Have you ever imagined the sounds that never existed? Have you ever eagerly explored to find an appropriate analog machine for your music? Have you ever attempted to combine multiple machines of different characteristics just to get the perfect sound? If those are what you’re looking for, The Palette – our innovative texture plugin, is the dream tool for you. Opening up the plugin, you will find there is a big triangular panel centering at the interface. It’s the “palette”, where we blend different tones sampled from real-world mastering machines. According to their texture, we clustered them into three categories: dark, neutral and bright. Exploring within the triangular panel, you will eventually find your desired sound, just like painters choosing the perfect colors for their artwork. Blending is a new concept of analog emulation, or, beyond only emulation, because it requires an additional process – creation, to create the sound in between existing ones. In the aspect of emulation, modern AI technologies have shown their excellent capabilities, and we also proved it in our previous products: British Kolorizer (Saturator) and The Stage Package (Stereo Enhancer). However, when it comes to the form of creation, especially when talking about using AI to create new mastering gears, it’s still an unexplored field. Traditionally, to create new sound with existing ones, we can simply mix multiple filtered sources with different ratios. Or, for some effects, like convolutional reverberation, we can interpolate coefficients of filters. However, the former one needs to generate sources beforehand and the later one only works on simpler effects. Moreover, simple linear combinations usually lead to mediocre results. Nowadays, in the era of AI prevailing, we can do more than that with modern neural network models. What caught our eyes is a field called generative AI arts, where researchers aim to create artworks algorithmically. The creations include paintings, drum samples, midi loops, reverb, and so forth. The core concept behind it are two steps: comprehension and recreation (or in more technical terms, encoding and decoding). It’s quite similar to how an artist was born – only after knowing the essence, then one can create. Taking The Palette as an example. In the comprehension stage, we guide the AI to learn to distinguish the characteristic of sampled tones, which in our case, timbre. Then the tones are visualized into a plane/palette, so the distance between them indicates their similarity in timbre. In the recreation stage, the AI learns to reconstruct the tones according to the coordinates. Notice that the creation is achieved by interpolating or extrapolating the plane. With sufficient tones, the constructed plane becomes stable and meaningful, then traversing on it means we can generate arbitrary and infinite tones! Another feature of The Palette is it accepts multi-channel IO. Making music with multi-channel is a growing trend especially when VR and Metaverse are gradually realized in our daily life. However, due to computational issues there are still few tools equipped with this feature, not to mention high quality analog emulation. In The Palette, the maximum number of channels is 12, which means it can process immersive projects smoothly, which would be quite useful for multi-channel mixing or even object-based mixing such as Dolby Atmos. In summary, The Palette is the world’s first mastering-grade multi-channel analog emulation plugin, and has the ability to create new sound that never existed before. In the near future, we will keep exploring new machines and effects such as guitar pedals, amplifiers, compressors, reverb, etc. Meanwhile, we will keep focusing on immersive experience, embracing advanced AI concepts, and the most important thing – uncompromising quality.