iZoTope Ozone 9 is released - Your Thoughts?

iZotope Ozone 9 was just released, and they have an introductory sale here

What are your thoughts, any nice improvements to this already complete mastering package?

Do you already have a previous version of Ozone? What are the best things about this product? :slight_smile:



this plugin is awsome
you can do a lot of thing on your track, on your wav, the quality is WOW
i have an old version of it and it is very wonderfull, usefull, plenty of good parameter to improve the quality of your sound during mastering

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I assume you can not have it “on” while composing right? Meaning it will add lots of latency, so you can only use it at the last stage?

I couldn’t really make any sense of the announcement I saw the other day, but if it adds anything interesting at all, I’m upgrading.

Been using Ozone 8 Advanced for a bit over a year, and it’s one of my best investments ever. Great integrated toolkit with nice UI, and the AI Assistant can either give you a pretty decent mastering chain in a matter of seconds, or provide you with a good starting point for manual mastering. I use it whenever exporting anything, even quick WIP previews.

And well, latency is terrible, but that’s unavoidable if you want phase aligned EQ, look-ahead limiters etc. It’s not really a realtime tool, though latency is certainly low enough that you can tweak arrangement, automation, mix etc with the mastering chain on, if you run into issues that can’t be fixed in the master. I mean, it’s still a HUGE improvement over having to go back and re-export the main project, re-import that into the mastering project etc… :slight_smile:


Isn’t it a bit “difficult” to not go overboard with mastering/processing with a product like this? How do you restrain yourself to keep the dynamics and authenticity of your music?

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Well, I suppose so, and I guess you could end up with “interesting” results if you feed it extreme sausage masters as reference tracks… :slight_smile:

However, in my experience (mostly with the standard profiles; Streaming, CD etc), the limiting is very subtle and transparent, dynamics/compression is not used, and there are only subtle EQ and dynamic EQ tweaks to smooth out problem areas. Basically a “make it sound good” machine.

Of course, then you can slap in a compressor and crank up the maximizer until your ears are burning, but that’s no different from other mastering tools. :wink:

You can get it pretty loud without it sounding obviously terrible, though, so I guess it might do a good job for EDM “radio edits,” final movie trailer masters and the like as well.

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Any particular preset you usually start from btw? Since you also seem to focus more on dynamic cinematic music (compared to crushed and over-processed trailer music). :slight_smile:


I typically just use Streaming, and then I manually tweak the Maximizer until I get climaxes sufficiently loud and intense, but without boosting the quite parts too much. Rule of thumb (as least for traditional orchestra): It it doesn’t basically just sound the same, but louder, you’re overdoing it, or there might be mix issues.

Might add multiband compression before the limiter if there’s too much dynamic range in the low end (because that will make the higher frequencies pump if the Maximizer is pushed too hard), but for orchestral/hybrid, I find that unless you just need it REALLY loud (as in trailers, or “background listening”), a need for multiband compression might a warning sign that there are arrangement/mix problems. If you want a natural, transparent sound, it’s better to get it right at the source, than trying to shape it in the master. But, failing that, making it fit by means of selective multiband compression is better than having the limiter desperately trying to squeeze everything in, all at once.

From a more sound design point of view. the limiter can (ab)used to fatten things up and add “epicness,” but one can overdo it… If you push too hard, too much bass is lost, and then it kind of has the opposite effect instead, just sounding bright and harsh.

Finally: It’s always a bad idea to mess with this with tired ears after hours of work! :smiley:

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Just curious, is there any merit using any other FX plugin on the master bus if you already have Ozone there. Does it cover all use cases?

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It does come with all the usual mastering tools (usable both as modules for the mastering chain, and as stand-alone plugins in the DAW, in case you want to use them in the mix as well), and they’re all pretty good. I very rarely have anything else on the master bus. (Apart from Reference 4, as the system wide calibration doesn’t apply to ASIO drivers.)

That said, I don’t think anything comes close to FabFilter Pro-Q 3 for surgical dynamic EQ, extremely steep filters etc, and you might have particular tastes and preferences for saturation and whatnot, but I find myself doing pretty much all processing on the mix level, and using nothing but Ozone on the master.

This Low End Focus module kind of sounds like the main selling point to me (want to make the best possible use of that sub!) - but still no technical details, examples, or videos released, AFAICT…

Update: Oh, there are a whole bunch of general updates as well; metering, performance, resizable windows, global and module presets, track referencing, NKS support etc. Vintage Mode also seems a bit interesting, if you’re into that.

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David, when using Ozone… I usually just put it in the master track and run the assistant… and that’s it… all the previous work manually balancing each track is done, and with this ozone in the master, I feel it micro-shape the imperfections.

Sometimes though, I shut Ozone limiter off and leave on the master track my FabFilter Pro L2… also, I do the same with the eq, living my FabFilter Pro Q2 (haven’t upgraded to Q3 yet, but I will)… and there you go… so… do you think its worth it using it like this? ( I mean, FabFilters are the best, and they are super light on CPU -contrary as Ozone, which is super demanding- and finally, I end up most of the time using them… )

What’s left from Ozono in the above mentioned cases, is just Maximizer and spectral analysis, imager… (but I use also per track IMpusher, or Wavesfactory Spectre Enhancer…)…

Do you consider the upgrade is worth it? (I mean, “loyalty pricing”, but still is not such a great price…)

In your experience, if I don’t upgrade this time (I have Ozone 8), next year that Ozone 10 comes out… will it be super expensive the upgrade? as of now, it is expensive to upgrade… it says USD$200.00. (150 before the end of October)


That’s basically how it should be with mastering in general, except maybe if you need to go full radio-ready sausage; the mix should pretty much be there already, and mastering is just a final touch-up and getting it to the desired level.

Yeah, like I said, there’s nothing quite like FabFilter Pro-Q… I use it for any EQ job, except for very basic stuff, where I typically just use the Cubas strip ones. And I can certainly see why you’d want to swap other FabFilter plugins in as well; they really sound top notch (or rather; can be surrealistically transparent, even when doing rather aggressive processing), and the GUIs are amazing.

Speaking of “abusing” Ozone as an analyzer; on this track, I literally only used it only for that, and then went on to rebuild the whole mastering chain using only FabFilter plugins. (It’s literally only FabFilter on that track; synths, reverb, delays etc.) Not extremely loud or anything - though I think Pro-L etc could do an amazing job of that too.

Maybe Ozone is a bit expensive if you’re only actually using parts of it, but OTOH, the AI Assistant is real quick and handy, and just slapping Ozone on there and pushing the button works great for quick preview exports and the like, so I think it can be quite valuable either way…

As for upgrading, I went ahead and grabbed it, but I don’t know if it was worth it yet… :wink: And no, it should be the same price. The 9 upgrade is valid for version 5 and up - which is also a bit… weird, but oh, well…

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I will maybe then, just wait for a bigger upgrade… maybe Ozone 10… or X…

Unless, it consumes significantly less CPU and brings out something that’s really amazing… (I kind of like that Analogue Vintage Vibes they claim)… I’ll better wait for your update :slight_smile: here at Baggström’s .


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Oh, yeah! I think performance improvements were mentioned as well. Ozone 8 does eat a fair bit of CPU. Not generally a problem on my OC’ed i9, but it can cause issues if there are other heavy plugins hogging away on the same CPU core, and you’re running low latency settings.

I’ll let y’all know what I think when I’ve had a chance to play around with it a bit. :slight_smile:

Thanks! looking forward to it.

Here, this guy is very thorough in his reviews, https://youtu.be/21J7qLS8ag0

Interesting video on the Master Rebalance and Low End Focus modules:

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If you look into the comments under the advert-video on youtube, you will find a lot of complains about the new upgrade. People are saying that they still have problems using Ozone 8 and Neutron 2, me too, and say there were no updates of improvement at all (I can’t remember the last 6 months). It tells me only that iZotope doesn’t care too much about their loyal customers at the moment. One guy wrote, he bought Ozone 8 a couples of weeks ago, and now have to pay another 150$ for 9. Not really sure about their business strategy.

My thoughts: I own Neutron 2 and Ozone 8 Elements, which is a good piece of software. I like the most, that you can built your own channel-strip as you like, have tones of good presets to start, if you lack of inspiration and the sound-qualities are at the top of the game. I don’t use them for too long (8 month or so), BUT I will definitely not invest another 150$ for a so called “Upgrade”, which is actually an update in my eyes. One or two new features doesn’t make sense to call it upgrade, and take hundreds of bucks for it. We all know, that they need to live from it and so on, but we need to live too, and I believe that’s definitely not the right way to play with your loyal customers. That said, they don’t have to be surprised if they see their piece of software on a torrent site. (Was mentioned in the comments as well.)

I guess you all know the “Valhalla” guy, who is doing a great job with his amazing reverbs etc. He says on his site, that he does believe that a great piece of software should not cost MORE than an entire DAW. Let’s be honest: Let’s say one of us buys the whole iZotope package, that costs more than 1000$ and one year later, you need pay another 500$ for an upgrade? This can’t be right. As a good comparison I find that NI is doing it really well. If you own the whole Ultimate Bundle, the next upgrade will cost you 200$ and that’s it. You will get so much value and that’s an amazing price. But to pay that much for just one plugin, which tells you now: If you can’t mix, we mix it for you…sorry, I am not sure what they want to say with this one :slight_smile: Not advertised to “pros” at all.

Look at FabFilter, yes they cost a lot as well, BUT you will get good and fair deals and everything they do is without a question top-notch! After they have released their Q3, I was one of few guys, who complained about the upgrade-price especially because they didn’t insert the dynamic EQ feature back then. I said: Sorry guys, I have invested 150$ for you Q2 years ago, now you put Q3 on the market and I have to pay the same price as a guy, who buys it now? Are you really serious?
What did they do? They put dynamic EQ feature in it and dropped the price to 50% for loyal customers. They’ve listened to us! That’s how it should work! Yes, they said, guys you know how much money the development costs, and how much time we have invested? We said, yes we know, but that’s just a digital copy, which you made only once and made millions with it in a few weeks. That’s not a hardware piece, which is “handmade”. That’s what the “Valhalla” said, he just made it once and press a button to generate a serial number for thousand of other customers.

A lot of complains in here, I know, but in first place, you need to make sure as a developer, that your people, who follows you and makes you A LOT of money, are happy in first place, and this is only generated with fair deals! Another example: Tokyo Dawn Records make amazing stuff, how much do you pay? 30-50$ for a plug. In the moment I see that iZotope doesn’t really focus on the real pros, mostly on people, who think their mix will only sound good after they have bought their product. Don’t be fooled! Even the greatest piece of software will never ever make you sound like a pro, that is fact. How many bad mixes I have heard from studios which costs millions of dollars. You need to already have mastered your mix, only then iZotope can give you another 5% on top.


Yeah, I think their upgrade pricing is crazy for a plugin with not that many improvements compared to last version.

I also got the free Ozone 8 elements, would you say this is enough for mastering inside one plugin? What am I missing without the full version?


Totally agree, and even though I was particularly interested in some of these new features in Ozone 9, I find the “upgrade” price pretty steep. Also weird that someone upgrading all the way from Ozone 5 pays no more than I paid to upgrade from 8. I can afford it, but that’s not the point…

Also agree about FabFilter, and I’m a big fan of kiloHearts and their modular snapin system as well. Can’t wait to dive deeper into electronica and the like, to find more creative uses for all these plugins. I almost feel bad about grabbing their respective “everything” bundles at massively discounted prices - but, I pretty much just add anything they release to my collection.

Unfortunately, my cynical nature leads me to suspect that iZotope, Waves and their likes make more money, and I’m not sure FabFilter, kiloHearts etc will win in the long run - but I hope I’m wrong…

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