Prismizer is an audio effect that combines the words prism and harmonizer to form its name. The prismizer’s polyharmonic pitch offers saturation similar to the dispersion of light to a prism. The prismizer is capable of combining pitch and frequency characteristics from multiple sources, and it is typically focused to the processing of the human voice. The prismizer audio effect is similar to the vocoder, also known as an Auto-Tune, in that it uses multiple audio codecs, whereas it uses pitch and frequency characteristics to achieve a variety of choral effects.
It’s worth mentioning that the prismizer has a unique configuration that has been included in many albums. Also, Harmony Engine plugin by Antares incorporates this effect. Antares Harmony Engine plugin has appeared on many albums such as Frank Ocean’s sophomore album, Blonde, the Bon Iver album 22, A Million, and Farewell, Starlite!, as well as Francis and the Lights by Francis Starlite. Because of this, Chris Messina created the live instrument version of the Prismizer known as The Messina. The Messina a laptop running the Prismizer that is connected to a MIDI controller using some form of outboard gear.
Nowadays, synthesizer effects are essential for many musical artists. James Blake used a vocoder throughout The Colour In Anything, and both Frank Ocean and Chance the Rapper used a Prismizer for their projects. Francis Starlite perfected the technique of reaching bright polyphony sounds without using a vocoder. The vocoder operates like the light that moves through a prism area and splits into a color spectrum. With vocals, the process is nearly the same as it is scattered and voluminous, giving a choir effect to any given sound. It’s worth mentioning that Chance the Rapper mentioned the Prismizer in an interview with Zane Lowe just after its debut on Coloring Book.