Kush's GoldPlate is a plate reverb emulation with a difference: the modelled plate material can be continuously blended between 'steel' and 'gold' characters, with optional dynamic processing that can create a 'pumping plate' effect, and an input stage that can be overdriven to add harmonic interest.
GoldPlate combines Relab's algorithmic reverberation tail technology with Kush's expertise in harmonic shaping and compression. The Squish knob that governs the dynamic processing is based on the compressor of the same name in Kush's UBK-1 plug-in, with the parameters tuned to work in the context of reverb compression. At low settings, Squish adds sustain and thickness, which tips over into pumping and overdrive when maxed out. The morph of plate metals is controlled using the Material slider. Most of the other controls are familiar, and include output level, wet/dry mix, 6dB/octave low- and high-pass filters rolling off at 500Hz to 8kHz and 0Hz to 500Hz respectively, and up to 250ms pre-delay. The reverb decay time can be varied, naturally, and there's also a Width control that makes the reverb mono at its narrowest setting.
A number of factory presets are included to get you started, but really, GoldPlate is so easy to use that you should have no trouble setting up treatments from scratch. User settings can be saved as presets arranged into banks, and a parameter lock page lets the user determine which controls will retain their settings when a new preset is called up.
Starting with clean settings, the two metal variants both have the general character of plates, with a smooth tail and no obvious early reflections. A fully Steel setting gives the classic plate sound, while Gold seems just a little lighter and more airy. Any blend is possible if you want something in between. Adding in a bit of Drive can gnarl things up nicely without getting too messy — a nice treatment for a snare drum, for example. Add some Squish and the reverb tail level starts to fatten up, then to pump; this is most audible on drums or percussion, and adds a useful sense of excitement and loudness to the proceedings. A maximum reverb decay time of five seconds is available.
It is hard to comment on the authenticity of the sound when compared with other plate plug-ins, as they all sound different according to which plate was modelled or used to record IRs. However, it does sound smooth and musical, and that's what matters. GoldPlate sits comfortably behind the dry sound without making things sound too cloudy, and those extra little twists — Drive and Squish — really do extend its creative potential.
$199; also available as part of Kush's subscription plan.