Sonarworks has released the Reference 3 headphone plug-in which offers a low latency mode in addition to sonic accuracy. This allows using calibrated headphones for real time monitoring and other tasks where low latency is crucial.

The third generation Sonarworks Reference headphone plug-in features a filter phase type slider which allows the engineer to adjust the filter phase type according to the use-case. Currently three filter phase type modes are offered – minimum phase, mixed phase, and linear phase:

  • Minimum phase trades phase linearity for down to 1.13ms latency.
  • Mixed phase mode gives the best of both worlds.
  • Linear phase offers maximum accuracy for mixing, mastering, and other tasks where latency up to 60ms is acceptable.

Sonarworks Reference 3 headphone plug-in also offers a completely reworked interface delivering a more intuitive and pleasant user experience. Tool tips will make it easier to use for those with less experience. Expert engineers will appreciate the advanced settings section as well as the option to customize the target curve for a more personalized sound signature.

The plug-in for digital audio workstations (DAWs) is offered in AU, AAX Native, RTAS and VST plugin formats and is compatible with both OS X and Windows. Currently a single license for Sonarworks Reference 3 headphone plug-in costs 70€/$79 and is available at

The DAW plug-in can be used with average curves made from numerous samples of the same headphone. Supported headphones can be viewed at: Those looking for even higher accuracy can buy AKG K712 and Sony MDR-7506 with custom calibration curves.

With the release of Sonarworks Reference 3 headphone plug-in three more calibration files have been added to the average calibration curve library – AKG K141 MKII, AKG K701 and Sennheiser HD598.



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