FireCobra Manual

During the early stages of audio recording era, engineers sought for perfection. They tried to record and playback the sounds as close to the originals as possible. Now, in the digital era, perfection is almost possible. We started to appreciate some of the analogue domain "problems". Since these sometimes just sound good. We understand, that it is not the analogue devices themselves. It's psychoacoustics that makes things sound better. The analogue devices are just the first step. We may be able to do much more than what the old hardware could do. And that's what FireCobra is all about.

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We took years of expertise in analogue & digital audio processing. That led us to create a plugin that takes the best of both worlds. 

Behind its simple user interface, there's more technology than you'd probably use in a big mixing project. FireCobra intelligently analyses the audio signal and makes it sound punchier, more powerful and better in general. FireCobra will make your mixes better with nearly no time wasted on setting it up. Just put it on every track you'd like to enhance and set how much, that's all. 

FireCobra Controls

FireCobra features a nice looking simple user interface, which adapts to your screen - it will be the same size on any screen, whether it is low-DPI or modern high-DPI / retina. You can always drag the arrow in the bottom right corner to change its size - make it smaller to save the valuable screen space, or enlarge it to make it easier to use.

DRY/WET - Using FireCobra is ridiculously simple. In most cases, all you need is the DRY/WET knob. Increase its value to get more enhancement and vice versa. Be careful. FireCobra may sound almost too addictive and it may be easy to over-process your material. Always keep in mind that sometimes less is better. Making every track in your mix too powerful can make the mix become crowded. 

The DRY/WET knob controls the amounts for the following 3 enhancement algorithms provided by FireCobra. You can control each separately and DRY/WET defines the overall level of enhancement. 

INTENSIFY - The first algorithm usually gives the best results. It is based on some advanced dynamics processing. It makes the overall sound tighter. It brings up the elements that are drowned and hard to perceive and attenuates parts, which are killing the others. Settings this parameter to the minimum value will disable the algorithm to save CPU. 

SMACK - The second algorithm is inspired by rare analogue devices. It creates unique harmonic distortion, which makes the audio sound dirtier and more audible in the mix. By default, It is disabled by setting its level to the minimum value. That is to save CPU and make the results cleaner. That is,  we believe, a good starting point. 

ANALOGIZE - The third algorithm is based on classic analogue saturation units. Since most audio signals benefit from a bit of the analogue mojo, this one is not disabled by default.

LINEAR-PHASE - All of the algorithms require complex filtering, which requires phase alteration. We believe that the default minimum phase processing generally sounds the best and most natural. But we took advantage of the digital domain, which lets us perform the so-called linear-phase filtering. That does not alter the phase but requires latency (therefore it cannot be used in live scenarios). Linear-phase processing is also specific for its "pre-ringing" artefacts. It is often sought when mastering in order to introduce as little change to the sound as possible. 

OVERSAMPLING - FireCobra performs solid nonlinear processing, so it can produce aliasing when pushed too hard. In these cases oversampling would help by processing in higher sampling rates. The cost is much higher CPU usage and latency (therefore it cannot be used in live scenarios). Always check closely if it actually improves the sound quality and if not, do not use it. Do not use oversampling "just in case", use it only when there's a benefit. 

INPUT & OUTPUT - FireCobra features handy input and output peak meters and gain controls. Their meaning is self-explanatory. But it's a good thing to note that for optimal results input level should stay in say -10dB to -30dB range.

FireCobra Top Toolbar

FireCobra features several standard controls, which can improve your workflow.

A, B and Copy buttons - The plugin remembers 2 sets of settings, A and B. Clicking any of these 2 buttons switches between these 2 settings. The selected one is highlighted in red. This is a great way for A/B checking and selecting the best settings. "Copy" button copies the current settings to the other slot (if A is currently selected, the button will copy the current settings to slot B). 

Presets and right and left arrows - The plugin comes with a set of presets, which should do the trick for most cases. Access them using the right and left arrows, or by clicking the preset field directly. There you can save and manage your own presets as well. On your computer presets are stored in the following paths:

Windows:

C:\Users\username\Documents\FireSonic\FireCobra

Mac OS X:

HOME/Documents/FireSonic/FireCobra

Undo and Redo buttons - All of us make a mistake from time to time, which is when these two buttons come in handy. Undo button reverts your last change, Redo puts it back.

Bypass button - It is always a good idea to check if the plugin actually improves your sound, which is what the bypass button is for. In many DAWs it will be in sync with the DAW's bypass button (if it has one).

Right-Click Menu

Click anywhere in the plugin background with the right mouse button and you will get access to following features.
Scale GUI precisely by per-cent.
Get the version info.
Access product web page, reach support and access online documentation.  
Activate/Deactivate the plugin
Disable/Enable GPU Acceleration.

Double-click Menu 

Some parameters let you access more accurate numeric settings by double-clicking the knobs. 

Installation and maintenance

Installation is a quick and simple process involving downloading and using a standard installer on both platforms, Windows and Mac OS X. The installer places the plugins and presets into proper locations so that your DAW can easily find it. The plugin is available for all relevant interfaces: VST, VST3, AAX, and AU. Note that on OS X since High Sierra you may need to restart your computer to make your DAW find new plugins.

If you find yourself in trouble, please contact us via info@unitedplugins.com .

Updating

Updating the plugin to the newest version is as simple as using the newest installer.

Uninstallation on Windows

You can either use the link to the uninstaller in the start menu by typing FireCobra for example or it can be access via Control panels / Applications / 

Uninstallation on Mac OS X

First delete the plugin files manually fom :

AU: /Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/Components 

VST: /Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/VST

VST: /Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/VST3

AAX: /Library/Application Support/Avid/Audio/Plug-Ins 

Then if you really want to get rid of all data created by the plugin, remove the following folders as well: 

HOME/Documents/FireSonic/FireCobra

HOME/Library/Application support/FireSonic/FireCobra

Note: Since OS X 10.7 (Lion), many folders are marked as hidden by default. To make them visible again in Finder, please follow this tutorial:

https://ianlunn.co.uk/articles/quickly-showhide-hidden-files-mac-os-x-mavericks/

Trial and activation

Initially, FireCobra is in demo mode. That lets you evaluate the plugin, try it in your mixing/mastering sessions and make sure it really does the trick. When ready, purchase a license from our shop (by clicking on the FireCobra logo in the middle) or any of our resellers. You will receive a so-called license file, which you download to your computer. The plugin displays an ACTIVATE button when in trial mode, so click on it and select the license file. The plugin will check the license and activate the license on your computer. After you restart your DAW, the plugin will be activated and will work indefinitely without restrictions. You can use the plugin on all your computers.

Support

Now that you’ve taken the time to learn all about FireCobra, enjoy and make your sound awesome! If our plug-ins helped you take your production to the next level, let us know, we’d love to hear from you and what you were able to create with our software. 

If you encountered any problems, we offer free technical support for all registered users. Start with the frequently asked questions here:

http://www.unitedplugins.com/faq/FireCobra

If you need further assistance, you can find our Customer Support contact form at:

http://www.unitedplugins.com/contact

You can also reach our support staff by e-mail at: 

info@unitedplugins.com