The last decade brought us some handy audio processing tools. The kind of audio processing tools we never imagined that would be possible. Having this in mind I will dedicate the next tutorial to one of these plugins. Have you ever imagined to be able to boost the drums in some track that you like or to bring their level down to hear the rest of the elements in the mix better? This piece of the audio plugin does that and a whole lot more.


UNMIX::DRUMS by Zynapiq


Unmix by Zynaptiq is the world’s first audio plugin that allows attenuating or boosting drums in mixed music, in real-time. Using advanced source signal separation (a.k.a. de-mixing, unmixing, sound extraction, sound isolation) technology under the hood, it provides frequency dependent drum level control that ranges from up to +18dB of a boost to virtually complete removal* – while always sounding great. Whether used on a full mix or on a drum bus, it can be used to shape and enhance the impact of your drums in a unique new way.

Sporting an intuitive multi-level GUI, frequency dependent control of key parameters, a sample accurate sub-bass (re)synthesizer, a high-precision analyzer display, M/S operation and an output limiter, UNMIX::DRUMS opens up exciting new options for mastering, music production, sample-based music creation, mash-up artists, remixers and DJs.


Let’s start


Let us start by adding a fresh instance of Unmix on the part of the track that I made some time ago in Soundbridge. We will listen to it first without any processing. But before we start I have to accept that this plugin is super CPU hungry. However, in comparison to what it is capable of, it is understandable.



~Track unprocessed



The interface


Upon opening the plugin, we can see a rather simple interface. But don’t let that fool you since there is much more under the hood.

In the top section, we can see the preset tab that contains some useful presets to get you started. Next, we have an algorithm section, where you can switch between punchy and smooth. Moving forward we see the “live comp” and “limit” switches which will bring the overall gain down if needed.

Let’s see how this track sounds when I dial the “Drum Level” to the max.


~Track processed with Unmix 1


We can clearly hear that drum section is now pulled in front of the mix comparing to the rest of the sounds in the track. I think the release parameter can be increased a bit more in order to preserve the original reverb heard on the drums. Therefore let’s listen to it once more with the longer release and let us compare the “Punchy” and “Smooth” algorithms.


~Track processed with Unmix 2

~Track processed with Unmix 3


Now for the last example let’s do the opposite. Let’s turn the drum level all the way to the left side. This will push back the drums back in the mix and the piano will be more present.


~Track processed with Unmix 4


As you saw from this tutorial, this plugin is unique, like most of the Zynaptiq plugins which I will cover more in the next tutorials.


Download the project here.