I’m sure you already heard about MS processing. We found a plugin which picks up this idea, but expands it in its own way. DrMS by Mathew Lane has an interesting approach to process busses, tracks or even your master. And this kind of processing does not exist in any other plugin yet. Let’s have a look at this pioneer tool.
The main technology behind MS is the fact that mid and side signals are decoded and processed differently. DrMS by Mathew Lane is an EQ using this technology with two additional sections: field and focus. A big advantage of the MS technology is that you have control about the stereo width, which can have a large impact on your sound. But let’s take a look at the additional features of this plugin which makes it pretty interesting compared to other MS modules.
- Focus: takes information of mid signal and sends it to the side signal. This creates kind of an “zoom” effect. It brings things closer to the listener. I tried it on a vocal bus to create an “in your face” feeling.
- Field: takes some of the unprocessed side information and feeds it to the mid channel. It does the opposite of the focus section and adds more depth to elements: It moves stuff further away from you. So if your mix sounds flat or one-dimensional it may help to make it sound better.
How to use it
Using these two controls is interesting for vocal and music busses or even single tracks to create more space and depth to your mix or tightness.
There are quite a lot of nice presets. And I really recommend using them, otherwise you might end up in phasing and strange sound if you don’t know what you are doing.
Let’s take the preset “008 Vocalokeeish Stereo” and “009 Vocalokeeish Mono” for example: with these settings you can lower the volume of solo instruments or vocals. You can use them if you hardly need an instrumental, but don’t have one or need to put VO over a part with vocals. I tried it on a song:
As you can hear, this is a compromise solution, as it creates artifacts and you can still hear some of the reverb and delays. But in the described situation this might be a saver. Note that this won’t work for Hooks.
Each section has a low and high cut filter, but also a delay. This can create nice effects, but comes in more handy used on busses. Try it on your master track! For this example I used preset “011 Gentle Mix Widen”
On a music bus the plugin processes in a nice and subtle way and creates airiness with a pleasant width. Here I used “002 High Strings Stretch”
DrMS also gives you the possibility to simulate rooms. Not by using a reverb, but just with this EQ. This crates a realistic effect which is great if you want to put your VO in a car for example. In this example I used the plugin like an aux reverb with preset “017” and “018”.
Let’s make it short: I think this is a pretty interesting plugin which seems to be the only one in this category. You can use this on a full stereo track, on busses, stems or single tracks. And if used properly, you can have a great impact on your stereo files.
DrMS is available for €99 via Mathew Lane.com