Empirical Labs Arousor 3.0
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Compressor plugin based on the legendary Distressor with extra features

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  • Regular price $199.00
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Compatible with Pro Tools|HDX Hardware
AAX Native - Compatible with Pro Tools 11 and above
AudioUnits Format VST3 Format
iLok Cloud compatible, dongle optional
iLok Dongle Required
MacOS Logo
Windows Logo

The Arousor is the only classic knee compressor plugin made by the creators of the Distressor, Empirical Labs. It’s been well over 20 years since Empirical Labs released its first compressor, the Distressor. From those early days on, Empirical Labs has been bombarded with requests for a great compressor plugin for those working in the box… and it had to be one with the creamy sound and ease-of-use of our own award-winning hardware compressors. We are sure you will find the 20+ year wait worth it!


Advanced Detector Sidechain

Dial in exactly where you want the compression to trigger with 2 bands of sidechain EQ. This advanced detector sidechain EQ expands both of the preset detection filter circuits on the Distressor into a controllable hi-pass and parametric sidechain. Control the exact point on the frequency spectrum where you want compression to be triggered without losing any low-end.


Rivet Mode

Get maximum gain reduction with the Rivet mode along with all of the ratios you know and love from the Distressor. Modeled after the Distressor’s Nuke Ratio, Rivet provides the steepest compression ratio a compressor plugin can provide to slam room mics and more.


Attack Modification

Fine tune the attack curve of the compression envelope with AtMod. The attack modification knob slows down the initial slope of the attack envelope to add just a little bit more of the transient back into the track. Whether it’s to get a little bit more snap on the snare track or more thump on the electric bass, the AtMod will let the transients through without losing your desired amount of compression.


Colorful Saturation

Add some vintage-style harmonic distortion to any track with the soft clipper. Whether you are looking for subtle or extreme amounts of total harmonic distortion, the soft clipper knob merges both of the distortion settings on the Distressor to grant the user complete control of total harmonic distortion without having to adjust the input level of the Arousor.


What's New in Rev 3

  • Two OPTO Modes based on the time constants of a classic and a modern LA2A
  • Soft Clipper Expert Panel that allows for introducing more second harmonic distortion and the ability to place the compressor input before or after the soft clipper circuit.
  • Detector Sidechain EQ now includes a listen mode to hear what frequencies are affecting the compression detector.
  • Two new ratios (6.5:1 and 7:1) can now be accessed by enabling "ALT" mode in the ratio section.
  • The GUI can now be enlarged to double its original size for more comfortable editing.
  • iLok Cloud activation is now available rather than just iLok USB activation.

System Requirements

  • MacOS 10.7 or higher (64-bit)
  • Windows 7 or higher (64-bit)
  • Free iLok account and iLok License Manager software installed
  • An internet connection for iLok Cloud use
  • An iLok 2/3 USB dongle is now optional, but required for offline use

Plugin Formats (all 64-bit only):

AAX Native, AAX DSP, VST2, VST3, AU

Tested DAWs

  • Pro Tools 11 and above on both Windows and Mac.
  • Cubase 6 and above on both Windows and Mac.
  • Ableton Live 9 and above on both Windows and Mac.
  • Logic Pro 9 and above including Logic’s non-graphical UI.
  • Reaper 5 and above.

AVID VENUE

  • VENUE version 4.61 and above (latest version is recommended).
  • iLok 2 or 3 USB and iLok License Manager
  • A spare USB drive to transfer the installer to the console.

User Manual