Waves Tune Real Time

Waves Tune Real-Time Review

So, I guess you here because you are wondering if Waves Tune Real-Time can turn your shitty voice into the voice of an angel?  Well as they say, ‘you can’t polish a turd’, but this plugin can definitely help you with achieving your turd polishing goals.

Waves Tune Real-Time is a vocal pitch correction plugin that can be used to correct live vocals or also in the studio during post-production.  Both subtle pitch correction, and the popular ‘auto-tune’ vocal sound effect can be achieved with Waves Tune Real-Time making it a versatile plugin for most music producers.


  • Demo available
  • Super fun
  • Minimal Latency
  • Can be used as Auto-tune
  • Play pitch correction via MIDI
  • Corrects Vibrato
  • Polishes turds


  • Samples slightly degrade
  • The interface takes some getting used to
  • Quite expensive

Is Waves Tune Real-Time for you?

Hip Hop is one of the biggest genres right now, and the overused and popular ‘auto-tune’ vocal effect is the star of the show, but that is not only task Waves Tune Real-Time can perform well.

Waves Tune Real-Time is for you if:

  • You love using heavy auto-tuned vocals.
  • You would like an easy to use the plugin for post vocal processing.
  • Or you want to keep vocals for live performance.

Skill Level

Beginner.  Believe it or not, pitch-shifting vocals is made super easy with Waves Tune Real-Time.  Simply dial in the desired settings and watch the tuning effect take place.  This is super cool for beginners because everything is tuned automatically once the correct settings have been set.

Advanced.  Advanced users will benefit most from Waves Tune Real-Time’s post and live tuning capabilities, whether you want to add subtle pitch correction to an acapella or you want to add pitch correction to a live performance.

How does it sound?

There are quite a lot of pitch correction VST plugins available and every one of these will sound slightly different with different characteristics. 

A common problem with pitch correction is sometimes the samples quality will degrade. 

Waves Tune Real-Time sounds super smooth with minimal artifacts when used in a more subtle way, although, if it is used in a more drastic way as heard in some popular hip-hop songs, it can sometimes make the sample sound a little grainier. 

Below is a video showing you how to achieve the auto-tune effect.

Some people like those characteristics but it’s something to take into consideration when purchasing a pitch correction plugin.

What makes it stand out?

Every great VST plugin has a feature that allows it to shine and stand out amongst all the other VST plugins out there, and in Waves Tune Real-Time is no different.

Waves Tune Real-Time stands out with the ability to add pitch correction to live singers with almost zero latency making it almost completely invisible to the listener.


Waves Tune Real-Time only comes with a few presets that are great for demonstrating its power. 

  • Medium Correction
  • Tight Correction
  • Quantized Correction

Each of these presets can be used with any scale you wish, and selecting a scale is made easy because Waves has most of them built-in.

Simply click the ‘Scale’ drop-down menu and select your desired scale. 

Once the scale has been selected it is then easy to edit the scale to suit your singer’s singing style.

If using the built-in preset settings isn’t for you, then everything is fully customizable.

The Interface

Waves Tune Real-Time’s user interface could not be simpler and has everything you need to get started displayed on the initial screen.

waves tune real time
The Interface

Correction Control

Correction Control

The Correction Control section sets the characteristics of the pitch correction and allows the user to control vibrato.

By Lowering the ‘Speed’ and ‘Note Transition’ settings, you can easily get that robotic hard tuned hip-hop vocal sound.

If you are after a more subtle pitch correction to support the vocalist, then these settings can be dialed in to perfectly suit the signer’s tune.

The ‘Tolerance’ section is what determines the range that the singer must hit in order for Waves Tube Real-Time to stay deactivated.  The wider the tolerance, the less pitch accurate the singer must be.  If the singer steps outside of this tolerance setting, Real-Time will step in and pick up the slack.

Pitch Correction Ratio Control and Meter

Pitch Correction

The Pitch Correction Section determines how much of the corrected signal will be applied to the original sound.  The more correction, the less you hear of the original sound.

This control is exactly the same as a Dry/Wet knob you see on every other effect plugin.

Formants are acoustical resonant frequencies that define the characteristics of a voice or instrument.  When the pitch correction takes place, the voice can sound more ‘chipmunk’ or ‘slower’ and it sounds like its not the same voice.  Formant control allows the voice to remain the same but still add pitch correction.

The display on the left is a visual representation of the corrected signal in real-time. 


This part of the user interface is the same as any other piano roll and is simply a representation of a MIDI layout. 

This is where the user can select or deselect the desired notes in their scale. 

Waves have put in another great option that allows the user to program what direction they want the pitch correction to go if the singer lands on a specific note.  This is great for customizing Waves Tune Real-Time to suit your singer’s singing style.

Scale Controls
The Keyboard

Global Settings

This is where you can establish the scale of your song or acapella.  There are many scales to choose from in the drop-down menu we mentioned earlier, and you can even add your own custom scales using the ‘Keyboard’ section mentioned above. 

All that is required is to know the scale of your song and then set the controls accordingly.

You can also set the note range of your scale depending on what pitch the singer’s voice naturally sits.  A female voice has a higher pitch and probably sits around ‘Alto’ or ‘Mezzo-Soprano’, while a male voice has a deeper voice that sits around ‘Tenor’ or ‘Baritone’.

Choosing the correct setting here can remove unwanted artefacts that might arrive from the singer making errors.

waves tune real time
Global Settings


All in all, Waves Tune Real-Time is a really fun and easy plugin to play with.  I have spent hours and hours adding hard pitch correction to my voice trying to make it sound half decent, and surprisingly it actually sounded pretty good!!

If you are shopping around for a good value pitch correction plugin that you want to use for live performance and post-production then I really think they Waves Tune Real-Time is probably one of the best options for you. 

I know that $199 is quite hefty but I actually bought my copy for $69 on sale.  If you can hold out for the next sale, then this plugin is definitely worth adding to your collection.

Want to check out some of my other VST related articles?

As always, good luck and happy producing.