MAIM Is A New FREE Lo-Fi Glitch Plugin By Wildergarden Audio


Wildergarden Audio releases MAIM, a FREE glitchy Lo-Fi plugin for macOS, Windows, and Linux.

Usually, at least in recent articles, when we talk about Lo-Fi effects, even glitchy distortion, we’re still talking about the sound you hear in ultra-slick, chilled instrumentals. The art of making something sound worse, but it’s really better because it’s on purpose, and I’m a sucker for it, still.

MAIM delivers glitchy Lo-Fi effects, but it’s something a little bit different.

More accurately, MAIM delivers the sound of MP3 compression with the added ability to control and adjust a wide range of spectral distortions and glitches.

This control comes thanks to two heavily hacked real MP3 encoders at the heart of the plugin.

MAIM offers enough tweakable controls to provide a relatively broad sonic palette, but the defining character is undoubtedly on the wilder side. The crunchiness and aggressive degradation won’t suit every need, but it’s probably more fitting for more styles than it first appears.

One of the things I like about plugins that degrade or mutate sound beyond a comfortable point is that they change the defining character of the sound. That’s a very obvious statement, but I mean the contrast between the dusty old, but ironically still polished, sound of subtle degradation and the uneasy, tension-filled sound of something much harsher.

I also love sounds that create so much tension that they become audible anxiety, mainly in the realm of film scores, but in the proper context and amount, they are great for anything with any sense of angst (or similar emotion), teenage or otherwise.

As I’ve mentioned film scores again, check out Sonokinetic’s Tutti Free orchestral library for Kontakt Player if you haven’t yet.

MAIM has a bit of a mad scientist feel to it, and unapologetically so, as it should be. The interface features a large Bitrate section with two encoder types, Blade and Lame.

Other sections include Frequency Reassignment, Spectral Effects, and Miscellanea. In addition, you also get Drive, Filter, Makeup Gain, and Dry/Wet controls.

You can adjust and automate all knobs without fear of nasty pops or gaps.

If you want to explore the wild depths of digital distortion in a controlled environment, MAIM should be right up your street.

MAIM is available in AU and VST3 formats for macOS, Windows, and Linux and will always remain free and open-source.

Download: MAIM (FREE)


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James is a musician and writer from Scotland. An avid synth fan, sound designer, and coffee drinker. Sometimes found wandering around Europe with an MPC in hand.


  1. One might think that another Bitcrusher/Lofi plugin is not needed. That might be true, but this one is very cool and special. The frequency randomization and the spectral capabilities make this one different and fun. The wet/dry mix knob makes even the weirdest effect usable if you just dial it in as needed… Love it!

  2. Today, using codecs as a realtime effect is basically magic when you made your own mp3 using Xing in 1996 on a Cyrix 166+. Not even realtime back then, using 100% of your CPU. -_-;

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