Florian Mrugalla releases NEL, a freeware vibrato plugin for Windows and macOS.
I admittedly know very little about vibrato as an effect. Yes, it’s based on a simple concept of
volume pitch (haha!) modulation, but it was never among my favorite pedals or features on an amp or pedal.
Moreover, I am terrible at playing the organ.
That said, NEL by Florian Mrugalla looks like a thoroughly modern take on the concept.
NEL was designed with the express intent of reducing artifacts and producing a clean and versatile vibrato. To this end, it utilizes feed-forward delays that modulate the signal’s pitch and time. You’ve got six modulators to choose from, and you can mix any two to get your desired vibrato.
The interface itself is a modern affair, calling to mind something like Collage by Kalide, with a very simplistic design that is quick to read.
You’ve got a randomized parameter for trying different sorts of effects out, which can yield some seriously cool results on the right material.
NEL’s modulators include a Perlin noise generator, an envelope follower, an audio rate MIDI input, an LFO, a pitch bend, and a macro.
In addition to the two base modulators active at any given time, four macros can be dragged and dropped to any modulation source for further control over the signal itself.
I found this sounded fantastic on a series of pads. It benefits synthetic strings and house organs quite well and gives a little depth and intrigue I otherwise wouldn’t have done on my own.
I’m not one of the diehards that runs everything through Plugin Doctor, but I didn’t really discern much in the way of noise or bit reduction.
The plugin’s author has done a fair job in creating a modern vibrato plugin. I greatly appreciate the interface, and I’m a huge fan of any plugin with a randomization feature.
While the randomization sometimes does result in unlistenable chaos, it serves as a great point of inspiration where you can sculpt things into a more reasonable state.
NEL is available for Windows and Mac computers. You’ll need a 64-bit host capable of using VST3 or AU plugins to use it.
Download: NEL (FREE)