McDSP Channel G
By Joe Gore
After you’ve perfected some of the most popular dynamics and equalization plug-ins for the Pro Tools platform, what do you do for a follow-up act?
For McDSP, the answer is Channel G, a virtual console strip for Pro Tools TDM systems that combines an expander/gate, compressor/limiter, equalization, and filters. The EQ sections include five channels of parametric EQ with ±18 dB of gain plus high- and low-pass filters, while the dynamics processor boasts a stupefyingly fast response time of a single sample at sample rates below 100 kHz.
Channel G appears in your plug-ins list in four configurations: equalizer alone, dynamics alone, surround compressor limiter, and “G Console” (the whole shebang). The latter devotes separate screens to its EQ and dynamics controls, though you retain a view of your EQ settings in the dynamics view, and vice-versa. All configurations boast easy-to-tweak controls and large, high-resolution graphics depicting your current settings.
Since the various configurations can run on a single chip, you may, depending on your usage, witness serious savings of DSP resources. You can power as many as 17 mono dynamics or EQ processors from a single HD chip, or eight instances of the full-blown G Console.
While McDSP points out that Channel G is an entirely new product and not an update of FilterBank and CompressorBank, it does recap some highlights of its predecessors, particularly their chameleonic knack for mimicking classic analog gear. The Channel G dynamics processors can simulate the responses of SSL channel and bus compressors, as well as Neve 33609s and API 225s. Similarly, the equalizer can conjure the sounds of both E- and G-series SSL boards, the Neve 9098i, and the API 550.
Channel G offers a full range of post-effect, pre-effect, and sidechain routing options, and supports sample rates up to 192 kHz. Though Channel G works with all Digidesign control surfaces, its parameters also perfectly map to the dedicated EQ and dynamics editing panels on Digidesign’s ICON consoles. The dynamics, EQ, and G Console plug-ins are available in both mono and stereo configurations. Meanwhile, the
surround compressor includes four independent compressor sets: LR,
C, LsRs, and LFE.
A downloadable demo of Channel G is available on the McDSP website.