NAMM 2021: Apogee and Clearmountain team up again on Symphony ECS Channel Strip

Apogee Symphony ECS Channel Strip Plugin

At the close of a new chapter, a historic first-ever virtual NAMM 2021 conference, some companies seemingly still have tricks up their sleeves. One of which is Apogee, who just announced a brand new plugin. Symphony Channel Strip ECS is the brand’s latest product, was previously only available as a DSP add-on for Symphony Desktop owners. Now, Apogee teamed up with mix engineer Bob Clearmountain, a frequent collaborator, to make this strip available Natively to Windows and Mac users. Here’s the full run-down on this now widely-available effect.

Apogee Symphony ECS Channel Strip Plugin

In order to effectively make sure the ECS Channel Strip would run the same way natively as it did before, Apogee needed some help. So, it enlisted help from Clearmountain, who worked on fine-tuning each control that it accurately reflected the sounds of its DSP format. The plugin consists essentially of two sections — an expansive EQ, and a compressor. Its EQ section starts out with a high-pass filter ranging from 20Hz to 300Hz. Assignable to either the EQ itself, or to an incoming sidechain source using a simple 2-way switch. Three bands are available here — a low shelf, mid peak, and high shelf. Each one is allocated to two knobs, a frequency selector and volume control.

In the compressor section, the setup and use is fairly simple. Like the EQ section, it can be engaged using a simple I/O switch to the left. Its threshold is adjustable to up to -50dBFS, which is especially nice for lower-gain signals. Users can select a ratio setting between 3:1, 5:1, or 10:1 which is all that would be needed in most situations. Finally, a dry/wet mix knob sits just next to that as well as a 7-set LED gain reduction meter. On the back end are the drive and overall output volume knobs for the effect.

Overall, we’re really happy to see Apogee taking the time to make its popular ECS Channel Strip available for Native users. It certainly shows that it takes all situations into account. Additionally, this product serves as a really nice wrap-up to a successful NAMM 2021 virtual show. Apogee Symphony ECS Channel Strip is available now from the company’s website. It can be purchased for $99 in full, or across 14 monthly payments of $6.99. Apogee’s website is also the perfect place to learn more about its new plugin, or others like Clearmountain’s Domain.