Although a little often goes a long way in the world of audio production, there’s definitely no need to be afraid of extreme values – especially when working with Disto. Not convinced yet? Well, let’s see…

Here’s a short audio clip that will serve as our test object:

It sounds all right, but that alone won’t suffice today 😉


We start by placing Disto onto the master track, for we want it to work on the mix as a whole. Since we will use the plugin in Stereo-mode (indicated by the small green LED on the left), we can ignore the controls of the second unit, as well as the right part of the third unit, because they are only active in Mid/Side-mode.

We leave the Sidechain-filter turned off (because we want the whole frequency spectrum to be affected), and then set Attack and Release to 0 and 10 respectively. This does mean that the peaks and transients will be compressed immediately, while the process takes the longest possible time to recover – which is perfect for the drastic effect we’re after.

Of course, we set the Ratio to ∞:1 so that every part of the signal that goes beyond the threshold will literally get squashed down. Finally we adjust the input Gain so that there’s at least a gain reduction of 20dB. To avoid any unwanted rumble and distortion during the compression stage we don’t activate the Drive control on the right.

However, we do introduce a small amount of Hottidude, and turn the Warmth up to about 5 – this will give the overall sound more weight and impact. Don’t forget to activate the Warmth effect by clicking the corresponding button next to the control.

The interface should now look something like this:

Disto Interface

The Result

Now let’s listen back to the sound example with Disto enabled:

As we already expected, the result is far from subtle, but very satisfying indeed! In fact, we have pulled the louder parts of the signal down so much that they are currently almost at the same level as the quiet passages between the initial impacts. You could even compare it a little bit upward compression, though we actually did just the opposite in a pretty extreme way. It’s really impressive to see how musical Disto sounds even at extreme settings – without any artifacts or audible distortion.

You can download the preset for Disto here: The Powers of Disto Preset.FXP

If you are using Disto V2, please download the preset here: The Powers of DistoV2 Preset.FXP