Virtual monitoring: What is it and why you should use it?

Virtual monitoring is a powerful production tool that ensures your mixes are accurate and translate across all sound systems - no matter how limited your mixing room is.

This guide explores what virtual monitoring is, what our plugins dearVR MONITOR and dearVR MIX offer, and why you should use them to stay ahead of the game. 

What is virtual monitoring

Virtual monitoring is a technique used to digitally simulate acoustic environments. Packaged into a software plugin, this system is a vital tool for modern producers. 

Virtual monitoring is the process of creating acoustic audio mixing environments via virtualization. This technique digitally captures the physical effects of an acoustic space, allowing users to use the resources of this virtualized environment as if they were available to them in reality.

The goal of virtual monitoring is to assess and troubleshoot issues with mixes in a more efficient way. Furthermore, virtual monitoring provides users with a range of listening environments to test their mix in different check scenes, such as a car, living room, or a stadium. 

Why should you use virtual monitoring?

In our product lineup, we offer two virtual monitoring plugins:

dearVR MONITOR is the ultimate mixing solution - giving you ideal acoustics in any environment. With a unique set of features, this plugin offers virtualized state-of-the-art referencing setups, helping you to get a faultless perception of your mix. 

With dearVR MIX, your stereo mixes translate reliably to any sound system, whether you're producing rock, pop, R&B, classical music, or your podcast.
Read on to discover the power of Virtual Monitoring.

Both plugins offer many advantages to producers - seasoned professionals and aspiring beginners:

1. Virtual monitoring helps you overcome acoustic issues with your room by accessing reference-grade room virtualization. You’re no longer confined to the limits of your studio. This can be a lifesaver for engineers who have to mix in a compromised room - such as a bedroom. 

2. It lets you access a wide range of environments to test how mixes translate across different sound systems and environments. To get the best mix, you need to test your audio on a variety of speakers and listening devices. This lets you get the best perception of the mix’s performance, although you often only have enough room for a couple of pairs of speakers.

This is where especially dearVR MONITOR helps, as it has a large selection of environments and speaker setups. Including both accurate mix rooms, and realistic places like live venues, cinemas, home theatres, clubs, kitchens, and more. 

3. Our virtual monitoring plugins add a sense of space to headphone mixing which is otherwise lost - in comparison to mixing on loudspeakers. This gives you a better judgment of how the mix works in an acoustic space. Headphones are convenient, but they don’t show us how the audio sounds when played through loudspeakers.

4. dearVR MONITOR is a great tool for engineers who work in multi-channel formats like 7.1, Dolby Atmos, and more. With this plugin, you don’t need to have a full multi-channel rig to test the format, you have all the setups there at the click of a mouse button.  

5. Virtual monitoring allows you to work on your mixes whenever you want and wherever you are. dearVR MONITOR and MIX free up your workflow so you can spend more time concentrating on the important, creative parts.

Key Features of dearVR MONITOR

Here at Dear Reality, we are passionate about providing producers with pioneering spatial audio tools to enhance their everyday productions. We were motivated to create a comprehensive plugin that puts a huge amount of power into the hands of producers and engineers - in the form of an immersive mixing tool.

dearVR MONITOR is a kind of swiss army knife for the mixdown. We’ve included a range of features that make this plugin highly efficient when it comes to checking and refining your mix. 

Spatial Headphone Compensation

This setting tunes the plugin to compensate for the unique characteristics of headphones. An algorithm is adjusted to match the response of MONITOR to the headphones, increasing accuracy and reducing coloration. 

The algorithm includes models for a wide selection of the most popular studio headphones.

Multi-channel audio formats

Test multi-channel and surround speaker formats. This is a lifesaver for anyone working in cinema, entertainment, and other areas where these formats are used. 

Virtual mix rooms

Get your hands and ears on clean and responsive mix room models, letting you test your mix in top-class, acoustically treated studios.

Sennheiser AMBEO Clarity and Focus parameters.

Fine-tune the plugin’s response to reduce colorization and increase accuracy. 

Listening Environments

Access the acoustic characteristics of a selection of common listening spaces. This function is a blessing for any mixing or mastering engineer. Instantly test out your track in a car, living room, or more.

Try it on your own!

Virtual monitoring tools are useful across the audio industry. Whether you are a bedroom producer or you’re working on the soundtrack for a Hollywood movie, virtual monitoring is there to make sure your mix is as accurate and clean as possible. This is an essential tool for any modern audio artist. 

If you’re interested in the power of immersive audio, check out dearVR MONITOR, dearVR MIX, or the range of other immersive plugins offered by industry leaders Dear Reality!

Kai Detlefsen
Kai combines a creative approach with profound knowledge about international business processes having two bachelor’s degrees in Music and International Management. As a musician and mixing engineer, he can be found at concert venues and in recording studios. At Dear Reality, Kai strives to make the spatial audio world accessible for everyone.

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