The Best Plug-in is the One in Front of You

The Best Plug-in is the One in Front of You

There’s a saying in business: “the most important client is the next one”. I have mixed feelings about this mindset. Because while of course bringing in new business is what keeps things going, you wouldn’t have much of a business to worry about if you didn’t give proper attention to your current clients. 

As most of you around here know, my main business is creating tutorial video content. My livelihood, in part at least, depends on the collective desire for the next best greatest plug-in that’s just around the corner. And there’s always another one coming (thank goodness or I wouldn’t eat!). But what about the ones right in front of us. You know, the ones from last week. Or maybe last year. Or maybe even a couple of years ago. 

You guessed it. Yes, they are still good and worthwhile using! There is something to be said for the comfort of reaching for a plug-in you know well, and knowing what to expect. Tweaking the knobs almost by instinct to get the sound you want is very gratifying; like a nice walk in a pair of well-worn shoes. 

Who among us here has never used any Waves plug-ins, put up your hand. 

I’m waiting…… still waiting…… Bueller…. Bueller…..

That’s what I thought. They are so ubiquitous in our world that virtually all of us have used at least some of the older ones at one point or another. I was fortunate enough to get the Waves Gold bundle when I bought my Apogee Ensemble a few years ago. But I was familiar with many of the venerable mainstays from my older Musician’s bundles. I also got to try most of the newer ones over the past couple of years when I was doing regular videos on them for Newer is not always better. There are a lot of gems in their older “catalog”. And a few duds in their newer one!

Which brings me back to the Waves Gold Bundle. I think it blends the best of their classic bread and butter processors, along with some nice colorful crayons to draw outside the lines with, and even a few of the sexy new ones that, in a few years, will most certainly be “classic”. 

I love the Renaissance Compressor. It’s attack and release ranges, combined with it’s ARC mode, are so versatile, I can’t imagine a scenario where I wouldn’t be able to get the sound I need from it. Same goes for Renaissance EQ. H-Delay is a beautifully simple delay plug-in. The ping-pong mode and built-in modulation give it a huge range of uses. The GTR processors are also fun to use. The stomp boxes, cabinets, and pedals are great. One of my favorite hidden secret weapons is the Axxpress pedal. It squeezes the sound so beautifully. I use in lots of unconventional places, almost always with interesting results.

I could go on about the other plug-ins as well. But my point is, I’ve known and used these plug-ins for a long time. They are comfortable, familiar, and intuitive to me. And that is more valuable to me than having the latest hardware emulation. 

So, I’m not here to tell you that the next best latest greatest plug-in is just around the corner. (Although there are always interesting new ones worth checking out).  I am here to tell you that my next best latest greatest video series is :-) But of course, continue to watch the older ones as well! :-)) 

I’ve done a mixing series using the Waves Gold bundle exclusively. I used it on a wonderful song called You Don’t Know Me, written by Morey Richman and sung by Hayley Richman. It’s interesting in that it shifts from 5/4 to 6/4 time in different sections, resulting in unusual syncopations that keep the listener on edge. It’s got lots of nice layered guitar parts, both acoustic and electric. And nice dark brooding vocals. I had a ball bringing the mix to life using my favorite Waves plug-ins. If you have some old Waves plug-ins kicking around on your hard drive, they still have a lot of life and music in them. They are worth exploring.  

So, check out this little “before and after” teaser to get a taste of how I have been using them. If you like what you see/hear, check out Mixing With Waves Gold Bundle right here on groove3. 

Mixing With Waves Bundle

Eli Krantzberg