Gullfoss by Soundtheory Review

Gullfoss by Soundtheory has been for the last weeks on the review bench in Cubase. Gullfoss is an unusual dynamic equalizer plugin that cleverly adapts the EQ parameter to improve the track or mix bus. Gullfoss is named after a waterfall in southwest Iceland.

There are plenty of great EQ plugins available, they all require mixing and audio knowledge that goes beyond a basic understanding of tone and layered instruments and sounds. Gullfoss is different with its automated EQ capabilities. Soundtheory did send a review copy with no strings attached.

Installation

Download the plug-in and install it by opening the disk image and then double-clicking the package. When you launch it the first time, you can use ‘Authorize’ button to register EQ. Just follow the instructions. On Cubase, I did experience a “hang” when authorized. I did need to relaunch Cubase, and all was fine. This error is reported to the developing company, and they are addressing it as we speak.

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It is MAC only today (Feb 2018) a PC version of Gullfoss is planned for later in 2018.

Sound

Gullfoss as an EQ plugin has one reason to exist. It automatically adjusts the EQ settings based on the audible features of the input signal. Gullfoss approach is to provide an instant improved quality of the track. Tracks that you could not fix due to lack of experience or knowledge.

Gullfoss processes audio with unique character. According to the developer the EQ is capable of changing its frequency response more than 100 times per second and without introducing audible artifacts or degrading signal quality.

As this plugin should help all the not so experienced composer and mix engineer this could be a killer tool for the amateur who wants to focus on something else than mixing and still want to do everything in the home studio. For a professional audio engineer, Gullfoss is a great way to see and compare the “robot” changes to her or his result.

If you experience that the sound is a bit harsh drive down the settings within Gullfoss with the lower values, you tend to get the wanted EQ effect.

I did get some good sounding tracks and also tried it on the mix bus and was surprised by the excellent quality. If you are in a hurry or lack the experience on using an EQ in your DAW, you get better results then turning knobs in a traditional EQ while you do not know what those labels and dials mean.

Gullfoss Features:

  • Automatic equalization in real-time
  • Highly advanced computational auditory perception model makes objective processing decisions
  • Intelligently treats sound elements in the mix separately
  • Improves clarity, detail, spatiality, definition, and presence
  • Eliminates annoying resonances and cancellations
  • Retains dynamics and reduces the need for multiband compression
  • Mixes translate much more consistently between listening environments
  • Improve your mixes by watching the real-time EQ graph display

User interface & Usability

A rather simple Interface, you drive the level of “automation” and that is all you need to do. You can download the manual here.

Gullfoss UI Overview

Rating:  Five out of five stars

Gullfoss is a capable “automated” equalizer which is helpful for both an amateur who can not effort to hire a mix engineer for his first version of a mix. For a professional, you get some unique results from this EQ that I would always take a look at to compare it to my manual approach with the different available EQs. I did use Gullfoss on some tracks, and when needed I added analog EQs for the analog vibe.

 

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