Drum Leveler by Sound Radix is a very special new drum dynamic and processing tool with some unique features and a very intuitive GUI. We had the chance to to a quick review and tested Drum Leveler in the studio.
What is Sound Radix Drum Leveler?
The Sound Radix Drum Leveler is a dynamic drum leveling plug-in available for VST, AAX, RTAS, AU for both Mac and PC. Sound Radix itself claims the Drum Leveler as “a new beat detection-based downward and upward compressor/expander and gate”.
What does Drum Leveler:
Instead of a usual dynamic tool like a classical compressor, Drum Leveler has a transient and beat detection and analyses the incoming audio signal in real-time and processes the signal with downward and upward compression or expansion and gating. It does not use any traditional VCA based envelope follower and even uses 2 different threshold curves.
One curve is used to control all low values and processes all values below this threshold and the other high threshold us used to modify all values above it. In combination with new advanced algorithms that allow unparalleled transparent and phase-accurate dynamics the result is a very clean and extremely adjustable sound.
The plug-in works in 3 mode: dual mono, stereo and in mide/side mode. The additional side-chain filter with a high and a low band allows even more control and influences what part of the signal does affect the control signal.
The sound of Drum Leveler!
Especially live recorded drums but also bass, guitar and other instruments with a very high dynamic range do benefit quite a lot by using Drum Leveler if the goal is a more consistent or balanced sound and dynamic range.
The algorithms are so fast and the control knobs and settings are so accurate that it is even possible to cut out specific sounds in a drum mix. For example getting rid of a snare drum should not be a hard task – this does depend very much from the recording and the source material for sure. It is also quite easy to accentuate or boost specific elements like a hihat or the kick drum. Even more drastic and unreal effects like the typical side-chain pumping effect or rhythmical gates can be achieved very quickly.
In almost all scenarios and with different settings the resulting sound was relatively natural and clean sounding; using this plug-in in processing real recorded instruments and drums is definitely its strength.
Watch Drum Leveler in action:
Overall Sound Quality
Summary and Total Rating
Drum Leveler is a very special tool. If you want to easily contol the dynamics of your drum recordings Drum Leveler is a no brainer and quite a unique little helper that doesn't destroy or overcompress your recordings.