La Petite Excite is a harmonic exciter effect developed by Fine Cut Bodies and released as a freeware VST/AU plugin for Windows and Mac OS based plugin host applications.
The plugin’s interface is pretty straight forward, featuring no more than five knobs and the additional noise floor switch. Getting the best possible results out of La Petite Excite does require some understanding of what’s going on “underneath the GUI” though, so let’s take a quick look at that. For a more thorough explanation of the plugin’s functionality, watch the excellent demo video which is embedded below and take a look at the user manual PDF which is included in the download pack.
An “exciter” is essentially a signal processor which is used to bring out and “enhance” certain frequencies in a sound. There are several different ways to achieve this effect (often a combination of multi-band compression and saturation) and La Petite Excite focuses on dynamic compression of the low and high frequency bands. The “Low” and “High” parameters on the plugin’s interface are used to increase the volume of these two frequency ranges, whereas the “CV” parameter is used to tame the highs if they sound too harsh (the method behind this is explained in the demo video below).
The “Input” and “Output” parameters control the volume of the signal and the “Noise Floor” parameter adds low level noise to the signal on the input when turned on. Overall, the plugin is extremely easy to use and it can really help with adding clarity and definition to a mix when used sporadically. Using it on too many elements in a mix can result in quite a mess though, so be careful and add it to only a few select tracks in your project. The plugin doesn’t come with any factory presets, however that’s understandable as the “sweet spot” for the “Low” and “High” parameters depends a lot on the characteristics of the processed signal.
Please note that you’ll need to submit your email address in order to download your free copy of La Petite Excite. You will be automatically subscribed to the Fine Cut Bodies newsletter (and they’ve released some really cool freebies in the past, so it totally makes sense to keep an eye on their updates channel), however it’s possible to unsubscribe at any point. The download pack contains an installer and it’s not possible to extract the DLL file with 7ZIP (you’ll need to go through the installation process).
UPDATE: The plugin can now also be downloaded as a separate DLL file (no installer required). That’s great news! :)
Check out the La Petite Excite demo video:
La Petite Excite is available for free download via Fine Cut Bodies (1.57 MB download size, ZIP archive containing installers, 32-bit & 64-bit VST/AU plugin format for Windows & Mac, user manual in PDF format).