Hi guys, welcome to our next Review and Raffle of one of the most useful toolsets our sound designers rely on. Today we want to present you the Uhbik Bundle sponsored by U-he: Below the fold, we share some brief insights and audio examples with you.
(pbo) The kind of plug-ins that make the most fun to use are creative effects. In this review I tested a bunch of them. U-he is especially known for their synthesizers. The Zebra, Hive, Diva and many more are all excellent software synths so I thought I would give the Uhbik Bundle a try and see how it can pimp a simple analog synth recording.
But first let's see what is inside the bundle:
A reverb. Why „A“? Because it creates remarkable Ambiences.
A multi-tap delay and echo with modulation.
A flanger with modulation and feedback/resonance.
A granular pitch shifter and phase vocoder.
A phaser that can be very deep and gentle on the other hand a beast.
A equalizer with freely tunable frequency bands.
A filter with overdrive and fuzz function.
A frequency shifter and sideband filter.
A tremolo that is much more then just a gain wobbler.
U-he's collection of nine effects does not only look very nice - vintage style with big knobs - there are also endless possibilities to create astonishing sounds with it. Every plug-in comes with parameters that are standard for the specific effects and a unique or extravagant feature on top.
Let us begin by hearing the unprocessed synth sound:
What is one of the best ways to fatten a sound? You're right - it is adding some reverberation. Uhbik-A is an algorithmic reverb that is perfect for creating nice big halls and rooms with long tails.
After browsing through the presets, which by the way are all pretty cool, I started building my own. I like the modulation and the clean sound of the early reflections but the best thing is going all the way and creating huge ambiences. Listen for yourself - here's the result:
The next one I checked out was the delay Uhbik-D. For a simple delay all you need to do is adjust the three big knobs. If you want to use is as an echo effect there is a section for the five delay taps with speed, pan and volume parameters and you can choose if it will be effected by the feedback or not. Furthermore there are low and high-cut, softclip and modulation rate and depth controls. Flutter and Wow modulation are available and great for wobbly delays like I did with the synth sound.
I went on with digging deeper into the tap section and its versatile possibilities. By accident I created an interesting sounding feedback that suddenly came out of my speakers after the initial sound had already decayed. A heavy low end sound came back and ended with a nice BOOM.
First listen to the processed synth as it was intended to sound:
And now the unexpected feedback:
One of my go-to effects when I am designing sci-fi sounds is granular processing. So I was very curios how U-he will perform when cutting my audio into little grains and then melting them back together resulting in a completely different sound. To make it short, this one impressed me the most and it is IMHO the best plug-in from the Uhbik collection. I used a short didgeridoo sample, switched the operation mode to phase vocoder and made some quick automations.
Here an example of the grain mode and its capabilities building a rising effect:
And one example of a falling effect beefed up with the Uhbik-F flanger.
The Flanger and the Phaser are both doing a great job and can go, like all other Uhbik effects, from subtile processing all the way up to extreme sound manipulation. I recorded a synth bass line with my Aturia MicroBrute. Here the unprocessed, clean recording:
And now pimped with the Uhbik-T tremolo effect.
I really do like the rhythmic patterns you can create very easily with this plug-in. It is like if a complete new bass line was recorded. The panning feature rounds this tremolo up to a extremely versatile tool in your plugin arsenal. Check it out:
To enhance the bass synth even more I added the Uhbik-P. The sonority of this phaser is something I have never heard from a phaser before and there are a lot out there. You can keep control of the low signal by activating the bass sanctuary function. This feature comes also with the flanger.
Last but not least I tested the Uhbik-S, the Uhbik-Q and the Runciter and created again some great sci-fi sounds with it. Both sounds were made from the original synth melody you listened to in the beginning of this review.
And the same sound again processed with the Runciter. A digital filter that can be a real monster you have to be careful with.
My advice is, although you already might have some or even most of these effects, it is really worth to check out the Uhbik bundle. You can download a full feature demo version that works without any restrictions (you will here a short crackling noise here and there as it's a free demo). The price of $149 for nine effect plug-ins is also more than fair. Not to forget that all effects work in surround too.