The Pro-C by FabFilter is the most versatile software compressor I’ve come across in almost a decade of mixing. I find it to be extremely quick and intuitive to dial in a great sound, which is helped by the visual indicators and sharp interface we’ve come to expect from FabFilter.
A “secret weapon” of many top mixing engineers, DrMS allows you to achieve “3D” stereo imaging effects and perform mid-side processing for amazingly wide vocals and instruments.
3. Waves – C4
Included with many of Wave’s affordable bundles, the C4 is an indispensable multi band processing tool that you’ll find yourself using on all kinds of sources, even your master bus.
The Lexicon reverb tone is undeniably familiar and the LXP bundle gives you the classic sound without breaking the bank.
Sibilant and harsh vocals and instruments can be some of the most annoying tones to deal with in a mix. The Waves DeEsser tackles the job of taming these harsh frequencies with a slim and simple interface.
This is my go-to EQ for vocal processing. The high end has a certain sharpness, while still being smooth. I haven’t been able to replicate it’s sound with other software EQs.
Capable of much more than just the extreme “T-Pain” effect, Auto-Tune can help blend and mesh vocals while giving you perfect pitch that can still sound natural.
EchoBoy is an extremely musical delay plugin with a plethora of different tones and controls at your disposal. Use this inside of the Effects Rack, part of the Sound Toys bundle, and you have an incredible set of vintage style effects with infinite possibilities.
Distortion has always been one my favorite effects to use in the mix. Saturn is capable of extremely distorted sounds with amplifier modeling and also subtle saturation which emulates old tapes and tubes.
If you’re looking for a huge, vintage reverb tone – look no further. For the price, this plugin is a no-brainer and it just sounds fantastic.