United Plugins and SounDevice Digital have released MasterMind, a new all-in-one mastering plugin designed for a quick and easy workflow. Is MasterMind your one-stop shop for quick and easy mastering?
SounDevice Digital MasterMind
Mastering is an art that normally requires a studio full of high-end equipment and a skilled engineer with a trained set of ears who knows how to operate it. Sadly, that’s not always in the budget. For those times when you just want to give your tracks a quick brush-over and make them sound better and louder with a few simple steps, all-in-one mastering plugins like the new MasterMind by SounDevice Digital and United Plugins are a convenient solution.
The plugin is built around the Optimize function, essentially a one-knob mastering tool. SounDevice Digital says that they researched lots of mastered material to create an algorithm that improves the sound from an audio and psychoacoustic standpoint. Like all one-knob algorithms, it’ll either fit your material or it won’t, but if it does, it’s certainly convenient.
Matching a track to the sound of a reference track is a technique many of us like to use while mastering, and it’s the second main building block of MasterMind. The plugin’s Match feature analyzes your material and reference track and then proceeds to create a custom EQ curve. You can adjust how much of this automatic EQ should be applied using the Match knob.
That said, MasterMind also features a manual EQ section for fine-tuning the high and low frequencies. The high and low shelving bands allow for up to 16 dB of cut or boost. The low shelf is adjustable from 20 to 150 Hz, while the high shelf ranges from 3 to 16 kHz. Furthermore, the EQ section offers an EQ Tube knob that allows you to add the desired amount of tube saturation.
Next is a Limiter section with the familiar Gain, Threshold, and Out Ceiling controls, as well as a Saturation knob. SounDevice Digital claims that the limiter makes tracks sound both louder and smoother.
Additional features include a Stereo Width knob for quick adjustments to the stereo image and a comprehensive visual analyzer. MasterMind provides an interesting mix of one-knob “magic” and additional controls for manual fine-tuning. If the algorithms sound as good as SounDevice Digital claims, it looks like a great way to brush up your tracks quickly and easily – especially at the low intro price.
Price and compatibility
SounDevice Digital MasterMind is now available from United Plugins for an introductory price of €29. That’s 78% off the regular price, which will be €129. A 15-day trial version is available.
The plugin runs on macOS 10.10 or higher and Windows 8 or 10. It’s available in VST, VST3, AU, and AAX formats.