Antares Auto-Tune Realtime X Plug-In Primer

Legendary for its vocal enhancing and creative applications, the Antares Auto-Tune effect revolutionized vocal production and has become a must-have tool for the modern music producer’s toolkit.

Developed by Antares and available exclusively for UAD-2 hardware and Apollo interfaces, the Antares Auto-Tune Realtime X plug-in offers genuine low-latency Auto-Tune effects popularized by the likes of Cher, Daft Punk, and Kanye West, as well as subtle, real-time pitch correction.

See below for tips & tricks that will help you get the best results with the Auto-Tune Realtime X plug-in. 


What is Auto-Tune Designed For?

Auto-Tune is designed to be used on solo, monophonic audio material. This includes:

  • Solo vocals

  • Solo instruments such as guitar, woodwinds, brass, strings, etc., playing one note at a time

Auto-Tune is not recommended for use on the following sources:

  • Vocal groups or doubled vocals

  • Polyphonic sources (chords, harmonies, etc)

  • Percussive sources (drums, cymbals, etc)

  • Sources processed with stereo effects (chorus, delay, reverb, etc)

  • Full mixes 

Using Auto-Tune Realtime X

Inserting Auto-Tune

Auto-Tune can be inserted on mono or stereo tracks, however, the source should always be monophonic.

Processing Order

In general, effects like high pass/low cut filters, subtle EQ, de-essers, and gentle compression/dynamics should be used before Auto-Tune in the effects chain. All other processing such as delay, reverb, spatial effects, distortion, etc should be applied after Auto-Tune.

Auto-Tune Realtime X is Unison-compatible - meaning it can be used after a Unison plug-in within Console - however extremely distorted or saturated signals should be avoided. 

Tips for Best Results

Auto-Tune works best with clean, well-recorded audio. The following standard recording practices can help improve your results with Auto-Tune Realtime X:

  • Reduce microphone bleed and reflections by using an isolation booth, gobo, and/or overdub vocals without any other sources in the room

  • Use closed-back headphones when recording vocals

  • Reduce rumble by using a shock mount / suspension mount for the microphone 

  • Reduce plosives by using a pop filter and ensuring proper distance from the microphone

  • Reduce hum and hiss by using high pass/low cut filters before Auto-Tune

  • Reduce excess sibilance by using a de-esser before Auto-Tune

Auto-Tune features Input Types designed for specific sources. If you encounter audio artifacts when using Auto-Tune, check that the Input Type matches your source and/or try a different Input Type. The Input Types available are:

  • Soprano: Used mainly for female vocals, occasionally for male falsetto vocals

  • Alto/Tenor: Used for most male vocals, occasionally for lower female vocals

  • Low Male: Used for very low male vocals

  • Instrument: Used for instruments such as guitar, woodwind, brass, strings, etc

Tips for Reducing Latency

Auto-Tune Realtime X has the lowest latency when used in Console with an Apollo interface. 

If you're not using an Apollo interface, Auto-Tune Realtime X can be used when monitoring input signals through your DAW however additional configuration is required to reduce latency. This includes:

  • Lowering the buffer size in your DAW application

    – Lowering the buffer size provides for lower latency, however it also puts additional strain on the host CPU.
    – How low you can stably set the buffer size on your system depends on the CPU load and processing power available from the host CPU.

  • Removing latency causing plug-ins from DAW output busses (including the master buss)

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