Arturia has unveiled its latest creation, the Efx REFRACT plugin, a free download until January 4, 2024! This innovative tool is a sonic playground that marries stereo super unison processing with a suite of multi-effects, including filters, bitcrusher, distortion, and harmonizer, all wrapped in a user interface that’s as engaging as it is intuitive.
The Essence of Efx REFRACT
At the heart of Efx REFRACT lies the super unison engine, capable of transforming a single stereo voice into a lush ensemble of up to eight. This core feature is the gateway to a spectrum of sonic possibilities, from subtle enhancements to dramatic transformations
The plugin’s signal path is rich with potential, offering:
- Bandpass and comb filters for sculpting frequencies
- A bitcrusher for adding digital grit
- Distortion with multiple algorithms for harmonic richness
- A harmonizer to create ethereal textures
Modulation and Musicality
Efx REFRACT doesn’t stop at static effects. It includes a versatile LFO with synchronization options and various waveforms, allowing dynamic modulation of the Refraction amount and the main Harmonizer parameter. This modulation capability ensures that Efx REFRACT can inject life into any sound, making it a potent tool for creative exploration.
Professional Yet Playful
Arturia has struck a balance between professional-grade features and playful interaction. The abstract visual representation of the plugin’s processing provides an immediate understanding of how changes in parameters affect the sound. This makes Efx REFRACT not just a powerful sonic tool but also a source of inspiration and enjoyment.
Accessibility and Affordability
In a generous move, Arturia is offering Efx REFRACT as a free download until January 4, 2024. After this promotional period, the plugin will be priced at $99/€99, making it an accessible option for producers and musicians of all levels.
10 Cool Things You Can Do With The Efx Refract Plugin:
- Refraction: The Refraction section duplicates your input in up to 8 stereo voices, depending on the ‘Voices’ parameter you set. The Refraction ‘Amount’ increasingly detunes and modulates each voice against one another to widen them, thickening and widening your input sound.
- Mode FX: The plugin includes five additional Mode FX (BandPass Filter, Comb Filter, Bitcrusher, Distortion, Harmonizer) which are added onto each Refracted voice and processed individually, before being summed back up at the output. This setup allows for new, wild, and creative results with only a few simple controls.
- Dispersion: The Refraction ‘Amount’ disperses the main control of your chosen Mode Effect on each of the ‘Voices’. For example, it will increasingly change the Cutoff frequencies of each voice in BandPass/Comb Filter modes, centred around the Cutoff frequency set by the user. Experiment with the relationship between the Refraction Amount and Voices, and how setting them impacts your selected Mode FX’s controls.
- Filters: Use the ‘Input HP’ to filter out some of the low frequencies from your input, which can help clean up the Distortion & Bitcrusher modes. Use the ‘Output LP’ to tame the Effect’s high frequencies and remove some harshness to get smoother results.
- LFO: Use the Sample & Hold LFO ‘Wave’ to create choppy chaotic modulations, or use the ‘Sample & Glide’ to keep the chaos but smooth it out.
- Filtered Widener: Use the Bandpass filter and set both the ‘Cutoff’ and ‘Resonance’ in the middle, and set the Refraction ‘Amount’ and ‘Voices’ to the maximum. Each voice will have a different Cutoff frequency centred around the ‘Cutoff’ control, creating a filtered widener effect. Experiment with how Refraction ‘Amount’ and ‘Voices’ affect this relationship.
- Surreal Shimmer: Use the Harmonizer with the ‘Spray’ set to the max and the ‘Oct’ Chord selected, and listen to how the Harmonizer creates some shimmer-like feedback. Use the ‘HP Input’ and ‘LP Output’ filters to shape the tone.
- Metallic Reverb: Use the Comb Filter with a low ‘Cutoff’ value and ‘Resonance’ at maximum, together with a low Refraction ‘Amount’ and ‘Voices’ set to eight, to create a metallic plate-like reverb. Play with the ‘Cutoff’ and Refraction ‘Amount’ values to change the size of your reverb, and use the ‘Output LP’ filter to tame the top-end.
- Melodic BitCrusher: Use the BitCrusher with high ‘Downsample’ and low ‘Bit Depth’ values. Set the Refraction ‘Amount’ high and with only one ‘Voice’. This results in an extreme Bit crush quality that is very non-tonal. However, as you add more voices, you will keep this extreme quality while adding voices that have a progressively less pronounced degradation and more tonality, making the overall effect much more melodic.
- Monster Bass: With a deep bass sound, use the Distortion mode with the Germanium ‘Algorithm’ selected and set the ‘Drive’ to 24dB. Set the Refraction ‘Amount’ to 50% and ‘Voices’ to 8, and lower the ‘OUT’ level by -10. Now gently increase the Distortion ‘Drive’ to give your bass some monstrous bite.
Arturia’s Efx REFRACT is a testament to the company’s commitment to innovation and user experience, in line with their previous Efx MOTIONS and Efx FRAGMENTS plugins. With its super unison engine, array of effects, and dynamic modulation, it’s a plugin that promises to bring a new dimension to any producer’s toolkit. Whether you’re crafting the next hit or experimenting with sound design, Efx REFRACT is a must-try—especially while it’s available for free.
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