For a long time, I stuck with hardware reverb when mixing, because I just didn't feel like there were any plugin reverbs that could come close to sound of dedicated hardware, such as my Kurzweil KSP-8. Eventually we got some pretty decent software reverbs, with my early favorites being the UAD EMT 140, followed later by the UAD EMT 250. Those were pretty good reverbs, but they had their own sound that while working great for some uses, they certainly didn't work for everything. Convolution reverbs seemed to be a bit more versatile if they came with, or you built up, a good collection of impulse responses, but I still didn't feel that had the sound of the hardware units that I was more familiar with.
Enter the Valhalla Room!
Valhalla Room has become my "go to" plugin reverb for many reasons:
- It sounds great, and has a wide variety of reverb types! Sound is everything, and if I can't quickly find and fine tune a reverb that works for the current project, and sounds great, then I move on to something else. These days I rarely even turn on my hardware reverbs, as Valhalla Room gets the job done 90% of the time.
- The developer, Sean Costello is also from the Pacific Northwest, and I like to support local talent!
- It's not some huge company cranking out products in a never ending quest for more profits. Sean is a gifted programmer, and is dedicated to creating software that sounds great!
- The prices are extremely reasonable! All his plugins are just $50! A bargain for the quality! I have all of his plugins except the newest VintageVerb (which I will most likely get soon).
- The graphics are simple and easy to use. He doesn't try to fool you with painstaking recreations of hardware reverbs, or any other type of fancy graphics which would distract you from the sound. It's all about the sound and ease of use with Sean's plugins!
- Flexible with a huge variety of reverbs. Lots of different algorithms, and many great presets to start with. Then, you can tweak to your heart's content with all the controls you could want (and more)! Very easy to dial in the perfect reverb for whatever you are working on. Everything from long dark reverbs, to short bright ambient reverbs, are all quick and easy to achieve... just select a preset that's close, and then fine tune.
Not much else to say, except that you should give this one a try! For $50, you really can't go wrong.
Also, no, I don't personally know Sean (but would like to meet up with him someday). I paid for the plugins, and am not getting any kind of compensation for this. This is just another in my series of bringing attention to my favorite tools for my work, and I especially like to help out the "little guys" who don't get as much publicity as some of the bigger companies.