With the big names such as iZotope, Waves, McDSP et al having such a huge share of the plug-in market, it must must be hard to try and get in with a new idea, let alone an entire range.
Some of you may not be aware of Plug & Mix, born out of the site Don’t Crack, their mission is to create high quality, affordable plug-ins. When we recently had news of their entry into the AAX format, we had to take a listen.
The range sports no fewer than 40 plug-ins, covering everything from top end rack emulations, vintage amps and Boss pedal emulations. Although right now 14 of them support the new AAX format.
I have to be honest, I’m always a little dubious about new plug-in brands, I have my trusty steeds and anything new doesn’t often get a look in. My approach to the Plug-in & Mix plug-ins was seasoned with a healthy dose of patronizing ‘good for them for having a go’ kind of an attitude, perhaps I’m unique? I don’t think so.
The guys at Plug & Mix sent me their VIP Bundle, consisting of the whole 40 plug-ins. Wow I thought, it’s hard enough to find the time to review one, but forty?
Installation and authorizing was a doddle and then it was time to spend 30 minutes reviewing 40 plug-ins. 4 hours later, I was still playing. I was trying them on guitars, basses, drums, mix busses, in fact I was trying them on everything. If I had started this review as a skeptic, I was now starting to believe in Plug & Mix.
I can’t go into detail about every plug-in, suffice to say you can download them yourself and try them out.
The highs for me were (of course) the sound, the almost zero latency they induce on tracks and the CPU load, which in most cases was tiny. The usual suspects were doing some CPU hogging, in the form of the guitar emulations, but I’m yet to find one that doesn’t hog the CPU.
The lows were just two minor things. Firstly the way the knobs seem to interact with the mouse requires some precision and so you often find yourself going to change a preset and finding the knob not moving on the first attempt. Secondly, I found the design of the GUIs a little amateur, this may just be down to taste, but I know some people would be put off by the book’s, or in this case, plug-ins cover. I know it doesn’t change the sound, but I’m not sure I want to look at an Amp Emulation with a huge Union Jack on the GUI, but as they say… one man’s meat.
In conclusion, 40 plug-ins for $299 sounds like a bargain, when they sound and work as well as these plug-ins do, it’s an absolute steal. Check them out and let me know if you find yourself as pleasantly surprised as I was.