Apogee Digital is giving away its Soft Limit plug-in. It’s a straightforward emulation of analog tape compression which the manufacturer first introduced in its first standalone A/D converters. It adds a touch of analog tape warmth and character to what’s typically a clean and true-to-source digital recording.
Apogee Soft Limit free plug-in
Soft Limit tape compression is something of a secret ingredient to the Apogee converter sound. It first shipped on the AD-500, the manufacturer’s first standalone A-D converter from 1991. It’s a simple, but effective analog tape compression emulation and it is available now as a free plug-in. Good on Apogee for looking after its legacy like this@
The Soft Limit feature present in the AD-500 was an actual analog circuit placed before the A-D conversion stage. It rounded up transients and introduced harmonic warmth with subtlety. It has been present on pretty much every Apogee A-D converter since, including the Symphony I/O and the latest Duet 3.
Whereas the original circuitry had a fixed threshold, the plug-in adds an adjustable threshold going all the way down to -18 dBfs. This way, you can dial in the entire range of Soft Limit.
Also available is Auto Makeup which adds level as the Soft Limit Threshold is lowered. The Drive knob adds ± 18 dB of level trim before Soft Limit to give the sound some crunch and grit. You can also adjust output and add up to 16x oversampling.
Overall, a fantastic freebie from Apogee. Every little bit that gets you close to the manufacturer’s reputedly excellent sound quality counts!
Apogee Soft Limit works under macOS 10.11 El Capitan (and above) or Windows 10 (and above). The registration requires a free Pace iLok account. The plug-in is available in 64-bit AAX Native, AU, VST, or VST 3 formats.
Learn more about Apogee Soft Limit