OneCornerClipDemo is a universal binary Audio Unit plugin (PPC/32/64 bit AU, for Mac) and one of the coolest things I’ve done in years.

It’s basically a special clipper where you can RADICALLY shape the tone of extremely distorted output without so much as touching any samples that aren’t clipped. The voicing control has a huge impact on the tone of the thing. The secret is this: once you clip, the waveform starts from where the last good sample was and begins rounding off the corner until the signal passes it going the other way. This means high frequency stuff gets well damped down, and it means you can reinforce low bass under conditions of super-obscene hyperclipping.

Then, exiting the clip, you get one perfectly sharp corner (much like if you were lowpass filtering a square wave). Hence, OneCornerClip. The corner becomes part of the waveshaping and stops sounding as much like digital clipping, because there’s only one per wave rather than two, and it’s in a more regular spot rather than being pairs of corners spaced at arbitrary intervals.

That part is true even for massively oversampled clippers: they’re still producing corners that are irregularly spaced depending on how far into clipping you went. OneCornerClip doesn’t do that, so it sounds like LOUD! not like plugin clipping. It feels like you’re cranking some physical device up, but without altering any sample that’s not clipped, without any kind of convolution or EQing or blurring. Clean samples are bypass, period.

For anybody who is trying to get fat EDM grooves to smash through all imaginable loudnesses forever, this is the tool. Dial in the voicing real low to bring out the kicks, you literally can’t lose kicks through smashing this thing. It depends on how you set it.

For anybody who likes taking a mix element like drums and going all NIN on them, producing an intense driving beat, this is also for you. The default voicing of 0.618 is quite good here but you can push it higher for a real aggressive rowdy top-end, or lower to produce drum-machine like effects on cymbals. As the voicing gets lower, cymbal overdrive will get more ragged and synthetic.

At very low or zero voicing settings, you get a dirty, grunged sound because you’re getting digital flat-topping but at many different output levels, never the same one. I’m pretty sure nobody else can do this yet and it doesn’t exist in anybody’s synths either. At a voicing of 1.0 you get literally raw digital clipping, nothing more: you can always hear what that’d be like, just by moving the slider.

Lastly, OneCornerClip can be used anywhere anytime: it’s very efficient, is coded ‘N to N’ so it can work on anything from mono to stereo to 7.1 surround channels (most of my plugins can do that!) and it has zero latency and zero delay. It’s like an analog device that does all this on the fly without getting bogged down in calculating and processing. Like the Purest line of plugins, it runs an 80-bit buss when it’s doing its thing, and when it’s not clipping it passes through the input value totally unprocessed, like bypassing the plugin completely. Heavily oversampled clippers can’t do that, and can’t match the rawness and pureness of OneCornerClip passing through normal audio.

I’m real excited about this one. I’m going to have a lot of fun with it, I think, and so will a lot of other people. Play with the demo and you’ll soon discover some amazing things are possible. And enjoy the video! I did! :)

OneCornerClip is $50.