Little AlterBoy by Soundtoys
Every now and then a plugin comes along that makes working on a project that much easier. A few years ago I got to review a fantastic little plugin called the Sound Effects Machine. While no longer available, it was one of those plugins that allowed you to just whack a standard sound into it, mash it up and it spat out something amazing.
So I was recently working on some robot sound effects and needed a good voice changing tool. Not having anything other than a vocoder (and that’s been overused to create such sounds) I went online. To my delight I stumbled across Little AlterBoy by Soundtoys.
Now, I’m not really a tech head, or someone who gets their head stuck into specifications and how things work. I am plug and play person who likes to switch something on and just use it. Therefore I like easy to use software that requires no reading of a manual and just works. This was exactly what this plugin allowed me to do.
The plugin does many things and the company state it is a tool for dramatic voice alteration and can change the pitch of your voice including changing the gender with formant shifting. The unit also allows you to control the melody of a persons voice using a midi controller keyboard. I’ve not tried and tested this yet, but hope to soon.
The user interface has three modules: Pitch/Formant, Mode and Drive/Mix. The three modes are Transpose, Quantise and Robot. The beautiful thing about this plugin is it’s very simple to use. Select your mode, alter the pitch, increase or decrease the drive (if you want) and select the mix. The mix is a great way to create instant vocal harmonies if that’s your aim while the Robot mode fixes onto a pitch and allows you to create some convincing robot sounds. I’ve even used this plugin for some music tracks when I wanted to get a lo-fi effect and it worked well.
The plugin is available for both 32 and 64-bit AAX Native, AAX AudioSuite, VST, and Audio Units (AU). Supported sample rates are 44.1 kHz to 192 kHz. The plugin will run in Mac OS X 10.8 or later and Windows 7 or later. Ot can be used in Pro Tools 10.3.5+, Live, Cubase, Nuendo, Sonar, Logic and Digital Performer and more.
Is it worth getting?
It depends on what you want. If you’re looking for a vocal pitch shifting solution to turn your voice into that of a pop star, probably not. While this plugin does a great job of transforming vocals, you’re going to want to look into other auto tune plugins. But if you’re looking for an easy to use vocal transformer that is simple, easy to use and transforms your voice in a number of different ways, then yes, at just $99 this is a bargain.
Little AlterBoy is available from the Soundtoys website