Fabfilter makes amazing products with amazing GUIs. I think every modern music producer or engineer knows this by now.
I have found myself to being too reliant on their products though, so for my next 30 days I’m going to not use any Fabfilter products. When I’m done I’ll write a post explaining why I went back to Fabfilter or why I fell in love with something else.
Currently I have some ideas of what I will replace things with, but that will grow. Read more to find out my plans, and comment if you have any awesome suggestions!
Check out the conclusion here after reading this post!
- Multiband Compression?
- Gate and De-ess
- Support Me!
So here’s what I have in mind to replace Pro-Q 2
I already use the apQualizr 2 a lot, but it’s yet to become my main EQ. It has some really nifty features like a semi-modular modulation system, sidechaining, an excellent analyzer and a great developer.
I don’t actually own SlickEQ GE yet, however it’s high on my list of things to purchase should I feel limited in my EQ options.
The new Equivocate sounds really wonderful to me, but once again I’ve been slacking on using it. So now is the time to give it a real trial.
Replacing Pro-C 2 maybe? These are my top choices right now.
The new TrackComp from DMG Audio is super exciting. A SPICE modelled selection of well-loved compressors and a nice configurable digital model. I’ve been using this for 2 days already and I love it.
I have a feeling this may become my goto.
Klanghelm’s DC8C2 is basically cheating. I know I love this product. I use it frequently, but I still grab Pro-C 2 sometimes because I’m lazy… even when I think I could get better results with DC8C2.
U-He’s Presswerk is another fantastic product that I know I like, but it forces me to think. I like thinking, but sometimes I’m busy with a cognitive load of 10 other problems that I’m trying to solve and I don’t want to add another thought process.
Maybe some familiarity with Presswerk will lubricate my brain a bit.
What am I going to replace Volcano 2 with?
Cytomic’s The Drop is a monster. This is one of two things I have in line to replace my constant use of Volcano, but I suspect it will be up to the task.
Cableguy’s FilterShaper 3 is another awesome filter plugin. I’m unsure how it will fit my workflow, since I use these types of filter plugins as sonic problem solvers instead of creative additions, but it’s going to get more use.
I don’t even like Pro-R that much. It just always sounds good. It’s never the perfect sound I’m envisioning, but it always works just fine anyway. I need to get out of that rut.
Let’s be real here. EAReverb is my favorite reverb. I love it. I just don’t use it because I get lazy.
EAReverb, like Presswerk takes a bit of thinking to get things done, but often that work is enough to give you an amazing result. My work doesn’t deserve that sort of laziness. More EAReverb 2.
I wasn’t even considering UltraReverb until yesterday. I needed a realistic small room sound and everything else just failed to get what I wanted. UltraReverb got it for me.
So it’s on the list. I’m going to explore this way more in the next 30 days.
Reverbical isn’t the prettiest plugin, but it is the fastest-to-use Reverb I know of. Everytime I use it, I’ve got damn close to what I want with minimal fuss.
We’ll see if it can fit most of my needs though.
I use FabFilter Timeless 2 so much because of the modulation, not because the actualy delay section is particularly great. Multiple taps, feedback paths and such are usually more useful… but because of the simplicity of Timless, I once again grab it more often than not.
Bluecat’s Late Replies is a monster delay. It’s delays inside of delays with effects inside of effects. You can do some crazy stuff with the multiple taps and feedback paths that you can even stick VSTs on.
I’m not sure how much work I’ll get done with it, but I know it’s fun.
Another product from EAReckon, EARebound. This is another sequencable 16-tap delay with effects for every tap. I’ve used it when playing around, but never much in serious work.
It’s time to do that.
I’ll come clean. I don’t like Pro-L, but I always use it. The results aren’t the best, but the time it takes to get 90% there is just so minimal. So many products out there that sound better, but what out there offers the same incredible usability?
- NOTE - I recently sold all of my Izotope products including Ozone. I was very unhappy with their support policy, upgrade pricing and features added in upgrades. This puts me at somewhat of a disadvantage for Limiting options currently, I will need to dig deep in my plugin collection to see what I still find useful.
Voxengo’s Elephant has a goofy name, but for many years it was the best limiter available. I used v1 and v2 on countless recordings.
V4 will be getting more usage soon.
Limiter 6 GE
Here again we have another TokyoDawn product: Limiter 6 GE. I suspect this will be the record holder based on my experience with it elsewhere, but I do not yet personally own it.
Will I feel the need to buy it?
I almost never use Pro-MB in the Multiband Compression modes, only in the Dynamic Phase mode which is actually a Dynamic EQ. So my replacement for this is entirely dynamic EQ products unless I come across a multiband compressor I don’t detest.
Once again, I do not own Nova GE yet, but it’s high on my list of things to explore. The free version is fantastic.
Voxengo’s GlissEQ was one of the very first really good dynamic EQs. I’ve owned this product for nearly 10 years I believe, and I used to use it religiously. That stopped when I started to use Pro-MB’s dynamic phase mode.
Let’s see if GlissEQ can court me again.
FabFilter Saturn is awesome. I LOVE IT. I overuse it. I have no qualms about my use of it, or overuse of it. I should use it more! Just not for the next 30 days.
SDRR is another great Klanghelm product. All I know is that I’ll be using this a lot more.
Bluecat’s Destructor is another crazy cool plugin from Bluecat. It is geared a bit more towards guitar use, but I know it’s capable of much… much more.
Cytomic’s Scream is an emulation of a famous guitar pedal, but with the tweakability of the mod section, it can be easily turned in to a versatile distortion and saturation unit.
I just need to spend more time with it to learn to use it for ‘general use’ in an efficient manner. I already use it sometimes, but I end up tinkering with the mods more than is maybe useful ;)
Gate and De-ess
Over the next few weeks I’ll try and keep you up to date with my findings, new plugins I start using more and my general thoughts.
I you have suggestions for things to try then please let me know. I own a lot of plugins, and I simple choose some of my known favorites for this post. I will likely be revolving around and trying a lot of new things.
If you are a developer and wish for me to consider your products, please let me know. If I enjoy it I will include a review here for it as well!
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