In Part 1 of this article series, we took a look at how the brand new iZotope Music Essentials Bundle can help boost your creativity with the included DDLY, Trash 2, and Mobius Filter plug-ins. Those three plug-ins alone can open up a world of creative possibilities for your music production.
In Part 2, we’re exploring how you can take those new ideas, repair them with RX Elements, add polish to your vocals with Nectar Elements, mix your tracks with Neutron Elements, and master them with Ozone Elements.
All of these plug-ins come with the brand new iZotope Music Essentials Bundle; let's dive in to how they can help you sound like a pro.
1. RX Elements
Recording in your home studio is convenient. But unfortunately, you don't always get the luxury of recording in perfect conditions. Various background noises may get caught in your recordings: neighbors, cars driving by, the hum of the fridge, or other unwanted sounds.
Thankfully, the Music Essentials Bundle comes with RX Elements, your best friend for repairing audio recordings. The built-in Repair Assistant can analyze your takes and automatically repair any of your recordings, removing noise, clipping issues, clicks, and hum. Additionally, you have access to each of those individual plug-ins, meaning you can get more in-depth with each of their controls to achieve the desired results.
Music producer Bruno Cunha partnered up with German-born, LA-based singer Giuliana Cosentino for this new single. Having recorded her in his apartment, inevitably, the lead vocal track had a significant amount of noise on it. We decided to run it through RX Elements and see if it could help. It did a gorgeous job at removing the undesirable noise and background hiss.
Since all the background vocal parts were recorded throughout the day at two different locations, they had varying types of noise in their background. Take a listen to how well RX Elements handled cleaning up the audio recordings.
I don't know any other noise removal and repair plug-ins that can fix audio on such a high level as iZotope's RX suite can. The five components that come included with RX Elements will have you covered for the majority of scenarios you're going to encounter with your home studio recordings.
2. Nectar Elements
Getting pro sounding vocals can take a lot of time spent on adjusting various plug-ins. Nectar Elements can quickly impart professional clarity and polish. The Vocal Assistant analyzes and adapts to your vocal sound, giving you a choice of three vibe modes: Vintage, Modern, or Dialogue, along with three intensity levels. Once you select your desired sound, Nectar will analyze your vocal content and do its magic behind the scenes. What you're presented with are only six super easy to use faders for controlling dynamics (compression), de-essing, clarity through EQ, pitch correction, tone, and reverb. All of that wrapped in one easy-to-understand interface.
Listen to how Nectar Elements made our lead vocal shine, before and after:
Nectar Elements also performed beautifully on our background vocal parts, adding more clarity, dynamic control, and sparkle to them as a whole.
3. Neutron Elements
Mixing can be frustrating. Where one track may sound exceptional on its own, in context it may create a lot of mud and masking issues in your mix as a whole. This is where Neutron Elements can come to save your day.
Neutron Elements includes four mixing processors: an EQ, Compressor, Transient Shaper, and Exciter, giving you all the control at your fingertips. It also comes with Track Assistant, which automatically detects the instrument content of your track and set up all the necessary components and settings to make it sound great. And if that wasn't enough, it comes packed with hundreds of professionally designed presets to let you achieve just the sound you're looking for.
Take a listen to the pad. As you know from part I, we used Mobius Filter to give it an interesting always-evolving motion. But as you can hear (and see from the waveform), the added motion also caused some dynamic issues with certain moments and frequencies standing out more than others. We used the Muddy Synth Cleanup preset to give our pad the clarity that it was missing.
4. Ozone Elements
Finally, what many of us consider to be a dark art: mastering. Getting your master channel output to sound exceptional, full but also clear, exciting yet balanced, and loud without being dynamically squashed is a difficult task, to say the least. Particularly when you're working on a deadline and on a budget.
iZotope Ozone has become my best friend in delivering excellent-sounding songs without having shed a single drop of sweat. Just like every one of the other "Elements" plug-ins in this bundle, Ozone Elements features a brilliant assistant which will do a lot of the heavy lifting for you.
Master Assistant analyzes the sonic profile of your song to then suggest the necessary plug-ins, targets, signal chain, and processor settings. It will set up the EQ, Imager, and Maximizer to give you instant results that sound great off the bat. Alternately, you can also use any of the hundreds of professionally-designed presets to find the right starting point for you: from genre-specific ones to those meant for particular instruments or aesthetic preferences. Whichever route you choose, you can then go in deeper and add your own personal adjustments to help you achieve your desired result.
Take a listen to how Ozone Elements brilliantly took our master channel's audio and processed it to give us a final master that's balanced, loud, with dynamics that are under control.
The brand new iZotope Music Essentials Bundle includes not only three exceptional creative plug-ins (DDLY, Trash 2, and Mobius Filter), but also four outstanding plug-ins that will allow you to repair your audio (RX Elements), polish your vocals (Nectar Elements), clean up your mixes (Neutron Elements), and smooth out your masters (Ozone Elements). See how it can transform your tracks today.