United Plugins are offering the newly released Front DAW (€49 value) analog saturation and gain control plugin as a free download until September 15th, 2019.
Front DAW is an analog saturation effect in VST, VST3, AU, and AAX plugin formats for compatible digital audio workstations on PC and Mac. The developers at United Plugins created Front DAW following the advice from English producer and remixer Greg Brimson. He suggested them to create an analog-style saturation plugin which will act as a “front door” for every audio channel in a DAW. This way, users who work in the box could easily apply an analog mixing console flavor to their mix. We’ve seen a similar concept in some other console emulation plugins, such as the Satson channel strip by Sonimus.
The plugin takes advantage of the VARM (Variable Analogue Random Modeling) technology to emulate the non-linear behavior of analog recording consoles. The same modeling technology was previously used in the Royal Compressor plugin by Soundevice Digital. Front DAW was designed to be used as the first insert in every channel, resulting in cumulative warmth and subtle saturation across the entire mix. Thankfully, the plugin is CPU-friendly enough to allow for multiple instances being used without any major performance issues.
The user interface features three knobs and three buttons. The knobs control the input gain, saturation amount, and the high-pass filter’s cutoff point. The buttons are used to select one of the three saturation models which are based on three different types of vintage analog recording consoles (British, German, and American). The plugin also features a preset manager which allows the user to save their own custom settings for later use. We were happy to notice that the interface is freely resizable, making the plugin compatible with any screen size.
As with any other analog modeling plugin on the market, producers will debate whether or not this type of processing has any real benefit on the quality of the mix. That said, there’s no denying that Front DAW does its intended job quite well. The saturation algorithm sounds very authentic and pleasant and the effect is certainly noticeable when the plugin is applied to multiple audio channels. I am personally a big fan of such tools and tend to use them creatively, to give my music a retro and somewhat oversaturated feel. If you like experimenting with saturation and always wanted to use real vintage hardware, don’t miss the opportunity to download Front DAW for free.
Front DAW can be downloaded completely free of charge until September 15th, 2019. After that, the plugin will be priced at €49 for the full license (a 15-day trial version will still be offered for free). Once you complete the checkout process on the product page linked below, a Front DAW license will be added to your United Plugins user account. Visit the My Licenses page to download the plugin installer and the license file which is required to activate the software on first use.
Front DAW is available for free download via United Plugins (14.5 MB download size, EXE installer, 32-bit & 64-bit VST/VST3/AU/AAX plugin format for Windows & MacOS).