Almost everyone loves the sound of analog (especially tubes), but getting that sound in your DAW has always been somewhat problematic, leading most to us to believe that it’s not worth the extra effort for setup and recall. That’s no longer a problem thanks to the FT-1 Freqtube by Freqport, a hardware device that provides real tube processing as a DAW plugin.
It Has Tubes
The FT-1 is a piece of hardware that connects to your computer via USB-C that has 4 tubes inside. It then shows up as a plugin on your DAW allowing you to run the tubes in series or parallel (providing 4 individual channels) giving you analog gain, mixing, drive, phase control and harmonics control.
There are two types of tubes – two ECC83/12AX7s and two 12AT7s. This gives a wider palette of sounds going from mellow and harmonic to bit more edgy. There are also 8 assignable knobs that allow you to control any of the onboard parameters.
You’ve probably figured by now that the box has to have both analog to digital and digital to analog convertors to work, and you’d be right. The FT-1 features high end pro-grade 32bit converters that can operator at a sample rate up to 192kHz, so it’s pretty future-proof in that regard.
Yes, It Resets
One of the problems using analog gear is resettability, as in the vast majority of cases we’re still left with taking pictures of the settings or drawing out them out as the only alternatives to get back in the ballpark for a recall. Not so with the FT-1. It has full recall of all the analog parameters, so your settings come back the same every time.
The Freqport FT-1 Freqtube is priced at $925 USD. Yes, it’s a bit pricey as compared to an “analog-style” digital plugin, but it’s a lot cheaper than most true analog alternatives and more versatile as well. Plus, you get the sound of tubes!
It runs on both Mac and PC and on most plugin platforms, and is also compatible with most popular DAWs.
You can find out more here or watch the video below.