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Sonnox Oxford Inflator v3 Plug-In – A Real-World Review

Our review team recently put the Sonnox Oxford Inflator plug-in to the test while in the Virgin Islands; here's how it went.

Sonnox Oxford Inflator v3 Plug-In
Sonnox Oxford Inflator v3 Plug-In

While I’ve had this plug-in for years, it has become such a valuable ally in my productions that I made sure to use it on this trip. The Sonnox Oxford Inflator is a multipurpose tool that I used to handle several different tasks. There are only a few controls on it. To begin with, I set the output level to just below 0 dB, which prevents clipping of the track. By engaging the Clip 0 dB button, the input level meter will not rise above 0 dB. From there, I literally assign an Inflator across every single track in the mix (minus the auxes). Think of it like a console strip. I then apply processing or input volume as needed. If I do need some gain on a track, I often turn to the Inflator first in my “console,” and it can provide up to 12 dB of gain.

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The magic sauce for me is inside the Effect slider. Since I tend to use a lot of strings and percussion in my work, I’ve found that by pushing up the Effect slider, there is a perceived increase in harmonic brightness and clarity without volume or EQ. I would note that the amount of effect seems to be program-dependent, and that strings and percussive hits benefit the most. Overall, the Inflator continues to be a go-to production tool for me and was quite valuable in the islands for its flexibility and sonic prowess.