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AIR Music Technology AIR Delay Pro

Delay Plug-in By Paul White
Published July 2023

AIR Music Technology AIR Delay Pro

The world may be awash with delay plug‑ins but in AIR Delay Pro (available in all the usual Mac and Windows plug‑in formats), the AIR Music Technology designers have delivered some interesting twists that make it worth a closer look. Offering both digital and emulated analogue delays in a dual‑delay format, AIR Delay Pro also has onboard resonant filtering for the feedback path and modulation of the delay time, and the modulation type can be Wobble, Chorus or Stereo. Both high‑ and low‑cut filters are available in the feedback section, as well as distortion and limiting. A Diffusion section, with variable stereo width, also allows for a little reverb‑like ‘blurring’ to be added around the repeats.

EQ, just to the left of the output section, offers frequency, gain and Q (bandwidth) controls while the output section itself has further high‑ and low‑cut controls, in addition to Balance, which adjusts the pan position of the delayed signal. A Width control affects the stereo delays, and another called Mix sets the wet/dry balance in the usual way.

But what really sets this delay apart from the crowd is its envelope follower. This has a variable release time, and its output can, using a threshold control, be used to modulate the delay time, feedback and wet/dry mix. Each of these destinations has a separate amount slider and an on/off switch too.

The delay modes on offer are called Single, Dual and Cross. In Dual mode the two delay times can be set independently either manually or in synchronised subdivisions of the host tempo, whereas in Cross mode they’re linked. One unusual feature is Auto Clear, a threshold‑based process that clears the delay feedback buffers when the feedback signal drops below the threshold level set by the user — a lot of the more unusual effects come courtesy of this feature.

In combination, these features extend the creative capabilities of the delay effect significantly.

Taken in combination, these features extend the creative capabilities of the delay effect significantly — well beyond what a typical delay can do. Of course, you can get all the usual flavours of delay, in which case filtering and modulation can conjure up some very tape‑like timbres. But that clever Auto Clear feature, and the way the various parameters can be linked to the envelope follower, open up the possibility of creating effects that react to the dynamics of the music, including adding pitch swoops, dynamic filter changes, filtered rhythmic repeats, exotic dub effects and so on. Many of the less usual effects come courtesy of that Auto Clear function, which can produce some quite surreal results when the feedback level is set high.

To give you an idea of the breadth of effects possible, it’s worth exploring the generous preset collection, which is arranged by category. The more you dig in, the more creative potential you discover. Maybe not every pop song composer will push the limits of AIR Delay Pro but if you’re into EDM, chillout or dub, you’re going to love it, and there is a free demo period if you’d like to take it for a test drive first.