Rich phase sweeps, deep analog vibe, and tempo-locked modulation – Mac/PC VST, AU, AAX
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- In Depth
If you’ve ever used some actual analog phasers at some point in your recording or performing career, you know that they have some incredible warmth and great tone compared to a digital, newer phase effect or plug-in. When it comes to making analog and other kinds of hardware effects in plug-in form, few beat the tonal excellence of Soundtoys. Their commitment to analog tone and immaculate recreations of hardware effects units are always admirable, and their phaser plug-in, the PhaseMistress, is another great achievement for them. They’ve gone to great lengths to match the analog tone, phase response, and warmth of several iconic phaser pedals and other hardware/effects units.
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The great thing about this, and many other Soundtoys plug-ins, is that they can be as simple or complex as you’d like. In this case, the plug-in defaults to a phaser that is modulated by an LFO with a rate (speed) knob, which is generally how real-life phasers work. This plug-in is notable in that it is tonally accurate to the real thing, especially when you mess with the input and output gain to add a little saturation or distortion. The global controls for frequency range and resonance make this easy enough to dial in the sound you want, and the modulation meter tracks the movement of the phaser effect in a really obvious, intuitive way so that you know exactly what you’re getting.
Luckily though, there’s a lot more to this plug-in than what you see on the surface. The style edit menu lets you change the plug-in’s general tone profile to match that of many different types of phasers. You’ve got your Phase 90, Small Stone, Mutron Bi-Phase, and plenty of other iconic phasers on tap here, with many other subtle variations therein. These styles, of which there are a whopping 69 available, considerably add to the versatility of this plug-in, and vary not only in tone but amount of phase stages, polarity and intensity. If you’ve ever wanted a phaser effect on your tracks, but have been disappointed when your particular plug-in just doesn’t have the right tone, you’ll likely be able to find the exact style and tone you need just by cycling through all the options here.
But the massive potential of the PhaseMistress really doesn’t reveal itself until you start messing with the tweak menu, as well as using some of the other modulator types. With the latter, you have several options in addition to the aforementioned LFO. Soundtoys’ unique rhythm editor modulators let you use customized wave shapes, as well as MIDI sync and tap tempo, to lock your phaser’s modulation in time with your music. This type of customizable rhythmic phasing is essentially impossible with analog phasers, and as such is a really unique, nice treat. There are also some modulators that react to the dynamics of your track, and don’t move until they cross a volume threshold (trigger). Each modulator has its own unique controls, which appear in the main menu as well as the tweak menu. This tweak menu lets you control wave shapes, modulation controls, offset controls, and additionally has some analog saturation types that you can choose to enhance your signal. All told, there’s a tremendous amount of potential for you to use here, and as such, the PhaseMistress could easily be a one-stop shop for phaser. Check it out and see for yourself!
- Recreates the tone, warmth, and feel of a variety of analog hardware phasers including the Mutron Bi-Phase, Shin-Ei Uni-Vibe, Electro-Harmonix Small-Stone MXR Phase 90, Maestro PS-1A, Eventide Instant Phaser, and more
- Create complex phase signals, with anywhere from 2 to 24 stages (including odd numbers, a rarity in phaser effects)
- Choose from over 69 phasing styles, all based on different analog phasers
- Detailed Tweak menu allows for intricate design of custom phasing styles, simulating circuit-level operation
- Six different phase operation modes let you use LFO, Rhythm Step Editor, Random and more modulators to set phase response
- Use volume/dynamic triggers and envelope followers to let your track’s dynamics trigger the phaser effect
- Create customized phase patterns with waveshape customization and Rhythm Editor
- Global Controls:
- Input and Output gain, dry/wet mix, frequency (phase mid-point), resonance (frequency peak), and Modulation amount controls
- Modulation meter displays current phaser position
- Style Edit menu controls:
- Up to 69 different styles (can be used in any phase operation mode)
- Color (Classic/Modern), Intensity (Normal/High), Phase (Positive/Negative) and Resonant Phase (Positive/Negative) switches
- Stage control (2-24, odd or even) resonant peak amoiunt and offset controls
- “Tweak” menu controls:
- Freq Mod (frequency modulation amount and depth), Res Mod (resonant peak number, independent of stages), Res Offset (based on modulation source), left/right offset (stereo phase), L/R mode (which switches between same phasing and inverse phasing for left and right channels)
- 7 styles of analog saturation
- 6 Phase Operation Modes with unique controls
- LFO mode with rate and waveshape controls
- Shape editor, smoothing, and smoothing mode controls in tweak menu
- Rhythm Mode with Tap Tempo, rhythm, and waveshape controls plus MIDI sync and groove (rhythmic offset) control
- Shape editor with smoothing and smoothing mode controls, plus rhythm editor visual interface with bar number, beats per bar, grid values and rhythmic presets in tweak menu
- Envelope Follower with attack, threshold, gain and release controls
- Random mode produces random phasing patterns, with tap tempo, MIDI sync, smoothing and rhythm controls
- Step sequence mode with trigger (volume threshold) and smoothing controls
- ADSR mode with Trigger (volume threshold), Attack, Decay, Sustain and Release controls
- LFO mode with rate and waveshape controls
Current Version: 5.2.0
Plug-in Formats (both 32 and 64-bit):
• AAX Native, AAX AudioSuite, VST, and Audio Units (AU)
Supported Sample Rates:
• Minimum: 44.1 kHz, Maximum: 192 kHz
• Operating systems: Mac OS X 10.8 or later; Windows 7 or later
• An internet connection is required at the time of activation.
• Pro Tools (10.3.5 or later), Live, Cubase, Nuendo, Sonar, Logic, Digital Performer
• Click here to view our full list of compatible host applications.
• Free iLok.com account.