Top 5 Audio Metering Plugins 2022 (LUFS, RMS, LRA, True Peak)

Top 5 Audio Metering Plugins 2021 (LUFS, RMS, LRA, True Peak) | integraudio.com

In this article, we review five of the best audio metering and analyzing plugins available today and list four excellent free ones.

In the present world of streaming and online broadcasting, mixing and mastering your audio to the standard maintained by specific platforms is essential for quality assurance. Metering plugins are the tools that help you ensure the specs of your music match the specified criteria.

What Do A Metering Plugins Do?

A metering plugin analyzes any audio you feed into it and provides various kinds of information about it. Streaming platforms use this information to assure consistency of their content. So, with a metering plugin, we can make sure our masters are compliant with our intended platform’s standard.

Let us have a look at some of the information provided by such plugins:

  • True Peak
    True Peak is the highest point an audio signal reaches on an analog system. In contrast, the regular peak meters we see in our DAWs calculate the same thing on a digital system. This is important because if your True Peak is higher than 0dB, it could cause clipping on analog amplifiers/players.
  • RMS (Root Mean Square) Level
    RMS is the average amplitude level over a certain period of time. Generally, this period of time is 300 milliseconds. However, some plugins let you adjust the time window as well.
  • LUFS (Loudness Units Full Scale)
    LUFS is the same as RMS, except this unit considers human ear perception. To simplify, our ears do not hear all the frequencies at the same level. So, for example, if you listened to a 60Hz sinewave and an 800Hz at 30dB amplitude, you would perceive the 60Hz sinewave as quieter than the 800Hz.
  • Stereo Width
    This analysis shows how wide the stereo field of your audio is. For example, audio with a thin line at the middle of such an analyzer is mono audio, whereas a moving, spaghetti-like visualization signifies stereo.
  • Ranges
    There are two kinds of ranges: Dynamic Range and Loudness Range. Both measure the range between the loudest and the quietest parts of your audio. However, Dynamic Range does so using peak metering (fast), while Loudness Range uses Loudness Unit (slow). Thus, dynamic Range is useful for measuring how compressed elements such as drums, vocals, etc., are in your song. And Loudness Range shows, as an example, how different the loudness of your verse and chorus section is.
  • Frequency Spectrum
    A frequency spectrum displays how loud each frequency is in your audio in real-time. You can analyze a reference song using a spectrum analyzer and EQ your song’s master until it somewhat matches your reference spectrum to get a similar sound. Another similar kind of analyzer is a sonograph/spectrograph. This analyzer displays the loudness of each frequency in a 2D or 3D graph over time.

What Do A Metering Plugins Do & Best Metering Plugins | integraudio.com

There are many kinds of metering plugins available nowadays — some focus on being easy to use, while others focus on being comprehensive enough to satisfy even the most seasoned experts. So, we have done the research for you and come up with a list of five truly note-worthy paid metering plugins in the market.

Top 5 Audio Metering Plugins 2022 (LUFS, RMS, LRA, True Peak)

1. Mastering The Mix LEVELS

More Info & Price (Trial Available)

As possibly the most straightforward-looking metering plugin available, Levels manages to become a welcome choice for both beginners and professionals alike.

The philosophy of Mastering The Mix Levels is simplicity. Instead of showing you everything it can on one page, it offers a certain kind of visualization per page. So, the information provided becomes easy to digest.

It has all the tools you could need to ensure your track fits the criteria of various music platforms such as Spotify, YouTube, or Apple Music. As we can see in the picture below, there are six kinds of meters in this plugin.

Mastering The Mix LEVELS Review - Top 5 Audio Metering Plugins (LUFS, RMS, LRA, True Peak) | Integraudio.com

A few of the pages have filters inside them to help you dissect your audio material even further. We also liked the main input filter at the top of the plugin. It can turn the sound mono or playback only the Mid/Side or just the Left/Right channel. This feature is beneficial for ensuring your track doesn’t have any phasing issues.

More experienced producers will be happy to know that the settings page lets you adjust the meter warning thresholds and the activation status of True Peak metering. Similarly, Mastering The Mix has provided various presets for beginners that help master your song to a specific platform’s standard.

Next, let’s have a look at each of the pages in the plugin:

“Peak” – Standard Peak Meter:

The Peak page shows the True Peak by default. You can also deactivate it by toggling it off on the settings page.

Mastering The Mix LEVELS Review - Top 5 Audio Metering Plugins (LUFS, RMS, LRA, True Peak) | Integraudio.com

“LUFS” – LUFS Metering:

This page shows the LUFS short-term and the LUFS integrated. Clicking on the numeral values initiates them. We would have loved to see an optional LUFS momentary as well. However, it isn’t available.

Mastering The Mix LEVELS Review - Top 5 Audio Metering Plugins (LUFS, RMS, LRA, True Peak) | Integraudio.com

Bass Space” – Low-End Analyzer:

The Bass Space page is interesting. You can analyze the bass content of your track using this metering. It asks you to mute the bass drum and the bass to see how bassy the rest of the instruments are together. This implies you should use Levels on the master channel of your mixing project. Theoretically, it should help you keep the bass tight and clash-free.

Mastering The Mix LEVELS Review - Top 5 Audio Metering Plugins (LUFS, RMS, LRA, True Peak) | Integraudio.com

Dynamic Range” – Oscilloscope:

This page shows the relation between the loudest part of your music and the quietest. The lesser the number, the more your music sounds squashed and compressed. So, you can set a certain threshold (manually or with a preset) to warn you when the range goes lower than the set value.

Mastering The Mix LEVELS Review - Top 5 Audio Metering Plugins (LUFS, RMS, LRA, True Peak) | Integraudio.com

Stereo Field” – Width Visualizer:

This page shows how wide or mono your music is. An optional filter lets you analyze only a specific range of frequencies.

Mastering The Mix LEVELS Review - Top 5 Audio Metering Plugins (LUFS, RMS, LRA, True Peak) | Integraudio.com

“LRA” – Loudness Range:

Sometimes confused with dynamic range, the loudness range also analyzes the relation between the loudest and the quietest parts of your song. However, this is done over a longer time scale using the Loudness Unit (LU). As with dynamic range, a higher value is desirable.

Mastering The Mix LEVELS Review - Top 5 Audio Metering Plugins (LUFS, RMS, LRA, True Peak) | Integraudio.com

 

Key Features:

  • Comprehensive Metering
    With six kinds of metering, Levels is comprehensive for most use cases. However, it does lack a few basic features like a frequency spectrum or a LUFS-M meter. Despite the shortcomings, however, the straightforward nature of the plugin is a significant factor to consider for people who prefer simplistic workflow.
  • Easy-to-use GUI
    For the most part, Levels has almost no learning curve. Each plugin page is quite self-explanatory, and it also has an optional tooltip feature that gives you some helpful information for the first few times of using the plugin. However, on the side now, You cannot resize the GUI of this plugin.
  • Helpful Presets
    The presets available in the plugin are intended for commercial release. So, if you are looking to get your next song ready for Spotify, then this plugin is useful.
Mastering With LEVELS

Compatibility:

This plugin is available for Windows 7 or higher and macOS 10.10 or higher, both 64-bit only. It comes in VST 2/3 and AAX formats.

Summary:

As much as we love the plugin’s simplicity, we must say the lack of resizable GUI and certain meters does drag its value down somewhat. However, if you are a beginner and enjoy having presets, helpful tooltips, and a simple UI, we would highly recommend it.


Download our free Delay plugin:

Deelay by Integraudio & Sixth Sample – Free Delay VST/AU Plugin

2. BUTE Loudness Analyser 2 Stereo

More Info & Price (Trial Available)

The BUTE Loudness Analyser 2 displays comprehensive loudness readings on both meters and a graph in a sleek, modern user interface.

Along with the graph and meters display, this plugin also has a compact mode where you still get a comprehensive numeral reading, making it highly screen space and CPU-saving. In addition, the graph keeps logs of your entire timeline. So, you can quickly go back to the middle of your song and have it reread the loudness.

This feature gives you accurate LUFS-Integrated and Loudness Range of the entire song without redoing the whole project.

You can set the meters to read either LUFS or True Peak. And it can also display absolute scale readings as well. The graph shows True Peak, LUFS-S, LUFS-M, and RMS. Each can be enabled or disabled as required.

BUTE Loudness Analyser 2 Stereo Review - Top 5 Audio Metering Plugins (LUFS, RMS, LRA, True Peak) | Integraudio.com

Key Features:

  • Complete Loudness Metering
    From True Peak and adjustable RMS to every kind of LUFS metering needed, the BUTE Loudness Analyser 2 offers a truly extensive loudness measurement solution. Similarly, the history logging feature only adds even more value to this plugin.
  • Flexible GUI
    Along with its fully resizable GUI and compact mode, you can zoom freely over the graph view to get as precise as you need. For example, by zooming out completely, you can see which area could be significantly louder or quieter. And, since the playback cursor inside the plugins and your DAW are synced, finding the problematic area becomes even easier. Another thing worth noting is that it displays all the numeral readings where your mouse cursor is placed over the graph.
  • Stereo and Surround Support
    The BUTE also has a version supporting up to Dolby Atmos 7.1.2 surround sound for sound designers and mixing engineers working on games or films.
  • Presets
    In a metering plugin, presets are used to ensure that your audio specs match the standards of a specific platform. The presets included in this plugin are primarily geared towards broadcasting and film/game audio for balancing dialogs, SFX, and score. There are only a couple of presets specifically for streaming platforms. However, you do get three empty “User” slots for creating your own presets too.
Mastering for Streaming | BUTE Loudness Suite 2 by Signum Audio

Compatibility:

The plugin is available for Windows 7 or higher and macOS 10.9 or higher. It comes in VST 2/3, AU, AAX, and RTAS formats.

Summary:

The GUI of this plugin is one of the best we’ve seen around. It focuses entirely on loudness analysis and nothing else. It may be relatively on the pricier side, but Signum Audio offers a 50% discount for students. However, if you are looking for an overall metering plugin with stereo imaging, loudness metering, and frequency spectrum analysis, this may not be the plugin for you.

3. IK Multimedia T-Racks 5 Metering

More Info & Price (Trial Available)

Originally included with their T-Racks processing rack exclusively, Metering is IK Multimedia’s one-stop solution for complete audio analysis.

This suite of audio metering tools has two loudness measurement sections, a stereo imaging section, a frequency spectrum, and a spectrogram, making it one of the most valued plugins on our list. Each section is resizable and has settings to fit your needs better. The sections aren’t detachable or removable, though, which would be our biggest wish for a future update.

The loudness metering section on the left has LUFS integrated, short-term, and momentary metering along with RMS, Peak, and Dynamic Range metering. You can set any of the LUFS units to display in the meter or numerically. Similarly, you can also set the peak meter to use True Peak. The RMS window size cannot be changed, however.

The frequency spectrum has settings to change the filter resolution, channel mode, range, and release value. The spectrogram also has a similar set of settings.

IKMultimedia T-Racks 5 Full Metering Review - Top 5 Audio Metering Plugins (LUFS, RMS, LRA, True Peak) | Integraudio.com

Key Features:

  • Comprehensive Metering
    There is almost nothing you couldn’t analyze with this plugin. From loudness analysis to frequency and stereo width analysis, the T-Racks Metering is a complete suite of tools you would need to get broadcast-quality audio out of your masters.
  • Excellent GUI
    The user interface of this plugin is fully resizable, and you can also resize each section inside the plugin to an extent. The stereo imaging section also has multiple display styles to suit your taste. Similarly, the frequency spectrum supports displaying peak values for the selected length of time.
  • Presets
    The loudness metering section has many presets designed to assist in mastering music targeting a particular genre or streaming platform. This could be of significant value to a beginner or an intermediate music producer.
  • T-Racks Standalone Support
    If you prefer to master your tracks exclusively using IK Multimedia plugins, you can use Metering inside the T-Racks 5 standalone experience as well.
T-RackS 5 Metering In-Depth

Compatibility:

T-Racks Metering is available for Windows 7 or higher and macOS 10.9 or higher, both 64-bits. It comes in VST 2/3, AU, and AAX formats.

Summary:

With so many tools and options available, you couldn’t possibly go wrong with this plugin. It would have been even better if it supported surround audio as well, though. However, if you only master stereo songs, we highly recommend you give this one an honest try.

4. iZotope Insight 2

More Info & Price (Trial Available)

A highly regarded brand among post-production engineers, iZotope’s Insight 2 provides complete audio analysis, flexible GUI, and more.

Whether you are a music producer mastering a new song for Spotify or an engineer working on a blockbuster film, Insight has you covered. Its interface has “modules,” each with a specific kind of metering. So, you could have only the Loudness module and the Sound Field module on your plugin page, or you could even view just one of the modules on full screen.

For measuring the loudness of your audio, you have the Loudness module and the Levels module. They have LUFS short-term, integrated, and momentary, Loudness Range, True Peak, Peak, and RMS metering.

There is a stereo width measurement module called Sound Field, which has adjustments to match your needs. And as for frequency analysis, you have a Spectrum and a Spectrogram module. The Spectrogram module in this plugin can display both traditional 2D spectrograph and 3D waterfall view. Both the modules have settings to customize them, zooming and pausing features.

For post-production engineers/sound designers, iZotope has an Intelligibility module, which measures the clarity of your dialogs from the rest of your mix. It even has listening environment emulations to ensure your audio is intelligible for every audience.

iZotope Insight 2 Review - Top 5 Audio Metering Plugins (LUFS, RMS, LRA, True Peak) | Integraudio.com

Key Features:

  • Comprehensive Metering
    iZotope Insight 2 is one of the fully complete suites of metering plugins you could find. It has been used for mastering music and podcasts for streaming platforms to mixing audio for theaters and broadcast.
  • Customizable GUI
    The user interface of Insight is nothing short of awe-inspiring. The plugin itself is fully resizable. Furthermore, each module can be enabled or disabled, expanded to full screen, and resized inside the plugin. Various settings per module can also help you customize the displays to your liking.
  • Inter-Plugin Communication
    iZotope’s interconnected plugin ecosystem allows Insight to connect with their utility plugin Relay to help you analyze your audio even further. The Intelligibility module uses this feature. Relay also has basic features such as a high pass filter, gain, pad, etc.
  • Presets
    The Loudness module has many presets for targeting various broadcasting standards and streaming platforms.
  • Surround Support
    This plugin also supports Dolby Atmos 7.1.2 surround sound. So, it is an excellent option for mixing game and film audio.
How to Use iZotope Insight 2 for Post Production | iZotope Tutorial

Compatibility:

Insight 2 is available for Windows 7 or higher and macOS 10.11.6 or higher. It comes in VST 2/3, AU, AAX (64-bit), RTAS (32-bit) formats.

Summary:

Insight 2 is an indispensable tool for anyone who requires high flexibility and advanced analysis. However, the price is difficult to justify for an average hobbyist. Nevertheless, we would recommend giving it a try and seeing if it is worth the high cost for your workflow.

5. Waves WLM Plus Loudness Meter

More Info & Price (Trial Available)

Hailing from one of the long-standing names in plugin development, WLM Plus is an analyzer plugin focused on loudness measurement.

The Waves WLM Plus has all three kinds of LUFS, True Peak, and Loudness Range metering. What it does differently is that along with the True Peak readouts, it also has a True Peak limiter built into the plugin. So, matching your master’s loudness to a standard won’t even require you to switch between two plugins.

There is both gain and input trim to help you with the mastering process.

We also liked its warning and logging system, which records any clippings or under-threshold readings in your audio. However, since it doesn’t have a graphical view, there is no way to tell where the issue occurred.

Waves WLM Plus Loudness Meter Review - Top 5 Audio Metering Plugins (LUFS, RMS, LRA, True Peak) | Integraudio.com

Key Features:

  • Input Filters
    There is an input low-pass and a high-pass filter for analyzing a set range of frequencies. Similarly, you can also choose to measure a specific channel of your audio.
  • Limiter
    Waves offer an in-built true peak limiter to help you with your mastering process. However, this may or may not be valuable as you could already have a favorite limiter for mastering. However, for mixing dialogs and so on, where you don’t typically introduce a huge amount of limiting, this may come in handy.
  • Presets
    The plugin has many presets for platforms like YouTube, Spotify, etc. The warning feature works great for making sure your audio is proper.
  • Surround Support
    The WLM Plus supports mono, stereo, 5.0, and 5.1 surround sound. So if you often find yourself working on low-budget indie projects, this could be of use.
How to Set Streaming Loudness Levels for Your Masters

Compatibility:

This plugin is available for Windows 10 64-bit and macOS 10.13.6 or higher. It comes in VST 2/3, AU, AAX, and RTAS formats.

Note that certain DAWs do not work with WLM Plus’ surround features, despite having surround support. So, make sure you check before you purchase.

Summary:

The WLM Plus is an excellent loudness metering plugin with an integrated limiter. With Waves Shell v12, you can have a resizable GUI as well. However, the price of this plugin without a sale is outrageous. With sales happening at Waves almost every day, though, the discounted price is undoubtedly worth the features.

The 4 Best FREE Audio Metering Plugins 2022

1. YOULEAN LOUDNESS METER 2

More Info & Download

With such an excellent interface and detailed metering, it is a wonder how the Youlean Loudness Meter 2 is a free plugin.

This plugin is a complete loudness metering tool. It has all three kinds of LUFS (and Max values), various loudness ranges, and True Peak measurement. With the zoomable graph view, you can analyze precise details of your audio.

The plugin also keeps logs of the generated graph, so you can go back in your project’s timeline and overdub the graph view to see the updated levels.

YOULEAN LOUDNESS METER 2 Review - The 4 Best FREE Audio Metering Plugins (LUFS, RMS, LRA, True Peak) | Integraudio.com

Key Features:

  • Modern GUI
    The GUI of Youlean Loudness Meter 2 is highly commendable. It is fully resizable and scalable. And if you don’t like having the graph view taking up your space, you can switch to a “mini-view” mode, which removes the graph. In addition, there are two skins available for the plugin: light and dark.
  • Comprehensive Loudness Metering
    You couldn’t possibly find a better loudness meter for free. Many people agree that it is even better than some of the paid ones available, as it has LUFS-S/I/M, Dynamic Range, Loudness Range, and Peak Loudness Ratio measurements.
  • Surround Support
    It supports mono, stereo, and 5.1 surround audio as well, making it an excellent choice for engineers working on film/games.
  • Presets
    It has several presets for major streaming platforms, broadcast standards, etc. You could even make your own presets for quick reference. The graph view makes it easy to discover any issues in your audio.
I Use This Plugin On Every Mix and Master - Youlean Loudness Meter 2 Pro

Compatibility:

The Youlean Loudness Meter 2 is available for Windows 7 or higher 32-bit or 64-bit and macOS 10.9 or higher 64-bit. It comes in VST 2/3, AU, and AAX formats.

Summary:

We would say that this plugin deserves a spot in your plugin library at all times. The incredible amount of features and convenience it offers for free is nothing short of amazing. And if you need even more features, consider purchasing the Pro version.

2. Voxengo SPAN

More Info & Download

Voxengo SPAN is probably the most famous spectrum analyzer plugin available today.

SPAN offers detailed frequency analysis, stereo correlation, adjustable LUFS/K, RMS, and True Peak metering in a gorgeous user interface. Also, you can customize the frequency spectrum to different FFT resolutions and window times.

You can also have a secondary analyzer display real-time maximum or all-time maximum values. Both the primary and secondary analyzer can be smoothed out for easier viewing as well. SPAN also supports multiple channels, so you could have various spectrums overlayed on top of each other, separated by color themes.

 Voxengo SPAN Review - The 4 Best FREE Audio Metering Plugins (LUFS, RMS, LRA, True Peak) | Integraudio.com

Key Features:

  • Excellent GUI
    SPAN has multiple color themes and a fully resizable GUI. It also has an option to disable the meters and statistics. The spectrum can be zoomed in and out using the scroll bar edges.
  • Customizable
    The spectrum can be set to have a certain FFT size, slope, and time. You could even change the color of the spectrum to your taste. “Modes” let you use preset settings for various uses such as mastering.
  • Multi-Channel
    With multiple channel support, you could create a send from various tracks and analyze each track with a new spectrum, all in one plugin instance. This is brilliant for checking if certain instruments are clashing with others. Similarly, you could also use it for surround sound channels in a single track.
  • Mid/Side Analysis
    You can have the spectrum only to analyze the mid or side channel. This is handy for analyzing which frequencies of your audio could use a boost in stereo width and vice versa.
MIXING HACK | How to Improve Your Mix Visually with Voxengo SPAN

Compatibility:

SPAN is available for Windows XP and higher and macOS 10.11 and higher. It comes in VST 2/3, AU, and AAX formats.

Summary:

You will find SPAN to be an essential plugin once you start discovering its capabilities. Other than frequency analysis, you could use its correlation meter to see if your track has any phasing issues as well. The other statistics it offers are further icing on the cake.

 

3. TBProAudio dpMeter5

More Info & Download

The dpMeter 5 is an astonishingly capable loudness metering tool, particularly geared towards film/game audio.

What keeps dpMeter 5 different from the rest of the flock is its fully customizable RMS analyzer, LUFS-I/M/S, and Dolby Dialog Gated LUFS measurement. Dialog Gating uses code from Dolby itself to only analyze the loudness of the audio when dialogs are present. This ensures the consistency of volume based on dialog levels.

For music producers, dpMeter 5 also offers excellent features. No other loudness measurement plugin provides as comprehensive an RMS reading as this one does. So, if you are used to the classic, you needn’t give it up.

Another thing worth considering is that it has an input gain. So, you could adjust the gain until it matches your reference level without ever leaving the plugin.

TBProAudio dpMeter5 Review - The 4 Best FREE Audio Metering Plugins (LUFS, RMS, LRA, True Peak) | Integraudio.com

Key Features:

  • Comprehensive Loudness Metering
    The dpMeter 5 offers in-depth metering for both LUFS and RMS, with several weighting filters. Its measurement also stays in sync with your DAW’s playback, so the LUFS Integrated readout updates accordingly.
  • Convenient GUI
    The look of the user interface is simplistic, and it is also fully resizable. There aren’t any deep-dive menus to discover in this plugin, so it should pose no difficulty in getting up to speed.
  • Automation Out
    It can write automation for LUFS and RMS readings straight into your DAW. By flipping this automation, you would have an efficient gain rider for free.
  • Presets
    The plugin has several presets for various streaming platforms and broadcast standards. And with its built-in gain, you could easily match your audio to the reference.
dpMeter5 walk through

Compatibility:

TBProAudio dpMeter 5 is available for Windows  7 or higher 32-bit or 64-bit and macOS 10.11 or higher 64-bit. It comes in VST 2/3, AU, and AAX formats.

Summary:

For a free plugin, it does offer quite a lot of features. It could be of particular interest as a gain-rider or for analyzing film/game audio. And if you enjoy having comprehensive RMS reading, all the more reason to give it a try.

4. iZotope Imager 2 (Stereo Width Analysis)

More Info & Download

One of the most sought-after free plugins on the internet, iZotope Imager 2, is both a stereo width analyzer and a stereo enhancement plugin.

The analyzer section of this plugin is essentially the Sound Field module of the iZotope Insight 2 plugin. There are three kinds of analyzing views.

The two faders on the right side are the enhancers. The Width fader controls how wide your audio is, where 50% is the dry input. And similarly, the Stereoize fader controls how deep your enhancement effect is by introducing latency between your audio’s left and right channels.

iZotope Imager 2 (Stereo Width Analysis) Review - The 4 Best FREE Audio Metering Plugins (LUFS, RMS, LRA, True Peak) | Integraudio.com

Key Features:

  • Simple GUI
    The user interface of this plugin is fully resizable. And the multiple modes for imaging analysis make it handy regardless of which kind of imaging you’re used to previously.
  • Stereo Enhancement
    There are two stereo enhancement modes in this plugin. Stereorize I adds a phasing effect to your audio, whereas Stereorize II mode adds only subtle enhancements. They help make a mono sound seem wider and fatter.
iZotope Ozone Imager 2 Demo

Compatibility:

This plugin is available for Windows 7 or higher and macOS 10.11.6 or higher, both at 64-bit only. It comes in VST 2/3, AU, and AAX formats.

Summary:

Often, your tracks seem dull and congested. Imager 2 can help you adjust the stereo width of individual tracks to create a balanced stereo space. You could also use it for getting fatter-sounding synth pads or leads. However, you will need to make a free iZotope account and install the Product Portal software to get this plugin.

If you are okay with the extra install, we highly recommend giving this plugin a try.

Conclusion

Even with the best studio monitors or headphones, you would still need audio analyzing plugins to ensure your audio is problem-free. These plugins also help you predict how various streaming platforms analyze their content. So, you can prepare for any potential change they may make to your audio.

And with free plugins offering almost as much functionality as paid ones nowadays, truly anyone could get broadcast-ready masters. We hope this article has helped you decide which one you are going to get for your studio.

In this roundup, we review six of the best exciter plugins available today and also talk about three free ones.

Interestingly enough, the exciter plugin was first discovered by an honest accident. The pro-audio manufacturer Aphex discovered that playing back an audio clip with a thin, distorted signal of itself gave it clarity. This opened the doors for many enhancers, exciters, vitalizers, etc., to be created.

What Is An Exciter Plugin?

An exciter plugin is an effect plugin that adds harmonic distortion to a targeted frequency range to add more spectral content to the audio. The most common exciter plugins are the high-frequency exciters, which add harmonics at frequencies generally higher than 3kHz.

Exciters have been used to lend clarity to audio by using calculated distortion to generate high-frequency harmonics. Similarly, there are also exciters made for adding low-frequency harmonics to make the audio sound fuller.

Some modern exciters have been built to intelligently generate harmonics based on the target frequencies you select for analysis. So, if you used such an exciter on the vocals to generate high frequencies and set the analyzer to focus on middle frequencies, the exciter will ignore sibilance. Instead, it will focus on enhancing clarity for the main body of the vocals.

What’s The Difference Between Exciter & Saturation Plugin?

The biggest difference is that the exciter plugin targets a specific frequency range, whereas a saturator most often affects the entire frequency spectrum as a whole. However, this isn’t quite the end of the difference, especially with modern plugins.

Nowadays, many saturation plugins will have some sort of emulation going on — some emulate the character of a certain mix console, while some emulate vintage EQs. This means that you might even find a saturator that sounds more like a high-frequency exciter than a general saturation plugin.

Nevertheless, it is enough to understand that while the fundamental function of both exciters and saturators is the same, the difference lies in what frequency range they primarily affect.

The 7 Best Exciter Plugins 2022 For Mixing & Mastering

1. Waves Aphex Aural Exciter

More Info & Price (Trial Available)

As the name suggests, Waves Aphex Aural Exciter is modeled after the very first design by Aphex themselves, renowned for its use on many classic hits.

This exciter adds clarity and sparkle to any audio you feed into it. The plugin also adds some character to your audio as the original hardware used to. We enjoy the sound of it on vocals and strings in particular.

Turning up the Input adds more drive and character to the sound, and the AX Mix essentially mixes the distorted sound to your audio. However, too much of anything is a bad thing, and this exciter is no different. Adding only a touch of excitement using this plugin and boosting the air with a conventional EQ adds a pleasant sheen to the audio without it sounding tiring.

Waves Aphex Aural Exciter Review - Top 7 Exciter Plugins & 3 Best Free Exciters (For Mixing & Mastering) | Integraudio.com

Key Features:

  • Mix Modes
    This model is based on a tube-based exciter, which means the sound of the same unit used as a send and as an insert differs in character. Waves have emulated each usage method and provided multiple mix modes to get the characterful sounds in a convenient insert workflow.
  • Ax Mode
    In the Auxiliary Mode, the Ax Mix knob is disabled. Instead, you use the plugin on a send track and adjust the input and output level on the plugin, which gives out a less colored signal relatively. This mode also adds a high-pass filter of around 800Hz to avoid muddying the sound.
  • Convenient Interface
    The GUI of this plugin in the Waveshell v12 is resizable. The VU meters at the top can be customized to display input, output, and auxiliary readings, and they can also be calibrated as required.

Character & Sound:

Waves have taken the extra step to ensure full flexibility in capturing this vintage hardware’s character. For example, each of the two Mix modes has a distinct style. While the Mix 1 mode is somewhat clean, the Mix 2 mode changes based on the amount of Ax Mix. At first, the effect remains quite subtle; halfway up, you will notice some phasing occurring at the mid-high frequencies. And turning the mix up even more results in a huge treble boost.

Similarly, an optional noise section is dedicated to giving a hum based on the A/C power hertz (50 or 60Hz).

Make Mixes Brighter, not Harsher: Aphex Exciter Tutorial

Compatibility:

This plugin is available for Windows 10 64-bit and macOS 10.13.6 or higher 64-bit. It comes in VST 2/3, AU, AAX, and RTAS formats.

Summary:

If you enjoy the sound of vintage sounds of popular artists like Linda Ronstadt and James Taylor, you will find this plugin highly satisfying to use. The amount of detailed work in capturing the true sound of the hardware is exceptional.

2. PROCESS.AUDIO Sugar (Multiband Exciter)

More Info & Price (Trial Available)

Prioritizing ease of use, Sugar is a universal answer for almost any kind of enhancement needs you might face.

Behind its simple UI, some complex coding is happening to ensure each band of frequencies stays predictable and musical. The buttons under each band let you select either of the two exciter algorithms designed for said band.

You can adjust the amount of excitement by simply grabbing the handles in the band view at the top or using the “wet inject” knob to increase excitement on all bands at once. There are also input filters to help rein in stray frequencies.

Its usage could vary from adding some clarity to vocals, strings, and synth pads to adding bite to drums and guitars. Or perhaps even adding some low-end depth to a bass track. Experimenting with the plugin is highly recommended and delivers quick, gratifying results.

PROCESS.AUDIO - Sugar Review - Top 7 Exciter Plugins & 3 Best Free Exciters (For Mixing & Mastering) | Integraudio.com

Key Features:

  • Multiple Algorithms
    Each band has two kinds of excitement algorithms, which give a particular trait to the enhancement appropriate for the band. This simplifies the process of excitement to the point of literally pushing a button and moving a slider.
  • Linear Phase Filters
    The band crossover filters and the input low-pass/high-pass filters are all linear-phase. So, you needn’t worry about phase issues occurring because of any of the filters. Although, if you prefer the sound of a minimum phase filter, this could be a downside.
  • Mid/Side Mode
    Sugar can work parallelly in mid/side mode, so you can adjust how much excitement it adds with even more detail. This feature is convenient for stereo depth enhancements.
  • Saturation
    There is a master saturation section, which can add three kinds of saturation to your audio. If you enjoy smooth, analog warmth, try adding just the slightest bit of Drive to your vocals or instruments

Character & Sound:

The inclusion of multiple algorithms per band is very thoughtful. For example, if you select the Thick algorithm for the Low band, you will hear enhanced low end without any regard for quick transients (of bass drums, for instance). In contrast, the Punch algorithm does exactly what it says — it adds punch to the low end depending on the transients. And the frequencies it focuses on are somewhat higher than the Thick algorithm.

Due to the linear phase filters and the deliberate design to remain neutral, there isn’t any coloration going on at the fundamental level. Manual adjustments deliver all colorful saturation and character.

Using Sugar To Mix Vocals | Mix Vocals Like Pros

Compatibility:

Sugar is available for Windows 7 or higher and macOS 10.9 or higher, both 64-bit. It comes in VST 2/3, AU, and AAX formats.

Summary:

If you are after a convenient, all-in-one sound enhancement plugin, Sugar is a great choice to consider. However, the CPU usage of this plugin is fairly high, so you may be limited to using this plugin only on busses or full mixes.

3. Noveltech Vocal Enhancer

More Info & Price

Focused on bringing out vocal presence and clarity, Vocal Enhancer uses adaptive excitement to help your recordings cut through the mix.

This plugin features a convenient interface with a frequency spectrum display between 1kHz and 20kHz. You can easily set the high-pass and low-pass filters to target a specific range of frequencies on this display.

Below the display is the filter section, where you can see what frequencies you have selected and adjust the Q-factor of the filters. On the left is a Focus Frequency knob that adjusts where you want the exciter to focus within the selected range of frequencies. Keeping an eye on the spectrum is helpful while adjusting this parameter.

The plugin is highly efficient — you could easily bring up a voice’s breathiness or just add some shine to the body by adjusting the frequencies affected. You could certainly also experiment with this plugin on synth, drums, and other instruments.

Noveltech Vocal Enhancer

Key Features:

  • Adjustable Band
    The frequencies this plugin modifies can be adjusted extensively using the filters, the Q-factor, and the slope steepness. This feature lets you focus on what element of the vocals you want to emphasize.
  • Silky Smooth Sound
    This exciter never makes the vocals sound over-the-top or brittle. The airy boosts remain smooth and pleasing thanks to the adaptive processing.

Character & Sound:

Noveltech Vocal Enhancer “listens” to your audio and generates harmonics based on it. This results in a natural-sounding enhancement without introducing unwanted distortion. We found that it performs well to improve the presence of the vocals’ body without boosting sibilance excessively.

Noveltech Vocal Enhancer - Introduction and Overview

Compatibility:

This plugin is available for Windows 7 or higher and macOS 10.9 or higher, both 32-bit and 64-bit. It comes in VST 2/3, AU, AAX, and RTAS formats.

Summary:

Among the many exciters available nowadays, Noveltech Vocal Enhancer is one of the winners for sure. We found that it works particularly well on the female voice. That’s not to say that it doesn’t work for male vocals. Truth be told, it works excellently on just about any mid-range instrument or recording. Try out the demo and find out for yourself.

4. SPL Vitalizer MK2-T

More Info & Price (Trial Available)

Vitalizer is an enhancing plugin with a patented filter network that can bring up clarity and focus in individual stems and even in busy mixes. 

This plugin is far more than a simple exciter. Plugin Alliance modeled this plugin on the hardware bearing the same name. The concept is that by creating a set of filters based on research findings on people’s hearing perception, you can create highly effective and musical results.

It has another feature called “unmasking,” which uses both loudness and length of sound to enhance the perceptive loudness of desired frequencies. The result, combined with its stereo widening circuit, is a truly effective sound-enhancing plugin.

We recommend using this plugin on vocals and individual instruments. Tightening up or enhancing the bass, widening and adding clarity to synth, etc., are just a couple of its many uses. And while it can be applied on busses, building up its effect per track results in a truly pristine mix with barely any EQing.

SPL Vitalizer MK2-T Review - Top 7 Exciter Plugins & 3 Best Free Exciters (For Mixing & Mastering) | Integraudio.com

Key Features:

  • Innovative Filters
    There are two high-frequency enhancement parameters on this plugin: the Mid-Hi Tune and the LC-EQ. The Mid-Hi Tune enhances the high frequencies and attenuates the frequencies below the set value. The LC EQ is a passive coil EQ that enhances over a broad high shelf. What’s special about a passive coil filter is that it can enhance the high frequencies without making it sound sharp.
  • Bass Enhancer
    On the left are two parameters named Bass and Compression. The Bass knob sits in the middle by default, and by simply turning it to the left, it becomes more rounded and loud. Similarly, turning it to the right makes the bass sound tighter. This simplicity is a huge time-saver.
  • Stereo Widener
    The Stereo Expander parameter utilizes a mid/side stereo widener. This means you will need stereo audio in the first place to hear any enhancements. However, it is certainly convenient to have that feature readily available.

Character & Sound:

The character and sound of this plugin are that of the original hardware, which has been tried and tested to give unmistakably outstanding results. Enhancing the bass using this plugin instantly lets you control its style without ever touching a transient processor. Similarly, the LC EQ never lets the high frequencies become overly sharp and annoying. This is one of the few plugins that are really difficult to make sound bad.

A fact worth noting is that this plugin is based on tube components. So, it does add some warm, analog sound using the filter shapes and by itself too.

SPL Vitalizer MK2-T Plugin - Enhancing Bass and Highs on EDM

Compatibility:

The plugin is available for Windows 7 or higher 64-bit and macOS 10.9 or higher 64-bit. It comes in VST 2/3, AU, and AAX formats.

Summary:

If you are looking for an all-in-one sound enhancement plugin that actually works, you should give this plugin a try. While it may look simple, the features it offers for controlling both bass and treble are astounding. Interestingly, it tends to affect the entire frequency spectrum to give a highly desirable sound right off the bat.

5. Drumforge DF-Xcite

More Info & Price

Focused on being a drum shaping exciter, the DF-Xcite provides control over the tonality of your drums with convenient preset multiband saturation.

When you need to add some power, bite, and presence to your drum sounds, some saturation targeted to a range of frequencies goes a long way. However, for the beginner, the question is which frequencies to target.

Drumforge provides an easy solution to that question. The Mode dropdown menu at the middle of the plugin lets you select various kinds of presets such as EDM Kick, Rock Kick, EDM Snare/Clap, etc., to aid you in shaping the sound. What it does essentially is that it changes the band crossover frequencies, and it does help.

The sound of this plugin can go from nice and subtle to heavy distortion quite easily. So, for the experimenting producer, it should give plenty of playing field.

Drumforge DF-Xcite Review - Top 7 Exciter Plugins & 3 Best Free Exciters (For Mixing & Mastering) | Integraudio.com

Key Features:

  • Multiple Excitement Types
    Each band has three types of saturation: American, Vintage, and Extreme. The American mode sounds more like a modern saturation, while Vintage focuses on sounding warm. The Extreme one is heavy saturation, which is handy for bringing out biting tones.
  • Helpful Modes
    The presets for changing the band frequencies are excellent for saving time. We also found that going for a non-conventional mode for experimental purposes delivers surprisingly interesting results.
  • Convenient Interface
    This plugin has to be one of the most straightforward multiband exciter available. But, it stays true to what it’s meant to do and offers only the fundamental controls to getting a great sound. So, there is no endless fiddling with parameters with DF-Xcite.

Character & Sound:

This plugin is certainly helpful for bringing up life in your drum sounds when they sound dull. The three saturation modes per band can also help your drums have varying characters. For example, you could use the Extreme mode on EDM toms’ low to mid frequencies to give them a lot of bite.

And you could mix in analog-sounding treble sheen to it. So, the sound you could get out of this plugin is quite varying and a lot of fun to experiment with.

Review Of DF XCITE By Drumforge

Compatibility:

DF-Xcite is available for Windows and macOS 32-bit and 64-bit. It comes in VST 2/3, AU, AAX, and 32-bit RTAS formats.

Summary:

This is a handy tool to shape your drums and add clarity and presence without spending a lot of time dialing in the right settings. And if you need to get rid of any aliasing, there is also an HQ mode that introduces oversampling. While on sale, the price is quite low for this plugin and justifies the investment easily.

6. AudioThing Type B

More Info & Price (Trial Available)

Taking inspiration from the vintage Aphex Aural exciter hardware unit, Type B adds brightness and presence to your vocals, bass, leads, and other instruments.

In this plugin, we have a Tune parameter, which is the frequency selector for the filter section right below it. The Color knob acts as a subtle low pass filter for the generated harmonics.

We liked the sound of it even more on melodic instruments than drums and percussions. The Emphasis on the filter section can generate interesting sounds on synths. You could also try automating the Tune knob to get even more dynamic sounds.

Next, the Direct toggle switch helps add any lost low and mid frequencies while you are exciting. And we also liked the Env toggle switch for the Noise, which makes the noise only come up when there is audio input.

AudioThing Type B Review - Top 7 Exciter Plugins & 3 Best Free Exciters (For Mixing & Mastering) | Integraudio.com

Key Features:

  • Classic Sound
    The sound of this plugin is that of the Aphex hardware unit. So, if you are a fan of the late 70s hits, this plugin will aid you in achieving that sound.
  • Convenient GUI
    The GUI of this plugin is resizable. And you can hide the additional sections beneath the six fundamental parameters if you prefer simplicity. So, it caters to both straightforward and adventurous producers.
  • Experimental Filter
    You can place the filter section before or after the saturation. Similarly, you can also experiment with using a band-pass filter instead of a traditional high-pass filter. Similarly, the Emphasis parameter can give an interesting peculiarity to your sound with ease.

Character & Sound:

By default, this plugin sounds faithful to the Aphex Type B unit. However, with some experimental tweaks, you can get it to sound very distinctive too. We recommend trying this out on electric keyboards, huge saw pads, and vocals. Driving the input higher gives an analog grit that could be the missing element in your wavetable synth or guitars too.

Type B Overview - Vintage Exciter Plugin (VST, AU, AAX)

Compatibility:

AudiotThing Type B is available for Windows 7 or higher and macOS 10.9 or higher, both 64-bit. It comes in VST 2/3, AU, and AAX formats.

Summary:

We would recommend this plugin if you are a fan of analog-sounding plugins and enjoy having some flexibility too. There’s even a noise section that lets you add the hum the original hardware used to make for authenticity. And if you just want to hear heavy distortion — check out the 12dB wet boost.

7. Brainworx Vertigo VSM-3w

More Info & Price (Trial Available)

The Vertigo VSM-3 is pure saturation freedom unleashed.

For the people who want to control every aspect of their effect plugin to create a truly unique sound, the Vertigo VSM-3 offers two kinds of analog saturation with a ton of flexibility. In addition, the two saturators can work in parallel as well as serial mode.

The ‘2nd Harmonic Fat Crusher’ is a warm saturator based on tube stages, and the ‘3rd Harmonic Zener Blender’ is a brighter exciter best suited for adding clarity. Each saturator can be set to affect low, mid, or high frequencies or the entire spectrum.

There is also a mid/side mode for both the saturator giving you ultimate control over your spatial image. We particularly liked using the Crusher on the mid while using the Blender to add sparkling air on the side.

UAD Vertigo VSM-3 Review - Top 7 Exciter Plugins & 3 Best Free Exciters (For Mixing & Mastering) | Integraudio.com

Key Features:

  • Ultimate Control
    The VSM-3 offers complete flexibility over the sound of the exciter, even more so than the original hardware it is based on. There is also a mid/side monitoring feature along with a distortion solo that lets you hear exactly what’s happening with your audio. And on top of that, the two saturators can work in parallel or serial mode.
  • Resizable UI
    The GUI of this plugin can be scaled up to 150% of its original size. However, we would have liked to see a bigger zoom factor as the tiny font and knobs of the plugin can get very tedious to work.
  • Analog Sound
    Brainworx is known for its meticulously accurate emulations of hardware units, and the VSM-3 is no different. The sound it generates remains faithful to the original gear, offers some upgraded controls, and still manages to be CPU-friendly.

Character & Sound:

The difference between the two saturators the plugin has is fairly easy to distinguish. One is warmer, and the other is noticeably brighter and sparkly. Used together, you can create a sort of sound reminiscent of the vintage era and yet somehow very contemporary.

The low-frequency enhancements work particularly well for getting punchier kicks. You could also try using the Crusher for adding saturated air to synths and keyboards. For vocals, the Blender works well at adding presence and sheen.

Vertigo VSM3 - Mid/Side Distortion for Mixing and Mastering

Compatibility:

This plugin is available for Windows 7 or higher and macOS 10.9 or higher, both 64-bit. It comes in VST 2/3, AU, AAX, and RTAS formats.
For Universal Audio users, it is also available for UAD-2 hardware and Apollo interfaces.

Summary:

The sound quality of this plugin is highly commendable. The level of detail and control it offers for a hardware-based plugin is unsurpassed by any other. However, the user interface could be a little overwhelming for an inexperienced producer.

The 3 Best Free Exciter Plugins 2022

1. Slate Digital FRESH AIR

More Info & Download

Slate Digital needs no introduction to the pro audio community, and this breath of Fresh Air is possibly one of the smoothest exciters in existence.

There are only two knobs in this plugin. However, don’t let its simplicity deter you. Under the hood, it utilizes vintage exciter technology, complete with its smooth high-frequency shine. The Mid Air and High Air parameters, as the names suggest, add brightness to said frequency ranges.

We love using it on vocals, drums, synths, and even full mixes. The plugin never fails to add clarity and presence seemingly magically. And being a free plugin, there is truly nothing to lose in giving it a try.

Slate Digital FRESH AIR Review - Top 7 Exciter Plugins & 3 Best Free Exciters (For Mixing & Mastering) | Integraudio.com

Key Features:

  • Easy-to-use Interface
    Despite having multiple parallel processings underneath the plugin, Slate Digital nails the interface design by keeping it astonishingly minimal and elegant. If you are just getting into the world of exciters and enhancers, Fresh Air is the best place to start, without a doubt.
  • Smooth Sound
    The sound of Fresh Air reminds us of expensive, high-end vintage gears that use induction and capacitors to get their filters, resulting in a smooth sound. Similarly, the plugin also manages to keep the excitement process without distortion or brittleness.

Character & Sound:

According to Slate Digital, Fresh Air was modeled to have the Dolby-A NR band splitting for smooth multi-band function. As a result, the sound of this plugin is that of smooth, analog gears. Also, it doesn’t introduce any frequency dips or notches with either of the two parameters.

Fresh Air on your Mixbus

Fresh Air on Vocals

Compatibility:

This plugin is available for Windows 8 or higher and macOS 10.12 through 10.14, both 64-bit. It comes in VST 2/3, AU, and AAX formats.

Summary:

We highly recommend this free plugin as a universal exciter for adding clarity and shine to your vocals, instruments, and mixes. Even for those with no experience with saturators or exciters, the simple interface of this plugin has zero learning curve.

2. Variety Of Sound ThrillseekerXTC

More Info & Download

The ThrillseekerXTC is a Pultec-style EQ emulation with an exciter stage added.

This plugin focuses on being all about analog sound and making sure the sound you get out of it is rich and silky smooth. There are pre-selected frequencies in the EQ section. On the right are two knobs, “Mojo” and “Drive,” where Mojo adds harmonic excitement, and Drive gives some analog warmth through the modeled EQ.

Another thing worth noting is that when you download the plugin, you receive two files. One is the black-colored version, which is for quieter audio around -18dB RMS. And the other blue-colored version is meant for louder audio.

Variety Of Sound ThrillseekerXTC Review - Top 7 Exciter Plugins & 3 Best Free Exciters (For Mixing & Mastering) | Integraudio.com

Key Features:

  • Three Saturators
    This plugin uses a separate exciter for each band processing parallelly. However, the Mojo knob only lets you adjust them all at once. Keep in mind that overusing the Mojo can introduce some strange effect into your mix, though. So, it’s probably best to avoid using it on full mixes.
  • Customizable Metering
    The needle meters can be set to display classic VU as well as LUFS readings.

Character & Sound:

Along with the pleasing sound of the likes of Pultec EQs and the Lang PEQ-1, it uses emulation of transformer-powered tube stages to give it its “mojo” excitement magic. Similarly, the EQ section itself also generates some harmonics and warmth too.

ThrillseekerXTC blue (acoustic guitar) by Variety Of Sound

Compatibility:

ThrillseekerXTC is only available for Windows 7 or higher 32-bit. It comes in VST 2 format.

Summary:

Being an EQ and an exciter both, this plugin can single-handedly shape sounds with ease while also adding brightness and thickness as needed. However, being a 32-bit plugin makes its use limited. And bridging isn’t recommended if you need many instances of the plugin.

3. Fine Cut Bodies La Petite Excite

More Info & Download

One of the quickest ways to add some shine and thick low end to your audio.

La Petite Excite has become a favorite among many producers, and for a good reason too. Both its low and high excitement simply work. Whether it’s drums or vocals or a synth part, you can enhance it using this free plugin, and the results won’t disappoint.

Fine Cut Bodies La Petite Excite Review - Top 7 Exciter Plugins & 3 Best Free Exciters (For Mixing & Mastering) | Integraudio.com

Key Features:

  •  Simple Interface
    We love how you can figure out the GUI of this plugin almost as soon as you open the plugin. It’s no-nonsense and clean to work with.
  • High-Frequency Compression
    The CV knob at the lower left part of the plugin introduces compression on the high frequencies. This helps when your audio has a lot of sibilance or high-frequency transients. However, avoid overusing it as it introduces heavy ducking unless that is exactly what you are after, of course.

Character & Sound:

The excitement features ensure the output doesn’t have phasing issues. So, the plugin is generally very predictable and easy to work with.

La petite excite by Fine cut bodies- free plugin!

Compatibility:

This plugin is available for Windows XP or higher and macOS 10.5 or higher, both 32-bit and 64-bit. It comes in VST 2/3 and AU formats.

Summary:

If you were to install just one free exciter, the La Petite Excite could be the one. It’s smooth, light on the CPU, and sounds excellent on almost anything. We highly recommend giving it a try.

Bonus Plugin

Nomad Factory COSMOS

More Info & Price (Trial Available)

Cosmos is designed as both an enhancer and a fattener, and it excels at both without a doubt.

If you are looking for a plugin that can thicken up your kick or vocals or any other instrument, you’re in luck. Cosmos uses a sub-frequency generator to artificially add low-end thickness to any audio you feed into it. You could use it for getting huge-sounding synth pads or thundering bass drums.

It doesn’t end there, though. There is a separate low-frequency and high-frequency enhancer, with the crossover somewhere around 600Hz. The Bottom Drive knob controls the former and helps add punchiness to kicks or some oomph to vocals. Similarly, the Exciter Drive adds shininess and richness to audio at the same time.

Nomad Factory COSMOS (Bonus) Review - Top 7 Exciter Plugins & 3 Best Free Exciters (For Mixing & Mastering) | Integraudio.com

Key Features:

  • Sub-generator
    The sub-generator analyzes your audio and levels the generated sub-bass accordingly. You can select the generated frequency as well.
  • Stereo Widener
    The Stereo Imaging knob lets you widen your stereo image right from the plugin interface. It uses the mid/side technique to achieve this effect.
  • Limiter
    There is an in-built limiter in the plugin. And you can control the gain (post excitement) feeding into the limiter.

Character & Sound:

Cosmos is built to sound mostly flat. It doesn’t introduce any noticeable character to the sound. And it doesn’t affect the overall level of the audio with its excitement. Of course, the sub-generator makes the audio sound weightier, but that is to be expected. The exciter section of this plugin is quite predictable and easy enough to use.

Compatibility:

This plugin is available for Windows XP or higher and macOS 10.7 or higher, both 32-bit and 64-bit. It comes in VST, AU, AAX, and RTAS formats.

Summary:

Nomad Factory has always remained a reliable audio plugins developer, and Cosmos proves it true even further. We like the sub-generator the most in this plugin, and the exciters are also just as commendable.

Conclusion

There are plenty of options available nowadays for your perfect enhancer. However, it’s important to note that some enhancers are designed to work better on certain instruments better than others. So, if you are a podcast-maker, for instance, you will want something like the SPL Vitalizer to get smooth, airy vocal recordings.

Or, if you intend to focus on fattening up drums, perhaps the Drumforge DF-Xcite or the Nomad Cosmos is a better choice. Try out multiple options and find one that works best for you. We hope this article helps you find your favorite.

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Top 12 Plugin Bundles For Musicians 2022 (Synths, Mixing & Mastering)

 

 

Processing & Sound Design:

8 Best Lo-Fi Plugins 2022 (PAID & FREE)

Top 11 Plugins For Mixing Vocals 2022 (For Home Studio)

Top 12 Saturation Plugins In 2022 (Best Mixing & Mastering Tools)

Top 6 Pitch Shifter Plugins 2022 (And 3 Best FREE Pitch Shifters)

Top 6 Chorus VST Plugins 2022 For Musicians (And 3 FREE Plugins)

 

Top 6 Limiter Plugins 2022 For Precise Mastering & Mixing

The 8 Best Filter Plugins 2022 For Precise Cuts & Boosts (+ 5 Free Filters)

6 Best Autotune Plugins 2022 To Improve & Enhance Your Vocals

Top 10 Transient Shaper Plugins 2022 (VST, AU, AAX)

Top 7 Enhancer Plugins 2022 (For Bass, Drums, Vocals & Harmonics)

 

Top 6 Flanger Plugins 2022 (And 5 Best FREE Flanger Emulators)

Top 7 Phaser Plugins 2022 (And 3 Best FREE Phasers)

Top 10 Plugins For Mixing Drums 2022 (And 3 Best Free Plugins)

Top 7 Bitcrusher Plugins 2022 (And 4 Best FREE Bitcrushers + 3 Bonuses)

Top 6 Plugins For Voice-Over & Dialogue Cleaning 2022 (Post Production)

Top 10 Stereo Imaging Plugins 2022 (Best Old & Modern Picks)

 

Top 5 Multiband Limiter Plugins 2022

Top 7 De-Esser Plugins In 2022 For Better Vocals (And 4 FREE Plugins)

Top 7 Clipper Plugins 2022 (Best Limiter Alternatives)

Top 6 Chord Generator Plugins 2022 That Inspire Melodies (+ FREE Tools)

Top 7 Channel Strip Plugins 2022 (And 2 Best Free Plugins)

 

Top 11 Distortion Plugins 2022 (And 4 Top Free Plugins)

Top 5 Comb Filter & Resonator Plugins 2022 | Melda, Kilohearts, Tritik

The 7 Best Vibrato VST Plugins of 2022 | Audec, Audiority, Melda

The 7 Best Tremolo Plugins 2022 | Eventide, Melda, SoundToys, Kuassa…

The 7 Best Harmonizer Plugins 2022 | Eventide, Melda, Aegean Music

7 Best Sidechain Plugins 2022 (VST, AU, AAX) | Xfer, Cableguys..

 

Top 10 Noise Gate Plugins 2022 (And 6 FREE Free Gate Tools)

The 6 Best Ring Modulator VST Plugins in 2022 | KiloHearts, Melda

7 Best Autopan VST Plugins 2022 | CableGuys, Melda, Waves, Soundtoys

The 6 Best Frequency Shifter VST Plugins Of 2022

Top 11 Granulizer Plugins 2022 For Future Sound Design

29 Best Sound Design VST Plugins In 2022

 

DAW Related:

Best DAWs For Musicians Available in 2022 (With FREE DAWs)

How To Develop DAW Software?

What’s The Most CPU Efficient DAW? – 5 DAWs Compared

How To Make Music Without Using A DAW?

Pro Tools Guide: How To Use AutoTune & Pitch Correction?

Ableton Review: Is It Worth The Money? (Cons & Pros)

Logic Pro X Review: Is It Worth It? (Cons & Pros)

How To Use Auto-tune & Pitch Correction In Cubase?

How To Fix Ableton Crackling, Crashing & Freezing? Step By Step

 

Plugin Related:

What Are Audio Plugins? Different Types of Plugins Explained

What Are The Best Tools To Develop VST Plugins & How Are They Made?

Cost of Developing Audio VST Plugin: Several Factors (With Table)

VST, VST, AU and AAX – What’s The Difference? Plugin Formats Explained

Complete Guide To Noise Gate – What It Is, What It Does & How To Use It?

How To Clip My Drums? Here Is How & Audio Teasers (Before/After)

 

Complete Guide To Limiter: How To Use It (+ Best Plugins & Analog Limiters)

Mixing With Reverb: How To Add Life To Your Mixes

Linear Phase vs Minimum Phase EQ – Full Guide

Difference Between LUFS, RMS & True Peak Loudness Meters

How And When To Use Algorithmic And Convolution Reverb In Your Mix?

Difference Between Active EQ, Passive EQ and Dynamic EQ

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