Softube launch a pair of official Weiss mastering tools
The $8,000+ digital DS1 hardware comes to the plugin realm, along with an accessible limiter
Swiss outfit Weiss Engineering have a deserved rep for quality high-end audio gear, with more than three decades’ experience creating processors and converters for the world’s top mastering studios. One such processor is their DS1 compressor, limiter and de-esser – a digital mastering box beloved by Bob Katz and Deadmau5 alike, but existing out of reach of most musicians, at $8,000. Thankfully, for those of us without that sort of cash lying about, Softube have now teamed up with Weiss to create an officially sanctioned software version.
This plugin recreation comes in two forms – a full version of the DS1-MK3 and the MM-1 Mastering Maximizer, which contains just the unit’s limiting capabilities in a cut-down, simplified interface. Softube stress that these plugins aren’t emulations, but rather line-by-line ports of the digital tech housed in the original hardware.
The full DS1-MK3 plugin feature limiting, compression and de-esser algorithms, which can all process at resolutions up to 32-bit/192 kHz. The plugin adds to the design of the original hardware with two new limiting algorithms and a selection of new presets, including some created by lauded engineer Bob Katz.
The MM-1, meanwhile, offers five ‘flavours’ of limiting. With its simple interface, Softube claim the MM-1 is “impossible to get wrong”. They also make the bold claim that it can make your mixes “louder than any other product without sacrificing desirable tone and dynamics”.
Both plugins are available now. The DS1-MK3 is priced at $499 (although currently available at an intro price of $399), making it rather expensive in plugin terms, but still a fraction of the original’s cost. The MM-1, meanwhile, RRPs at $199.
To coincide with the launch, Softube have also released an updated version of their Volume plugin bundle. Volume 2 adds the MM-1 to the mix, along with last year’s Tape and Fix Phaser plugins, which join an assortment of Softube’s other mixing, mastering and effects plugins. The Volume 2 bundle is also out now, at $499, but with a $399 intro offer currently available.