Gear of the Year 2016 – The Best Software Effect/Utility

We now move onto our next hotly contested category – the best software effect or utility of 2016. Both these products are adored by us in the MT office in equal measure but the public vote swung it…

Highly Commended Software Effect/Utility – FabFilter Pro-C2

Price £114


FabFilter is a regular winner in this category – you clearly have great taste. Pro-C 2 is an update to the company’s compressor and reviewer Mike Hillier was certainly impressed… “As always, FabFilter has managed to wrap an incredibly powerful tool into an easy-to-use and intuitive user interface, which makes getting great sounds simple,” he said.

“The original Pro-C got a lot of day-to-day use on our sessions, but it was always the compressor to reach for when you just needed a job doing. Pro-C 2 can handle anything you throw at it, and is already pushing far more expensive compressors aside.”

He then concluded: “Pro-C 2 is set to become a staple of many professionals’ toolkits. Everyone needs a good compressor, and there are few as good as this. A future classic.”

Winner – iZotope Ozone 7

software effect

Price £169, Advanced £339, upgrade from Advanced 1-6 £135
Contact 01837 55200

There’s a heck of a lot of software out there, so this category – like the Best Software Instrument category – was super crowded. However, unlike that list, there seems to be one name dominating proceedings year after year and that name is iZotope.


The company’s Ozone specialises is mastering and does it with some finesse. After giving version 6 a slightly lukewarm reception last year (even though it still won 2015’s Best Software Effect Award), reviewer Alex Holmes thinks version 7 is a return to form. “iZotope has put a lot of work into this update and it will add more tools to your arsenal. Frustratingly, three useful things that were removed from version 5 – the ability to load saved reference curves into the EQ, the Reverb module and the gate in the Dynamics module – are still absent.

However, this is a minor niggle – and with the new features in both versions, and reduced price of Advanced, there’s never been a better time to add Ozone to your plug-in list.”

He concluded: “After version 6, iZotope has come back fighting with an extensive update that includes some excellent new features, modules and algorithms. Ozone 7 sounds better and is more flexible than ever.”

Check back tomorrow for the winners of the best hardware effect/outboard!