Acustica Taupe - Hype Or The Real Deal?

VST, AU, etc. plug-in Virtual Effects discussion
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plexuss
KVRAF
2571 posts since 8 Jul, 2009

Post Sat Nov 10, 2018 10:03 am

perpetual3 wrote:
Sat Nov 10, 2018 9:49 am
el-bo (formerly ebow) wrote:
Sat Nov 10, 2018 9:36 am
plexuss wrote:
Sat Nov 10, 2018 9:11 am
Wag, where you are going to hear the difference with a tape emulator like Satin is more in the over-all sound-stage (width, depth, height) and how the various tracks either stick out more or blend in more. It's more subtle than a big EQ move for sure. But it should be: a good tape machine is designed to impart as little distortion as possible - but they still mess with the signal in ways that affect phase, etc. giving those kinds of net results. But yes if you can't hear it then it's not worth bothering with. All these kinds of small incremental changes can add up and have a more obvious effect on the perception of the track, but yes you have to be able to hear them and know how to work with them to get good results. otherwise you are wise to pass. :phones:
I think wags Would be much better off with something like Audiothing's 'Reels', as he's clearly after the kind of artifacts that come from poorly-maintained tape machines, and badly-degraded tape. And while machines in such a state can be good for sound design, they're not the states that most of these tape plugins seek to emulate.
Yeah, Reels nails the lofi sound exceptionally well. I thought about it, but between Reelbus 4 and DAW Cassette it was too much overlap for me. I think Reelbus 4 is amazingly flexible and can be both hifi and lofi. I also find the drive EQ fantastic for using the plugin creatively especially together with the delay.
I also agree. I like the way hifi tape emulation messes with the sound-stage and balance of audio in the digital domain. Back in the day we never would pick a tape machine for these kinds of artifacts, mostly because we didn't know any different! But you might pick different tapes for sonic character. However most people had their fav tape (Ampex 456 for me, for 15 ips). I rarely use the emulated saturation and other more lofi effects of tape emulation. I passed on AT Reels because of that (I pretty have every other AT plugin). :phones:

sleepcircle
KVRian
536 posts since 28 Nov, 2016

Re: Acustica Taupe - Hype Or The Real Deal?

Post Sat Nov 10, 2018 10:15 am

plexuss wrote:
Sat Nov 10, 2018 9:11 am
Wag, where you are going to hear the difference with a tape emulator like Satin is more in the over-all sound-stage (width, depth, height) and how the various tracks either stick out more or blend in more. It's more subtle than a big EQ move for sure. But it should be: a good tape machine is designed to impart as little distortion as possible - but they still mess with the signal in ways that affect phase, etc. giving those kinds of net results. But yes if you can't hear it then it's not worth bothering with. All these kinds of small incremental changes can add up and have a more obvious effect on the perception of the track, but yes you have to be able to hear them and know how to work with them to get good results. otherwise you are wise to pass. :phones:
+1. plexuss probably explained it much better than i could.

incidentally, i regret buying kramer master tape. it was one of the first things i bought, and i used to like it quite a bit—but the more i listened, the more i could hear a kind of faint… crinkly digital noise and a sort of stuffiness which satin (and admittedly which taupe) does not impart to their tracks.

User avatar
plexuss
KVRAF
2571 posts since 8 Jul, 2009

Re: Acustica Taupe - Hype Or The Real Deal?

Post Sat Nov 10, 2018 10:30 am

sleepcircle wrote:
Sat Nov 10, 2018 10:15 am
plexuss wrote:
Sat Nov 10, 2018 9:11 am
Wag, where you are going to hear the difference with a tape emulator like Satin is more in the over-all sound-stage (width, depth, height) and how the various tracks either stick out more or blend in more. It's more subtle than a big EQ move for sure. But it should be: a good tape machine is designed to impart as little distortion as possible - but they still mess with the signal in ways that affect phase, etc. giving those kinds of net results. But yes if you can't hear it then it's not worth bothering with. All these kinds of small incremental changes can add up and have a more obvious effect on the perception of the track, but yes you have to be able to hear them and know how to work with them to get good results. otherwise you are wise to pass. :phones:
+1. plexuss probably explained it much better than i could.

incidentally, i regret buying kramer master tape. it was one of the first things i bought, and i used to like it quite a bit—but the more i listened, the more i could hear a kind of faint… crinkly digital noise and a sort of stuffiness which satin (and admittedly which taupe) does not impart to their tracks.
And one of the most important aspects of tape are all the non-linear distortions the medium imparts - from the cabling to the tape - the entire signal path, even when set as flat as possible, will still deteriorate the signal. We love the sound of deteriorated audio. Our ears themselves profoundly deterioriate an audio signal, in a technical sense. It's funny how we "think" we know what flat and 0% distortion are. We simply do not hear that way. :phones:

sleepcircle
KVRian
536 posts since 28 Nov, 2016

Re: Acustica Taupe - Hype Or The Real Deal?

Post Sat Nov 10, 2018 10:39 am

yeah. but this wasn't a GOOD distortion. it was a stuffy, clogging-up of the higher register which the sound didn't "float on" as much as "slog through." i can only assume it was some kind of aliasing issue, because i've learned recently that Waves is very lax when it comes to that sort of thing.

User avatar
wagtunes
KVRAF
14578 posts since 8 Oct, 2014

Re: Acustica Taupe - Hype Or The Real Deal?

Post Sat Nov 10, 2018 10:48 am

perpetual3 wrote:
Sat Nov 10, 2018 9:49 am
el-bo (formerly ebow) wrote:
Sat Nov 10, 2018 9:36 am
plexuss wrote:
Sat Nov 10, 2018 9:11 am
Wag, where you are going to hear the difference with a tape emulator like Satin is more in the over-all sound-stage (width, depth, height) and how the various tracks either stick out more or blend in more. It's more subtle than a big EQ move for sure. But it should be: a good tape machine is designed to impart as little distortion as possible - but they still mess with the signal in ways that affect phase, etc. giving those kinds of net results. But yes if you can't hear it then it's not worth bothering with. All these kinds of small incremental changes can add up and have a more obvious effect on the perception of the track, but yes you have to be able to hear them and know how to work with them to get good results. otherwise you are wise to pass. :phones:
I think wags Would be much better off with something like Audiothing's 'Reels', as he's clearly after the kind of artifacts that come from poorly-maintained tape machines, and badly-degraded tape. And while machines in such a state can be good for sound design, they're not the states that most of these tape plugins seek to emulate.
Yeah, Reels nails the lofi sound exceptionally well. I thought about it, but between Reelbus 4 and DAW Cassette it was too much overlap for me. I think Reelbus 4 is amazingly flexible and can be both hifi and lofi. I also find the drive EQ fantastic for using the plugin creatively especially together with the delay.
Thanks for quoting this or I'd have missed it. Thank El-bo for me. Son of a gun, he nailed it.

Now you say Reelbus 4 can do both? I went to the site but can't find any audio demos. I guess I'll head to Youtube to see if I can find something. But yeah, Reels is off the charts amazing for that sound. Ideally, I'd like something that can do both just as well. That might be asking for a lot though.

perpetual3
KVRian
510 posts since 28 Sep, 2012

Re: Acustica Taupe - Hype Or The Real Deal?

Post Sat Nov 10, 2018 12:08 pm

wagtunes wrote:
Sat Nov 10, 2018 10:48 am
perpetual3 wrote:
Sat Nov 10, 2018 9:49 am
el-bo (formerly ebow) wrote:
Sat Nov 10, 2018 9:36 am
plexuss wrote:
Sat Nov 10, 2018 9:11 am
Wag, where you are going to hear the difference with a tape emulator like Satin is more in the over-all sound-stage (width, depth, height) and how the various tracks either stick out more or blend in more. It's more subtle than a big EQ move for sure. But it should be: a good tape machine is designed to impart as little distortion as possible - but they still mess with the signal in ways that affect phase, etc. giving those kinds of net results. But yes if you can't hear it then it's not worth bothering with. All these kinds of small incremental changes can add up and have a more obvious effect on the perception of the track, but yes you have to be able to hear them and know how to work with them to get good results. otherwise you are wise to pass. :phones:
I think wags Would be much better off with something like Audiothing's 'Reels', as he's clearly after the kind of artifacts that come from poorly-maintained tape machines, and badly-degraded tape. And while machines in such a state can be good for sound design, they're not the states that most of these tape plugins seek to emulate.
Yeah, Reels nails the lofi sound exceptionally well. I thought about it, but between Reelbus 4 and DAW Cassette it was too much overlap for me. I think Reelbus 4 is amazingly flexible and can be both hifi and lofi. I also find the drive EQ fantastic for using the plugin creatively especially together with the delay.
Thanks for quoting this or I'd have missed it. Thank El-bo for me. Son of a gun, he nailed it.

Now you say Reelbus 4 can do both? I went to the site but can't find any audio demos. I guess I'll head to Youtube to see if I can find something. But yeah, Reels is off the charts amazing for that sound. Ideally, I'd like something that can do both just as well. That might be asking for a lot though.
It definitely can, and there are some good presets. But it will take more work to get the sound that Reels delivers out of the gate.

Here is the link to the demo.

https://www.toneboosters.com/download.html

Flandersh
KVRist
152 posts since 17 Dec, 2005 from Norway

Re: Acustica Taupe - Hype Or The Real Deal?

Post Sat Nov 10, 2018 1:25 pm

wagtunes wrote:
Sat Nov 10, 2018 5:59 am
Okay, downloaded the demo and put it through the ringer on a pre mastered track I did. My 2 cents real quick because not worth more time than that.

As a channel strip, it's excellent.

As a tape emulation, it's fair. It has NO tape controls. They're all just tape presets. No wow, flutter, bias, tape hiss or anything. You pull up the machine you want and you're stuck with the preset sound.

Thanks. I'll pass as I'm not looking for another channel strip with some built in tape presets and certainly not at that price.

Will be looking at Satin as it does more of what I'm looking for.
An alternative is to try out the older Nebula powered tape emulations (they are still mostly presets based thought), like the ones by cdsoundmaster, or buying Nebula and using external libraries by in example AlexB or signaltonoize

User avatar
Zaphod (giancarlo)
KVRAF
2436 posts since 23 Jun, 2006

Re: Acustica Taupe - Hype Or The Real Deal?

Post Sat Nov 10, 2018 11:52 pm

- not all tape plugins are the same. I didn't test competitor tape plugins, but feedbacks we are receiving are not surprising me: our tape is clearly different from competition, especially because the technique we used. People are reporting they finally recognize a tape action in a digital plugin, which is a pretty bold statement if you ask to me. I don't know if they are just excited because taupe is just a new release or not, so I will not comment it further, but I'm quite happy because that.

- taupe is quite different also from nebula libraries: we take in account harmonic saturation and compression (based on the same latest compression techniques) in a single workflow and sampled from each specific gear, multiplied by a large number of choices. Lacking of settings, like "speed" is just covered by presets. We'll not add artificial hiss, there are plenty of sample libraries for that already. I don't think there are nebula libraries comparable with taupe, I mean no other developer is using our specific techniques. I guess results are completely different.

- no, we'll not feature tapes in other acqua plugins. So this is the only one which features our tape techniques. A bit like lemon, we'll not create an other delay unit. Lemon is "our" collection of delay units. Taupe is "our" collecion of tape units, so if you need "that" sound there is only this choice.

- we feature a mix control between the source (electronics without tape) and the full emulation. It adds endless possibilities to each "preset". People reported that phase could be messed sometimes, but it is also true that on a real tape the same action would lead to even worse results, because wow/flutter, supposed you have enough time for experiment all possible alignment attempts.

last note, we reduce artfifacts quite a lot, we'll refine them further in next updates. Most people are reporting they don't have issues any more, but there is a margin for improvement.

User avatar
Omkar
KVRian
728 posts since 25 Dec, 2007 from Hamburg,Germany

Re: Acustica Taupe - Hype Or The Real Deal?

Post Sun Nov 11, 2018 8:16 am

I can now see why the thread confused me:
it is the mixed message of the unit Taupe itself
and the question of wag "what is the right tape for me".

I was wondering about the push backs when just providing infos
so every reader can have a better picture of what Taupe is,
of course before readers decide to do a demo then (crucial).
So, I exclusively refer(ed) to the plugin, nothing else.

First impressions of demo today:
I remeber to have asked if not former AA units profit from (then latest) core 12,
the question remained unreplied but having Taupe with core 13 at demo I would say yes.

The unit runs smooth and it looks like now at core 13,
AA plugins are getting more compatible (= useable) across daws
and not only a matter of asking Reaper to do the job (on PC that is).

Up to now, the plugin concept is unique to me
with upper half tape section, EQ in the middle and comp/lim at he bottom.

Tape and comp/lim can run standalone (comp/lim when "ECONO" is pressed and Tape off) or combined
and also mixed with EQ section.

Without the option to compare hw and plugin,
the tape section sounds pleasing and appealing, vitalising the material
and depending on the choice of A0-D9 the respective tape-machines/cassette players.
It is important to drive the input in that regard
and setting the tape to full wet gives the most audible differences.

The tape section comes along rather in the field of sound experiences
than having parameters for all the details and nuances that makes an hw a hw.
Would be almost suicidal to even think about it at this point.

I rest on the tape section here for the sake of talking about tape,
some may want to try:
tape c6, full input and tape, ECONO on, compressor on to taste, EQ to taste ...

Since AA demos do run for 4 weeks I suggest to give each unit of interest that time,
it is like to nose a bit into the analog world and coming from vst
things may appear uncommon from subtle to distinct different.
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Haraldator
KVRist
126 posts since 26 Sep, 2012 from Norway

Re: Acustica Taupe - Hype Or The Real Deal?

Post Sun Nov 11, 2018 8:26 am

Definitely not hype. Taupe is as great as you would expect coming from Acustica, who really make some amazing plugins. Taupe sounds more authentic than any other tape plugin I've used (and I own a bunch of them and have demoed even more), and most importantly it sounds considerably better. Just demo it and hear for yourself. It's fantastic IMO. I want to buy the Acustica guys a beer. ;)

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Robert Randolph
KVRAF
2172 posts since 25 May, 2003 from Saint Petersburg, Florida

Re: Acustica Taupe - Hype Or The Real Deal?

Post Sun Nov 11, 2018 11:22 am

It's fairly well known by some folks that I'm not a fan of Acustica on several levels. I hate their manuals. Their marketing is gimmicky. Their public relations can be somewhat crude. Their GUIs are vomit inducing on occasion (literally). There's some really annoying bugs across multiple products.

On top of that, as someone that's used a number of classic tape machines in the studio, I don't think Taupe sounds much like a well-calibrated tape machine. U-he's Satin is much, much closer in that regard.

All that negative-nancy jabbering aside, Taupe does sound fantastic. It's "tape-like" in a pleasant way, and there's more extreme flavours available if you want.

I'm of the opinion that most people looking for tape plug-ins simply want a 'vintage' sound which was mostly the result of multiple layers of tape processing, coloured consoles, post-processing, etc... Taupe nails that tape-like sound (not to say that this is exactly what it's emulating!)

Viewed as just a saturation processor it's really fun. As a channel strip it's excellent as well.
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Robert Randolph
KVRAF
2172 posts since 25 May, 2003 from Saint Petersburg, Florida

Re: Acustica Taupe - Hype Or The Real Deal?

Post Sun Nov 11, 2018 11:27 am

wagtunes wrote:
Sat Nov 10, 2018 7:24 am
Know what? Just saved myself a lot of money on both of these.

Satin? Forget it. Listened to a demo. Bypass and then on. Guy says "As you can hear, it's real subtle."

No, it's not subtle. There's no f**king difference. I have Abbey Road and Kramer Tape to do that for me. I don't need another "no difference" plugin.

Yeah, Taupe blows Satin away but I don't need another channel strip. I can get those same sounds from the various plugins I have now. Don't need to spend 10 euro just to get them all in one place.
You listened to someone else's single demo of a plugin and determined that it's worthless?

That's a very strange way to make a decision. Satin has a lot of controls that allows you to reach some rather extreme sounds, plus it's a tape delay and a flanger!

I'm also really confused by saying Kramer Tape doesn't have a sound. I can't stand that plugin because it sounds exceptionally awful, and not in a subtle way at all.
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Robert Randolph
KVRAF
2172 posts since 25 May, 2003 from Saint Petersburg, Florida

Re: Acustica Taupe - Hype Or The Real Deal?

Post Sun Nov 11, 2018 1:44 pm

jancivil wrote:
Sun Nov 11, 2018 1:36 pm
duplicate.
You have just one post, and it's this :borg:
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jancivil
KVRAF
16889 posts since 20 Oct, 2007 from No Location

Re: Acustica Taupe - Hype Or The Real Deal?

Post Sun Nov 11, 2018 1:51 pm

In_fact, I have one two posts on pg 2 of the thread and I went to edit one [in order to make clearer my opinion of the sound of something vs the usability of Nebula] and hit quote, as I tend to do.

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Robert Randolph
KVRAF
2172 posts since 25 May, 2003 from Saint Petersburg, Florida

Re: Acustica Taupe - Hype Or The Real Deal?

Post Sun Nov 11, 2018 2:00 pm

jancivil wrote:
Sun Nov 11, 2018 1:51 pm
In_fact, I have one two posts on pg 2 of the thread and I went to edit one [in order to make clearer my opinion of the sound of something vs the usability of Nebula] and hit quote, as I tend to do.
:tu:

Those edit and quote icons do need to be more distinct.
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