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Meet COMMAND Q, one of Australia’s hottest up and coming bass acts. Shuan Offbeat gives us the lowdown on their current Top 3 plugins.

3 plugins?! So this was a seemingly impossible task. I probably use a minimum of 150 plugins per session. I just cant get enough and my Mac can handle it easily. So I’m gonna throw at you the plug-ins that I find most useful for my work or those that have impressed me. And no it’s not Izotope Ozone because we already know how good that is. 

And just for the record… MeldaProduction. They are amazing! Why isn’t everyone already using them!? Somebody please go help them market their products. Visit their website because they have a whole bunch of free plugins that will change your mixing process and then you’ll go: “oooooh, holy f@#k this is good”.

WAVES One Knob

Okay so I know this is a group of plug-ins but I HAVE to mention them. Holy s#!t they are brilliant. Each plug-in… Has…One…Knob! And it’s stupidly useful when applied correctly. These plug-ins are surprisingly intelligent, intuitive and somehow just sound frickin’ awesome.

They range from 8 different plug-ins: Brighter, Phatter, Filter, Pressure, Louder, Driver, Pumper and Wetter.

One Knob might mean simple; but I have a hunch there’s a lot more going on underneath the skin. For example: the “Phatter” Knob I’m assuming here is probably an equaliser, compressor and saturator. The “Pressure knob” which I’m also assuming is a mixture of parallel compression and expansion. The “Brightness Knob” is so simple, yet wow it sounds good. An intelligent treble booster that adds brightness from the mid-high range on up, without the harshness, via a quick swivel of the knob.

So many times I’ve found their simplicity and speed useful. They’ve definitely hit the mark with this range. And the sound! Tick of approval here. Only down side is that everything WAVES always costs a lot more. If you’re just buying a few? I recommend, getting Pressure, Brighter and Phatter first.

Enough jerking off over One Knob though…

Slate Digital’s FX-G Virtual Mastering processor

Now I know I’m throwing in another expensive one here, but this changed my mastering process forever and I would pay this price any day, for a product this good.

This weapon of sonic genius uses a process named “Intelligent Transient Preservation”, or ITP.

The ITP process uses a complex look-ahead detection algorithm to analyse on-coming transients and groups of transients. It then optimises a specialised set of saturation curves for that specific transient.

For example, if the ITP algorithms’ look ahead identifies a kick drum transient, it will optimise the algorithm so that it preserves low frequency energy.

For a snare drum transient, it will optimise the algorithm to preserve upper mid-range punch. The result is extreme transparency, and no degrading artifacts that are often common with peak limiters.

The user interface uses just a few controls and is surprisingly user friendly, as the software adjusts to your sound and does most of the work for you. However, enjoy your CPU getting smashed through the roof. The problem with having an intelligent plugin that is constantly swapping through algorithms is it will s@#t all over your CPU’s head room. So, use it wisely and sparingly. Note: Also sounds frickin’ awesome on busses. Note of that note: it eats CPU for breakfast, be careful.

Native Instruments REPLIKA

I was lucky enough to receive this for free, but now I think it’s $49 Aussie dollars, which if you’ve been looking at exchange rates recently – is cheap for most world currencies!

This plug-in… Throw away your ideas of delay. I use it mostly for stereo expansion and reverb. Weird right? Yep this guy is weird, welcome him into your house. He has very unique functions for a delay plug-in.

The reverb I’m talking about comes from the “Diffusion” function. Very automatable and very interesting. It displaces the sound into this nice rich field that sounds better than many reverbs I have used. They also have a “vintage” function for a little grit and the “Modern” function for crystal clear delay. This all comes with modulating filters and phasers at your disposal.

The interface is very easy to use and I like it most for that unique and versatile sound it has. It can be used on so many things. Sometimes on a lead instrument that I need a little widening, almost a short room reverb feeling. Other times I want to push a sound deeper into the mix with an interesting timbre. And rarely I actually use it for the ping pong delay or the wide delay. The wide delay is great by the way. But the possibilities seem quite endless for it.

I could go on and on for pages and hours, but I’ll leave it at that for now… Feel free to reach out to me if any of the above interests you and/or you are from MeldaProduction and have some goodies for me to try 😉

Shaun OffBeat, C/o Command Q.

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