Streaky is known throughout the music mastering world for working with artists like Junior Sanchez, Ed Sheeran, Sub Focus, Outkast, and Groove Armada. In addition to engineering a large quantity of high profile music, he also curates a YouTube page where he reviews audio mastering equipment.
Streaky’s latest venture is creating and releasing his own plugin called colourbox. This unique plugin allows you to combine three analog-modeled distortions, similar to the VSM-3. However, colourbox is operated in an extremely different way due to the graphic nature of the interface. You can choose different blends of the 3 sound sources by selecting a color and then assign that color to the palette at the bottom of the interface. The palette allows you to save six colors (sounds) that you like and quickly reference them at different points in your track.
At first, the design of colourbox may seem daunting. The controls look like something you would find in a visual editor, apart from some familiar fader controls on either side of the color palettes. We quickly found through our tinkering that the plugin was intuitive and had a wide range of possible saturation. In addition to the drive and color controls, there are also controls for ‘Clarity’, ‘Warm’, and ‘Focus’, which seem to be EQ-based algorithms that sound very smooth and are easy to use.
The concept of the plugin is the strongest part- constantly forcing you to listen… which is honestly a great thing to see on the market with so many preset-based DSPs. In Streaky’s own words, “I’d rather be able to do it with my ears, rather than with my eyes”. Despite a strong concept, the inability to truly understand what exactly the plugin does makes us wary.
With other tried and true saturation plugins on the market, why do we need colourbox? At £97.00 we certainly aren’t going to buy it anytime soon, but we still highly recommend checking out the demo if you have an iLok.
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