Now with software that enables you to manipulate select UAD plug-ins in the physical universe, the Softube Console 1 MK II Hardware and Software Mixer is an integrated hardware solution designed for studio mixing without the use of a mouse. The system provides a software channel strip that can be utilized with any track in your DAW, as well as a hardware controller for adjusting the parameters of that channel strip. You can keep watch over all track levels using the on-screen meter bridge and the hardware’s built-in meter display.
You can switch between tracks using the controller’s bank of channel selector buttons. When switching between channels, the contoller’s built-in LED indicators—now more visible than before— will change to display the current channel-strip levels; the on-screen display will change to show the selected channel. Page-up and page-down buttons enable access to additional channels in groups of 20.
The system comes with Softube’s virtual model of a classic large-frame console, the Solid State Logic SL 4000 E, and with this emulation, you get every tonal option an SSL channel strip can provide. In addition to this emulation—as well as separately available models of other classic consoles—the system allows you to control, straight from hardware, well-regarded UAD emulations. Digital offerings from Chandler Limited, Fairchild, Teletronix, Tube-Tech, Abbey Road Studios, and more are all represented, with no MIDI mapping required to make these plug-ins work with the controller.
As for the hardware controller, you can use it in a variety of ways, grouping multiple channels together to adjust their channel strip parameters simultaneously. You can also copy and paste settings from one channel to another. The flexibility of the controller allows for parallel compression and side-chaining, and a history function allows you to undo any change to the plug-ins, thus facilitating experimentation when mixing.
The MKII also includes DAW control functions for Presonus Studio One and Cakewalk Sonar, two DAWs heretofore incompatible with the product. The system supports VST, VST3, AU, and AAX plug-in formats on Mac OS X systems, and is compatible with Windows as well.