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2 June 2005

Waves IR-1 Convolution Reverb review — Studio Reviews

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Studio Reviews give Waves IR-1 Convolution Reverb a very good review. They found the reverb to be “smooth, very clean and detailed. The vocals or instruments being used with the Wave impulses sound like they were recorded in the venues. With synthesized reverb units, a lot of times it sounds like you’re adding a reverb on top of the signal. But with the Waves impulses (as well as many third-party impulses) you get the impression that the signal was recorded in the room you chose.” Of course, this puts demands on the host computer: they recommend a Pentium IV or G5 with a minimum of 1 gig of ram to run it smoothly.

They also like the interface; they “found the IR-1 to be very straight forward and easy to use. The screen display is very neat and organized and pleasant to the eyes. ” This makes it easy to take advantage of the plugin’s flexibility: “Being able to adjust early reflections, tails, size, damping, changing the EQ and other features makes it very flexible. If you alter the controls modestly, you can get different character and size while still retaining the great sound.”

They like the included impulse responses, which contain “some very amazing impulses.”: “The software comes with two CD-ROMs with over 60 room types from auditoriums, theaters, small rooms, medium halls, churches, recording studios, outdoors, opera houses, amphitheaters, clubs, stairwells, car interiors, and stadiums. Plus there are 60 different hardware device presets as well.” So you can get that genuine “car interior” sound without having to drag your equipment down to the garage.

And it’s not just the included impulses, it’s what you can do with them: “if you want more control and flexibility, I easily can recommend the Waves IR-1. On the Waves web site, there are additional impulses you can download as well giving you more venues to choose from. However you cannot download any of the Waves impulses unless you have an IR-1. It should be noted that not all impulses are done with great care and skill that Waves has taken. Many just use the balloon method, which can reflect in reverbs that don’t have the same intimate detailed sound that Waves offers with their impulses.”

IR-1 is available in a full and a light version. The light version, called IR-L, has the same sound and uses all the same impulses, but has limited controls compared to the full version. It’s also cheaper.

The reviewer was initially skeptical about IR-1, but the quality won him over: “Before I reviewed the IR-1, my feeling was most of us just need one of the cheaper plug-ins above, with convolution impulses available online. However after comparing the IR-1 to the other packages, I feel the additional flexibility justifies the higher price. … So if you want high end impulses and great flexibility, I recommend looking closely at the Waves IR-1. I had no choice but to buy this amazing reverb.”

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