Nugen Audio

Nugen Mastercheck

Nugen Audio release new Mastercheck meter aimed at the music industry and podcast community.

Nugen Audio, whose name has become synonymous with high end, professional, mission critical, tools have launched Mastercheck, a brand new meter that aims to help us find our way through the new “loudness normalisation” landscape that has opened up before us.

With loudness normalisation having become quickly adopted by nearly all of the major music streaming platforms and some media players it’s left a lot of people, professionals and enthusiasts alike, unsure of ideal levels and “how loud is now too loud?”. Mastercheck can help with it’s five primary applications:

  •  Audio Production To A Loudness Target

Now there’s no advantage in simply being louder than the rest, the unique “Offset To Match” feature will allow immediate referencing at the levels your listeners will be fed using all the major international standards in use today.

  • Measuring Dynamic Content / Dynamic Range

With a new standardised numerical measure of dynamic content/range, the Peak to Loudness Ratio (PLR), Mastercheck offers both a short-term and full program loudness dynamic content display.

  • Avoiding Downstream Clipping From Compression Codecs

Streaming services utilise compression codecs to deliver audio and they can cause nasty clipping if given too hot audio. Mastercheck allows for Inter-Sample True-Peak monitoring so you can see when your audio will get mangled by compression codecs.

  • Comparing Your Audio With Reference Material

Quickly feed in some reference material using the built in sidechain and quickly A/B between that and your audio.

  • “Removing” Loudness From The Signal Chain

Easily and conveniently switch between your processed and unprocessed audio with instant loudness matching. Mastercheck allows you to properly hear whether a louder master is better for your audio when loudness normalisation is in full effect.

While a reasonably simple concept, the practical implications of loudness normalisation have introduced some fairly complicated decisions into the mastering process so any tools that can make this area clearer will be very welcome indeed. If Nugen Audio can carry over their brilliantly simple design, workflows, and ease of use from their other products into Mastercheck then this will surely be a vital tool in your arsenal.

Available now for Mac and Windows PC, it’s priced at £80/$129 (plus VAT/taxes), and comes as a VST 2, VST 3, AAX, AU and Audiosuite in 32/64bit. RTAS is 32bit only. Go to the Mastercheck product page for full details.

NUGEN Audio have released the SEQ-S, a linear phase spline-match EQ.

As with other NUGEN products, SEQ-S appears to be a “no cut corners” approach offering mono, stereo, 5.1 and 7.1 support, stereo MS operation, automated spectrum analysis, curve smoothing and a direct-draw spline interface for corrective application. Jon Schorah, Creative Director for NUGEN Audio, adds,

“Unlike many digital EQs, SEQ-S features a phase profile that is linear across the frequency spectrum which results in natural sounding EQ changes and produces minimal phase artifacts. SEQ-S also includes a unique resolution setting that can be used with high precision in the low frequencies, allowing for highly transparent adjustments without muddying the mix.”

On top of these SEQ-S offers an “Invert” button making usual space saving techniques as literally simple as pressing a bunch. Perhaps most excitingly, the “match” in the “spline-match” description refers to the ability of cloning the EQ in a piece of audio and then transferring onto yours! While SEQ-S won’t be the first EQ to offer this there’s no doubt that NUGEN will offer one of the best applications of this concept so far.

Available now for $249, it comes in as VST, VST3, AAX and AU in 32 and 64bit formats. There is an RTAS version but that is only in a 32bit version. For full details visit the NUGEN Audio website.

World beating analysis suite, Nugen Audio’s Visualizer, has now been updated to include compatibility with Avid’s 64bit AAX technology, as well as 64bit and VST3 formats for non-Avid platforms. Straight from Nugen Audio:

Visualizer provides comprehensive audio analysis for recording, mixing, and mastering in a single plug-in, offering a standardized reference set of professional tools designed to help audio engineers work faster, avoid mistakes, repeat past successes, and understand the success of others. With the latest upgrade, Visualizer is now among the first in the industry to be compatible with Avid Pro Tools 11, the latest version of Avid’s popular digital audio workstation.

With Visualizer, engineers are able to access many different views within a single intelligent window system, which lets them select the view combinations they need. Visualizer automatically resizes and aligns windows to maximize legibility and referencing information across screens. For recording, Visualizer offers tools for calibration, setting levels, signal path checking, noise minimization, and many other audio tasks. At the mixing desk, engineers can use Visualizer for tasks such as low-end control, masking, hidden frequencies, and stereo placement, among many others. For mastering, Visualizer supports a wide range of views such as stereo spread, phase relationships, and EQ distribution.

As a user of Visualizer for many years Book Of Sound was lucky enough to be included on the beta version testing and we’re pleased to report that the GUI has also been given a slight makeover as it now features a rather beautiful dark skin making it much easier on the eyes when used for long periods of time.

If any part of your job involves audio analysis then we fully encourage you to give Visualizer your consideration. The regular price is $199 but there is currently a deal where Nugen Audio site registrants can snag it for $99 and existing Visualizer users get a free upgrade. Full details can be found at the Nugen Audio Visualizer product page.

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