Viator DSP releases BT Clipper, a freeware clipper effect in VST3 and AU plugin formats for Windows and macOS.
BT Clipper is a clipper effect with three clipping modes, auto-gain compensation, and a mid-frequency tone control. The plugin also features input and output volume controls.
A clipper is an audio effect that “trims” the volume peaks of incoming audio above a certain threshold. “Soft” clipping rounds out the signal at the threshold (similar to tape saturation), and “hard” clipping cuts off the signal more abruptly, resulting in a harsh “digital” distortion.
For such a simple effect, a clipper can be incredibly useful. Clippers are great for catching any excess volume peaks, especially with percussive materials. It’s often helpful to apply a clipper to smooth out the signal before sending it to a compressor or a limiter.
I always use a clipper before the limiter on the master bus, trying to get a few dB of loudness before I can “hear” the clipper working. After that, I apply some gentle limiting to boost the volume a little bit further.
Back on topic, BT Clipper is your standard clipper effect with three different clipping algorithms: hard, soft, and “analog.”
We already covered hard clipping and soft clipping, so I’m guessing the “analog clipping” mode in BT Clipper uses a custom curve that simulates the type of clipping you’d get from analog hardware.
It’s nice to have different clipping flavors to choose from, and the mid-frequency control lets you further shape the incoming audio. The tone knob comes with a pre/post switch that enables you to apply the tone-shaping before or after the signal hits the clipper circuit.
However, BT Clipper’s auto-gain compensation feature is lowkey its best asset. It lets the user A/B test the clean and “clipped” signal without messing with manual gain adjustments. This makes it super easy to make sure you’re not clipping the signal too hard.
Last but not least, BT Clipper comes with volume controls and a handy little switch that lets you invert the phase. That’s an excellent option to have when you’re mixing a multi-channel drum kit recording, for example.
And that pretty much sums it up. BT Clipper is a simple clipper effect with some handy add-ons that will make your life easier.
You can download BT Clipper for free from the developer’s Patreon page. Become a patron to support Viator DSP.
Download: BT Clipper (12 MB download size, EXE installer, 64-bit VST3/AU plugin format for Windows & macOS)