Soundware and plugin developer Boom Library really grabbed our attention with the superb Enforcer last year, and its latest is a VST/AU/AAX stereo centering effect.
In a nutshell, ReCenter constantly analyses and rotates your wayward stereo (L/R or M/S) signal to keep it fixed at any angle you choose, while maintaining the integrity and positioning of the stereo field. Most of the magic happens behind the scenes, and it often gets the job done in its default state: just slap the plugin on any stereo or mid-side signal in which the main element - or the whole thing - is off to one side or the other, and marvel as it miraculously snaps to dead centre without affecting all the stereo info around it.
You can set the target angle manually if you’re not aiming for the centre, or automate it for re-panning; and the Intensity knob can be used to under- or over-play the correction if you want to relax the centre enforcement or make it more forceful. Response adjusts the correction speed, and Lookahead trades latency off against accuracy. Mono Filter sets a cutoff frequency, from 20Hz-10kHz, below which everything is monoised; and Width ranges from mono to ‘200% wide’, and can be inverted to flip left and right. Finally, the Multiband option switches in three crossovers for independent processing of four discrete bands, yielding better results with complex signals.
ReCenter is obviously most at home in the post-production studio, or fixing up field and dialogue recordings, so it’s not necessarily something most electronic music producers will find a great deal of regular use for. If you do ever find yourself needing to centre a wonky vocal or guitar, calm down a wide synth pad with a roving focal point, or reposition anything else in the stereo field without kludging around with panning, however, ReCenter is most assuredly the best way to do it.