DigiDesign Revibe

Digidesign has recently released a new TDM plug in called ReVibe, designed exclusively for the HD Accel card. This reverb-modeling tool includes nine new reverb algorithms and over 200 room types/early reflections, all running up to 96 kHz, natively. The reverb algorithms can process audio at 96 kHz without sample rate conversion.

ReVibe runs in mono, stereo, and surround, and is built upon the user interface of Digidesign’s Reverb One plug-in. It features a flexible set of room modeling controls, allowing the user to adjust room colorations, early reflections, ambience, density, and presence. It was engineered to utilize the power increase provided by the 321 DSP chips on the Accel card, so it won’t run on previous-generation TDM systems.

The layout is quite similar to Reverb One, with a few additional parameters. In the LEVELS section, there is, of course, the input level, but there are also sliders to control the front, center, rear reverb, and rear ER (early reflections). There is also the ability to turn off those ERs, via a master ER on/off or just a rear ER on/off.
Under the REVERB section, there is a rear shape slider along with the more traditional level, time, pre-delay, diffusion, attack shape, size, and spread. There’s also a pull-down menu to choose the REVERB type, with various choices ranging from natural to small. Attack time also has a pull-down menu, with choices of short, medium, or long.

The metering section features INPUT and OUTPUT of L, C, R, Ls, and Rs signal. It’s interesting to watch the surround meters react when feeding a stereo signal into ReVibe — you see the L and R meters react on input, along with the corresponding L, C, R, Ls, Rs meters reacting to how you’ve tweaked your reverb.
Also slightly different from Reverb One is the DECAY COLOR section, with low and high frequency crossovers and low and high frequency ratios. Under EQ sits low and high frequency shelving, low and high gain (high gain boosts mid and high), and a high frequency rear cut, which rolls off high frequencies in the rear channels of the early reflections and reverb tail. It’s applied in addition to any Global EQ. There’s also a ROOM COLORATION section with a coloration slider and HF and LF color sliders.

Again as with Reverb One there are the EQ and CONTOUR (called COLOR in R-One) windows, allowing for easy grasping of EQ points and viewing of your early reflections and reverb contour, as well as the front and rear channel contours and reflections.
In the ROOM TYPE graphic window, in the top middle of the plug-in, users can click on the small arrow to choose an overall menu of Vintage Digital, Springs, Plates, Churches, etc. Below that is another arrow where you can choose from a huge drop-down list of selections.

You could also use the traditional method of selecting the presets from the plug-ins menu selector at the top. There the listings are more direct in nature, such as EMT 250 Hall, Long Inverse Room, Airport Terminal, Bathroom, and Orchestral Ambience, among many others. In the plug-in pull-down menu, the ReVibe choices are stereo, stereo/LCR, stereo/LCRS, stereo/Quad, stereo/5.0, and stereo 5.1. The letters for each selection will turn white at the bottom of the input and output meters to reflect your choice.

Digidesign has done their homework on this plug-in. I’ve used all the surround reverbs, and this one is right up there with the best I’ve tried — no wonder it needs so much horsepower to run it. Since I’m a reverb tweaker, I enjoyed playing with the coloration, reverb type, decays, and EQ parameters. The amount of control, in small measured steps or large leaps, is extremely useful to color the sound.

In stereo or mono, this will now be a plug-in that I apply in my mixing template right off the bat. In surround it really shines, and at the risk of seeming too simple, it just sounds great. The unique dimension and flavor it added to the drums, vocals, and guitar I tried it on were perfect — fitting nicely around my other surround reverbs. Some of my favorite settings were Tight Drum Room, LEX 300 Warm Plate, Vocal ER Presence, and Warm Baroque Hall.

Surround Professional Magazine