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Waves OVox

Vocal Effects Plug-in By Paul White

Waves OVox

Waves' new plug–in is more than just a vocoder...

Is it a synth, is it a vocoder, is it a special effect, or is it a voice processor? Actually, with an internal, pitch-tracking, eight-voice synth on-board, Waves' OVox can lay claim to being all of the above and more. It has plenty of hidden depths, as I'll explain shortly, but note that you can easily get going by simply dropping it on a track and checking out the very large and varied range of presets. As with other Waves plug-ins, all the common plug-in formats are supported on Mac and Windows operating systems, and it can run as a stand-alone application, which opens up possibilities for live performance.


The vocoding process at the heart of OVox requires two sound sources — typically a synth to provide the pitched sound, which we call the 'carrier', and a voice input as the 'modulator', whose spectrum and level are applied dynamically to those of the carrier. At its simplest, OVox tracks the pitch of the incoming audio, then uses that to control the oscillators of its internal synth. To use it as a MIDI-controlled instrument, OVox should be opened in your DAW as an Instrument with its Note Source set to MIDI. Its external audio side-chain input is then used to receive the desired voice track. But OVox can also be used as a MIDI-controlled audio plug-in, and in Logic Pro (the host I used for my tests) it showed up with all three options: Effect, Instrument and MIDI-controlled audio plug-in.

While the presets use the internal synth, there's the option of using an external carrier signal instead, in which case you use OVox not as an instrument plug-in but an insert effect. This mode is akin to a traditional vocoder, with inputs for both the synth sound and, typically, a vocal, though of course you can...

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Published May 2020