Venn Audio has released a beta version of Free Clip, a forthcoming freeware soft clipper effect in VST and AU plugin formats for PC and Mac.
Free Clip is a soft clipper effect designed for trimming the volume peaks and boosting the loudness of the processed signal without introducing harsh sounding artifacts. As most other soft clippers, it emulates the type of soft distortion you’d get when overdriving a tape. This type of clipping can sound great on drums, bass guitars, and even on the master bus when used very carefully and subtly.
The thing that makes Venn Audio’s clipper different from similar offerings on the market is the fact that it features a set of clipping curves which result in different sounding results. The user can choose between Hard, Quintic, Cubic, Hyperbolic Tan, Algebraic, and Arctangent clipping shapes, as well as adjust the oversampling mode (up to 32x), and control the input and output gain levels. The plugin also comes with a Clip Ceiling knob which controls the level at which the clipping circuit kicks in.
The interface, although not the prettiest looking thing in the VST plugin world, is well laid-out and easy to use. The volume meters on the left and the right show the peak levels to help fine-tune the Clip Ceiling parameter and visually adjust the clipping amount without distorting the “body” of the sound. The CPU usage changes drastically as the oversampling amount increases, which is to be expected. I’m happy to say, though, that the plugin performs very well at lower oversampling settings.
You can download Free Clip directly from the product page linked below. The plugin doesn’t need to be activated and you don’t need a user account in order to grab your free copy. Please note that this is a beta version and that Free Clip is still a work in progress. A solid first release by Venn Audio, though!
Free Clip is available for free download via Venn Audio (2.85 MB download size, ZIP archive, 32-bit & 64-bit VST/AU plug-in formats for Windows & Mac OS).