Pro Tools 12.6 brought us Clip Effects. This long awaited feature brings a convenient solution to those wishing to apply clip by clip processing but at present this is limited to the features brought over from the Avid Channel Strip and full functionality is limited to HD users. I have long held the opinion that AudioSuite plug-ins are often overlooked and although much of their raison d’etre no longer exists, computers have been capable of real time processing for many, many years now, there is still a place for AudioSuite in modern workflows.
With that in mind, here are my 5 most used AudioSuite plug-ins, in no particular order they are:
Vari-Fi AudioSuite Plug-in
For such an obvious effect I’ve used this a lot. It’s one of those things which is far more useful that it at first appears. From constructing sub drops to comic narrator drop-ins it is an effect which isn’t easy to do in other ways. Samplers offer more control but with far more complexity. An oldie but a goodie.
Avid Pro Limiter Loudness Analyser AudioSuite Plug-in
This simple plug in would meet most of my loudness needs without the accompanying Pro Limiter. This plug in illustrates perfectly why AudioSuite is still relevant today. AudioSuite originally existed because real time processing was too fast for the host computer. This plug in exists because real time is too slow for the user. Being able to analyse offline and tweak limiter settings means you can get deliverables to spec much faster.
Avid Reverse AudioSuite Plug-in
In my teaching days I introduced Reverse first when covering AudioSuite. Apart from the inherent comedy value of some reversed sounds (comedy can be useful when teaching) the reverse plug in is the perfect illustration of the difference between realtime and offline processing. After all, how would a real time reverse plug in work?
iZotope RX Connect AudioSuite Plug-in
The original purpose of AudioSuite was to allow processing which was too intensive for the host computer to accomplish in real time. Some restoration processes are still best left in this offline workflow and while much of RX is available as real time processing, the clever RX Connect plug in allows the whole of standalone RX to round trip seamlessly with Pro Tools, thanks to AudioSuite.
Avid Invert AudioSuite Plug-in
There are some really unglamorous corners of the AudioSuite menu. For example DC Offset Removal is hardly a crowd pleaser but it has been a long standing grumble from users that there is no polarity invert button in the Pro Tools mixer. The typical workaround is to insert a trim plug in on the track and toggle it from there. I do this but when a phase issue has been identified it is usually going to stay inverted and rather than leave the plug in occupying an insert slot I’ll usually “bake in” the inversion using an AudioSuite render. Invert is particuarly suitable for this because it is a reversible process. If you want to undo just invert again.
With Clip Effects presumably being expanded to cover more processes and presumably getting opened up to third parties do you think AudioSuite has a future in Pro Tools?