Post Production

First look: T-RackS Saturator X for Mac/Windows from IK Multimedia

With its new T-RackS Saturator X, IK Multimedia is promising “analog saturation magic” for digital recordings

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With its new T-RackS Saturator X, IK Multimedia is promising “analog saturation magic” for digital recordings. In the Italian company’s desire to simulate parity in two of the world’s most important currencies, new software for Mac and Windows and costs under US$80 or under €80. They state that the new T-RackS digital signal processor module plugin can bring the color, flavor and saturation effects of classic analog audio processing gear to digital recordings. This is a first look; I may do a review in the future.

T-RackS Saturator X is a plug-in that can be used on individual tracks or on the master fader in a user’s favorite DAW (digital audio workstation). IK Multimedia says that T-RackS Saturator X provides simple controls that let users select from 10 modes of saturation effects that span the panorama of classic analog gear. T-RackS Saturator X also features a Brickwall limiter and oversampling options.

Warmth and Growl

From tape to tube to transformer to transistor, T-RackS Saturator X provides options – 10 individual styles of saturation and distortion from the gentle, subtle hint of drive from a slightly overdriven transformer to the full-on, aggressive “in-your-face” mayhem of tubes driven beyond their limit… and everything in between.

T-RackS Saturator X can be used as a plug-in on the individual tracks in a mix or as part of the T-RackS signal processor chain. It works by imparting distortion into the digital signal path which by its nature doesn’t typically change or alter the linearity of the frequency response and harmonic pattern of a signal. The introduction of distortion simulates the way analog circuitry behaves especially when pushed beyond its limit.

10 modes of simulated saturation

According to IK Multimedia, T-RackS Saturator X provides users with 10 saturation modes that accurately deliver the behavior of the analog hardware component and circuitry or medium, selected for their special or unique character. The modes include replicated models of classic analog processors; there are 2 “tape”, 2 “master soft saturation”, 2 “tube”, 2 “solid state” and 2 “transformer” modes from which to choose. This comprehensive offering covers a full palette from the very subtle “color” of the transformers to the more pronounced and downright “nasty” distortion from tubes and solid state circuit designs.

Metering

Saturator X also features a “Magic Eye” VU meter that quickly gives users a vintage-looking, visual indication of the amount of saturation being applied to the incoming signal.

Brickwall Limiter

T-RackS Saturator X also has a built-in Brickwall Limiter feature. When engaged, the Brickwall Limiter ensures that the saturation level never overdrives the signal to the point of harsh digital distortion (clipping) that can ruin a recording.

Family

IK Multimedia says that Saturator X is part of the growing family of T-RackS signal processors. All T-RackS processors are available from the T-RackS Custom shop, a free plug-in and standalone audio processing workstation, and can be taken for a test drive as a full featured demo without restriction for a 14-day period.

For more information, click here.

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Born in Connecticut, United States, Allan Tépper is an award-winning broadcaster & podcaster, bilingual consultant, multi-title author, tech journalist, translator, and language activist who has been working with professional video since the eighties. Since 1994,…

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