Safari Pedals Lion Master Review | A roaring limiter

In the vast world of audio plugins, Safari Pedals has introduced the Lion Master, a plugin that promises to bring character and identity to your sound. After a thorough examination, here's what I found:

First Impressions

The GUI (Graphical User Interface) of the Lion Master is impressive. It's not just about aesthetics; the design has balls, character, and a distinct identity. This is a significant plus point, as a well-designed interface can make the user experience much more enjoyable.


The plugin boasts a range of features:

  • Input Gain: Adjust the level of the input signal.
  • True Peak &
  • LF Gain & HF Gain: Shape the tonal balance of your sound.
  • Crossover: A feature that allows for more detailed sound shaping.
  • Bypass
  • Oversampling
  • Saturation Module: Impart color to the sound.
  • Width: Adjust the stereo image.
  • Input and Output Meter: Monitor the levels of your sound.
  • Gain Reduction Meter: Keep an eye on how much the plugin is affecting your signal.


I tested the plugin with multiple chains, adjusting the input gain from 1 DB to 24 DB. Surprisingly, even with widely different values, the Lion Master held its ground. None of the instances sounded bad, which is a testament to its robust design.

The 2db version was my preferred setting for the project I was working on. Tweaking it further, I found that the plugin added a subtle but rich color to the sound. It's not just a tool for the master bus; it can add flavor across the mix, making it a versatile addition to any producer's toolkit.


The Lion Master shines as a coloring tool. It's subtle but effective. The width knob, especially at low values, opens up the stereo image in a pleasing way. However, there's a peculiar aspect of this plugin: the gain reduction. Even with just 2 DB of input gain on a signal that's not peaking, the meter shows up to 7dB of gain reduction. The math doesn't quite add up, and it's unclear where this reduction is coming from. Perhaps it's the saturation, but the sound doesn't feel overly compressed or squashed.


Despite the odd behavior of the gain reduction, the Lion Master by Safari Pedals stands out for its sound quality. In sound engineering, the end result is what truly matters, and this plugin delivers. Kudos to Safari Pedals for crafting such a valuable tool for producers and sound engineers alike.


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