Plug In's (software) VS The REAL thing (Hardware)

So today I woke up and I slept on my neck wrong and I couldn't bend my neck in either direction... So I thought to myself how could I turn this into a positive outcome. Well the good news is that it's rather simple. If you can't move your head... that means that you don't need to worry about your head moving out of the sweet spot while listening to songs you've recorded in your recording studio. Granted my recording studio design at my house is pretty exquisite. I have many toys that I don't regularly use. Most of my time is consumed by working on other client's projects and very rarely do I find time to play around with some analog gear that's at my house. If you decide to buy analog gear and we install it... I do have to make sure it is working correctly... many tests must be done before concluding that it is indeed performing to standard. I have done recording studio design for myself and implemented a pretty sweet at home set up for myself. Today while I probably should have been in a neck brace, I decided I was going to do an A/B comparison between the Focusrite Red 3 which I bought used off of eBay a few years back, the D3 plug in from Avid, well originally digidesign designed for pro tools however it's now Avid and pro tools is turning out to be more awesome everyday along with the Steven Slate Red 3 plug in which I downloaded a free trial of. In my acoustic treated room with acoustic panels designed for the room to tune it and with all the frequencies ranging in a + or - 3 db in any one frequency I designed my room to be pretty awesome.


Before I go any further... let me explain my playback. I recorded a song with an artist a few months ago, so I am trying to compress an acoustic guitar and vocal track. For the original audio it was captured into Pro Tools using my Prism Converters because Pro Tools interfaces are just eh. Avid did a really nice job for a little while but when it comes to A/D conversion I haven't heard anything that compares to my Prism converters. I do own Apogee AD-16X's and DA-16X's and they were really great for a long time and a lot of really great records were being cut on those for a while... and I heard their new converters sound EVEN better... Also AVID sort of took over DAD's converters and are now selling their converters as their own... I even spec'd them in for Spotify's new facility while we were designing the new one here in Downtown Los Angeles. Nevertheless, What i have is pro tools playing out audio files, into prism converters, which are feeding the Focusrite Red 3 (an old classic compressor that allows you to push the compression a ton without compromising dynamic range and punchiness) then returning back into the prism converters. Note: I also heard that BURL converters are really nice too... but I haven't had a client buy them yet so I haven't actually heard them. So back to the story at large... I then with the same settings used the Avid D3 plug in and the slate audio Red 3 plug in... and honestly guys... to quote the awesome Marvin Gaye - "There ain't nothing like the real thing" the Avid plug in falls short. On some of the higher compression reductions it sounds like a multi-band compressor bringing out the mid range A LOT... The Slate Audio plug in performed much much better... and compared to the cost I would say is probably the best total value of ownership but man... there is just nothing like the real thing.

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