Gear Review: Multipass Effect Plugin by kiloHearts w/ Rory PQ

In this gear review, Dubspot’s Rory PQ takes us through the new multiband modular processor plugin by kiloHearts called Multipass. Get an in-depth look at the intuitive interface and all the features that make this powerful, modern multiband effect processing tool worth adding to your arsenal.

Multipass

kiloHearts, the Swedish software developers of the popular kHs ONE, Faturator, and Disperser plugins have announced the release of their latest creation called Multipass. This impressive modular multiband processor is capable of splitting a track’s input signal into a maximum of five different fully adjustable frequency bands called ‘Lanes’ that can be processed independently using a selection of effect plugins called ‘Snap-ins.’

An Introduction to Multipass

Let’s delve deeper into this powerful effect processor and take a closer look at the customizable interface and many features included in the Beta version. The interactive interface displays a modern workflow complete with various options to process your sounds, as well as an expandable preset library window. Multipass has all the tools you need to produce a powerful and polished sound in one intuitive plugin for a mixing experience that inspires creativity. Let’s check out what this innovative multiband effect processor has to offer.

Macro Controls

Multipass

The upper-left section of the interface has eight Macro controls that can be assigned to nearly every available parameter in Multipass. To assign a parameter to a Macro, simply hover your mouse over any of the eight knobs to reveal an orange link icon. After clicking the orange link icon, smaller orange knobs will appear under every parameter that can be assigned to a Macro control. Adjusting these orange knobs will set the amount of influence the assigned Macro has over the selected parameter. You can also assign multiple parameters to a single Macro for simultaneous control. Assigning Macros makes it easy to manage essential parameters better or create complex control relationships between effects, making it simple to forge truly unique sounds.

Modulation

Multipass

The upper-right section of the interface is where you can assign LFO, Envelope, and different types of expression control modulation to any available parameter. Setting up a modulation source to control a parameter is accomplished the same way as assigning Macro controls. Hover your mouse over a modulation source to reveal an orange link icon. After clicking the orange link icon, smaller orange knobs will appear under every parameter that can be modulated. Adjusting these orange knobs will set the amount of influence the assigned modulation source has over the selected parameter. This section includes two LFO sources with selectable waveforms and retrigger options, two Envelope sources with different curve options and envelope follow modes, and a MIDI section for setting up Modwheel, Pitchwheel, and expression modulation. Oddly, there is also a section for playing the classic 8-bit game, Snake.

Multiband Effect Lanes

Multipass by kiloHearts

The center area of Multipass harnesses the core concept of this plugin and is divided up into sections called ‘Lanes’ that allow us to separate the input signal into different channels where multiple Snap-ins can be added to create custom effect chains that operate in parallel.

The far left Lane labeled ‘Pre FX’ is used to add Snap-ins that process the input signal before it splits into different frequency bands. To add a Snap-in, hover your mouse over an empty area of the Lane and click to reveal a list of available effect plugins. You can add as many Snap-ins as you like and reorder them to build an effect chain that fits your needs.

The center section of Multipass is where the magic happens. This set of Lanes is divided into five frequency bands that can each be loaded with their own chain of Snap-ins. Splitting the frequency spectrum into fully adjustable and independent bands gives us the ability to process different parts of the sound separately to produce a more powerful sound. Each Lane has crossover points that can be adjusted to define the frequency ranges for the bands. There are also options, to Mute, Solo, and disable any of the Lanes. When a Lane is disabled, the signal will pass through unaffected. Also, you don’t have to use all five Lanes if it’s not necessary. Only enable the Lanes for the frequency ranges you wish to process. To add a Snap-in, simply click on an empty area of the Lane and choose your desired effect from the list. Again, the Snap-ins can be rearranged to suit your needs.

Multipass

The far right Lane labeled ‘Post FX’ is used to add Snap-ins that process the combined output signal as a whole. Think of this Lane as the master channel before the signal leaves the plugin. Adding Snap-ins to this Lane is achieved the same way as all the other Lanes.

Below each Lane is a set of parameters that allow you to control the output signal further. You can set the output Gain, Panning, Mix amount, and the influence the Post Lane effects will have on the output.

Multipass

Snap-in Effects

Multipass by kiloHearts

All the effect plugins included in Multipass are called ‘Snap-ins,’ which can also be loaded as stand-alone effects. You can use as many, or as few Snap-ins as you fancy with Multipass, and you can order them however you like. This amount of flexibility allows you to easily manipulate sounds in a fun way using only one plugin rather than several plugins.

Below is the current list of Snap-ins included with Multipass. kiloHearts has also announced they plan on releasing additional Snap-ins in future releases. In addition, Disperser and Faturator are compatible with Multipass as well!

  • Bitcrush
  • Chorus
  • Comb Filter
  • Compressor
  • Delay
  • Disperser
  • Distortion
  • Faturator
  • Filter
  • Formant Filter
  • Frequency Shifter
  • Gain
  • Haas
  • Limiter
  • Phaser
  • Pitch Shifter
  • Resonator
  • Stereo
  • Trance Gate

Preset Library

Multipass

The preset library can be expanded from the top preset display menu. The Beta version of Multipass comes loaded with nine different preset folders stacked with over 80 impressive sound mangling presets geared for various mixing situations. There are also options to save user defined presets, change the preset folder location, and create new folders.

Multipass Technical Notes

  • 5 configurable frequency bands
  • 2 LFO modulation sources with multiple shapes
  • 2 Envelope modulation sources, working either as amplitude followers or ADSR envelopes
  • LFOs and Envelopes can be retriggered both by MIDI note or audio input
  • MIDI modulation by note, velocity, pitchwheel, modwheel, pressure and up to 3 custom controllers
  • Sidechaining (on select snapins), both against external sources and internally between bands

Final Thoughts

Multipass is a forward-thinking effect processing plugin that integrates essential tools for mixing and sound design into one simple, user-friendly interface. Multipass’s modular approach for multiband processing is convenient, and the included Snap-ins sound great. Multiband processing is not new technology, and you can easily create multiband Effect Racks in Ableton Live. However, this plugin streamlines the process and can save you valuable time. I can see this plugin being a valuable music tool for people using other DAWs that don’t have the capability of creating custom multiband devices. Multipass’s modernized user interface, powerful features, and unlimited possibilities make this plugin a great all-in-one solution that certainly encourages creative experimentation.

Pricing & Availability

All new products will be available as a digital download in AU and VST formats, 32 and 64-bit, for purchase at kiloHearts.com.

Multipass will be sold pre-bundled with five free Snap-ins; Chorus, Delay, Gain, Limiter and Stereo. It will cost $99 / €89.

Chorus, Delay, Gain, Limiter and Stereo can be downloaded individually, or in a separate bundle, through kilohearts.com for free.

The following snapins: Bitcrush, Comb filter, Compressor, Distortion, Filter, Formant Filter, Frequency shifter, Haas, Phaser, Pitch Shifter, Resonator, and Trance Gate, will be priced at $19 / €17 each.

A bundle including Multipass as well as all 17 Snap-ins will be available and priced at $249 / €219. That is a $78 / €74 mark-down as opposed to buying each product separately. This bundle will also have a discounted limited time release offer, priced at $199 / €179.

For users interested in acquiring only the Snap-ins, there will be a bundle of all 17 Snap-ins that are available at release for $179 / €159. That is a $49 / €45 mark-down as opposed to buying each product separately.

After November 13th the pre-existing plugins, Disperser and Faturator will get updates, making it possible to use them as Snap-ins as well as standalone plugins. As a result, they will both have their prices adjusted. New prices are $39 / €35 each.

About kiloHearts

Kilohearts AB is a small development studio focusing on the development of software synthesizers and effects. The company’s mission is to combine quality and power with ease of use. Based in Linköping, Sweden, Kilohearts AB currently employs four people.

 


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