Faded Instruments has created the ultimate ‘breathing bitcrusher’ with LitBit. Better still, this ingenious plugin won’t break the bank.
Faded Instruments make some pretty weird plugins. From their Slimer FM machine, which uses audio input from any of your DAW’s channel signals to create the sloppy sticky sounds of a SOPHIE single, to their Spectral Disturbtion unit in which you move emojis through a polynomial grid to get some of the most mental distortion FX I’ve ever heard — they have just the right kind of insane genius we need in the VST game right now.
Their suite of plugins are diverse in purpose, but they all each share a striking design aesthetic, were developed with heaps of versatility, and have interactive functionality coming out of their virtual noses — and their new LitBit bitcrusher is no exception.
Though it’s not quite as wild as some of their other units, LitBit offers a great solution to any of your sound crushing needs. The bitrate and sample rate reducers are intricate, assigned to fully adjustable knob controls instead of switches or buttons, which allows you to finely adjust just how much of a bashing you want the sound to get.
Alongside this are both saturation knobs and a white noise oscillator which can be used to further destroy and ripen the sound. On top of this, there is a beautiful waveform visualiser at the centre of its display, which can show just how much you’re throttling the shape of the audio — but this is about as standard as this plugin gets.
LitBit begins to differentiate itself from all other bitcrushing units with its Breathe envelopes, which recognise the shape of the incoming audio and adjust the location and amount of distortion affecting the sounds in turn.
These envelopes are placed on both the sample rate and bitrate parameters, and allow you to choose whether the crush affects the start of the sound (for a clean tail) or the end of the sound (for a clean sample, and a crushed tail). Using soundtracking envelopes like this makes for some useful sound manipulation, as each crush can be specifically catered to the incoming sound, and can once again be adjusted with on fine tune knob.
There’s also a Crinkle function, which randomises the size of these bit/samplerate reductions, and with enough adjustment, you end up with the most beautifully shattered interpretation of your sound.
But the quality of the plugin isn’t even LitBit’s biggest draw. That award would have to go to its incredibly accessible price, because for $14.20 US, you can start using this incredible bit of kit for your own destructive needs. In my opinion, it’s one of the most intuitive and versatile bitcrushers available, and whilst such a low price seems insane, it’s not like we’d expect any less from Faded Instruments.
LitBit is available here, and their other suite of weirdo plugins are available here at similarly low prices. Give them a look and prepare to be inspired by the wacko world of sound they’re producing.