Psycho Circuitry released RLC-79, a freely downloadable donationware compressor plugin for Windows.
That’s right, folks; another compressor has entered my plugin folder, and I’m here to tell you all about it!
Psycho Circuitry’s RLC-79 is a decidedly no-frills compressor, but what it lacks in controls, it makes up for with character and panache.
The design is based on a program-dependent RMS compressor from the 1970s, as you might imagine from the name. Despite general appearances, this compressor is chock full of character.
Going over the controls, you’ve got an input trim to gain stage. Following that, there is a threshold knob, which allows you to actually get the compressor action acting on your audio signal. You can select the knee, which does alter how the ratio, attack, and release all interact with the material.
The ratio selector allows for a wide range, spanning from gentle compression to limiting. You do have an output knob for adding or reducing gain as desired.
Now, by themselves, these are all perfectly fine features that would suit a set-and-forget compressor like the dbx 160A.
However, what sets the RLC-79 apart is the harmonics and output transformer modeling.
While the compressor action itself is great on kicks, snares, toms, guitars, bass, and whatever else you can think of, you can easily get this to go into tone box territory.
I do enjoy the saturation on this particular compressor; it is a pleasing grit that suits quite a bit of material.
It is also worth appreciating that you can dial in just how much harmonic distortion you want to add to the output of the signal, and you could realistically just run this clean if you want.
All in all, RLC-79 is a fun dynamics processor. I found myself slapping it all over a mix just to see how it went and came away ultimately pleased with the results.
There are a few drawbacks, like the plugin itself being Windows only at the moment. However, the developer has a Mac port in the works, so everyone should be able to join in on the fun soon enough.
RLC-79 is pay-what-you-want, so you can snag it for free. Keep in mind that the developer states that donations are required if you’re planning to use the plugin commercially.
While you’re there, take a look at the new Qx-Comp, which is a 2-band dynamic EQ working on the same pay model.
Download: RLC-79 (FREE /Support the devs by donating)