get a nasty rocky bounce, the extended attack range also allows gentle dynamic contouring and can provide unique mid-band definition and intelligibility on a vocal.

When it comes to compression, having more control over the sidechain signal can bring a mix to the next level. The dynamics of a drum groove hinge on how compression is triggered by both the kick drum and the snare. With Pulsar 1178’s full-featured sidechain EQ section, you can make each one hit just the right amount of gain reduction.

Keeping an eye on dynamics is key to a well-balanced mix. Pulsar 1178’s accurate and modern metering section helps in this important task. Peak meters allow insight into overall dynamics; RMS meters let you monitor loudness and match levels, and a scrolling view helps visualize how the attack and release settings are affecting the gain reduction.

Add grit and drive to the usually-transparent 1178 with four flavours of saturation: Tape, Triode, Warm and Clip modes open up new ways of managing dynamics and spectral envelope. These modes are fully-integrated in the compressor’s gain reduction system, allowing a unique vibe, unachievable with pre or post saturation.

How does it sound?

  • Snappy with a rich sound: More transparent than an 1176, the 1178 allows incredibly fast control over transients when compared to other compressor models. Add the all-buttons-in mode and Pulsar’s added saturation models, and you can access characterful, colourful tones as well
  • Vocals: The 1178 is a great way to get vocals to pop out of a mix and sound very aggressive. Bob Clearmountain has used these circuits to do the business on vocals from Mick Jagger, Christina Aguilera and more
  • Drum overheads: The 1178 has the speed to catch crashes in a flash, and also opens up the top end of a signal in a very natural-sounding way. Chris Lord-Alge uses this combination to great effect on “lacklustre overheads”. With lookahead, you can get surgical with your drum transients too
  • Bass: Whether you’re catching transients, controlling dynamics, or all-out smashing up the signal, bass is prime fodder for the 1178. Using the added Saturation circuits, you can really introduce extra grit, helping the bass to pop through a mix and survive on smaller speakers
  • Acoustic guitar: Guitar transients can be particularly fast and harsh, and the 1178 is a great tool to dampen lively picking, as well as to make the body of the sound bounce and respond. Fast processing and natural release helps to add life to a mix but retain a natural guitar tone
  • Buss and master compression: Transparency and speed make the 1178 a good candidate for buss compression and even mastering compression (as on Robert Plant’s album Angel Dance). The added sidechain EQ is helpful in controlling the entire frequency spectrum – not just heavy bass



Features

  • Topology Preservation Technology guarantees a perfect emulation of the original device’s behaviour
  • Saturation stage featuring four saturation flavours: Tape, Warm, Triode and Clip
  • Mid-Side processing enabling a signal’s mono and stereo information to be processed separately with different settings
  • Look-ahead or Look-behind delay stages, up to 20ms for the former or up to 10ms for the latter
  • Powerful sidechain EQ to help perfectly tailor your signal and arrive at the ideal detection response
  • External sidechain opens a very wide range of applications: ducking, de-essing, filtering the sidechain signal with your favourite EQ, or even applying dynamic processing
  • Advanced metering section. Gain reduction, input level and output level are all visible in different ways
  • Smart GUI with draggable resize handles that streamlines based on output configuration

Video


Rating


Value For Money

Sound Quality

General Ease of Use

Number of Presets


Windows

  • Windows 7 with SP1 / Windows 8.1 / Windows 10 (all 64-bit only)​
  • CPU: Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7 / i9 / Xeon or AMD Quad-Core minimum
  • Memory: 4 GB RAM & 1 GB free disk space​
  • GPU: OpengGL 2.0 compatible GPU​
  • Monitor: Minimum 1024×768 Resolution (recommended 1920×1080) & 60 Hz Refresh rate

Compatible Plugin Formats (32 & 64-bit):

  • AAX Native
  • VST 2.4
  • VST 3

Mac

  • macOS10.10 - macOS 11 Big Sur (M1 Apple Silicon supported) (64-bit only)
  • CPU: Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7 / Xeon
  • Memory: 4 GB RAM & 1 GB free disk space​
  • GPU: OpengGL 2.0 compatible GPU​
  • Monitor: Minimum 1024×768 Resolution (recommended 1920×1080) & 60 Hz Refresh rate

Compatible Plugin Formats (64-bit only):

  • AAX Native
  • Audio Unit
  • VST 2.4
  • VST 3

Activation:

  • You need to have an account at ilok.com to be able to use Pulsar software.
  • The Mac version of this software is 64-bit only and will not function on 32-bit systems.

OS Compatibility



MDynamics

Compressor by MeldaProduction



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Description


Compressors, expanders, gates. Indispensable tools in modern production. MDynamics gives you everything you could wish for: amazing sound, an easy-to-use interface, versatility beyond your imagination.

All in One Solution

MDynamics can do it all. It can be a compressor, expander, gate, or any combination of those, and you can even draw your own processing shape for more creative effects. Add integrated parallel compression, adjustable channel linking, up to 8 channel surround processing and MDynamics becomes the ultimate tool for single-band dynamics.

Ultra-Flexible Level Follower

MDynamics can adapt to any audio material thanks to its extremely versatile envelope follower featuring automatic release modes, peak hold, RMS length, look-ahead, psycho-acoustic prefiltering, custom attack and release shapes, spectral smoothing plus much more.

Extremely Versatile Side-Chain

MDynamics can not only follow the input level, it can filter it or even use any other signal from the side-chain. For filtering you can have a simple bandpass or even a fully-featured 6-band equalizer.




Features

  • The most advanced user interface on the market - stylable, resizable, GPU accelerated
  • Unique visualisation engine with classic meters and time graphs
  • exceptionally versatile modulators
  • Adjustable oscillator shape technology
  • 4 multiparameters
  • M/S, single channel, up to 8 channels surround processing...
  • Smart randomisation
  • Automatic gain compensation (AGC)
  • Safety limiter
  • Adjustable up-sampling 1x-16x
  • MIDI controllers with MIDI learn
  • Very fast, optimised for SSE/SSE2/SSE3 processors
  • Global preset management and online preset exchange
  • Supports VST, VST3, AU and AAX interfaces on Windows & Mac, both 32-bit and 64-bit
  • No dongle nor internet access is required for activation
  • Free-for-life updates

Video


Rating


Value For Money

Sound Quality

General Ease of Use

Number of Presets


Windows

  • Windows Vista / 7 / 8 / 10 (32-bit or 64-bit)
  • VST / VST3 / AAX compatible host (32-bit or 64-bit)
  • Intel/AMD processor with SSE2 support

Always use 32-bit plugins in 32-bit hosts, or 64-bit plugins in 64-bit hosts!
 
64-bit plugins can't work in 32-bit hosts even if the operating system is 64-bit. Do NOT use 32-bit plugins in 64-bit hosts. They would have to be bridged and can become slow and unstable.
 
Mac OS X

  • Mac OS X 10.9 and newer (64-bit only)
  • VST / VST3 / AU / AAX compatible host (64-bit only)
  • Intel/AMD processor with SSE2 support or Apple Silicon processor

Note: Please check your product PDF documentation for more information and installation instructions.

OS Compatibility



smart:comp

Compressor by sonible



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Description


The Spectro-dynamic Compressor

Master Audio Compression Like Never Before

smart:comp finds the parameters for well-balanced compression results in just a few seconds and ensures unparalleled transparency through frequency-selective processing.

  • Tonal and dynamic balance with spectral compression
  • Intelligent parametrization with a single click
  • Sidechain mode with frequency-dependent ducking



Features

  • More than just Compression

  • Balance makes the difference: Getting the Best Out of Your Track

  • The spectral compression is all about giving a track the best possible definition and maximum transparency. By continuously analyzing the input signal across more than 2000 bands, smart:comp acts like an intelligent, ultra-high-resolution multiband compressor that dynamically smoothes out tonal imbalances. Once you experience its power, you wouldn't want to miss it.

  • smart:comp's spectral compression only applies compression where it is really needed and therefore ensures a consistent tonal and dynamic balance at all times. Use the feature to clean up tracks in the mixing phase or to put the finishing touches on your mix when mastering.

  • Speed and Precision – Powered by A.I: Intelligent Compression Parametrization in Seconds

  • smart:comp significantly speeds up the task of compression and delivers results with greater precision than ever. With just one click the plug-in analyzes the incoming audio signal and sets specific parameters that result in well-balanced compression – all with the familiar look and handling of a single band compressor.

  • Behind the intuitive interface of smart:comp, runs the smart:engine – an A.I.-based, content-aware system designed on the basis of psychoacoustic principles as well as extensive hands-on mixing experience. Although the plug-in greatly assists in creating a fast workflow when the smart:engine is activated, you retain control over the final outcome and are able to access and adjust all essential parameters.

  • A Smooth Mix: Give your Sidechain Signal the Space it Needs

  • Frequency-dependent ducking in sidechain mode seamlessly merges signals that compete for attention within the same spectral regions. smart:comp ‘listens’ for potential spectral clashes and dynamically ducks affected frequency regions of the input signal.

  • smart:comp's frequency-dependent ducking makes sure that the track of your choice remains in the limelight of a mix. If you want to use smart:comp for broadband ducking, just enable the spectral ducking.

  • Specifications & Technical Details

  • plug-in formats: (Mac) AU, VST2 (universal binary), AAX
  • plug-in formats: (Windows) VST2 (32/64 bit), VST3, AAX
  • supported sample rates: 44.1 kHz to 192 kHz
  • authorization: machine-based or iLok

Video


Rating


Value For Money

Sound Quality

General Ease of Use

Number of Presets


Mac:

  • OS X 10.8+ (macOS 11 Big Sur only supported on Intel-based Mac systems)
  • RAM - at least 4 GB (recommended)
  • CPU - at least intel DualCore i5 (recommended)
  • Plugin formats - AU, VST2 (Universal Binary), AAX (64-bit only)
  • iLok License Manager is required to install sonible software (activation is optional)

PC:

  • Windows 7+
  • RAM - at least 4 GB (recommended)
  • CPU - at least intel DualCore i5 (recommended)
  • Plugin formats - VST2, VST3, AAX (64-bit only)
  • iLok License Manager is required to install sonible software (activation is optional)

Important Notes: 

  • In order to install this sonible product, you must have the iLok License Manager installed on your computer. You DO NOT need an iLok account or a physical iLok USB Dongle.
  • macOS 11 Big Sur is only supported on Intel-based Mac systems.

Please note - To use sonible plugins on an M1 Mac, you may need to launch your DAW under Rosetta (right-click the application icon, select "Get Info" and then select "Open using Rosetta"). Note that many DAWs do not yet support macOS Big Sur, so it is important to check your DAW's website for compatibility info before updating.

OS Compatibility



Blue Cat's Dynamics

Compressor by Blue Cat Audio



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Description


"The most flexible all-in-one dynamics processor"

Blue Cat's Dynamics is a full featured dynamics processor: it can be used as a compressor, limiter, gate, expander, waveshaper or all at once! The dynamics response of the plug-in can be tweaked with a unique two-thresholds system, and provides detailed visual feedback about its behavior.

The plug-in includes several filters to control the frequencies affected by the compression. Its continuous VCA/Opto and Peak/RMS controls let you smoothly and precisely choose the behavior of the envelope detection like you have never been able to.

The plug-in also provides advanced stereo features, with mid/side processing capability, multiple stereo linking options and the ability to choose the channels affected by the processor.

An additional brick wall limiter and clipper protects the output for complete control over the dynamics response.

Three different modes are available for external side chaining, using either the external side chain input, MIDI control or automation lanes.

The configurable visual feedback shows every detail of what is going on inside the plug-in. You can also record this information as automation curves, to monitor the modifications applied to the signal on top of the audio representation of your favorite host application.

All these features can be controlled from a fully configurable and "skinnable" user interface, or from any external controller.

The package includes a mono and a stereo version for optimal CPU usage.

Features

Main Features

  • Full featured dynamics processor: compressor, gate, limiter, expander, waveshaper with a unique two thresholds system.
  • Total control over the processor: continuous peak/RMS and Opto/VCA modes selection, peak envelope shape control, depth control to limit the gain range.
  • Total control over the signal: dry/wet control for parallel compression, input and side chain filters.
  • Stereo or mid-side processing with multiple channels linking options.
  • Post brickwall limiter or clipper.
  • Optimal monitoring: dynamics response, envelopes and gain reduction real time display with zooming capability. The main compression information can be recorded as automation curves.
  • Best quality: up to 4x oversampling for the best sounding quality.
  • Multiple side chaining modes: a unique way to perform side chain compression, ducking, gating and much more.
  • Fully configurable user interface for optimal experience.
  • No latency.

Blue Cat Audio Standards:

  • Available as: Mac-AAX, Mac-AU, Mac-RTAS, Mac-VST, Win-AAX, Win-DX, Win-RTAS, Win-VST, Win x64-AAX, Win x64-DX, Win x64-VST.
  • Native DSP code for optimal performance.
  • Full MIDI control and automation support with silent, zipper-free parameters update, advanced response control and MIDI Learn.
  • No CPU load on idle: when the plug-in is fed with silence, the processing smoothly shuts down, to optimize the CPU usage of your Digital Audio Workstation.
  • Skinnable and customizable user interface with transparency management.
  • Automation and MIDI output: record output parameters as automation curves or send MIDI CC messages to other plug-ins for powerful side chain effects.
  • Smooth Bypass: activate/deactivate the plug-in with absolutely no noise.
  • Undo/Redo.
  • Full featured integrated presets manager.
  • Copy/paste the plug-in's state between instances using the system clipboard.
  • Any sample rate supported.



Video


Rating


Value For Money

Sound Quality

General Ease of Use

Number of Presets


Windows

  • An SSE2-enabled processor (Pentium 4 or later).
  • Microsoft Windows Vista, Windows 7, 8 or 10.
  • Any DirectX / VST / RTAS / AAX compatible host software (32 or 64 bit).

Mac OS X

  • Intel or Apple Silicon processor (M1)
  • Mac OS 10.9 or newer
  • Any VST / Audio Unit (32/64-bit) / RTAS / AAX compatible application.

OS Compatibility



Weiss Compressor/Limiter

Compressor by Softube



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Description


Softube Weiss Collection

The Modern and Transparent Mastering Compressor/Limiter

The name Weiss is synonymous with quality in mastering, and a truly exceptional compressor/limiter is essential to any serious mastering engineer. The Weiss DS1-MK3 digital dynamics processor is the top-of-the-line go-to for a huge proportion of the world’s greatest mastering gurus, and for the Weiss Compressor/Limiter, we draw on its essence (and code-base) to bring a totally focused and fit-for-purpose modern answer to the question ‘how should I deal with dynamics on my mix bus?’

Available as a standalone plug-in, or as part of the Weiss DS1-MK3 collection (also including the class-leading Weiss Deess de-esser for your high-frequency delight, and the fast and intelligent Weiss MM-1 Mastering Maximizer) the Weiss Compressor/Limiter aims squarely at the body of your sound, and offers the perfect set of features for this most crucial of tasks.

The mastering stage is the last chance to make or break a track, so getting it right can be the difference between a battle won or lost. That’s why the startling transparency and effectiveness of the Weiss digital compression algorithms, and its unrivalled versatility in terms of detailed control over attack and release times, knee settings, ratio, threshold, filters (low pass and band pass), and other crucial factors, are a must-have.

And being able to push a track to the appropriate degree of loudness without unpleasant artifacts from the limiter is rightfully expected of any modern mastering engineer. That’s when the quality of your tools really matters; the Weiss is the only product that allows you to achieve such a clean, sweet, and dynamic sound at high levels. And with two brand-new advanced limiter algorithms on top of the Weiss original, you have more top-of the line options with Weiss than ever before.

But it’s perhaps the new visualisations that really make the Compressor/Limiter a no-brainer. Being able to see in detail the precise effect you’re having on your signal; where things are working nicely and where you might be over or under-compressing; allows you to know your material better and make the right calls with a degree of precision and detail that even the very best ears can’t promise.

Of course, this being a plug-in, you can run as many instances of it as you like, so there’s nothing to stop you using its uniquely clear and precise character on individual instrument tracks. Take a bass guitar, for example, and run the Compressor/Limiter with a low-pass filter applied, to compress only the lowest frequencies and fatten out the body of the instrument, just as you might with a multi-band compressor. Or use the Compressor/Limiter on a vocal in conjunction with the Deess, for perfectly tailored dynamics processing across the frequency range, and no compromise.

Whatever you do with it, the Compressor/Limiter’s unbeatable sound-quality makes it a joy to use, and ultimately leads to better-than-ever finished sounds, so buy or upgrade today.

In short

  • A modern and transparent digital compressor and limiter, with code-ported algorithms from the industry standard DS1-MK3
  • Total control, without an over-complicated interface. The ‘expert’ tools are all in a hidden side-menu
  • Stunning and intuitive visualisations for detailed control, and an intuitive experience
  • Clean tweak-and-go faceplate, with immensely detailed controls hidden in side-menu
  • Ultra-professional tool, but without the daunting, complex look
  • Compress selectively, with low pass and band pass filters
  • Two brand-new advanced limiter algorithms in addition to the Weiss original
  • Available as a single plug-in, or as part of the Weiss DS1-MK3 collection



Video


Rating


Value For Money

Sound Quality

General Ease of Use

Number of Presets


  • Mac OS X 10.13 or newer (older OS versions will not work) (64-bit only).
  • Windows 10 64-bit (older Windows versions may work but are not tested) (64-bit only).
  • Mac: Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7 / Xeon - M1 support pending.
  • Windows: Intel Core i3 / i5 / i7 / Xeon / AMD Quad-Core or newer.
  • Screen resolution 1280x800 or larger.
  • Supported sample rates: 44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4 and 192 kHz, in both mono and stereo.
  • 8 GB RAM or more is recommended, as well as at least 8 GB hard disk space for installation (individual plug-ins take less space, while sample libraries may require additional disk space).
  • A Softube account is required to register and install the software.
  • An iLok account is required for authorisation of the software.
  • Internet access for downloading installer and managing licenses.
  • iLok generation 2 and up, if you intend to use a physical iLok dongle for authorizing your plug-ins (note that an iLok dongle is not a requirement).
  • In theory, any 64-bit VST, VST3, AU, or AAX (11.0.2 or higher) compatible host application should work.
  • The most recent maintenance release of the DAW application is recommended.

However, due to plug-in host differences between DAWs - and Softube's own rigorous testing standards - Softube only officially test their plug-ins and instruments in the most recent versions of Pro Tools, Logic Pro, Cubase, Live, Studio One, Digital Performer, Reaper and Sonar. Softube plugins are not tested in the non-listed systems, but they most likely work as long as the system requirements are met.

Important note: make sure that you always use the latest iLok License Manager. It is not included in the Softube installer but can be downloaded from www.ilok.com​

OS Compatibility