Madrona Labs Aaltoverb, Aalto Synth’s Excellent Built-In Spring Reverb Is Now Available As A Plugin

Madrona Labs Aaltoverb is a new spring reverb plugin for PC & Mac (VST3/AU) that you already know from the Aalto Synthesizer.

Due to high user-requests, the well-known spring reverb from the Buchla inspired Aalto Synthesizer by Madrona Labs is now available as an independent VST3/AU plugin. Aaltoverb does not have many built-in features, but these few are so well implemented that you do not miss others.

The highlight of this spring reverb is that you can smoothly change the size of the virtual space that the sound is reverberating in. So your audio will receive pitch-shift effects that we all know from vintage tape delays but here in a spring reverb. But instead of a single speed, the shift applies to the whole acoustic space. So a giant room can turn smoothly into a small and natural-sounding chamber, and then into a tiny and very unnatural resonator. With longer decay times, weird spring-like beasties can be found along the way.

Somewhat unusual: Aaltoverb is delivered without presets. So you need to play around to discover the possibilities of it. A very different concept for a spring reverb and I’m pretty sure it sounds as brilliant as the reverb built into Aalto Synthesizer.

Madrona Labs Aaltoverb

Randy Jones, developer of Madrona Labs says:

We made Aaltoverb after hearing from people who wanted to use the reverb from our synthesizer Aalto as a standalone effect. Aalto’s reverb is meant to sound good as part of Aalto, but like the spring reverbs in our favorite vintage synthesizers that inspired it, it’s not at all flexible. Our focus as a company is on instruments, tools for performance, so we thought: what features would a performance reverb have?

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The decay control works in tandem with the size control to set an accurate T60 (the number of seconds it takes for a sound to decay by 60 decibels) for any space, even the weird ones. And at the top of its range, this decay time jumps to infinty as Aaltoverb’s freeze function is seamlessly faded in. Freezing results in a truly endless wash of sound without audible loop points. It’s great for ambient performance, making room tones, and hopefully some things you’ll do that we haven’t thought of yet. 

Like its neighbors, the tone dial also give you more control than meets the eye. It’s not the tame EQ a typical reverb provides. In the middle of its range, right near 1000 Hz, it does have a subtle and transparent effect that’s good for tweaking a mix. But beyond that it gets much more drastic, like the isolator in a DJ mixer. At the low end, it muffles everything to an outside-the-warehousey boom. And the dramatic lift at the high end can fade a whole track “up and out” or add a real sizzle to vocals. 

There are no presets. Instead, just a few dials that invite you to navigate through a whole pocket universe of sounds.

Madrona Labs Aaltoverb is available now for PC & Mac (VST3/AU) for $35 USD. A demo version is available for free.

More information here: Madrona Labs 

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