Kilohearts is a Swedish music software developer known for some cool, characterful plug-ins. The company has a new product on the line, called Phase Distortion. By their description, PD goes from presence enhancement all the way to extreme signal decimation. So, what makes this one different from the heaps and piles of distortion plug-ins out there? It’s the nature of its algorithm.
Instead of traditional waveform clipping and amplitude shaping, Phase Distortion modulates the phase of the input signal with its own amplitude. The effect is similar to feedback frequency modulation, giving the distortion a different flavour.
The Phase Distortion plug-in is reasonably easy to get around. The Drive knob controls the amount of distortion applied, while the Normalize and Tone controls modify the amplitude and frequency response. Bias and Spread offset the phase difference and widen the stereo image. Finally, Mix balances the wet and dry signals.
Like other Kilohearts plug-ins, Phase Distortion is available in VST, AU, AAX, and Rack Extension formats. It also installs as a Snapin, to be used with the free Snap Heap plug-in – a virtual effects rack for hosting multiple Kilohearts modules. They can be configured in up to four parallel chains and modulated with integrated LFOs, envelopes and macro knobs.
Additionally, the paid Kilohearts Multipass extension (99 USD) enables multiband splitting of Snapin chains. For example, you can push the low end through the Compressor and Phase Distortion Snapins, while treating the high frequencies to Chorus and Delay, for example.
Price and release date
Phase Distortion is available now for 39 EUR or USD, online from Kilohearts.
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