Within 20 minutes of having it, WaveRider became a part of the workflow. THANK YOU!!!

Bruce Howell, Producer
Comedy Central | South Park

WaveRider has the best smart ducker I’ve ever used. This is truly a great tool!

David Farmer, Sound Designer
(Thor: Ragnarok, The Hobbit Trilogy, LOTR Trilogy)

WaveRider has been an incredible time saver in a high-pressure, quick-turnaround environment.

Scott Rowan, Shine Australia
(Masterchef, The Voice)

It’s rare to find a plugin that improves my efficiency, is easy to use, and allows me to focus on the music. WaveRider has become a valuable tool that I use often.

Dave Pensado, Mix engineer | Grammy Recipient
Pensado’s Place

Quiet Art’s plugins are amazing! They have saved me countless hours, which allows me more time to focus on other areas of a project. Thanks Quiet Art, for my new favourite tools!

Justin Van Hout C.E.A
Sound Designer | Re-recording Mixer 


A lot more than a time saver

Wave Rider is designed by a busy sound engineer to give him a break. Not only it improves your lifestyle by making mixing easier, but it also improves your sound, and that's progress. Wave Rider first became publicly available for Digidesign Pro Tools® users back in March 2009. It's a unique and innovative plugin that detects audio signal levels on the inserted channel, and applies Pro Tools fader movements as needed. Since its release, it evolved into a much improved tool thanks to user feedback. Here's an overview of its functions:

Ride mode

    In this default mode, Wave Rider's level detecting algorithm automatically raises or lowers the fader to maintain a user selectable output level by writing volume automation on the timeline. User can then alter the volume automation as needed. Be it your vocal, bass, voice over, or dialog, WaveRider makes it a breeze to maintain a smooth and consistent level so you don't end up over-compressing. Check out the videos on the right for example scenarios.

Duck mode

    This function will lower the signal of a target track by a user selectable amount if there's signal present on the inserted track. Narration and announcements over music as heard on radio channels rely on keyed compressors with poor results, now cooler with Wave Rider.

Park on silence

    This is a function you'll find in Automatic Mixer boxes. The faders are parked at a user defined low level when there's little signal, and they come up to full output when there's strong signal present, maintaining a steady output level. Particularly useful in situations where there are a lot of mics open and you want to have the cleanest signal without much background noise. Park mode can also be used in situations to replace a noise gate.

Trace mode

    Trace function is practically the opposite of what the Ride function is. It actually makes volume graphs of the envelope of the signal. This helps you to copy the dynamics of a signal to another track. Pretty useful when trying to combine 2 sounds together seamlessly.

Videos to get you started

Peripherals Setup
Ride Modes
Ratio Adjustments
Duck Mode
Trace Mode
WaveRider as gate
Not for the faint of heart!
Full Automix Showdown

WaveRider Support FAQ

I can’t get Wave Rider to do anything.

After installing Wave Rider, you will have to set Pro Tools peripherals for Wave Rider operation.
Go to Setup–>Peripherals–>Midi Controllers. Choose HUI as type and select Wave Rider ports for both send to and receive from.
Go to tips section to see a video of it.
Windows users, please make sure to choose port Wave Rider Ch x-x(snd) under “Receive From” and Wave Rider Ch x-x(rcv) under “Send To”.

Awesome, but I don’t see WaveRider ports in the peripherals menu.

You may need to restart your computer after installation. Also, if you see Send To ports but not the Receive From ports, then in ProTools check Setup > MIDI > Input Devices and make sure all WaveRider ports are checked.

I want to automate the controls of Wave Rider, but can’t see them in the menu! Is this a bug?

No, this is intentional. Since Wave Rider writes its own automation on the volume pane, there should be no reason to automate the plugin itself. After a write pass, you can remove Wave Rider and all the automation remains on the track. We simply wanted to get rid of the nuisance of adjusting parameters in latch mode while forgetting that all parameters are auto enabled.

When I turn the averaging mode on, the fader jumps up to +10db. I find it annoying, is there a way around it?

Yes, this is a known little issue. But fortunately very easy to get over. Upon playback, the faders will go to 0.
Also, putting “park on silence” on and setting a slow release will get over this issue and give you better tracking for material that is made of broken regions (checker-boarded).

It does not look like the automation written by Wave Rider is bang on, it looks like it is a little late.

There are a few of things to watch out for:

  • Set your playback engine so that H/W buffer size is 512-1024 samples.
  • Make sure there are no DSP plugins before WaveRider.
  • Delay compensation should be on if your system supports it.
  • WaveRider should be last plugin the chain.
I was using Wave Rider happily and suddenly I get HUI error messages and ports are inactive.

This is caused by the Mac OSX MIDI server crashing for a reason. We found that if you have M-Audio USB Support.plugin in your MacHD/Library/Audio/MIDI Drivers folder this can be the cause. Simply remove this driver and all is good. In some instances putting this driver back in doesn’t cause the issue again.

My faders are going nuts, zig-zagging uncontrollably.

Please use the Latch automation mode, and not touch. And make sure no other instant of WR is trying to control the same track number.

I have installed and set up everything right, but I don’t see any automation written on the track.

There could be a few reasons.
1-Make sure you have selected the proper channel number for the track you want to control. Wave Rider requires manual selection of the channel number, it will default to channel “off” when inserted.
2-Make sure you have not suspended automation in Pro Tools, and you have auto enabled Volume controls, and put the track on LATCH mode.
3-Please check out the following question to see the difference in HUI behaviour along with other types of external controllers.

I have a physical controller. How does WR play along with it?

If you have Icon, Pro Control, or C24), Wave Rider will only control the first 8 tracks that are loaded on the controller. Changing the loaded tracks of this bank will also affect what track WR will control. WR will treat the first track of this bank as channel 1, no matter what the actual track number in Pro Tools is.

If you have a 002, 003 series controller, Wave Rider will control the tracks immediately after the 8 tracks that are loaded on the controller.

If you have a Eucon enabled controller, Wave Rider’s functionality won’t be affected. You can enable all 32 channels in the MIDI controller section, and banking on the Eucon controller will not change WR track numbering.

Command 8 can’t be active concurrently with Wave Rider.

Does WaveRider do LKFS or LUFS ?

No. WaveRider does not utilize the ITU-R BS. 1770 specification, because its algorithm is designed for mixing, not metering. However, WaveRider does make it extremely easy to meet requirements like EBU R-128, ATSC A/85, OP-59, and TR-B32.

What’s WaveRider algorithm based on?

To put it simply, it’s based on Leq (A) weighting. But it gets complicated. Alpha version WaveRider’s algorithm was designed by a genius engineer with a PhD.

But in the studio, it didn’t work that well. It needed some human feel. So we went back to the drawing board and lessened the logic, and put some magic in it.

Ultimately, it evolved into an organic beast that is hard to classify as anything. We like that.

Isn’t this like AGC (Automatic Gain Control)?

Well, you are kind of right. However it doesn’t suck as most AGC circuits do.
WaveRider’s intelligent algorithm maintains the natural dynamic of the signal, keeping quiet parts comparatively quieter than loud parts. AGC circuits have a common characteristic: They will push gain as default and then brick-wall limit the hell out of the signal, creating a pumping artefact. WaveRider won’t do that, it will glide the signal gently to where it needs to go.

I have a range of compressors and limiters, and their plugin versions. What can WaveRider do better?

Compressors and limiters do one thing: attenuate the signal. For levels below their threshold they simply don’t do anything. You need to squash your signal over the board and use make up gain to achieve an even output level. This colors the sound, and once it’s there it’s there forever. WaveRider rides the faders for gain as well as attenuation so the output level stays consistent without degrading the dynamics of your signal. The best part is you can alter these moves after the fact. Of course WaveRider could be used along with your favorite dynamics processors to achieve ultimate results.

WaveRider is shown in classrooms at Full Sail University to exhibit precise vocal production techniques. Watch a show and tell video by Mike from Pro Tools Expert. Wave Rider is reviewed in May 2011 issue of Sound On Sound magazine: Link to article
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