Today’s mastering tools are better and better, but can also be much more complicated than the average engineer wants to deal with. That’s why some plugins are becoming smarter in how they operate thanks to incorporating artificial intelligence, and a perfect example is the Elevate mastering plugin developed by Newfangled Audio and distributed by Eventide.
Elevate is essentially a mulitband limiter, but one that’s super sophisticated and simple at the same time. It has 26 filter bands(!), but they’re modeled on how the human ear hears, and they use adaptive technology that responds in real time to your music. The artificial intelligence sets the amount of gain, dynamics speed, and and transient variation for each band so that you can either maintain or even emphasize fast transients of the mix to get the competitive level you need while not having the mix feel squashed. This gives you not only the ability to create a loud master that sounds good, but also make some critical mix balance adjustments after the fact as well.
While you can get deep into Elevate’s many adjustable parameters, most work can be done from just the Main Parameters (see the video below). The Limiter Gain boosts the volume, but the Adaptive Gain below it makes sure that the tonal balance doesn’t change in the process. The Speed parameter is a combination of the attack and release time, while the Adaptive Speed decreases any unwanted pumping effects that might be introduced as a result. The Ceiling control is the loudest level that the plugin will output, and will ensure that there’s never an overload.
Elevate has a couple of additional sub-modules that are extremely useful. The Transient Emphasis makes sure that the transient are let through to maintain the punch of the track, while the Adaptive Transient parameter ensure that they remain controlled. Finally the Spectral Clipper provides some overdrive to thicken up the signal if needed. There are also 6 different types of metering, including a large spectral display so that you know what’s going on as a parameter is adjusted.
This plugin can get pretty deep if you let it, but it comes with a wide variety of presets from the likes of APS Mastering, Matt Lange, Jeremy Lubsey, Eric Beam, ROCAsound, Chris Tabron and John McCaig to keep things simple as well.
Elevate works on most platforms and is available for just $99 through October 31st. Find out more about it on Eventide’s website or watch the quick mastering demo below.