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Empirical Labs Arousor Compressor Plugin

Our Price: $299.00

Quantity in Stock:116
Availability:: Available for download now
Product Code: AR1-RTL


It’s been 20 years since Empirical Labs released its first compressor, The Distressor. From those early days on, Empirical Labs has been bombarded with requests for a great compressor plugin for those working in the box… and it had to be one with the creamy sound and ease-of-use of our own award winning hardware compressors. We are sure you will find the 20-year wait worth it!

For many years, processing speed, sample rates and copy protection were limiting. Things have changed. Digital Technology can now come very close to having all the wonderful non-linearity and “warts” of the best analog gear. We say “close” because most of Empirical Labs’ analog gear will pass 150KHz easily, and that is something that is impossible with current digital technology. But hey, who hears above 20KHz? But it is difficult getting everything right up to that 20KHz, especially at sample rates of 48KHz and below.

As this plugin does all kinds of non-linear stuff, we had to employ a variety of techniques to minimize common digital artifacts found in almost all digital compressors/limiters etc. Unfortunately, these techniques are costly as far as processing, and one has to streamline certain DSP processes for less CPU load without sacrificing any audio quality. Ironically, sometimes stuff that is hard in Analog is easy in Digital, and sometimes stuff that is hard (or impossible) in Digital is easy in Analog.

The first implementation of this plugin is “skeuomorphic”, i.e tries to imitate the look and feel of real world stuff. In this case, it is the look and feel of Empirical Labs hardware. But in Digital, a whole universe opens up with interfaces. Suddenly things you could never do in the hardware world becomes simple. It’s a wonderland.

The best part of getting this plugin now, is that more features are coming, including new processing and interface changes, but… the plugin will be backwards compatible. Buy now and get these updates for free until 2020!

    • AAX-DSP for the MAC. Windows version to follow shortly, pending copy protection repair.
    • Much greater efficiency, especially in Pro Tools AAX.1/3rd of the CPU usage.
    • Greatly increased Bargraph accuracy. You will find it makes matching a Distressor sound much easier.
    • Preset Sharing Function - Works across all platforms and makes it easy to share, even with emails.
    • Graphic and Interface Improvements - New colors, and 3d Depth
    • Our first "Expert Panel" Button appears for the BLEND Section.
    • New Presets from Famous Engineers
    • Refined markings for matching Distressor Detector settings. New Mark on Det HP Freq, Det BP Gain
    • Higher resolution readout on Det BP BW. Reads to .01 places.
    • Better support for Control Surfaces, including the older Avid D-Command
    • MAC only for now, Windows support coming within a month or two.

    • Empirical Labs Classic Knee Compression in a Plugin… Finally!
    • Foolproof operation – It is almost impossible to get a bad sound.
    • Empirical Labs Famous White Knobs, with parameter readout and direct entry.
    • Proprietary Empirical Labs Detector modeling. High resolution.
    • Broadband Saturator, controllable by user. A novel approach was used to allow amazing control over peaks.
    • Unique AtMod™ Attack Modification Control. Changes the shape of the initial attack, and can lengthen attack times in a different manner than the ATTACK control.
    • HP Sidechain EQ
    • BP Sidechain EQ
    • Rivet, a brick wall ratio great on room mics, and for skimming peaks.
    • Linkable with the stereo version.
    • BLEND Control – Mix in the dry signal with the compressed one.
    • 18 Lock n Load Presets, finely tuned and named intuitively. More coming down the line.
    • Backwards compatible features coming.

Average Rating: 5 of 5 Total Reviews: 138 Write a review »

  0 of 0 people found the following review helpful:
A new classic April 13, 2018
Reviewer: Daniel Picard from Mont-Royal, QC Canada  
I own two Distressors that I have used on almost everything I tracked and mixed throughout the years.  And though I was hoping that ELI would release a software version, I’m glad that they took the time to do it right! The Arousor has the same « magic device » quality as the Distressor : whatever source material it processes sounds better at the output. And the new features (such as the 1.5 ratio, attack mod, soft clipping settings, etc.) make this plugin a true Swiss-Army knife. While I do miss the Opto and British modes, I understand that they should be present in future revisions.

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  0 of 0 people found the following review helpful:
A new favorite! February 5, 2018
Reviewer: Richard Devine from Atlatnat, GA United States  
I was already a big fan of the hardware version of the Distressor. Now I have the ability to automate and run multiple instances across my mixes. Its insanely awesome for pumping up your drums! Love it!

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  0 of 0 people found the following review helpful:
Powerful and AAX DSP! February 5, 2018
Reviewer: Scott Frankfurt from Woodland Hills, CA United States  
Instant improvement to virtually everything I throw at it. Literally my new Default DSP Dynamic processor. Since my name is on the door, I am very careful about which products I get behind. Well done, Dave / Empirical Labs.


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  0 of 0 people found the following review helpful:
5 Stars January 16, 2018
Reviewer: Choukri Gustmann from Düsseldorf, NRW Germany  
5 Stars

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  0 of 0 people found the following review helpful:
No regrets! January 16, 2018
Reviewer: Andrew Shaw from Dorchester, MA United States  
I typically record with distressor. It added a lovely weight and depth to my vocals. I needed a solution for mixing songs that I didn’t record. I tried several obvious choices in the box none came thru like I expected. So I mustered up the money and bought Arouser. It was instant familiarity. Instant gratification! I was worried about spending all this money for one simple plugin, but once I placed it on my vocal plugin chain I instantly had no regrets. Thanks Empirical Labs!

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