My go to software choice is Character from the TC Electronic Powercore Firewire Unit..
The Unit comprises of 4 sharc dsp motorola chips and 4gb of ram and uses no system cpu..
I actually own two powercore units with differing software packages..one for mastering and one for synth or efx work, combined they act as a major buffer to my sometimes busy mixes and tracks…
Character (Novatech) is a plug in that i use on almost every mix and every track…
it combines Compression and EQ in a easily intuitive GUI with stunning audio quality..
Great for bringing out air in muddy vox mixes or bringing warmth and richness to cold souless acoustic guitars recorded on small diaphragm condensor for instance….
It never fails to make me smile and always gets the desired result i need from it…
How i tend to use this plug in is usually on Buses.
I will create a vocal mix bus and usually put it before the reverb/delay and usually after compressor like a la76/la3 to act almost like parallel compression..this method works fantastic on a drum bus for instance for an overall desired change of character..
What i really like about it is the main character knob as its essentially the amount and the wet/dry mix so all you do is set the desired mode (123) narrow/medium/wide…
Set the Target Frequency (hz/Khz) and dial in the amount of characer desired…I usually take this one step further and arm the automation RW and automate the main character knob for chorus/verse changes etc….
this is how they explain the plug in and i think it explains it perfectly..
“Basic audio processing tools such as EQs and compressors involve a large number of technical parameters, which have to be set to correct values in order to get the desired result. The Character™ intelligently enhances the relevant characteristics found in the source, working across a complex set of connected parameters, and not only boosting e.g. one specific frequency. This innovative approach allows users to get to the desired results much faster, as only three parameters need tweaking!”
I’d Gladly give this Plug in 8/10