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Stereo Tool 7.44
Stereo Tool offers a stereo widener which makes music sound `fuller`.
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Stereo Tool manufacturer description
Stereo Tool 7.44 is a Winamp plugin that delivers professional quality audio processing - for free¹.
Have you ever wondered why on the radio all songs have the same volume, while if you play CDs or MP3s, the volume and the type of sound changes all the time? That`s because the big commercial radio stations use expensive equipment that ensures that all songs sound the same, and that they sound good on a wide range of cheap up to expensive audio systems. Now Stereo Tool Audio plugins and utils offers you similar processing, which you can use while listening to your own music.
Many people have reported that the processed audio sounds better on their equipment than the original unprocessed audio.
Besides this, Stereo Tool offers a stereo widener which makes music sound `fuller` and more `spacial` (less is also possible), and it can repair phase shift problems in recordings (cheap CDs, vinyl, tapes).
¹ Although most options of Stereo Tool are free, some options that enable FM radio stations to sound louder than their competitors, as well as some options that enable broadcasting in stereo and adding RDS texts to the broadcast without using extra hardware are limited in the free version of Stereo Tool.
Currently, Stereo Tool offers the following sound processing options:
* 10-band multiband compressor / limiter / clipper
If one song contains a lot of bass, and the next contains a lot of treble, this filter can make them sound equal. The volume is also kept at the same level. Many people have reported that music sounds better on their equipment when using the multiband compressor. The clippers reduce sudden bursts of loud sounds, without causing pumping or other artifacts.
* Stereo channel separation widening / narrowing
With this you can move the instruments to the center, or further away from each other. This can be used among others to let both speakers play all the sounds at the same level (so if you only hear one speaker, you don`t miss any sounds), and still keep a part of the stereo effect.
* Stereo phase shift widening / narrowing
Phase shift widening makes the stereo stand out more, which can make music sound more powerful. The instruments do not change position though.
Phase shift narrowing can be useful if you have a mono output channel: Sounds converted to mono using this filter sound just as full and powerful as the original stereo recording. This enables transforming any recording to mono without audiable artifacts, and achieving better quality encoding for low bitrate MP3 files.
* Phasing error (AZIMUTH) correction filter.
Old tape recordings and many cheap CDs often suffer from severe phasing errors. These phasing errors can make listening very unpleasant, and when the phasing error changes over time the sound can seem to "float" around you. It can also cause severe artifacts when converting the sound to mono or when playing it on a surround system. This filter automatically detects and repairs such errors.
* Center bass speaker filter
In some very rare circumstances, playing sounds using a single (center) bass speaker can result in less powerful and deformed bass sounds. This filter optimizes the bass for playback on a single bass speaker.
* Hiss reduction filter
Stereo Tool download contains a powerful hiss reduction filter that has almost no effect on the rest of the sound. Especially useful when playing older songs or when a lot of volume compression is used.
* 3-level overshoot protection
If your goal is to make the sound loud, the 3-level overshoot protection filter can remove the remaining peaks after all the other processing has ended. By using 3 levels, any pumping artifacts that would normally be caused by such a filter are reduced as much as possible.
* Loudness filter
This filter can make sounds up to 5 dB louder, without causing higher amplitude peaks in the signal, with very little effect on the sound. Especially useful for radio stations that want to sound loud.
* Lowpass filter
Useful if you want to feed the Winamp output into an FM transmitter. This filter can completely remove any FM pilot tone interference. Also useful to hear how a recording would sound on an AM station etc.
* FM transmitter support
The following options can be used to prepare sounds for broadcasting on an FM transmitter.
o FM pre-emphasis filter
Prepares the sound to be sent through an FM transmitter, such that the pre-emphasis step in the transmitter does not cause clipping. The multiband compressor and overshoot filters take into account that the FM transmitter will pre-emphasize the sound.
For FM transmitters that do not contain a pre-emphasis filter, Stereo Tool can also output the pre-emphasized sounds.
o FM stereo encoder
The software FM stereo encoder enables broadcasting in stereo using a simple mono FM transmitter.
o FM RDS encoder
The software RDS encoder enables broadcasting RDS texts without using a hardware RDS encoder.
The last two steps don`t work on every sound card (details).
FM transmitter support have been tested with a very cheap (€ 15,= / $ 20,=) mono FM transmitter. When enabling Stereo Tool, the orignal mono, dull, soft and sometimes clipped sound becomes stereo and as clear and loud as that of the big commercial stations.
More sophisticated FM transmitters may contain filters that disrupt the signal generated by Stereo Tool (details).
* Channel delay filter
Play back one channel with a small delay to create a fake stereo effect.
Stereo Tool categories
singleband compression, multiband compression, singleband compressor, multiband compressor, singleband limiter, multiband limiter, volume compression, 8 bands, Winamp plugin, Stereo Tool, WinAmp DSP plugin
What is new in 7.44 changeinfo log
Error message about bad sound card ID's changed (it does not always require a restart). Bug fix: FM transmitter synchronization did not function properly in stand alone version. Bug fix: Setting some AGC settings to 0 could 'lock' the AGC. Setting to 0 no longer possible. Bug fix: Changing MB flatness or frequency sliders no longer causes weird noises. Bug fix: Invalid (NAN) values sent to compressor and clipper are now handled gracefully. Bug fix: Loading a preset turned auto-start with Windows and watchdog off. Bug fix: Sound card watchdog sometimes kicked in too soon - changed the timing. Bug fix: AM frequency display is now hidden when no updates are calculated. Presets: AM presets now turn on AM mode, US AM presets also turn on AM pre-emphasis. 2014/07/01 v7.43 Added separate processing for FM and Normal (or plugin host) output. Streaming output: Added option to send output to a stream using VLC. Streaming input: Added option to pass extra parameters to input VLC (just type them after the URL). Limiters: Greatly improved limiter behavior. Limiter (in all compressors) now works much tighter, causing less pumping and less distortion. Usability: Added sound card error popup screen with better error messages. Lower CPU load when using streaming with low pre-emphasis values, by using LQ Hole Protection mode. AM Transmitter: Added AM Transmitter panel. AM Transmitter: Added NRSC AM pre-emphasis curve (slightly different from the FM 75 μs curve). AM Transmitter: Added C-QUAM AM Stereo compliant clipping and limiting. AM Transmitter: Headroom slider added; no more need to abuse Post Amp to make headroom for asymmetry. AM Transmitter: Added Downmix to Mono button checkbox to AM panel. AM Transmitter audio now uses FM sound card settings (including tilt correction). AM Transmitter: MPX (frequency) graph now also visible in AM mode. Added auto-start with Windows option. Added Watchdog, regularly checks that sound card inputs and outputs are working. If no audio runs for a longer period, sound cards and later Stereo Tool gets restarted (stand alone version only). Added Exception handling: Exceptions should never occur, but if they do, they are now handled gracefully: They are logged and shown to the user, an attempt is made to continue processing, if that fails (exceptions keep occurring) Stereo Tool (stand alone version only) can be restarted automatically. Added Event FM License (lower price, works 3 days at a time). Added CPU load (actually, percentage of time busy with processing) display. Added an error popup window if sound cards cannot be opened. Added translations (Dutch, Spanish, Russian, Hungarian). SCA frequencies are now configurable for HAM radio. Reduced memory usage of stand alone version. Merged in older changes from a separate project, should not have any noticeable effects for end users. Bug fix: Fixed crash that could occur when switching input from sound card to VLC and back to sound card. Bug fix: VLC input channels could get swapped. Fixed. Bug fix: VLC input with Low Quality Low Latency output hangs. Output is now disabled when VLC input is used. Bug fix: Opening sound cards could fail sometimes if ASIO and non-ASIO were combined using the same sound card. Fixed by opening the non-ASIO connections first, which appears to solve the issue. Bug fix: Compressor Difference mode didn't always work properly. Code improvement: Ran code checkers cppcheck and PVS-Studio and fixed all the (real) issues they reported. 2014/05/19 v7.42 Marian Trace Alpha on Windows 7: Added workaround to avoid driver hangups, which occurred on some systems after some performance optimizations done in version 7.41. Added 'Flat tops' mode to Multiband Compressor and Natural Dynamics. Added experimental DeLossifier (MP3 artifacts removal filter). So far it only reduces pre-ringing a bit. Sound card control: Added locking to non-ASIO audio to protect buffers. Declipper: Sound at extremely low latencies (256 samples or less) improved. 7.41 bug fix: AM Assymmetry in combination with FM pre-emphasis enabled again. 7.41 bug fix: Deemphasized audio didn't work properly under all circumstances in 7.41, fixed again. 7.41 bug fix: Fixed potential crash due to a rounding error in the compressor in 64 bit VST plugin. 7.41 bug fix: Linux version crashed un startup. Code improvement: Potential rounding error in compressor (which could lead to all kinds of issues) fixed. Code improvement: Initializing some values that were never initialized before. Code improvement: Several 'Division by 0' situations (which were masked so they didn't cause problems) are now completely removed. Perfect Declipper separate product now uses the same code base as Stereo Tool again. Added a lot of new presets. 2014/02/26 v7.41 Big code cleanup. Performance: Removed a lot of threads that might cause unpredictable performance behavior. Performance: No longer sending data through a separate thread for some final processing. Performance: Optimized FM Composite Limiter (50% less CPU), also no more extra latency (was 2 ms). Performance: Optimized Natural Dynamics (80% less CPU, apart from channel splitting). Performance: Optimized Compressors. Performance: Optimized sound card handling (40% less CPU). Performance: RF spectrum calculation now uses a lookup table for sin() calculations. Performance/Bug fix: RF spectrum calculation analyzed more data than needed before (75% less CPU). Performance: Redesigned and optimized Simple Clipper. Performance: Optimized clipper bass handling performance. Performance: Removed a few 'division by 0' protections that appear to be unnecessary. Performance: Optimized RDS encoder. Performance: Rewrote code to remove a lot of unnecessary data conversions. Performance: Noise Gate/Stereo Boost: Pre-calculating some values values. Performance: Optimized for memory caching. Memory usage: Reduced by about half (DSP version: From 200 MB to 100 MB, Stand alone: From 197 to 113 MB). Sound card: Several optimizations done. Buffer filling might look a bit different than before, but now if you don't see an empty buffer it won't crackle (before it could). ASIO: Removed buffering step, this might in some cases allow slightly less latency. ASIO: Added hiccup/crackling protection: Preliminary data is placed in the sound card buffer so something gets played in case of hiccups. ASIO: Fixed low latency output with ASIO block sizes below 256 samples. ASIO: Fixed buffer size calculation. Old versions reported the wrong time in the display. Hard Limit: In Composite Clipper mode, it caused very soft (inaudible?) clicking sounds in previous versions. Fixed. Also made spectrum cleaner. Low Latency Monitoring: Now uses the normal processing code instead of a separate code path. Sounds more like real output. Low latency: Improved AGC behavior. Low latency: Fixed AZIMUTH behavior. Low latency: Fixed Phase Rotation frequency effects (now compensating for loss at certain freqs). Low latency: Improved Multiband and Singleband limiting and compression. Low latency: Clipper 'Advanced Bass Distortion Protection' did not work properly at latency 128. Low latency: Slightly improved equalizer behavior to sound more like the higher latencies. AGC: Added Power Highs filter (similar to Power Bass, under AGC). AGC: Moved Power Bass and Power Highs to before the wideband AGC to improve volume level consistency. AGC: Power Bass and Highs: Sudden fast rise of bass or highs is limited, new slider 'Release boost' added. AGC: Power Bass: Sidechain option removed. Stereo Image: Fixed most of the artifacts! No longer marked as Deprecated. Fixed 'Post filter for DC offset' problem. Bug fix: Carbon Coder Stereo Tool TV plugin hangup when normalizing for R128, reported by FOX TV. Added HQ mode. Not available for users. FM output for input sample rates below 30 kHz is no longer possible! 2013/12/24 v7.40 Declipper: Fixed several bugs (reported by Leif Claesson), output sounds better. AGC: Added "Power Bass" mode. Makes deep bass far more constant and stronger (feedback from Wouter Tietema and Jeff Prins). AGC: Release did not respond the same at very high input levels. Old behavior still present for compatibility. AGC: Audio level was more consistent at lower latency settings. Same consistency now also for high latency. AGC: Added matrix mode (L+R/L-R processing) for stereo expansion. Not really great though... Compressor/Limiter: Improved and optimized code for compressors, limiters and Natural Dynamics. Compressors: Added Continuous Release mode for compressors. Limiters: Improved limiter attack and release behavior. Much tighter, far less pumping. FM: Replaced Multipath Clipper by something that works better and affects the audio less. Feedback wanted! Stand alone version: Added option to receiving a stream via VLC (must be installed). Stand alone version: FM: Added FM transmitter synchronization to stand alone version. FM: BS412: Memory and CPU usage reduced. FM: Rewrote Stokkemask code and added some options to control behavior and CPU load. Advanced Clipper: Added Controlled Distortion, including intermodulation distortion detection. Command line version --samplerate option to use different sample rates. Allows outputting MPX. Command line version --r128 option for R128 normalization. Sound cards: Added hysterisis when changing buffer size to avoid Juli@ ASIO driver crashes. Sound cards: Auto-restart in case of driver errors. Sound cards: Join input sound cards for Rockland/Radio SAW (stations with normal and regional content). GUI: Added multi-language support. GUI: Metering: Added scales to meters. GUI: Metering: MPX power added. GUI: RDS: Use RDBS PTY names when using 75 us pre-emphasis. GUI: Added full screen mode; hides all window bars and Windows task bar. GUI: Added zooming in/out to waveform displays, optimized code, made it possible to turn the display off. GUI: Added warning when closing. GUI: Moved Phase Shaping to under Phase Rotator (since it's hardly used or useful). GUI: CPU load for moving mouse over Bands or Equalizer displays greatly reduced. GUI: Improved multi-touch screen handling. GUI: Improved VMware detection. GUI: Renamed some Natural Dynamics settings for clarity. GML Plugin: GUI: Removed new version notification from GML plugin. GML Plugin: Added R128 normalization. Bug fix: Compressors did not handle audio with more than 2 channels properly. Updated existing built-in presets to run with the new RMS mode. Added presets. 2013/09/27 v7.31 Added 64 bit Windows VST version, with AVX support (2nd generation i3/5/7, Windows 7/8). Added 64 bit Windows stand alone version, with AVX support (2nd generation i3/5/7, Windows 7/8). Improved Natural Dynamics default settings. Added after-AGC singleband compressor to bottom display. Bug fix: Loading partial presets caused Multiband and Natural Dynamics frequencies to be reset. Added presets (Bojcha's King's Fire 2, which I used for demoing at the IBC). 2013/09/05 v7.30 Added Mac OS X versions: Command line, stand alone (with JackOSX for now), VST Added Natural Dynamics filter that increases dynamics of music with little dynamics. Compressors (MB, SB): Improved limiter attack behavior. Much tighter and far less audible than before. Compressors (MB, SB): Removed lookahead for limiter; smoothing in backward direction to avoid distortion. Compressors (MB, SB): Added Attack and Release Flatness sliders. This non-default (not in standard compressors) behavior can give a much tighter sound with more dynamics, especially if combined with: Compressors (MB, SB): Added Release Inertia. Don't slow down moving towards target level when getting close. Compressors (MB, SB): Added "Traditional Peak" detection mode; uses less CPU but also sounds less good. Multiband compressor: Improved limiter flat frequency response behavior: Much more-line with compression. Multiband compressor: Improved Flat Frequency Response behavior, sweep is much flatter than before. Added option to perform phase rotation at the beginning of the processing chain. Changed AZIMUTH correction filter default settings. Linux: Improved GUI update speed. GUI: FM: Pre-emphasize output was confusing, now auto-enabled when RDS or stereo coding is used. GUI: Limiting now displayed in dB's just like the rest of the data. GUI: All ASIO settings are now available on a single page. Bug fix: Multiband default frequencies (used for resetting) were incorrect after restart. Bug fix: Removed printing from Jack thread in Linux, should allow lower latency. Bug fix: Fixed low latency ASIO bug introduced in version 7.24. Removed old Natural Dynamics implementation (saves 8MB of memory). Added and updated presets. 2013/07/17 v7.24 Linux versions are back, now with multi-threading and Jack sound card support! AM stations: Added asymmetric clipping. Much faster preset loading/saving and hence much faster booting and closing. Improved low latency monitoring output (latency wasn't low enough and sound was sometimes bad). Sound card handling improvement: Latency is now always exactly the same after (re)starting. GUI: Entering registration key changed, overview of registered features added. GUI: Errors are now displayed in sound card bars. GUI: Remember sound card selection even if that sound card is not present anymore. GUI: Slightly improved the mouse hold (slow slider movements) vs. non-hold detection. Simplified a lot of code and moved any OS-specific code to separate files. Bug fix: With Multicore disabled, Normal output didn't work in the stand alone version. Bug fix: Very rare channel swapping issue in Windows due to a threading error. Bug fix: Very rare hangup on sound card switching via GUI. Updated some presets. 2013/05/30 v7.23 FM: Improved Stokkemask (ITU-R.SM1268) clipper; less effect on audio (from 2 dB to 0.7 dB loss in highs). FM: Added option to remove demodulated L/R spikes above 100% (level is configurable). FM: BS412: Fixed small volume calculation bug in composite clipper mode. FM: Added RF spectrum analyzer. Warning: Uses a lot of CPU power. Bug fix: Some warnings kept coming back after restarting despite selecting 'don't show me again'. Updated some presets. 2013/05/16 v7.22 FM: RDS encoder bug introduced in 7.21 solved (long texts were broadcast at a far to high speed). 2013/05/16 v7.21 FM: Improved Stokkemask (ITU-R.SM1268) filter for composite clipper (sounds better). FM: Fixed several bugs, mainly noticeable in SSB mode, at lower Quality settings. FM: SCA1 channel is now displayed in MPX graph. Updated and added some presets. 2013/05/07 v7.20 FM: Added composite clipper! FM: Added SSB (Single Side Band) mode. (Requires composite clipper.) FM: Added Multipath clipper. (Experimental! Requires composite clipper.) Loudness: Improved Airy Highs. Highs now sound crisper and less 'tonal'. Loudness: Rewrote clipper to reduce CPU load (Strictness can be set lower to give similar results). Added Phase equalizer. Updated and added many presets. 2013/03/25 v7.10 User interface: 5 modes ranging from "Simple" to "Extreme Tweaker". "Basic" should be good for most people. Greatly reduced CPU load of almost all filters. With identical settings, the CPU load is typically 12% reduced. Singleband compressor completely redesigned.
Keywords: Attack, release, release hold, ratio, feed forward vs feedback, lookahead, burst protection. Multiband compressor completely redesigned: Configurable number of bands; monitoring individual bands, median display. Added 'graphics' equalizer. AGC: Added side chain. AGC: Added singleband compressor after AGC. AGC: Smoothed Band 1 to band 2 coupling. AGC should work better if declipper or noise gate is activated. Extra lowpass filter before processing to fix problems with songs with excessive very high frequency content.
Set 0.25 kHz above actual LPF freq, but never below 16 kHz. Loudness: Improved delayed bass clipping protection to cause less distortion. Provision to discard buffer after a certain period of inactivity added for VST plugin. FM: SCA was missing since version 7.00, added again. Declipper: Reduced artifacts when using declipper in combination with non-phase linear highpass filter. Declipper: Changed default settings based on input from Jesse Graffam. Sound cards: 'Synchronize to output' now also works with Normal output. User interface: Made 6 dB lines in meters more prominent. Bug fix: Disabled mouse hold behavior for all widgets except sliders. Updated and added many presets. 2013/01/08 v7.03 Loudness: Added delayed bass clipping for better punch. Loudness: Fixed Bass Shape artifacts, and now also works on higher frequencies. Loudness: Added option to dynamically switch off distorted mids/highs for tones. RDS: Better special character display in GUI. Updated presets. 2013/01/03 v7.02 Added 5.1 and 7.1 audio support (channels are declipped, highpass and lowpass filtered and clipped, nothing else yet). Loudness: Improved bass clipper, better punch and warmer sound with more mid-bass. (old vs new) Loudness: Removed volume drop between 2.8 and 3 kHz. RDS: Added convertor from Windows-1252 to RDS characters to support special characters. Installer made smaller by moving non-SSE2 version to a separate installer. Now below 1 MB again :) Bug fix: Drawing issue in 7.00 and 7.01 pull-down menu's without scroll bar when using mouse wheel. Bug fix: Left and right channels were sometimes swapped when loading a preset in 7.01. Bug fix: Stokkemask clipper was broken in 7.01. Carbon Coder plugin now supports R128 normalization for 5.1 and 7.1 audio. Added some presets. 2012/12/17 v7.01 Solved several VST GUI issues in several VST hosts. Made VST window a bit bigger. On loading built-in presets, most FM and sound card settings are no longer reset. Volume increase on preset reload should not occur anymore, although I'm still getting reports that it does. But at least one cause is solved. Added sound card restart button, was missing in version 7.00. Bug fix: GUI unresponsive at very high CPU loads when you click right of text in text box. Bug fix: BS412 acted weird with FM sound card enabled, pre-emphasize output disabled at low input sample rates. Updated presets. 2012/12/12 v7.00 Total GUI redesign. Interface dynamically adapts to screen size and is nearly touch screen ready (keyboard needed). Added new version alerts and specific warnings which unregistered functions are in use. Last selected preset name visible after restart. Added web interface (no access protections yet). Completely rewritten parameter handling code; solved bugs and reduced the chance of introducing new ones. Added ability to reset, load and save parts of presets. Added input sound card Gain control. FM transmitter audio synchronization added to synchronize streaming audio at multiple transmnitter sites (experimental). Loudness: Changed bass clipper behavior, flatter frequency response; sounds a bit warmer. Loudness: Bass clipping filter bug fixes: Whistle artifacts gone, 'knock-on-wood' artifacts reduced. Loudness: Airy Highs turned off if there are very little highs (reduces crackling sound that sometimes occurs). Declipper: Reduced 'clicking' artifact in reconstructed audio. Declipper: Improved splitting load over 2 cores. FM test tones: Added Bessel null frequencies and "smooth square wave" (sounds less loud) test tone mode. Removed a number of memory allocations/frees that occurred during processing. Added a lot of presets. Natural Dynamics is available in the GUI again, if you enable it explicitly in the INI file. 2012/08/02 v6.32 Added sound card input and output tilt adjustment (2nd order). Loudness: Changed clipper distortion masking model, giving less distortion at nearly the same highs level. Loudness: Added "Airy highs", makes highs sound both louder and more natural (less restrained). Loudness: Removed bugs that caused hole punching by loud highs. Loudness: Highs Priority no longer causes volume drops caused by loud highs. Loudness: Redesigned de-esser for pre-emphasized sound. Bass sensitivity: If there are both mids and highs, the drop is a bit less strong than before. Bass sensitivity: Determining more precisely when the clip is needed. BS412: Added max deviation (+/- 75 kHz) display. BS412: Added headroom slider. Determines margin for error to avoid sudden volume drops. BS412: Max deviation can be lowered to create denser sound and protect against sound card problems. BS412: Faster rise after fast drop for louder end result. GUI: Added displays so you can see what is being sent out to the sound card (including calibrations). GUI: Cleaned up Loudness panel (removed some things that are no longer needed). Bug fix: Latency 512 didn't work properly. Bug fix: Fixed GUI issue where singleband compressor settings were not always correctly loaded. Bug fix: AXIA input sound card loading issue. Added Carbon Coder plugin with multi-pass R128 support. 2012/06/10 v6.31 AGC: Added a slider to protect against volume drops for loud voices. Loudness: Improved overall filtering (removed post ringing) at latency 4096, sound is cleaner in many ways (especially bass). Added some new controls for configuring it ("Time Spread") Loudness: Advanced Bass Distortion Protection: Improved bass clipper. Bass is now louder and clipped tighter Loudness: Added bass shaping. Adds harmonics to very low frequencies to make them sound louder Loudness: Allow turning highs intermodulation distortion off Loudness: Added "highs priority" slider, increasing this reduces high frequency intermodulation distortion but may cause some drops in other frequencies Loudness: Asymmetric bass reduction should not go below dynamic threshold Loudness: Reduced strictness, the high precision wasn't really useful Loudness: Split 'sensitivity' for bass clipper: Can now be configured separately for mids and highs. Result: more constant and higher bass level Loudness: Turned off old bass protection mechanisms in default settings. Caused artifacts, no longer needed Loudness: Reduced clipping strictness for mid-bass frequencies (lower CPU load) Loudness: Increased de-esser range, and it can be turned off now Loudness: Simplified clipping algorithm Stereo Boost disabled for lowest frequencies (below approx. 140 Hz) BS412 limiter: Show a warning and info when BS412 is enabled BS412 limiter: Fixed drops issue. Very brief drops can still occur but they are usually hardly noticeable BS412 limiter: Changed default values for more constant sound level Added and updated many presets Split values for Singleband, Singleband AGC style and BS412 Bug fix: Stereo Image was broken for latency 512 Bug fix: Icon now visible in stand alone version Bug fix: Stokkemask clipper didn't work at latency 512. 2012/04/11 v6.30 Major code cleanup and restructuring Added BS412 limiter Added Stokkemask clipper Improved scope display (triggered) Improved low latency (6 ms) monitoring output in Stand Alone version Improved overall quality by changing the processing window shape for ALL filters Added support for cheaper limited Winamp/DSP declipper license Reduced CPU load when playing pure silence AGC: Improved handling of sudden loud bursts Loudness: Improved protection of mids against loud highs, which were causing drops ("holes") in the sound. Loudness: Changed the bass protection shape Loudness: Added protection against distortion caused by asymmetric bass sounds Loudness: Slightly better protection of frequencies below 700 Hz against very loud bass Loudness: Bass protection and de-esser levels were calculated incorrectly if Final Clipper was enabled with a volume other than 1.00 BS412 limiter now also works with 'Pre-emphasize output' disabled. Phase rotator: Improved behavior and display Bass AGC: Now works on a much smaller frequency range so it only affects really deep bass sounds Bug fix: Changed default values for the "Allow more distortion" sliders in the VST version Bug fix for Omnia 9: RDS A/B flag works properly now, and if you change the RadioText and there was no sequence of texts there the new text will start to be broadcast immediately Bug fix: Forcibly remove DC offset in Loudness did not always work properly Slightly reduced Loudness CPU load, but the new highs protection adds a lot more if it's enabled 2011/12/12 v6.21 Added multicore support for Declipper and Loudness. Throughput is now 38% higher in presets that use both. Loudness: Fixed a bug in the non-SSE2 version. Declipper: Fixed memory bug in clipping detection. This may have lead to weird issues. Improved performance when closing/minimizing Stereo Tool if the virus scanner NOD32 is used. Bug fix: Loudness de-esser setting was not saved in VST plugin. Bug fix: Loudness values above 3.00 were not loaded correctly in VST plugin. Bug fix: TA button in main window did not work. Changed a value in Bojcha's Neodymium preset. There is now also a separate declipper program! See www.perfectdeclipper.com. 2011/10/25 v6.20 Added declipper filter Loudness: Completely redesigned for more consistency, better transients, louder output and greatly improved highs. Punch is no longer needed. Loudness: Improved vibrating voices filter caused by loud bass. Loudness: New filter that removes highs distortion caused by loud bass, now allows bass levels upto 100% without (much) distortion in the highs. Loudness: New filter that detects when highs cause volume drops in the rest of the sound, and briefly lowers the highs level. Loudness: Added oversampling checkbox for streaming and mastering: This makes sure that no clipping will occur if the audio is upsampled afterwards. Loudness: Added separate dirty bass / mids / highs sliders for better bass control and 'artistic' effects. AGC: Redesigned to handle different input levels much better. AGC: Enabled ITU-1770 support (for bass and head separately). AGC: Added stereo separation control. AGC: Added start level for mastering. AGC: Separate "Remove remaining peaks" settings for lows and mid-highs. AGC: Added "Force level below" slider for improved peak control. Forces the AGC level down faster if the difference gets too big. Added Bass AGC filter to reduce excessive bass sounds. Multiband: Added voice protection settings to better cope with loud vocals in music. Multiband: Allow changing band frequencies (only via STS file). Multiband: Added control of link between bands 1 and 2. Pre-emphasis: Moved to end of processing, just before clipping. Highpass filter: Improved filtering to reach a cleaner output. Highpass filter: Added "order" setting for non-phase linear filter. Improved audio processing window shape to reduce artifact levels. Improved pre-ringing filtering to avoid artifacts that occurred before. Added SCA output channels (SCA1 works, SCA2 is problematic due to the required frequency range). Support added for multiple Stereo Tool installations with different settings per installed version (requested by Jazler). Added registration to command line version. Bug fix: Fixed "Test right channel" in "FM Transmitter Calibration" (broken in version 6.10). Bug fix: FM Calibration frequencies 23-57 kHz were not at the correct frequencies. Bug fix: Fixed left/right channel swap that could occur in the stand alone version. Bug fix: AGC could hang in some cases when enabling more bands. Fixed. Bug fix: Phase rotation did not sound good at low latencies in version 6.10. Bug fix: Time zone in RDS was wrong. GUI improvement: Made waveform background black. RDS: Adjusted behavior if no special characters (<, >, |, ||) are used: Word wrap with centering is selected by default. This was done for the Omnia 9 that uses the Stereo Tool RDS encoder; the behavior is now identical for both systems. RDS: Ignoring trailing spaces for word wrap. Added a lot of presets. Added interface for blind users. Set environment variable STBLIND to 1 or YES. 2011/02/10 v6.10 Reduced latency:
Latency: ASIO: Add processing priority control to enable very low sound card latency (~ 1-3 ms) without hiccups; total latency of ~ 16 ms possible.
Latency: Upsampling (for FM) and downsampling (for high input sampling frequencies) no longer causes extra latency. Latency: Reduced Composite Limiter latency from 1.7 ms to 0.9 ms at latencies 512 and 1024. Some (very small) effect on audio. Latency: Found a bug that caused hiccups in audio processing, fixed it. Results in lower possible latency. Latency: Pushing data to the output before the processing instead of afterwards to reduce latency. Improved audio quality at low latencies:
Dynamically adjusting audio processing windows at low latencies to better match the type of audio that comes in. Dynamically adjusting clipping effectiveness to avoid clipping 'too much' in certain conditions, depending on audio processing window and audio content. This protects soft highs against horrible vibration caused by bass sounds at latency 512 and (less) 1024. Upsampling and downsampling: Far less artifacts caused, far cleaner output signal. Created alternative Phase Rotation filter for low latencies (512, 1024). Multiband: Added an 'artifact protection' step that limits the maximum difference in reduction between adjacent bands, if they cause too much (configurable) artifacts. Multiband: Adapted frequency bands and band content to make Multiband at latency 512 sound as much as possible as higher latencies. Loudness: Disabled Improved Bass Distortion Protection filter for latency 512 because it caused distortion. Loudness: Fixed vibrations caused by Very deep bass distortion protection at latency 512 and 1024. Now also enabled for latency 512. Hard Limit: Fixed (minor) artifacts in upsampled audio. Bass Boost: Reduced artifacts at latency 512. Note: Using a less steep filter (bigger difference between frequencies) helps! Other changes:
Loudness: Improved Punch filter: Now causes far less artifacts than before. But it is less effective for soft sounds. Loudness: Removed distortion caused by Punch. Bass Boost: Removed distortion. Quality and Latency are now part of presets, and STS files. Bug fix: Loading and saving Noise levels in VST version resulted in incorrect behavior. Bug fix: Displayed Multiband output levels were unreliable at low latencies, especially clipping. Bug fix: For high input sample rates, now removing very high frequencies that cause issues with Hard Limit. ASIO: Added ASIO Configure button, which allows setting ASIO parameters such as ASIO buffer granularity. ASIO: Changed buffer size configuration to match whole ASIO grains. Added and updated a number of presets. 2010/12/17 v6.00 Noise gate: Fixed crackling sounds in first band.
Added FM Hiss filter. Removes FM hiss from input signal, useful for re-transmitting FM signals.
AGC: Added 'Based on volume before Pre Amp' checkbox to make it easier to create presets with consistent behavior at different Pre Amp settings.
AGC bug fix: Behavior was different at different input sample rates.
AGC: Lock band 1 to band 2; if the bass is loud but not extremely loud it is not lowered. This avoids sound changes caused by the AGC, and results in a warmer, more natural sound.
Multiband: Added 'Flat frequency response' mode which works much better.
Multiband: Added display of the median amplification, useful for configuring Multiband settings.
Singleband: Added 'AGC style' mode. Doesn't seem too useful though. Final Limiter: "DIFF" mode fixed.
Final limiter is now automatically bypassed when Loudness is used (improves audio quality and reduces CPU usage).
Loudness: Added filters to protect highs against loud bass sounds. The bass level can now be set much higher without causing distortion, even if Punch is used.
Loudness: Added 'maximum mirror reflection' to make the sound more natural (less metalic) and louder.
Loudness: Fixed 'Improved loudness distortion protection' artifacts.
Loudness: Fixed 'Very deep bass distortion protection' artifacts.
Loudness: Removed 'Allow louder lows' slider (no longer needed).
Loudness: De-esser: Replaced 'Allow louder highs' by an AGC.
Loudness: Added a slider to increase the dynamics of the output (by allowing some more harmonic distortion).
Loudness: Added a filter to protect certain sounds (female voices) against vibrating.
Loudness: Fixed dynamic Loudness input level behavior of Punch
Hard Limit: Added an extra slower Hard Limit phase; volume comes up slower when the peaks are really loud.
Added 'Lossy Compression (MP3/AAC/OGG/...) output optimization' filter for webradio stations. See this image for a display of the effect of different pre-emphasis values on 128 kbit/s MP3 files; this image displays a frequency analysis (high frequency content means clipping), again 128 kbit/s MP3, Post Amp at 90%.
FM Output: Repaired the lowpass filter which sometimes caused artifacts.
VST plugin notifies host of the delay.
VST plugin: Bypass mode fixed.
VST plugin: Removed separate window border, now loading inside host window.
VST plugin now also works in mAirList.
Improved handling of hiccups in the stand alone version when the CPU load gets very high.
Presets: Made Generic and Web Radio presets sound much closer to the sound of modern CDs.
Presets: Made FM presets sound much closer to that of popular hardware processors (more bass and highs, among others).
Presets: Added new user presets, removed some obsolete ones.
Command line version: Files larger than 2 GB can be processed now.
Linux version added! Both a standard command line version and one with a GUI.
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