We are in a new series of trying out FREE plugins! For Part 1, we quickly dive into the GSI Watkat!
A free Emulation of the Watkins Copicat:
"Charles Watkins invented the Watkins Copicat, an echo unit introduced in 1958. Mr. Watkins was inspired by the Morino Marini Quartet who made famous the Comi Prima, which contained a special use of repeated phrasings. The Copicat revolutionized the world of music beginning in the United Kingdom, Watkins’ home country, and soon covered the world. The echo unit did not contain any printed circuit boards, just a few valves, a tape loop and as he said “a bit of imagination.” The Copicat was sold by the hundreds of thousands and is still regarded as a standard echo unit for most recording studios and concert halls. Accredited as the major element in the sound of the 60's, many models are still being played nightly over 50 years later. "
Our Quick Demo of the GSI "WatKat" Plugin:
Note: The video does have sound, but I show at the start the noise it features as a faithful recreation of what a real tape echo would have.
I love how there's inherent noise (as shown in the beginning of the video) when you enable one of the playback heads, and that each playback head has a slightly different type of noise. I think it's also a cool touch that the "tape" wobbles when you touch the capstan. This delay is not super versatile, but it's not meant to be. It has its own vintage voice that works really well with guitars, vocals, keys, etc. There are 3 different playback heads to choose from, and you can control the volume of each, and the "sustain" or feedback of the echo as well. Visit GSI for more information. And yes, they have both Windows and Mac versions!
For more information on the Watkins Copicat, this page is pretty cool.
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