So, you decided to spring for that Intel Mac. And now you’ve got a plug-in that refuses to run, because it’s PowerPC-only, not a Universal Binary for Intel. Sorry, but only plug-ins that have been updated as Universal Binaries will run in a Universal audio host. Fortunately, there’s away around it, and it’s even fully documented by Apple:

Intel-based Macs: Forcing a Universal application to run with Rosetta [Apple Support Doc]

That’s it. You force your audio application to run under Rosetta, as a PowerPC-native application. During the period when I had a MacBook Pro for testing, I was surprised to discover audio applications are usable. Performance is degraded — your Core Duo suddenly feels like a 400 MHz G4 (apologies to Titanium owners) — but they run. My advice: render any of those old plug-ins as audio, then reload; in Ableton Live, for instance, temporarily force the software to run in Rosetta, bounce the track with the plug-in you need, then re-load Universal and play the audio. Not the most elegant solution, but it’ll get you by.

Note that it’s not just us audio folks who have to suffer through this — the same is true for graphics and Web plug-ins. But now you can finally run that free PowerPC-native 8-bit music plug-in we saw earlier this week.