The latest and greatest version of Ozone has arrived full of new features to help you achieve the sound you’re looking for. Let’s dive into some of the modules and modes new to Ozone 9 Standard and Advanced.
In Ozone 8 we introduced Master Assistant, which uses machine learning to create custom presets tailored to your audio. In Ozone 9, Master Assistant has been updated with the new Vintage Mode, which can intelligently incorporate Ozone’s Vintage EQ, Compressor, and Limiter into your mastering chain. Use this mode if you’re looking to add a bit more analog warmth and vibe to your sound. Additionally, there are now “low,” “medium,” and “high” settings for both streaming and CD. So whatever vibe you choose you’ll be confident it will sound right, no matter the platform you’re delivering to.
Pro Tip: Master Assistant is a great learning tool that can teach some general best-practices for using the specialized processors of Ozone. Try switching between “Modern” and “Vintage” modes to see how Ozone reacts. Who knows, you might want to save those settings as a preset for future masters!
Previously only available in Ozone Advanced, we’ve brought Ozone’s Vintage Limiter, Vintage Tape, Vintage EQ, and Vintage Compressor to Ozone 9 Standard. That’s a lot of modules packed into one plug-in, so you’ll be happy to hear we’ve also expanded the module chain to let you use every Ozone module in your mastering signal chain at the same time—that’s up to 12 at once! Mix and match modules and create the signal chain of your dreams, whether you’re delicately balancing an orchestra or aggressively layering miles of distortion onto your next death metal single.
Previously one of the Ozone EQ’s best-kept secrets, we’ve overhauled Match EQ with new functionality and improvements that make it an even more powerful tool for matching the vibe of your favorite reference tracks. Match EQ is now a completely separate module in Ozone 9, meaning you don’t have to take up an EQ slot to use it in your chain. You can now use one of your loaded reference tracks in the Ozone 9 Track Referencing menu to create a unique EQ snapshot, rather than needing to manually play sound through the plug-in.
If you only want to match a certain part of a mix (just the high end, for example), you now have boundary controls to limit the matching to a certain frequency range. You can now save your favorite Match EQ snapshots as presets to quickly use on other projects, without needing to re-learn the reference.
Take an imprint of your reference track and save time finding the right EQ balance with this mastering engineer’s secret weapon.
You might notice that Ozone 9 looks and feels a bit different. Enjoy faster performance, with 25% faster startup time and less CPU usage in your DAW, so you won’t need to think twice about opening Ozone in large sessions. You’ll see improvements across all Ozone modules, most notably the EQ, which now features a totally upgraded HUD-based design in the spirit of Nectar and Neutron. We’ve also made Ozone resizable for enhanced visibility on larger monitors, with updated fluid meters that see your sound in greater detail.
NKS support puts the power of Ozone into your creative process, letting you master while making music with Maschine or Komplete Kontrol. Open Ozone on the fly and easily add professional polish while making music on your hardware, using hundreds of different presets and accessible parameters mapped to your hardware controls. Add loudness, width, and EQ without touching your DAW and keep the creative juices flowing.
Mastering engineers typically don’t work with a full mix session—they receive a single audio file or “bounce” of a mix, or sometimes a handful of “stem” tracks to work with. In either case, it’s usually impossible to do something as simple as turning up or down a fader to change the volume on an instrument—until now.
The new Master Rebalance module uses an updated version of our Source Separation technology that is fast enough to work in real-time. It gives you the final say in a mix by letting you correct and change the levels of instruments without needing the original tracks. Use Master Rebalance to make sure you have the perfect balance of vocals, bass, and drums before starting the rest of your master, so you’ll have far better results in the end.
Pro Tip: Use Master Rebalance in combination with your DAW automation to add flavor to certain sections of a song. For example, try bumping your vocal up 1dB only in the chorus for some subtle energy, or try turning down the bass instead of using an EQ filter!
Using EQ and compression to master low frequencies can be a dangerous game—you might run into artifacts or loss of clarity, and, even in the most ideal listening scenario, it still may be difficult to hear what you’re doing. Low End Focus solves this by adjusting the spectral “image” of your sound, sharpening its edges and getting rid of unwanted background noise that can cause muddiness.
Low End Focus gives you two modes, Punchy for when you’re working with percussive sources like kick drums, and Smooth for longer tones like basses and synths. There’s also a “Listen” button that lets you hear what you’re removing, so you can be sure Low End Focus is doing right by your sound. It’s an effect you may be tempted to use often, because who doesn’t want massive, well-defined lows?
The new resizable Tonal Balance Control lets you compare the overall spectrum of your master against a target, enabling you to see where frequencies might be out of balance. No two songs are alike, which is why we’ve added even more genre-based targets to Tonal Balance Control. You can see how your master compares (or contrasts) in one of 13 different genres, like jazz, hip hop, or classical. If you own Neutron or Nectar, Tonal Balance Control becomes even more powerful: you’ll be able to control the EQ and gain of these iZotope plug-ins in your session to fix balance problems from one window, letting you blur the lines between mixing and mastering.
As always, getting the Advanced version of Ozone gives you full access to every new feature: better performance, improved UI, EQ Matching, Master Assistant, and more. So if you’re looking to try out everything Ozone 9 has to offer, Advanced is version for you.
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