GEAR EXPO 2021: Take the fast track to success and let some of the industry's smartest brains do the heavy lifting for you. There are countless ways to inject your mixes with a great new sound, with a never-ending range of powerful plugs ready to work magic in your DAW.
2021 shows no sign of slowing down and we’ve picked the latest and greatest new processing plugins below.
Softube’s Weiss EQ MP
The Weiss EQ MP plugin is Softube's latest collaboration with Weiss Engineering. Said to be an EQ that’s “honed for professional-grade use,” this is built on the minimum phase algorithm of the classic Weiss EQ1 and is designed for surgical mixing purposes.
This is a seven-band EQ that promises transparency and accuracy for the mixing specialist. Enhancements include continuous unstepped frequency parameters and expanded filter slopes, and you also have the bonus of a resizable GUI with dark mode.
Despite its power, the learning curve is said to be practically non-existent. CPU load is said to be low, too, as is latency.
The Weiss EQ MP is available now for the introductory price of $149 (regular price $249). It runs on PC and Mac in VST/AU/AAX formats. Find out more at Softube.
Harrison Consoles AVA Bass Flow
Looking Looking for a single plug-in to take care of your bass? Wll Harrison Console's AVA Bass Flo promises to do it all.
This is a channel strip plugin that’s designed specifically for mixing bass, and contains four routable processing elements and a master section.
The master section, meanwhile, features controls for switching input polarity, adjusting input and output trim, and setting the order of routing between elements.
Available for PC and Mac in VST/AU/AAX formats, AVA Bass Flow will be available for the introductory price of $89 (regular price $179) until 31 January (so act fast!). Find out more on the Harrison Consoles website.
Waves Nx Ocean Way
Having already attempted to replicate the experience of mixing in a control room at Abbey Road Studios, Waves is now emulating the sound of another legendary facility: Nashville’s Ocean Way Studios.
The Nx Ocean Way plugin promises to bring the acoustic environment and monitoring system of the Ocean Way Nashville studio control rooms to any pair of studio headphones, the theory being that this will enable you to create mixes that translate accurately to multiple playback systems.
Development was supervised by Allen Sides, who founded and designed Ocean Way, and promises to replicate the control room’s acoustics and the sound of its Ocean Way Audio HR1 and HR5 far-field and near-field monitors.
Nx Ocean Way is available for PC and Mac in VST/AU/AAX formats. It can currently be had for the sale price of just $35 (regular price $199). Find out more on the Waves website.
Rast Sound Naturaliser
Tired of your music all sounding 'the same'? Have we got the plug-in for you…
It works by slicing time into user-selected sub durations and then applying discrete, random states of its spectral, attack shaping and colouring effects. These change from one sub-duration to the other, introducing ongoing variation.
Naturaliser is available for PC and Mac in 64-bit VST/AU/AAX formats. The regular price is €39, but you can currently purchase it for €29.
Find out more on the Rast Sound website.
soothe2 is an amazing dynamic resonance suppressor which magically spots problematic resonances on the fly and applies matching reduction automatically.
What does this all mean? It means a smoother, more balanced sound and saves you from having to notch out the frequencies by hand.
And it comes heavily endorsed by Guy Laurence of Disclosure who says "soothe is a game changing plug-in! The amount of time I’ve saved using this thing is crazy. It does wonders for vocals, guitars... I even have it on my master bus at all times. I call it the tinnitus protector! No more hours of notching out frequencies or automating resonances out of the mix. Soothe has it all covered."
Find out more at oeksound.com
Black Rooster Audio RO-140 reverb
We’ve seen plenty of emulations of the classic EMT 140 plate reverb, but Black Rooster Audio’s RO-140 plugin throws a few other bits of unnamed classic hardware into the mix.
Using physical modelling, RO-140 lets you choose between six plate materials, and you can adjust the size of the plate, too. There’s a damping control that can be set to one of 10 positions, while the pre-delay - placed after the plate reverb emulation - enables you to set the amount of delay between the wet and dry signals.
There’s also a 3-band EQ and adjustable gain-staging at the input and output stages, and you can choose between three output modes (mono, mono to stereo and stereo).
RO-140 is available now from the Black Rooster Audio website priced at £63. It runs on PC and Mac in VST/AU/AAX formats.