Algorithmix has released the K-Stereo Ambience Processor
which they say is a VST processor for natural and unobtrusive enhancement, expansion, and equalization of the ambience, space, imaging, depth and width in a recording without adding artificial reverberation or causing unwanted coloration or artefacts.
Hereâ€™s all the details in their own wordsâ€¦
K-Stereo is a patented psychoacoustical process (US Pat.7076071) that extracts the ambience inherent in ordinary recordings, and is capable of spreading that uncorrelated ambience around the soundstage, and enlarging the size of that soundstage, both deeper and wider.
In addition, K-Stereo enhances the depth and imaging of the instruments and vocals without adding any artificial reverberation. It does not have a sound of its own; it fills in whatâ€™s been missing. K-Stereo is also capable of making a natural mono to stereo conversion.
The plug-in is intended to be compatible with the new VST version 3.0 and is the first in the new Algorithmix Chromium Series, a set of reference mastering plug-ins.
The Worldâ€™s first Ambience Recovery Processor
Welcome to a brand-new category of audio product: the worldâ€™s first Ambience Recovery Processor. You are about to experience a sound enhancement plug-in that can add the last polish to an excellent audio recording, or improve a good recording. Itâ€™s based on a psychoacoustical process developed and patented by US mastering engineer Bob Katz.
Unobtrusive and Natural Ambience Enhancement
For the first time, the mastering engineer can easily enhance, expand, and equalize the ambience in a recording. K-Stereo works unobtrusively and naturally. It can help a â€œsmallâ€� rock&roll recording become bigger, make a mono recording sound stereophonic. It can improve the definition, depth, width and space of any recording. K-Stereo is primarily a mastering tool, but it is also useful during post-production, and occasionally during mixing. K-Stereo provides control over reverb returns or ambience mikes after the program has been mixed, and it enhances the shape, spread, tonality and depth of that reverb. After mastering, the resulting reverberation envelops the direct sound but the mix becomes clearer and the definition improves due to the psychoacoustic nature of the process.
Merging Different Ambience Types
K-Stereo helps to glue a recording together without need for dynamic compression. Recordings that were made with multiple stereo microphone techniques sound more realistic and cohesive, as K-Stereo removes or reduces the artificial â€œedgesâ€� between the different spaces that were mixed together.
Ambience Enhancement Without Adding Any Artificial Reverb
K-Stereo can help give a demo the polish of a better mix, or reduce the weaknesses of a poor mix. Thereâ€™s no substitute for a great mix; no substitute for use of stereo and surround microphone techniques in a natural acoustic space. However, an experienced mastering engineer will discover that K-Stereo can put the final polish on nearly any mix.
This is accomplished without adding artificial reverb, without the muddy effects and artifacts that are associated with adding reverberation to an existing mix. Plus you wonâ€™t have to spend an hour playing with reverb settings to avoid the â€œroom within a roomâ€� effect, or attempting to match the color of the original recorded reverb. The color and feel of the original reverberation is preserved. K-Stereo improves the spread and diffusion of the inherent reverb and reveals the critical early reflections that define the position and location of the instruments. It canâ€™t turn a $600 reverb into a $6000 model, but it can give the $600 reverb some of the qualities of the more expensive model.
Adding and Modifying Real Space to Vocals and Instruments
You can instantly create a deeper, wider soundstage, move instruments and vocalists that are too far up front away from the listener. Instruments and vocalists take on a spatial, kinetic, quality, improving the illusion of being in a real space, without coloration, pitch modulation, â€œphasinessâ€� or artifacts often noted with other processes. You can restore or enhance the missing front-to-back depth in stereo recordings that otherwise sound flat and one-dimensional. Recordings become integrated and organic; â€œin your faceâ€� recordings can be made to sound just right. The effect can range from subtle and intimate to extremely spacious with the touch of a knob, without losing center-panned information (as would occur with competing techniques that reduce the M to S ratio).
K-Stereo also performs natural mono-to-stereo conversion, by bringing out the ambience in the original mono source and spreading it to the sides in a stereophonic fashion, and with an extremely mono-compatible result.
Ambience Enhancement Keeping the Character of a Mix Unchanged
K-Stereo does not have a sound of its own; it fills in whatâ€™s been missing. Initially, the effect appears subtle. Even when you turn the effect up too loud, it doesnâ€™t sound bad. Youâ€™ll hear a natural, diffuse ambient field which is extracted (derived) from the ambience in the source recording. The recordingâ€™s clarity, spatiality, depth and soundstage is enhanced without creating phasing or comb-filtering effects, without matrixing or altering mid/side ratio (unless you choose to do so), without changing the â€œmixâ€�, without fancy steering, and with no effect on the tonal balance of the direct sound. The tonal balance of the ambience can be altered so as to produce a more pleasant sonic effect, which is a different and more subtle form of equalization.
Preserving Ambience in Coded Recordings
Normally, conversion from long wordlength to 16-bit CD format as well as coding (data compression) to mp3 or other coded formats for the Internet tends to narrow the space and the depth. But through the use of the K-Stereo process and a good dithering algorithm (today included in every serious DAW), amazingly, a 16-bit master can have much of the depth of the 24-bit original, and mp3s as well! A 24-bit and/or high sample rate master destined for a high resolution medium will also improve if the original mix was small or â€œdepth-deprivedâ€�.
And finally a secret: K-Stereo makes the sound louder, but rarely causes clipping. (shhhh).
Pricing and Availability:
- natural and unobtrusive enhancement, expansion, and equalization of the ambience in a recording without adding artificial reverberation or causing unwanted coloration and/or artifacts
- improves the definition, depth, width and space of any recording
- enhances the shape, spread, tonality and depth when used in reverb return
- preserves the color and feel of the original reverberation
- compensates for spatial and depth losses associated with wordlength reduction, e.g. 16-bit or mp3
- moves instruments and vocalists that are too far up frontâ€”away from the listener
- mono to stereo conversion preserving excellent mono compatibility
- reliable operation with up to 384 kHz sampling frequency, thus perfectly suitable for high-resolution DSD post-production
- extremely low noise and low nonlinear distortion algorithm implementation resulting in the residual THD+N significantly lower than 24-bit quantization noise
- all internal calculations are in double floating-point accuracy (80 bits)
- low CPU usage allowing many instances to be opened simultaneously
- exact parameter editing via numerical fields
- three fast accessible presets for quick setup comparison
- Complete setup exchange among several simultaneously opened instances