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Tag: audioease

Plugins I still miss from Pro Tools 11

With the big change to AAX we all knew that it would take time to convert/recode our favourite plugins to the new format. Some company could do this so fast that we almost didn’t have to wait, others are still trying to catch up. Sadly even Avid is in the catch up team. I know they have enough on their plates, but still there are plugins they should release in AAX.


For me the most important would be TL Space. Although I love Altiverb, for my personal rig I cannot justify the high price of it, and frankly with my IR library I’m pretty much covered. It somewhat surprises me that it take so long Avid to port it. In my opinion Avid should’ve shown a good example to plugin companies. With that I mean they should’ve released almost all their plugins when Pro Tools 11 was released, or at least only a month after that. And now, here we are in 2014, and they are still not ready with some of their very popular plugins.



As far as I know he’s almost ready with the AAX transition. I own many of his plugs and really looking forward to use them in Pro Tools 11. I realise that Massey plugins is a very tiny company so I understand that it take considerable time to port everything, still very eager to get them as soon as I can.



Speakerphone. I would love to use it in PT11. Frankly I’m a bit disappointed. They make amazing plugins. These plugins are very expensive ones, so in my opinion users deserve a much more straight and honest communication. I understand that they don’t want to promise things they cannot keep, but after many many months a simple: “I hope it will be soon…” is not enough. I already know many fellow engineers who simply decided to search for other tools, and would never buy a thing again from them.

This is my short list. I think we almost have everything we need to completely abandon the older versions of Pro Tools. I do almost everything in PT11 now. We need a few more plugins and a few more bugs to be ironed out, and then I will happily say that I’m completely on PT11. Hope it won’t take too long from now.

I know about some nasty bugs that need to be ironed out in PT11, still, I can see huge potential in it.


The decision

After the last post I made some more tests and researched my options even more. The emails and the comments helped me to decide which way to choose, the Native or the DSP. I really appreciate both comments and the 28 emails I’ve received recommending me different options, alternative plugins and very useful advises.

If I want to look at numbers 99% of the voters chose the Native path and only 1% recommended the UAD route. Everybody clearly expressed the pros and cons of both routes and now I really know my options very well. I know it looks too slow to make this decision, but this is very important for me and it is not a simple thing as this investment is made for many years not for a few days.

Native all the way

So, as you might guessed, the Native route won hands down. I leaned toward that path as it seemed more versatile and future proof, but your suggestions confirmed my findings. This is clearly the best route to go in my opinion too.

In the first run here’s what I already got:

  • Avid Pro Tools 11HD (upgrade from PT10HD) – not a plugin, but I love it
  • Avid ProLimiter
  • Audioease Speakerphone
  • Exponential Audio R2

A few others will come, but right now I’m very happy with this decision and want to thank you all who sent me an email or left a comment here on the blog.

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Upgrade paths to consider

Right now I’m planning some plugin purchase and as soon as I started to research the different options I realised that this will be harder to decide than I imagined before.

Basically there are two paths here: DSP or Native. Within these I seriously consider the possibility to buy into a UAD card, but haven’t decided yet.

The hard part is that it seems like going with native I have more options with cheaper price and I’m able to select the best developers. With UAD, I have less choice, but certainly very high quality and the benefit of DSP processing.

DSP route

Right now if I would buy a UAD satellite quad, I would get 3 plugins as gift: Neve channel strip, EMT 140 and Ep34 tape echo. But for post work I would still need to buy a few more plugins. As I researched it, that would mean at least another 500$ or more.

The good thing is that with this route I could make bigger mixes even on a laptop. And as the satellite is mobile I can “carry” my plugins with me. UAD history suggest that they will continue to develop great plugins and will support their products for many years.

On the other hand I need to buy into a closed DSP product which is somewhat more music oriented and certainly not cheap. Not to mention the fact that many other fellows and facilities don’t have UAD, so in this case I’d need to print many things during the collaboration.

Native route

With this choice I’ll have more freedom as I can choose from a plethora of developers, and hand-pick the necessary plugins. To be honest, even a laptop can run many instances of different plugins, and bigger machines don’t have a problem even with hundreds of instances. The other big concern is, of course, the price difference and the lack of choice available with the UAD.

For less money than the UAD package, I can get the following:

  • Avid ProLimiter
  • McDSP ML4000
  • Exponential Audio R2
  • Audioease Speakerphone
  • Izotope RX

With these plugins, I’ll have almost everything I need right now. I know that UAD has many exceptionally fine plugins, but I’m still not convinced about that they can cover my needs as much as some well chosen native plugs can.

Hard choice

My main point is that I can see the benefits and drawbacks of both solutions, but haven’t, or rather couldn’t decided yet which would serve me better in the long run. I still have a little more time to decide, but if you have any experience or suggestion, please share it with me in email or in the comments. Thank you.