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v5.3.1 Soundtoys Decapitator

Review:

Soundtoys Decapitator
  
Soundtoys Decapitator

Analog Saturation Modeler

Analog saturation has long been the magic mojo that engineers have used as their swiss army knife of mixing.


Highlights

decapitator

It’s used on drums, bass, vocals guitars, everything. It can be used to beef things up, thin things out, give them some edge, fry them up nice, add a bit of warmth, pull things out of the mix, or even create a signature sound. Used subtle to extreme, analog saturation is the golden child of great mixes. That’s why we took our time, bought and listened to all the great analog classics, and painstakingly created that magic for you in Decapitator.

Analog Feel
Decapitator is more than just an emulation of the analog sound. It has the analog feel. You can hear the subtle changes reacting to the track, following the dynamics of the instrument. That’s what analog is all about. Not a static snapshot (No convolution here) but a changing responsive model of all those tubes and wires (And careful notes), and transistors. The sound of real gear, but with the flexibility of software. Our modeled tone control let’s you shape and contour, and our mix control let’s you mix back in the dry signal for parallel processing without the need for routing and submixes. The best of both worlds.

The Models
In our lab we gathered so much cool analog gear. From preamps to compressors. From tape machines to EQ’s. Vintage gear and modern gear. All of it so we could listen to how the sound changed and moved and created it’s special vibe. We picked some of the models that had the most distinct sounds, the models that had a flavor both subtle and extreme, and made them instantly accessible on the front panel. By adding analog modeled tone control we increased the sonic possibilities far beyond many of the originals and give you a remarkably flexible “analog” palette to create with.

Bad Boy
Because we know that audio is not always nice, we’ve included a convenient way to make sure it’s not nice. Our “Punish” button kicks in another chuck of gain to push it over the edge. This tool let’s you drive hard and responds just like it’s analog counterpart, it screams in pain. Not your standard stomp-box distortion, Decapitator gives you those unique qualities that only come from driving high end studio gear. Listen to how each model has it’s own sound of beautiful agony when you hit the “Punish” button and crank it up.

Plug-in formats (both 32 and 64-bit):

  • AAX Native
  • AAX AudioSuite
  • VST
  • Audio Units (AU)

Supported sample rates:

  • Minimum: 44.1 kHz
  • Maximum: 192 kHz

System requirements:

  • Operating system: Mac OS X 10.8 or later, Windows 7 or later
  • An internet connection is required at the time of activation.

All version 5 Soundtoys products come with 32-bit and 64-bit VST, AU, and AAX Native plug-in formats.

Here is a list of all of the DAWs (Digital Audio Workstations) that we currently support:

  • Pro Tools 10.3.5 – 2018 (Mac & PC: AAX Native and AudioSuite)*
  • Logic Pro 9 & X (​Mac: AudioUnits)
  • Digital Performer 8 – 9 (​Mac: AudioUnits & VST; Windows: VST)
  • Cubase 7 – 9  (Mac & PC: VST)
  • ​Nuendo 6 – 7 (​Mac & PC: VST)
  • Sonar X3 & Platinum (​PC: VST)
  • Ableton Live 9.2.2 – 10 (Mac: AudioUnits & VST; Windows: VST)**

*Our 32-bit AAX Native plug-ins will only load properly in Pro Tools 10.3.5 or later. If you are using Pro Tools 10.0.0 – 10.3.4 and wish to use Soundtoys 5 on your system, you will need to upgrade to Pro Tools 10.3.5 or later in order to do so. Our Native V4 products include RTAS, which will work in any version of Pro Tools 10.

**Using Live 9.2.1 or earlier can result in a nasty audio glitch when switching sampling rates during playback, or during offline bounce. We recommend using the latest version of Ableton Live.

Click here to view our full list of compatible host applications.

Other requirements:

iLok.com account (An iLok USB dongle is not required. Create a free account here)

Soundtoys 5.3.1: Our Final 32-bit Release

We’re happy to announce that Soundtoys 5.3.1 is now available. This update includes an important improvement to Little AlterBoy and PrimalTap and a number of other bug fixes.

Soundtoys 5.3.1 will be our final patch before we add support for MacOS Catalina, which will require us to drop 32-bit plug-in support. This will be our final 32-bit compatible release for both MacOS and Windows. Visit our Download Page to get the latest installers.

Little AlterBoy and PrimalTap Sync Fix

When using Little AlterBoy on a mono track with a stereo output, sometimes it was possible for the left and right channels to shift out of sync. This could add an unwanted “phasey” sound to the vocal, or create a slight difference in the sound of the left and right channels. This bug could also affect PrimalTap’s Freeze mode. Soundtoys 5.3.1 fixes this issue.

NOTE: this fix may change the sound of some audio tracks that use Little AlterBoy and PrimalTap (in freeze mode). We think this change is for the better! However, if you think the out-of-sync sound is an important part of some of your tracks, we recommend you bounce or freeze those tracks to preserve the exact sound they have today.

MacOS Catalina Support Coming Soon

If you’re a MacOS user, you’ve probably gotten word that many DAWs and plug-ins, including Soundtoys, do not yet support MacOS Catalina. Unlike previous releases of MacOS, Catalina introduces new security safeguards and ends support for 32-bit applications and plug-ins, creating a significant challenge for plug-a developers. We’re hard at work updating and testing our products, and we will have an update soon.


What’s new in v5.3

macOS and PC:

  • Plug-in activation window now includes support for Activation Codes, which will be distributed to customers who purchase a new product (not an upgrade) from our web store, and will allow those licenses to be activated without an iLok account (optional).
  • Little Plate is now included in the 5.3 license group for new Soundtoys 5 customers.

macOS-only:

  • macOS Mojave is now officially supported.
  • Graphics issue that was causing several components of the Soundtoys graphical user interfaces to display incorrectly on macOS Mojave has been resolved.

What’s New in v5.2.3

All Soundtoys Plugins updated June 4, 2018 (Maintenance Update 5.2.3.13619 (Mac) and 5.2.3.13636 (PC))

  • Little Plate now included in the Soundtoys 5 installer
  • Fixed rare audio dropout/glitches under certain circumstances
  • Fixed crash that could happen sometimes on session recall
  • Fixed sluggish animation of tweak drawers on high DPI monitors on Mac
  • Fixed rhythm editor to allow for creation of multi-bar rhythms
  • Fixed “update nesting too deep” alert
  • Added support for MIDI triggering to AAX versions of FilterFreak and PrimalTap
  • Fixed CPU spiking in certain instances
  • Fixed AudioSuite support for different stem formats (mono-mono, mono-stereo, stereo-stereo) for Tremolator, Decapitator, Devil-Loc Deluxe, FilterFreak 1 & 2, Little Radiator, Radiator, and Sie-Q
  • Fixed occasional crash when rendering in Reaper on Windows
  • Fixed preset sorting in macOS High Sierra
  • Audio Units plug-ins will now scan correctly without requiring a restart in macOS High Sierra
  • Locked knob titles will remain red when GUI is closed and reopened
  • Fixed Pro Tools automation hotkey support for Effect Rack, as well as compound parameters like Delay Notes/Time in EchoBoy
  • Fixed Pro Tools automation hotkey support for all plug-ins on Windows
  • Fixed session recall in AU Lab
  • Fixed balance offset in in PanMan Random & Triggered modes
  • Updated VST plug-in names to make them consistent with AU and AAX versions when displayed in DAWs. *This included Little Plate, Little AlterBoy, Little Radiator, Little PrimalTap, Little MicroShift, EchoBoy Jr., and Sie-Q.

What’s new in 5.2:

  • EchoBoy Jr. is now available in Soundtoys 5 and Effect Rack
  • EchoBoy Jr. is now included with individual EchoBoy 5 licenses and installers
  • Some Effect Rack presets now include EchoBoy Jr.
  • Fixed an issue where certain AAX plug-ins did not support multi-mono operation
  • The LFO rate parameter can now be automated in PhaseMistress and FilterFreak 1 & 2

What’s new in 5.1

Sie-Q was added to the lineup.

What’s new in 5.02

Features:

  • Plug-ins with the Analog Mode option now have a new “Op Amp” style to replace the Version 4 “Digital” style that was removed. In the previous version 5 release sessions using “Digital” defaulted to “Clean”. They now default to “Op Amp”. This will address the sound differences that some customers heard when recalling old sessions.
  • PrimalTap has a new Auto Gain switch added to the Tweak menu. When enabled, the output will automatically be lowered proportionally as the input gain is raised. This is the new default behavior for PrimalTap. Old sessions and user presets will open with Auto Gain set to “Off.”
  • Preset names, when edited, now display in italics to indicate an edited state

Fixes:

  • Preset names are now displayed correctly when sessions that were last saved with V4 are recalled (instead of reading “Default”).
  • Fixed an issue in PrimalTap where the Rolloff feature was not filtering the feedback loop as intended. (Note: this update will change the sound of some presets and sessions but is the correct and intended sound and behavior of PrimalTap).
  • Fixed an issue where Devil-Loc and Devil-Loc Deluxe knobs could jump to minimum or maximum when clicked in a certain area.
  • Fixed a problem where the delayed signal in EchoBoy might drop out under certain conditions.
  • PhaseMistress default settings will now sound identical to the default preset.
  • Preset names are now pre-populated when using the Save As… option.
  • Resolved a Windows problem where alerts could be hidden behind other windows.
  • Fixed issues that would cause the compare light to come on unnecessarily with certain plugins and presets.

New in Soundtoys 5:

  • Effect Rack, PrimalTap, and Little AlterBoy plug-ins
  • New authorization options
  • Workflow enhancements

Getting Rhythmic with SoundToys Plug-ins

SoundToys guru Mitch Thomas demonstrates the basics of using SoundToys plug-ins to create rhythmic effects, and then dives deeper with the powerful Rhythm Editor in part 2.

More...