It’s been another amazing year of innovation in the music and post production industry, we’ve seen and reviewed many of the top products. Many of you want to know what we think, but now we want to know what you think was the best one. So check out our round-up of many of the products we reviewed at Pro Tools Expert and then head to the bottom of the page and place your vote, but note that voting will close on December 24th 2013, so don’t leave it too long… what do you think will win?
Universal Audio UAD Apollo 16
When Universal Audio introduced the original Apollo it got a lot of love from us and it seemed almost every other Pro Tools user on the planet, so when the Apollo 16 was announced we knew that Universal Audio were making another smart move. You can check out our exclusive interview with Universal Audio about the Apollo 16 and then watch our UAD Apollo 16 video review here.
One of several contenders in the list showing cool innovation and not just reinventing another plug-in format. Zynaptiq Pitchmap has to be seen, or indeed, heard to be believed, we reviewed the Zynaptic Pitchmap here and we loved it.
How do you take an amazing plug-in like iZotope RX2 and make it better? Well iZtotope did it with this version that offers real-time processing of many funcitons like de-noise and de-reverb and took the already unbeatable RX2 to a new level. Watch ‘Mr RX’ Mike’s iZotope RX3 video here.
Avid Pro Tools 11
Perhaps one of the most significant Pro Tools updates for several years, Avid Pro Tools 11 came with 64 bit processing, offline bounce and many more features. It has taken some time for the AAX plug-ins to catch up, but in most cases nearly all our favourite plug-ins are now the new AAX format. Read our Pro Tools 11 review for music here and our Pro Tools 11 review for post here. Watch our video Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Pro Tools 11 here.
McDSP 6020 Ultimate Eq
Colin at McDSP is part genius, part comedian and part really nice guy, his plug-ins continue to reflect his originality and this year the new McDSP 6020 Ultimate Eq gave us not 1 but 11 flavours of EQ to use in our mixes. You can watch our McDSP 6020 Ultimate Eq review here.
The only other piece of hardware in our list, the Arturia MicroBrute had Russ going giddy with love. Real analog synths don’t get much smaller or fatter than this baby! You can read his Arturia MicroBrute review here.
Slate Digital VBC Virtual Buss Compressor
The Slate team seem unstoppable, with the dreams of Steven Slated realized with the genius of Fabrice Gabriel there’s been a steady flow of both software and hardware from Slate. The Slate Digital VBC Virtual Buss Compressor is a combination of classic comp models pimped up for extra power. Watch our review of the Slate Digital VBC Virtual Buss Compressor here.
Blue Cat MB7 Mixer
Whatever the opposite of a perfect storm is then Blue Cat walked into it with the Blue Cat MB7 Mixer. An awesome and highly creative plug-in in its own right but when you add the option to host 64 bit VSTs in Pro Tools 11, especially in the middle of what was an AAX plug-in drought, then you have a winner. Watch our Blue Cat MB-7 video here.
Vienna Ensemble Pro 5
Much like the Blue Cat MB7, the Vienna Ensemble Pro 5 (VEP5) offers a wealth of power, but not least the option to host AU and VST plug-ins within Pro Tools, even better you can host them remotely over an ethernet connection. Again the Vienna Ensemble Pro 5 got a lot of love from those itching to use their favourite plug-ins in Pro Tools. Watch our review of the Vienna Ensemble Pro 5 here.
Maag EQ4 Plug-in
If ever there was a plug-in that encapsulated audio quality then the Maag EQ4 is it. The Maag EQ4 effortlessly transforms the sound of any signal with its awesome sound. It is available in Native, AAX DSP and UAD powered platforms. Watch our review of the Maag EQ4 plug-in here.
Synchro Arts Revoice Pro 2
When it comes to getting sung or spoken vocals in time then Synchro Arts are the industry leaders. Synchro Arts Revoice Pro 2 is their flagship product, now offering Pro Tools users of all version the chance to take as many voices as they want and get them into time. Synchro Arts have worked hard on workflow in the latest AAX compatible Revoice Pro 2.2 with the ingenious Revoice Monitor plug-in, that now allows seamless intergration into any Pro Tools workflow, including HD systems. Watch our review of Synchro Arts Revoice Pro 2 here.
Sound Radix Auto Align
Phase issues can plague live recordings and Auto Align offers a simple and powerful solution in an almost plug and play format. Loved by top producers, Auto Align brings live recordings back to life in ways that not even EQ can fix. Our review of Sound Radix Auto Align is here.
AIR Instrument Expansion Pack 2.0
It took some time coming but Pro Tools users eventually got a refresh of the AIR instruments with updates to Strike, Structure, Hybrid, Velvet and Transfuser. As an added bonus users also got two new power synths in the form of Vacuum Pro and Loom. Our review of the AIR Instrument Expansion Pack 2.0 is here.
Waves J37 Tape Saturation Plug-in
In our recent round up of some of the top tape emulation plug-ins we couldn’t leave out the gorgeous Waves J37 Tape Saturation Plug-in. Modelled on a classic Abbey Road tape machine the Waves J37 offers gallons of vintage character with the marriage of the world’s top studio and plug-in manufacturer. Our review of the Waves J37 Tape Saturation Plug-in is here.
Native Instruments Scarbee Rickenbacker
When it comes to sampling then it takes a lot to beat Thomas Scarbee, a top musician, friend of music industry legends and perfectionist sampler, what do you expect? His Native Instruments Scarbee Rickenbacker was no exception and took Russ back to his 80s post punk days. Our review of Native Instruments Scarbee Rickenbacker is here.