Free plug ins (or I'm so cheap I went bald to save on haircuts)

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MikeDBass
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Free plug ins (or I'm so cheap I went bald to save on haircuts)

Post by MikeDBass » Tue Apr 05, 2016 10:01 am

Any of you into digital recording know how expensive plug ins can get. I've found a few free ones that get close, match, and sometimes beat the expensive ones.

I'll start with. Tokyo Dawn Labs. http://www.tokyodawn.net/tokyo-dawn-labs/ These kids are part of a record label from London. They put out modern, classy funk, reggae, hip hop etc. but their audio designers are burning up the homerecording world. They have four audio processors that are free, three of them also have upgraded paid versions. I have and use all four of them and they beat plug in processors that cost me over $100.

Nova is a multi-band, parametric compressor. You can keep the eq however you set it at lower levels, but at higher levels it will compress at however the curve is set. I use it first thing on the mix buss and set it very mild. The best way to describe it is it works like a de-esser that only kicks in at the level you want and you can set several eq bands wherever you want them.

Slick eq is a three band eq (four bands if you count the hi-pass filter) that's very musical.

Kotlekikov is a mastering compressor that beats my Focusrite Midnite compressor by a lot. It allows you to mix compression and dry tracks without have to copy a track so you can use a basically dry track beefed up with a tight high range compression to give the track punch.

The upgrade version on these add more bands, more paramaters and other goodies. I'm going to buy an upgrade on one of these (once I decide which one) just to reward these kids for great work. It seems as if they design these for their own recording and give them away as loss leaders to draw in new fans for their music and to make a few extra pounds for the upgrades. All of these work very well on acoustic recordings.

Proximity doesn't have an upgrade version. It takes whatever you put in it and makes it sound like it is further away or closer to you. I use it on drum busses and it makes sampled drums sound a lot more real. I've fooled a few drummers by using it.



If folks are interested, I'll come back and add some more free plug ins that I use.

Stay cheap, my friends. :)

flip18436572
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Re: Free plug ins (or I'm so cheap I went bald to save on haircuts)

Post by flip18436572 » Tue Apr 05, 2016 2:07 pm

I will be learning and using more of the plug ins as I get more familiar with my current setup and possible changes. The built in effects of the XAir software for my live sound is amazing as to what is there and how easily it can be changed for the requirements of the different rooms we play music in. I really need to learn more of the recording side, before I add more plug-ins that I may or may not use. But, I will always takes posts like this as something to go back to.

Thanks for starting the thread.

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MikeDBass
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Re: Free plug ins (or I'm so cheap I went bald to save on haircuts)

Post by MikeDBass » Wed Sep 14, 2016 11:51 am

I see a lot of views here so I'll add this one. It's a free plug-in called the Softube Saturation Knob. Saturation generally adds some harmonic distortion to a track. A small bit of it can make a vocal or a fiddle or almost anything stand out more in the mix without raising the volume. I've used "Da Tube" that comes with Cubase, but it has a very finnicky sweet spot, sometimes it never goes between too much and not enough. The Softube Saturation Knob sounds good from the lowest setting up until it is too much. It sounds like an analog box. I turned by buddy Rick Otts at Stringhouse Studios on to it and he immediately put it on a vocal. He said the Sat Knob was like magic and wouldn't be surprised if he uses it on every project. It's extremely easy to use, one knob and a choice between leaving it off the low end, leaving it off the high end, or keeping it on both. Off the low end sounds good on upright. Vocals, sometimes off the low works especially with a smoother "crooning" voice or just leave it on both. Here is the link:

http://www.softube.com/index.php?id=satknob

flip18436572
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Re: Free plug ins (or I'm so cheap I went bald to save on haircuts)

Post by flip18436572 » Wed Sep 14, 2016 3:49 pm

Thanks for posting to this as I am just getting into recording side of things and hopefully will be able to start working on the learning process in December when I am no longer booked every weekend with music and art.

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