PSP are well known for their range of effect and processor plug‐ins, but their PSP Stereo Controller 2 revisits one of their earliest products. It’s a plug‐in that’s designed specifically to help identify and correct problems with stereo tracks or mixes, whether in L‐R or M‐S format. Sample rates of up to 384kHz are supported, as are all the common Mac/Windows plug‐in platforms, including AAX, and there’s Apple Silicon compatibility too. Authorisation is via the iLok License Manager (no physical iLok dongle required) and up to three licences can be activated to the same iLok account.
With the ability to split the audio into separate bands with user‐adjustable crossover points, Stereo Controller 2 allows the user to adjust the stereo width separately in the high and low bands. It also offers the ability to flip the polarity of either channel, and to swap the left and right channels. A goniometer scope display at the top of the centre section shows the stereo width and positional balance of the processed signal: if you just see a vertical line you know that your signal is, essentially, mono. Stereo width can be narrowed to mono or widened up to 400 percent — higher settings should obviously be avoided unless the original signal contains very little stereo information!
Two additional bar‐style displays show Correlation and Balance. If the correlation meter strays too far to the left, it could indicate that some parts of the mix have opposite left/right polarity, suggesting possible cancellation problems. If over fully to the right, the mix is in mono. The Balance display should also hover around the centre if the left/right balance is nominally even.
Up to two milliseconds of inter‐channel delay can be dialled in, to compensate for mic distance errors of up to two feet (68 cm) on a stereo track, while the Stability control allows the left/right balance to be adjusted without affecting the location of centre‐panned signals. The Low, High and Main sections have individual Bypass buttons and there’s also independent gain adjustment for the frequency bands. The Centre signal has its own pan control, while Balance works as an overall left/right balance control. There’s also a global Width control in the middle section which moves the L and R markers in the Scope display when adjusted. It is also possible to drag the L and R markers and the Width control will follow.
The ability to correct independently any side and centre positional imbalances is extremely useful too, as is having separate control over the stereo width in different parts of the spectrum...
There’s nothing complicated about Stereo Controller 2, and there’s little that you can do with it that couldn’t be achieved using other plug‐ins in combination. But having all the tools and metering in one place like this does make the job so much easier, and a utility plug‐in such as this has many applications, for example narrowing or even making mono the very low frequencies within a mix to aid vinyl cutting or to ensure equal distribution of low frequencies across both speakers. The ability to correct independently any side and centre positional imbalances is extremely useful too, as is having separate control over the stereo width in different parts of the spectrum and the ability to solo the Mid and Sides signals separately. It comes with a useful selection of presets, and while it’s unlikely to be your first call when it comes to creating fun sounds, Stereo Controller 2 can be a powerful ally when fine‐tuning your final mixes or when processing stereo tracks.