Studio Pro-Audio

Renowned sound designer relies on Metric Halo Production Bundle plug-ins

Thu, 26 Oct 2017 11:18

Sound designer Gareth Hester


UK-based Gareth Hester is a forward-thinking sound designer with Zero-G, Sunderland Audio, and the VR gaming company Beloudest. Hester describes how relies on Metric Halo Production Bundle plug-ins to get great work done quickly.

“One of the things I love most about making music is how rewarding it is to learn new techniques that allow me to take sounds in a new direction,” Hester said. “The Metric Halo plug-ins have made that process faster and more direct. Especially when I’m working as a sound designer, my sessions can often be spontaneous – I’ll just drop the entire Metric Halo Production Bundle on a channel! Then I have everything I need: ChannelStrip for fundamental equalisation and dynamics, Character to give it a particular ‘sound,’ and then all of the more sophisticated dynamics and effects, like TransientControl and Dirty Delay. Before I found Metric Halo, I found that I burned through a lot of time messing around with plug-ins that ultimately couldn’t give me what I wanted. I’m glad to be done with that.”

Hester cited Metric Halo’s unusually-low CPU demands as another great reason to load them onto channel after channel in his sessions; they come at almost no CPU cost. “Previously, running up against the limits of my CPU was a constant battle,” he said. “It’s nice to be able to focus on the demands of the audio alone.” Hester also uses Metric Halo’s affordable, stand-alone sound analysis software, SpectraFoo, which is equally-easy on the CPU. SpectraFoo’s objective reference has helped to speed up his already-speedy production time by helping to settle any questions about the technical aspects of his music and sound design work.

Hester dug in on a couple of his favourite and unique Metric Halo Production Bundle plug-ins – TransientControl and Dirty Delay: “Now that I’ve had Metric Halo TransientControl, I cannot go back to processing snares or claps without it. It’s a subtle, but critical effect. It preserves all of the sound’s character, but it gives the snare room and takes any harshness away. I find that lot of the digital samples commonly used in dance music can be very harsh. I’ve tried all the transient plug-ins, and Metric Halo TransientControl is my favourite by far. The settings are so straightforward and intuitive; I get the result I’m after in just minutes.”

He continued, “I keep Metric Halo Dirty Delay on a bus channel for pretty much everything I ever work on. I send synths and pads to it. Just having that effect gliding in and out of the mix at certain points can really add a unique aspect to a track. Like all of the Production Bundle plug-ins, Dirty Delay comes with a bunch of useful presets that give me a terrific jump-start to what I want to achieve, and it has a clean, clear interface. Metric Halo has given me a quick way to make great sounds and great music.”