I often get asked which are my favourite plugins. I decided to answer this question with a 5 parts blog post.
1) Channel Strip and EQ
2) Compressors and Limiters
3) FX including Reverbs, Delay and Saturators
4) Space Enhancers Chorus / Flanger, Utility and others.
5) Virtual Amps and Virtual Instruments
I use a fair amount of plugins when I mix some are seasonal, I use them a lot for a few months then I move to something different, some have been with me for a really long time. Those are the one that I’ve been with me for quite a while and I keep using on almost every mix.
If you have been following this blog you know that my Channel Strip of choice is the Softube Console 1 with the SSL 4000 E Channel.
I use Console 1 on every mix, on every instrument and on all the other channels, including fx returns, virtual instruments, 2bus and on the stereo mix out. This is my Swiss Knife of tool that gives me low and high pass filters, transient shaper, gate, 4 bands EQ, compressor and a saturator. I just love it. Sounds great and it helps to mix fast without compromising on the quality.
On the Master Out, I always have the Chandler Zener-Bender channel strip, and on some tracks, I often use the Summit Audio Grand Channel Console. Those are all compatible with the Console 1 hardware interface.
If I don’t have my trusty Console 1 available I use the SSL channel strip from Waves or/and the Scheps Omni Channel this second one is really an amazing plugin that can be used to achieve really lot’s of different sounds.
If the SSL EQ on the Channel Strip combined with on the harmonic distortion that can enhance the high or low-frequency harmonics, isn’t enough, then it really depends on the sound I need to process. But my choice is usually between the Neve 1073 EQ (Scheps 73), the H-EQ which is really versatile, the SSL G-Equalizer or the Kramer HLS (all Waves plugins).
When I need a dynamic EQ I go for the Waves F6 which is a joy to use and my go-to for DeEssing.
For surgical EQing I use F6 or the Waves Renaissance Equalizer or the Waves Q10. Using differ kind of EQs help to preserve separation while making some tracks really stands off for their uniqueness. (This is also true for compressors).
For example, I would use different EQs, a Pultec on a kick drum and API550 on guitars, a Neve 1081 on vocals and a Neve 1073 on the bass guitar, in this way all they would have their unique character.