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Sonible pure:unmask Plug-In — A Mix Product of the Week

Pure:unmask is the latest plug-in in Sonible’s “Pure” series of AI-powered processors, designed to automatically duck a track

Sonible pure:unmask Plug-In

New York, NY (April 19, 2024)—Pure:unmask (Mac/Windows) is the latest plug-in in Sonible’s “Pure” series of AI-powered processors. It’s designed to automatically duck a track that’s taking up too much frequency space in a mix, thus allowing another to be more prominent.

For example, say you have a rhythm guitar that’s partially masking a vocal, but you don’t want to turn the former up and the latter down. First, you’d insert pure:unmask on the rhythm guitar track (which Sonible refers to as the “background track”) and configure the vocal (the “prioritized track”) to appear in the plug-in’s sidechain feed. Next, select the Profile that most closely matches the background track. Choices include Vocals, Guitar, Bass, Kick, Drums and Universal. Choose the latter if none of the others match.

With the profile selected, press the Learning button and hit play on your DAW. Pure:unmask will quickly analyze the background track and, using both AI and spectral processes, reduce the overlapping frequencies on the rhythm guitar whenever there’s signal in the sidechain from the vocal track.

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You can refine the results manually using several adjustments. The Resolution parameter lets you choose between three levels: Low uses the fewest frequencies in its calculation and is useful when you want the ducking to create an audible pumping effect. Medium uses more frequencies and produces a smoother result. High employs the most frequency bands and offers the most transparent and effective ducking.

The Unmasking parameter is numerical and controls the amount of ducking. You can adjust it graphically by dragging on the outer part of the circular waveform display, which shows the sidechain signal and background track coming up from the bottom of the circle and the ducked signal coming down from the top.

Another adjustable parameter is called Speed. It’s like a combination of attack and release, where higher settings capture the most transients. The Range control allows you to narrow the frequency range that gets processed.

Pure:Unmask has a list price of $49, but it is currently on sale for $29 at the Sonible website, where you can also download a fully functional 30-day trial version.