I wanted to do another post on stereo imaging since I've been using the UAD Precision K-Stereo Ambience Recovery plugin on some of my projects lately. The K-Stereo plugin is based on the hardware designed by world renown mastering engineer Bob Katz (who I had the great pleasure of meeting last year). Even though it was designed for mastering purposes I find it quite handy as a mixing tool.
The K-Stereo works on the concept of mid-side enhancement and ambience recovery. It enhances the soundstage and stereo image without ruining the phase. The best way I can describe it is it makes the tracks more 3-D. The plugin can work on individual tracks and aux busses (works well on the background vocals buss) but really shines on the Master Buss. The K-Stereo is very simple to use and a little goes a long way. The AMBIENCE FILTERS section only affects the 'wet" signal and only when the "RECOVER" button is lit. This allows the user to tailor the frequency response of the ambience. Note the K-Stereo does not add artificial ambience but just enhances the inherent "space" already in the material.
Take a look at this video with Mr. Katz demonstrating what the UAD K-Stereo does:
And here's a quick video review of the K-Stereo plugin by Russ over at Protools Expert:
A few years ago I did a post on stereo imaging tips which feature both hardware and software stereo imagers. The tips are a part of my daily mix routine.