10 Jun 2022

Joe Chiccarelli Plug-in Review

Gearspace: “A very effective one-stop-shopping vocal processing strip.”

IK's Joe Chiccarelli Vocal Strip for T-Racks is making waves. Gearspace is one of the first to publish a full review, giving the plug-in an overall score of 4.75 out of 5 stars! It's an excellent read for learning the magic behind Joe's mastery.

The article dives deep into the controls and functionality of the vocal chain and even discovers some secret functionality not mentioned in our manual. They congratulate IK for producing "a fascinating processor strip based on what Joe has used with many professional artists."

Gearspace verdict

  • Sound Quality: 5 out of 5
  • Ease of use: 5 out of 5
  • Features: 5 out of 5
  • Bang for buck: 4 out of 5
  • Overall: 4.75


  • T-RackS Joe Chiccarelli Vocal Strip is an all-in-one vocal chain based on a very successful installation at the famed Sunset Sound Recording studio.
  • Provides a wide range of vocal-oriented effects that are applicable to almost any singer and any musical style.
  • Can be used both as a plug-in directly in your DAW or inside the T-RackS 5 mastering shell.
  • Includes a variety of presets from Joe himself, providing insight into his methods, saving time and making it easy to get started.
  • Full-latency compensation (though latency is extremely low!) and allows sampling rates up to 192 kHz.

Here are more highlights and a link to the full review below:

The Vocal Chain of Stars

"While you can always use your own EQ, compressors, reverb, etc. to design your own vocal chain, JCV provides a versatile, proven set of processors that, as an aside, have been used on sessions for U2, Beck, The Strokes, The Killers, Morrissey, Tori Amos, The Shins, Alanis Morissette, The White Stripes, and Jason Mraz, among others."

Compression Times Three

Joe often uses two or even three compressors in parallel, rather than in series.


"The first in JCV, called the Main Parallel Compressor, is modeled on a UREI 1176. From my tests, I found a fairly high ratio, moderate attack rate of 15-20 msec and a release time of about 2 seconds.

"The second compressor, the Retro Parallel Compressor, is modeled after a Fairchild 670. I found this compressor has a very fast attack (hard to measure, but under 1 msec), a long release time (in the 4.5-second range) and a high ratio.

"The third compressor, the Heavy Parallel Compressor, is based on a custom UA 176 and Tube-Tech CL 1b "designed to add distinctive character and aggression", and I found it really does! I measured the attack in the 25-35 msec range, and the release at about 1.4 seconds."

But There Is More!

"Now if that were all, it would be quite entertaining, but I found the input section alone creates some unique signal "modulations". I'm not talking saturation, but actual level and phase modulation.

Since JCV works a treat on vocals, this illustrates that "perfection" in sound processing is not what you always need!


"The preset manager has 24 factory presets from Joe Chiccarelli himself, covering female and male vocals in a range of styles which should prove both useful and educational. Most of them use all three compressors."


"All technical details aside, JCV proves a very effective one-stop-shopping vocal processing strip.

The T-RackS Joe Chiccarelli Vocal Strip should help you create excellent vocals with the artists you work with, and with a minimum of effort.


Read the full Gearspace review HERE.

Learn more about Joe Chiccarelli Vocal Strip HERE.


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Joe Chiccarelli Vocal Strip



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