FireSonic 'FirePresser' by United Plugin
Multiple hardware compressors in succession — or numerous compressor plugins positioned as DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) track inserts — may produce natural yet strong-sounding compression, as any serious mix and/or recording engineer worth their salt should certainly know.
However, owing to the timely release of FirePresser, there is no longer any need to go to such efforts to do this.
No doubt, that FireSonic has produced some unique, well sounding, interesting, and very affordable plugins. And Firepresser is the one we are going to check today.
FireSonic has carefully chosen a set of compressors with unique and expressive characteristics and has combined those devices into a single plugin.
FirePresser -Rainbow Pad!
With FirePresser, you can approach the multi-compressor colors in a very initiative way. The Rainbow Pad in firePresser is what all the fuss is about with this plugin.
4 different colors are representing 4 different compressor types, which are plotted in the four corners of a graph that looks like a standard X-Y pad. Which allows you to combine all these 4 models together.
For a Vari-Mu tube compressor.
For the dbx160 VCA.
For the 1176 FET compressor.
For the Empirical Labs Distressor.
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GUI & Features
On top of the FirePresser, you’ll see the A/B comparison switch, the Preset menu, undo/redo, and the Bypass button, which (ensures that you don’t get any clicks or harmful noises when automating the parameter).
Then, you’ll see the Input Fader which helps you to drive the signal to the compressor, the Output Fader, and the Rainbow Pad which we talked about it earlier. If you want to only use one of these compressors, you need to bring the pointer dot to the concern of any of these emulations you want to use.
Each of the four compressors has an independent VU meter that shows how much compression is applied based on the blend setting.
Below the Rainbow Pad are four colored boxes that represent the signal flow. By dragging and dropping the boxes changes the order of the compressors in the chain.
The Dry/Wet mix knob, allows some of the dry signal to shine through. That really depends on the situation, and you can try and find your suit spot.
The Turbo cranks the compression in FirePresser by increasing input gain and pushing some of the input signals through all of the compressors even if the Rainbow Pad is panned all the way to one of the four corners. I find it very useful for some heavy parallel compression on drums, bass, and sometimes vocals.
Saturator adds a very pleasant warmth and is also a very responsive control.
Link is an interesting and fun control that allows the blending of stereo or mono compression.
Attack & Release are the standard controls found on almost all compressors.
Low-Cut and High-Cut set a cutoff frequency for the compression chain, allowing a fine-tuned compression that only affects certain frequencies. This makes stacking FirePresser and setting different cutoff frequencies possible, meaning you could have one blend of compressors on one frequency range and another blend elsewhere.
The Detector control is very straightforward and incredibly handy. It allows you to change the oversampling setting, the UI size, copy, and past setting, and some other features.
Finally, you can change the UI scale by grabbing the bottom right arrow.
This plugin is for Mac (64bit) and Windows (32/64 bits) and supports VST, VST3, AU, and AAX formats.
I was very impressed with the usability and sound of the FirePresse. Reordering the compressors brings out changes that are either subtle or very noticeable depending on the sort order and how the blend is set. The High-Cut and Low-Cut dials, as well as the Turbo function, offer a new dimension to the output which is very useful for more extreme settings.
However, on the other hand, FirePresser has two drawbacks in my opinion. Once hides the numbers on the control while you change it, which is especially useful while you are changing the Attack and Release. And the other one is that it’s missing the tooltip next to the features that actually isn’t a big deal but would be extremely useful to the user.
Aside from that, this is a fascinating and unusual plugin. As always you can get your 15-days fully working trial version.
MAC OSX Requirements
- macOS 10.10 and later (M1 Silicon Mac and macOS 11 Big Sur supported)
- 64bit only
- Intel/AMD processor with SSE2 support
- VST2, VST3, AAX or AU compatible host
- Windows 8 – 10
- 32bit or 64bit
- Intel/AMD processor with SSE2 support
- VST2, VST3 or AAX compatible host