TC Electronic Powercore 6000
Now discontinued, the TC Electronic Powercore 6000 provides access to some of TC Electronic’s flagship System 6000 processor in plug-in form.
Roughly half of all our plug-in work is performed by Powercore plug-ins. Remarkable considering the age of the algorithms, but when you get it right, you get it right.
At base, the MD3 is a 3 band multiband compressor; arguably the best in the business (aside from the MD4 in the System 6000).
However, it’s also a fully featured mastering suite in plug-in form, containing an M/S matrix, EQ, multiband expander, normaliser, soft clipper and limiter aside from the compressor section.
Endlessly tweakable, the MD3 offers some of the most pristine digital processing available on a computer.
We often use the EQ when the Gyratec XIV is too coloured, and the Sonnox EQ is a bit too tight. And the multiband compressor and soft clipper are our go-to digital options for electronic music where analogue warmth isn’t appropriate.
The TC Brickwall Limiter is different to other limiters. It’s not really designed for pumping up mixes, being far more useful as a transparent way of catching peaks – particularly inter-sample peaks. As such it doesn’t get used much for mastering anymore, but it can be a very reliable tool in audio post-production for transparently meeting broadcast standards in stereo.
Sometimes mixes will have resonances that refuse to be tamed by static EQ and are too narrow for a multiband compressor to tame transparently.
At times like these the Dynamic EQ in an absolute life saver. It works like a surgical multiband compressor, reducing (or boosting) the volume of a particular frequency range (selected as with a normal EQ) when it reaches a particular level.
Remarkably transparent and not used often, but when it is, it’s the only tool for the job. Saviour of many mixes.
VSS3 and DVR2 reverbs
Arguably the crown jewels of the Powercore family, TC Electronic’s reverbs are legendary. We rarely use anything else in mixing.
The VSS3 is a stereo source reverb of exceptional quality. It’s incredibly smooth, and if need be, incredibly life-like, making it superbly suited to sound design work in audio post – delivering realistic spaces far better than most convolution reverbs.
The DVR2 is a vintage plate emulation perfect for vocals and snares. Incredibly smooth, with extra grit if you want it, it gives effortlessly vocals that big, spacious, round quality.
Again, despite their age, these plug-ins just haven’t been beaten, and are still highly sought after despite TC Electronic ditching the Powercore line.