Earlier this month Acon Digital released a cost effective surround and 3D capable version of their Verberate 2 algorithmic reverb plug-in which supports surround and immersive formats all the way up to 7.1.6 channels.
What Do Acon Digital Say About Verberate Immersive 2?
Just like the stereo version, Verberate Immersive 2 includes the new Acon Digital Vivid Hall algorithm, which adds time variance to avoid the stiffness that plagues convolution based reverbs while preserving the natural high density reverb tails. It’s an algorithm based on entirely new technology, designed for natural and pristine reverb tails without repeating patterns, resonances or other artefacts.
Verberate Immersive 2 offers complete and independent control over the panning of the dry sound, late reverberation and early reflections. The panners work in up to three dimensions and have adjustable divergence. The pan positions and divergences are visualised and adjusted in an intuitive way, thus simplifying automation of complex movements.
The decay editor makes it possible to sculpt the reverb tails by setting up frequency dependent reverb times. It offers bell as well as high and low cut and shelving filters similar to a parametric equalizer. The filter slopes can be adjusted continuously as with most Acon Digital plug-ins. The integrated input and output equalizers offer the same filter types and both the decay editor and the equalizers show accurate curves with interactive handles to modify the filter band settings.
The 15 early reflection patterns offered are also algorithmic, calculated in real time and applied using convolution. A dense and resonance free late reverb tail follows the early reflections, resulting in extremely convincing room simulations with impressive depth combined with the flexibility algorithmic reverbs are known for.
There is a large catalogue of factory presets that come with Verberate Immersive 2 and a graphical user interface designed to simplify the search for a specific reverb sound.
Stian Aagedal, CEO of Acon Digital told us…
"We have worked closely with professionals in film and TV post production during the development of Verberate Immersive 2. We wanted to develop a product that truly delivers, not only when it comes to audio quality, but also when it comes to workflow. We realise that sound editors are working under tight deadlines, so we wanted to develop a tool that delivers the best possible results quickly and intuitively.”
What Others Say About Verberate Immersive 2 From Acon Digital
What We Think About Verberate Immersive 2 From Acon Digital
Before we share what we think about Verberate Immersive 2 from Acon Digital, in this video, Mike takes a tour around the user interface before playing a couple of demos showing how it works. Please be aware that the examples in this demo video are downmixes of the 5.1 surround audio.
Its a personal preference but I prefer a dry-wet mix control rather than separate faders for Dry, Reverb and early reflections. What is more disappointing is the lack of a Link option to link the Early Reflections and Reverb level faders, which is strange when there there is a Link option to link the Dry and Reverb and link options for the panning between reverb and early reflections. Especially as there isn’t a dry-wet control, once I have the balance of early reflections to reverb set, I would like to be able to link the 2 faders so I can adjust them together. This is especially important when using the plug-in in-line, rather than as a send and return tool.
When it comes to the presets, there are some good space and rooms for audio post-production, but there weren’t many presets set in the middle of the room, which when doing music in-the-round would be very useful as the sound of the room and the way the reverb propagates, will be different when you are in the middle of the space than when you are at the front or back for that matter. The brief for the album I was using to demo Verberate Immersive 2 was to give the sense of the musicians being all around you rather than on the stage in front of you and so especially for immersive applications having algorithms that reflect (pun intended) where the source of the sound is in the space would be very useful. However, once I had spotted the Centre option in the early reflections menu included a centre option for the Hall modelling, I realised I could effectively create my own central room presets.
The metering is in ITU order, that is L, R, C, Lfe, Ls and Rs for a 5.1 configuration whereas the Pro Tools metering is in film order, L, C, R, Ls, Rs and Lfe. Once I had realised that I didn’t have a problem with one channel, it was OK but it is a little disconcerting when the metering is different between the DAW and the plug-in and so it would be nice to have the plug-in metering format available as an option in the plug-in preferences.
The Tool Tips are especially good and very descriptive which is really helpful when you are finding your way around the plug-in. They were so good I never needed to refer to the manual to use this plug-in.
I like the decay editor and that there are both input and output equalisers, especially as the sessions I used to try out Verberate Immersive 2 out had EQ plug-ins in the inserts before the reverb acting as input EQ filters.
But what does it sound like? my first impression was that it sounded a little muddy compared to the reverb plug-in it replaced in the session, but I was able to resolve that very quickly by adjusting the decay editor and the filters. One of the ways I evaluate a reverb plug-in to stop Pro Tools and then listen to how the reverb decays away and I have to say I liked what I heard.
Below are some examples in 5.1 surround which is what my studio is set up for. The first set are an excerpt from a surround recording I made of Grieg’s Morning. Listen to the Cor Anglais in the rear and the flute in the front. I have included a version with no reverb and then a series demoing some of the presets. In each case the audio stops to allow you to hear the reverb decay away. There is a stereo downmix that you can listen to on the page and to the right a button to download the 5.1 surround version…
The Spread control is one control I found very useful for both opening up the width of the reverb to enable the reverb to stand clear of the main audio but also on occasions narrowing the width to control the image width of the reverb, depending on the context. I was very pleased to learn that the The Vivid Hall algorithm allows stereo spread values above 100%. Apparently the Vivid Hall modelling uses M/S processing when the stereo spread is above 100% enabling the reverb to gradually decay more into the side channel with higher values, which can ensure mono compatibility whilst adding a touch of extra width. A nice touch and the MS feature ticks a huge box for me, not only because I am an MS fan but also it lends itself to much better mono compatibility, which for me is still a very important requirement.
The second set of examples are from a different session for the same album, but this time it is a piece called Dwelling written by Mark Warburton and used with his permission. This track has a piano keyboard and so the DI feed needed more help to sit it appropriately in the surround soundfield. Again there is a dry version and a series of different presets and in each case the audio stops so that you can hear the reverb decay away. There is a stereo downmix that you can listen to on the page and to the right a button to download the 5.1 surround version…
The panning and sizing window is simple and very effective and it’s good to see that the parameters are available to automate, enabling complex pan and size changes to be created, again very useful for audio post-production workflows.
Like many plug-ins from Acon Digital the price of their immersive reverb plug-in is set very competitively at $199, which is significantly cheaper than other surround and immersive audio plug-ins, especially when you consider that Verberate Immersive 2 supports immersive audio formats that include height channels all the way up to 7.1.6.
Supports Dolby Atmos formats.
Very helpful tool tips.
Powerful decay editor as well input and output filtering.
The price. It is significantly cheaper than other immersive audio reverb plug-ins making it excellent value for money.
No link option between Reverb and Early Reflections Levels
Plug-in Metering channel order different to Pro Tools.
Acon Digital Verberate Immersive 2 System Requirements, Price And Availability.
Verberate Immersive 2 is available for both Windows (PC) and macOS (Macintosh). Both 32 and 64 bit versions are available, supporting VST, VST3, AAX Native / AudioSuite and Audio Units (macOS only) plug-in formats.
PC Version (Windows)
Windows 7 / 8.x / 10
Intel Core i3 or AMD multi-core processor (Intel Core i5 or faster recommended)
1366 x 768 display resolution (1920 x 1080 or higher recommended)
1 GB RAM (4 GB or more recommended)
1 GB free HD space
VST2, VST3 or AAX native compatible host
Macintosh Version (OS X)
OS X 10.8 or later
1 GB RAM (4 GB or more recommended)
1 GB free HD space
VST2, VST3, AU or AAX native compatible host
You can buy it from the Acon Digital Store for $199.90 and owners of the stereo version can upgrade for $99.90.