TC Electronic MD3 Stereo Mastering Package

The MD3 Stereo Mastering Package includes the
dynamics and EQ tools from TC Electronic’s
System 6000.
Denmark’s TC Electronic has been creating upscale signal-processing tools for decades. These days the company’s flagship product is the System 6000, an $8,000 hardware reverb and mastering tool. Fortunately for Pro Tools users, TC has been porting the System 6000 software into a series of TDM plug-ins.

The latest trickle-down goodness is the MD3 Stereo Mastering package. It includes two plug-ins: MD3 Multiband Dynamics and BrickWall Limiter. Multiband Dynamics is a three-band expander/compressor boasting hi-res, 48-bit processing. It can process stereo or dual mono signals. (And when TC Electronic says dual mono, they mean dual mono. The MD3 offers true stereo side-chaining for completely independent control of any two mono tracks.) You also get adjustable crossover and crest frequencies, automatic gain make-up, and a “look ahead” delay for ultra-responsive compression.

A powerful four-band parametric EQ precedes the MD3’s dynamics processors. The low and high filters can also serve as shelving, notch, or cut filters. This is a precision tool — the notch filter can target bands as narrow as a hundredth of an octave! A normalizing section located between the EQ and dynamics stages guarantees that you reach the compressor with optimum levels.

The BrickWall Limiter nixes the signal overshoots that can cause nasty distortion in consumer audio gear and data-reduction codecs. You can use the two channels independently or link them to safeguard the stereo image. When it’s not attenuating a signal, the BrickWall Limiter passes signals through completely uncolored, so you can use it on previously mastered and dithered tracks.

The MD3 Stereo Mastering Package uses iLok authorization, and runs on all Pro Tools|HD systems.