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Airwindows Atmosphere: Mac/Windows/Linux AU/VST
Old 30th April 2018
  #1
Airwindows
 
chrisj's Avatar
Software Airwindows Atmosphere: Mac/Windows/Linux AU/VST



TL;DW: Console5 processing with powerful acoustic distance effects.

Atmosphere

I'm pleased with this one: it's in the Console5 family (so its parts can be interchanged with any other Console5 plugins) but it represents a few different breakthroughs, and if they work out, I'll be keeping them.

First, this is a multi-stage slew clipper. The effect's a bit like PDConsole, a gluing and taming of bright digital highs: but, where PDConsole uses the algorithm of PurestDrive to get a more analog mixing-desk kind of sound, Atmosphere's many stages of slew clipping (across fourteen samples, each with a different maximum slew) enforces the behavior of free air and acoustic distance. This has been a goal for quite a while, but I've never got results like these before (might be worth fitting a more exaggerated version into a 'Distance 2', if people like). It's not calibrated to overwhelm, but the scale of your mix should be huge, and since it's an extended-window slew clipping effect your quieter, subtler sounds don't get muddied.

This type of processing steps on the annoying digital harshness with a heavy foot, but doesn't directly EQ: the results you get will depend on what it would be like to have your sound blasting away through a perfect playback system at a distance of ten to thirty feet. If you need up-close, bright and loud sounds, you'll need to use another system (such as PurestConsole), this one is for space and scale. It'll probably work well for some electronic mixes if they're meant to sound loud, it'll give a real hugeness to rock or metal mixes (so long as the desired effect is more 'live gig' in scale) and it will really come into its own summing orchestral stuff from virtual instruments (or anything with similar scale/power needs).

There's more. The denormalization code is subtly different. Normal Airwindows plugins take pains to not add denormalization noise (prevent CPU spikes) unless necessary. This noise is incredibly faint. Atmosphere keeps this noise going at all times, to sit the mix in a bed of 'live air', much fainter than any electronics noise but present. It should feel like an acoustic space is out there at all times, even though it's at levels way too fine to perceive.

Lastly, the noise shaping to floating point is different too, in an opposite way: previously, Airwindows plugins noise shape to the floating point buss (correctly valued for whatever you're using, so double-precision buss VST gets processed for a 64-bit output word length) and use an interleaved buffer similar to things I do in Capacitor etc. The one in Atmosphere is different. Instead of incorporating whatever error you'd get as this interleaved buffer that fades out as it goes, Atmosphere uses a single buffer, continuously and seamlessly extended… and fades out NONE of it. Instead, every time the DAW latency setting finishes a buffer, that's when Atmosphere's code scales back the buffer just a tiny bit. The idea there is to avoid the noise shaping getting carried away, since it's way more intense than the previous version: but it's a smoother, more low-frequency centric kind of noise shaping that would produce DC energy rather than the brightness of previous Airwindows floating-point noise shaping. The result should be a new frontier of Airwindows depth and hugeness in the mix, and if it works it can be applied to new plugins that would benefit from it.

New frontiers cost money, even if it's just to buy time to work and a place to be, so that's why I have a Patreon. I've been trying to edit that, because back in the days of late 2017 I had it set up to tell you amounts to pledge that would add up to $50, or $100 etc. a year, under the Patreon rules that had you paying some of my fees. But Patreon recanted and decided not to do that, so the numbers I had were wrong: if I said 'pledge this to be charged this much at the end of the year', surprise! You're being charged less than I said you would, because Patreon decided to only charge you what you pledged. I approve of that a lot, and don't feel you have to alter any pledges, but now they just say how much it'd take to amount to $50/$100/$150 etc. at the end of the year. Pledge what you like

Finally, by definition you've all seen Youtube Airwindows because that's where all my videos are. If you're subscribed, you also have seen things like hardware synth how-tos that aren't plugins so they aren't posted to forums. But now there's something new: I'm pointing my livestreaming techno/house jams to Twitch but also to the primary Airwindows channel, because people were interested and it seemed crazy to just bury it on an obscure channel with 17 subs. So, if you're following Airwindows on YouTube, and you see a live stream, it's music of some sort. This is not so much plugins and DSP, instead it's a fully analog and very sophisticated electronic music-streaming studio that I look forward to teaching people how to replicate. I gotta get inspiration from somewhere, so consider Airwindows streams to be Chris getting in touch with his roots, and expect the sounds to be everything that I try to approach with the plugins. Musically? Expect surprises, and some of you will like it, and it may never be the same twice.

There's one up there right now, just before the Atmosphere video. It came out pretty good

oh, one more thing…

From now on, NewUpdates.zip is organized by plugin TYPE, not just as a pile of plugin zip files. That was easy to put together, and it's a bit more work for me now, though not much…

But now you can go to a folder, select all, and drop them in your plugins folder all at once.

That should help
Old 30th April 2018
  #2
Gear Nut
 

uh oh Chris I think I love you, seriously u make the audio production world infinitely more exciting and interesting for the creative types! I love all the Console5 variants
Old 30th April 2018
  #3
Gear Nut
 
Corrosive.Abuser's Avatar
 

Superb plugin Chris, love it, and the new drumming example, - might make an interesting wav file for patrons to download and disseminate, or decimate?
~ I also caught 2hrs of the live show, and I'm so glad I did, AWESOME. And, hearing your unique xOx lines compelled me to finally dig into my old doepfer system and get around to replicating all the slides and accents for their "acid" filter, with thouroghly impressive results.

Chris, your ever-flowing energy is infectious and inspiring.
And as always, many thanks for adding yet another dimension to the sonic arsenal.
Old 30th April 2018
  #4
Gear Maniac
 

Chris, you have a cheeky finger.
As always, great work - thanks!
Old 30th April 2018
  #5
Gear Addict
 

I'm waiting for something to render for work but as soon as it's done I'm going to try this one, sounds right up my alley.
Old 1st May 2018
  #6
Airwindows
 
chrisj's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by broco View Post
Chris, you have a cheeky finger.
As always, great work - thanks!
One of those things where it's like 'edit it out? NAAAHHH'

Any thoughts on the new denormalizing/noiseshaping-to-floating-point buss? I'm figuring out whether to incorporate that in all new plugins going forward. It should be a more relaxed presentation, like switching from a push-pull amplifier architecture to Class A.
Old 1st May 2018
  #7
Lives for gear
 

Sounds cool!
Old 1st May 2018
  #8
Lives for gear
 
StoneyBCN's Avatar
 

My first instinct was to take the individual OH mic stems (kick, snare etc) out of SSD4 and sum them to an OH L/R track through Atmosphere. I really enjoyed the results - the hits interacting and becoming more unique. It showed up in the swing in the beat nicely. It's a subtle tone but a nice difference in feel.

Second was summing some sends in a reverb Aux through Atmosphere. With a decent room tone (Nonlinear Space), I was again very impressed with the added realism and interactions of the sources.

After a quick A/B, both instances of Atmosphere were not going ANYWHERE. This is absolutely a keeper and I think it's potentially a sign post for a new era of plugins...

Acoustic modelling. The new best way to beat out the digital

Thank you SO MUCH Chris. New noise shaping is an interesting subject. How easy would it be to drop it into an existing product so us mere mortals could make some comparisons?
Old 1st May 2018
  #9
Gear Nut
 

I'm getting the Sennheiser HD600s headphones in the mail soon for mixing (cause my monitors and room sound is bad) so I'll have to look into this 'denormalizing/noiseshaping-to-floating-point buss' that you speak of when I can monitor everything better. This'll help understand in more detail the depth and sonic description of all the Console5 plugins too.
Old 2nd May 2018
  #10
Airwindows
 
chrisj's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by StoneyBCN View Post
My first instinct was to take the individual OH mic stems (kick, snare etc) out of SSD4 and sum them to an OH L/R track through Atmosphere. I really enjoyed the results - the hits interacting and becoming more unique. It showed up in the swing in the beat nicely. It's a subtle tone but a nice difference in feel.

Second was summing some sends in a reverb Aux through Atmosphere. With a decent room tone (Nonlinear Space), I was again very impressed with the added realism and interactions of the sources.

After a quick A/B, both instances of Atmosphere were not going ANYWHERE. This is absolutely a keeper and I think it's potentially a sign post for a new era of plugins...

Acoustic modelling. The new best way to beat out the digital

Thank you SO MUCH Chris. New noise shaping is an interesting subject. How easy would it be to drop it into an existing product so us mere mortals could make some comparisons?
I could do a new Channel in which only that and the denormalization are changed? Channel is sort of for that purpose. For some time now I've used it to just represent current Airwindows back-end audio code, and the rest is just an interleaved IIR highpass, a slew clip, and a sine saturation with a dry/wet. It's enough to fully engage all the back-end stuff but it's not a distracting amount of processing.
Old 2nd May 2018
  #11
Gear Head
 

Hi Chris from Airwindows, and huge thanks for your incredible work!

Question: Could you please explain Console5 family's interchangeability? If I use different types of consolechannel in a mix, what bus plugin should I use? For example, if I use Atmospherechannel and Purestconsolechannel in the same mix, does console work the same way with either one of bus plugins? Purestconsole being the simplest one of the family, is purestconsolebus still able to decode console5channel or Atmospherechannel correctly? What bus plugin works best when mixing different console types?
Old 2nd May 2018
  #12
Gear Guru
 
Karloff70's Avatar
 

Another wishful hope for Distance2....always loved what the old Distance can do for some stuff. Anything related to that but different is highly interesting!
Old 3rd May 2018
  #13
Lives for gear
 
StoneyBCN's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisj View Post
I could do a new Channel in which only that and the denormalization are changed? Channel is sort of for that purpose. For some time now I've used it to just represent current Airwindows back-end audio code, and the rest is just an interleaved IIR highpass, a slew clip, and a sine saturation with a dry/wet. It's enough to fully engage all the back-end stuff but it's not a distracting amount of processing.
Sounds pretty cool. I know the whole point is that we DON'T hear that kind of processing, but it seems that the handling of digital audio itself (and it's tendency for error) is a key difference between developers and plugin quality. Also, I already consider Airwindows to be top-tier in that regard, so any advances you may have made are certainly of interest. Could you comment on any difference in cpu hit etc In the code?
Old 3rd May 2018
  #14
Gear Addict
 

Had a chance to use this on a drum machine submix (four tracks of drums and three tracks of printed, outboard effects) and it really does make everything feel like it's sitting together in the same space in a subtle way. Too soon to say for sure but it might end up replacing PurestConsole as my go-to Console variant.
Old 4th May 2018
  #15
Lives for gear
Is this another one that has to be post fade, or used on a fader fixed at 0?
Old 4th May 2018
  #16
Airwindows
 
chrisj's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by dontsimon View Post
Is this another one that has to be post fade, or used on a fader fixed at 0?
Yes. Functionally, it's a Console 5. You can interchange parts with Console 5 compatible parts. The tipoff is that it comes in Channel and Buss versions
Old 4th May 2018
  #17
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Karloff70 View Post
Another wishful hope for Distance2....always loved what the old Distance can do for some stuff. Anything related to that but different is highly interesting!

+1 for Distance2, the OG one is so useful. Love dulling things and then using the dry wet to bring something back, such a simple device for pushing something back into the mix or softening it a touch.

Haven't had a chance to try this new atmosphere but it certainly sounds interesting!

I get such good vibes opening my Airwindows folder!!
Old 4th May 2018
  #18
Gear Nut
Distance2 ??? Woooow!!! Yes! It would be a superbomb, really!
Many thanks for Atmosphere.
Old 4th May 2018
  #19
Lives for gear
 
G-Sun's Avatar
Subtle but nice
Old 6th May 2018
  #20
Airwindows
 
chrisj's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stereo Flux View Post
Distance2 ??? Woooow!!! Yes! It would be a superbomb, really!
Many thanks for Atmosphere.
I'll see what I can do. I'm also trying to get out a Channel5 that incorporates the more subtle improvements in Atmosphere (and have been asked to add an output trim, which if it defaults to 1.0 it shouldn't alter comparisons as I'll have the trim bypass itself).

Would you want a Distance2 to also roll highs in the normal way, or to be strictly the Atmosphere wide-area slew restrict? I could do either.
Old 14th May 2018
  #21
Lives for gear
 

Had a chance to give this a go this evening. All I can say is wow, I think this could be my favourite of all the console5 variations. It sounds very classy. Look forward to getting deeper into it, thank you.
Old 18th May 2018
  #22
Gear Addict
 

It's exactly as you say Chris, this thing pushes the sound stage away from you, noticeably in headphones in mono, it's like 'viewing' the instruments away from oneself in a non reverberant room.

I'm probably going to hybrid use this PDconsole for upfront sounds and Atmosphere for the rest.

Another thumbs up for Distance 2
Old 18th May 2018
  #23
Airwindows
 
chrisj's Avatar
Gimme a few weeks. I've promised Golem, and Righteous is scheduled to come out… and if that wasn't enough, I was watching a Numberphile video about golden/metallic ratios, and it gave me the biggest idea I've had in a decade.

What if… the building-block sine-based saturation routine I build so many things on, is NOT the ideal distortion?

I mean, it's still optimal for Console encode/decode because it can be lossless, but what if there's a WAY better analog-sounding distortion effect based on insights presented in the Numberphile video, notably the way that the 'constructed' golden ratio seashell/spiral made of circle sections in boxes that get smaller, is NOT correct because much like the simplest sine-based overdrive, it doesn't start with zero distortion but with the same tiny distortion the whole time (which, in joining to the opposite pole, makes a discontinuity you can't see much like the golden ratio 'spiral' has discontinuities you can't see?)

People HATE the sound of discontinuities. An old version of Channel where I hacked in a 'flat' undistorted section, got me a huge blowback of dismay and outrage until I put it back to the simple sine-based one. And now it turns out the sine based one HAS a discontinuity, at the zero crossing, right where you'd get class AB and B distortion, and it never occurred to me.

What if I made a test plugin that fixed this and it was AMAZING, and I dropped everything and boiled the equations down to one line of code that does the work, and did the VST versions and made a long, excited, talkative video and got ready to RUSH the new hotness out, forcing you to wait a little longer for Distance 2?

T-minus just a few days. Then you will have Airwindows Spiral, which I'm super excited about.

And then I'll get back to Distance 2. It's going well, should be fine. But I think you'll be glad I dropped everything to get you Spiral. I really had no idea I could do a basic saturation algorithm (which still uses long double precision sines as part of it) that was that good. It's a considerably bigger sonic improvement than the new noise shaping technique, because what it does is on a far higher level… though of course it also is using the new noise shaping, for good measure.

Oh, also: no controls, at all. You can gain stage into it and do stuff with it and sit it on the top of every track like it was PurestDrive or Channel, or use it as a 2-buss clipping stage, where it will clip to around -1.4dB with about -0.4 intersample peak maximum (so it is Mastered For iTunes friendly, used as a final clip). It also has a 'freak out mode' if you massively overdrive it, and you can do that with things like uncompressed drums, and it makes noises you've never heard before, or when used more gently it just sounds like the ultimate analogification.

So… yeah. Distance 2 must wait a little longer
Old 18th May 2018
  #24
Lives for gear
 
StoneyBCN's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisj View Post
Gimme a few weeks. I've promised Golem, and Righteous is scheduled to come out… and if that wasn't enough, I was watching a Numberphile video about golden/metallic ratios, and it gave me the biggest idea I've had in a decade.

What if… the building-block sine-based saturation routine I build so many things on, is NOT the ideal distortion?

I mean, it's still optimal for Console encode/decode because it can be lossless, but what if there's a WAY better analog-sounding distortion effect based on insights presented in the Numberphile video, notably the way that the 'constructed' golden ratio seashell/spiral made of circle sections in boxes that get smaller, is NOT correct because much like the simplest sine-based overdrive, it doesn't start with zero distortion but with the same tiny distortion the whole time (which, in joining to the opposite pole, makes a discontinuity you can't see much like the golden ratio 'spiral' has discontinuities you can't see?)

People HATE the sound of discontinuities. An old version of Channel where I hacked in a 'flat' undistorted section, got me a huge blowback of dismay and outrage until I put it back to the simple sine-based one. And now it turns out the sine based one HAS a discontinuity, at the zero crossing, right where you'd get class AB and B distortion, and it never occurred to me.

What if I made a test plugin that fixed this and it was AMAZING, and I dropped everything and boiled the equations down to one line of code that does the work, and did the VST versions and made a long, excited, talkative video and got ready to RUSH the new hotness out, forcing you to wait a little longer for Distance 2?

T-minus just a few days. Then you will have Airwindows Spiral, which I'm super excited about.

And then I'll get back to Distance 2. It's going well, should be fine. But I think you'll be glad I dropped everything to get you Spiral. I really had no idea I could do a basic saturation algorithm (which still uses long double precision sines as part of it) that was that good. It's a considerably bigger sonic improvement than the new noise shaping technique, because what it does is on a far higher level… though of course it also is using the new noise shaping, for good measure.

Oh, also: no controls, at all. You can gain stage into it and do stuff with it and sit it on the top of every track like it was PurestDrive or Channel, or use it as a 2-buss clipping stage, where it will clip to around -1.4dB with about -0.4 intersample peak maximum (so it is Mastered For iTunes friendly, used as a final clip). It also has a 'freak out mode' if you massively overdrive it, and you can do that with things like uncompressed drums, and it makes noises you've never heard before, or when used more gently it just sounds like the ultimate analogification.

So… yeah. Distance 2 must wait a little longer
Sounds like it might just be incredible. You also just cleared up a number of nagging questions I had about Density/Drive and the sine function

Impatiently awaiting the new "ish" this week!
Old 18th May 2018
  #25
Gear Addict
 

That's some exciting news! And yes, by your description, Distance 2 can wait, Spiral sounds like it's going to be a thing of beauty. And hopefully a starting place for yet more discoveries.
Old 18th May 2018
  #26
Gear Nut
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisj View Post

Would you want a Distance2 to also roll highs in the normal way, or to be strictly the Atmosphere wide-area slew restrict? I could do either.
Rolling highs...
If as an option only, to use it or not when need. You know better) any highrolls can be solved by eq/fiter plugin, but as an option to roll or not - it would be a great update

Thanks Chris!
Old 18th May 2018
  #27
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisj View Post
And now it turns out the sine based one HAS a discontinuity, at the zero crossing, right where you'd get class AB and B distortion, and it never occurred to me.
What do you mean?
Mathematically at 0 sin(x) approximates simply to x, so there are no discontinuities?
Old 20th May 2018
  #28
Airwindows
 
chrisj's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by meloco_go View Post
What do you mean?
Mathematically at 0 sin(x) approximates simply to x, so there are no discontinuities?
People are incredibly sensitive to second order discontinuities, where the output number will be 0 but the direction things are changing will suddenly be the opposite. That's what made the old 'New Channel' be such a failure: the center of the wave was flat no-distortion, and then without making a visible discontinuity it would suddenly change to 'tighter sine-based saturation curve', both on the negative and positive sides of the wave. It would look perfectly normal but people just hated the sound. Now I know why
Old 21st May 2018
  #29
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisj View Post
People are incredibly sensitive to second order discontinuities, where the output number will be 0 but the direction things are changing will suddenly be the opposite. That's what made the old 'New Channel' be such a failure: the center of the wave was flat no-distortion, and then without making a visible discontinuity it would suddenly change to 'tighter sine-based saturation curve', both on the negative and positive sides of the wave. It would look perfectly normal but people just hated the sound. Now I know why
Yes, but then again sin(x) is an ideal function in that respect either, as the second derivative is the function itself.
Old 21st May 2018
  #30
Lives for gear
 
mutetourettes's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by meloco_go View Post
Yes, but then again sin(x) is an ideal function in that respect either, as the second derivative is the function itself.
it gets interesting...
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