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Should I Buy It? – DS Thorn Synthesizer Review

Should I Buy It? – DS Thorn Synthesizer Review DS Thorn is a Spectral synthesizer plugin designed by Dmitry Sches (hence the DS before Thorn). Yeuda goes over the synthesizer and boy it seems amazing, we think you’ll be excited too. Watch the video review below, and read the walkthrough below that.     General Interface     Thorn’s interface leans heavily toward a utilitarian aesthetic, favoring skeuomorphic design (the knobs look lifelike) over the alternatives. This results in a plugin that looks cluttered with all the many parameters you are able to adjust, and a bit dated. One of the best parts of Thorn is that you can map every single parameter to a modulator! Unfortunately, the plugin lacks visualization of those mappings so it can hard to keep track of everything as your routings become more complex. What we have are five major sections of the plugin. On …

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Should I Buy It? – Kilohearts Phase Plant Review

Should I Buy It? – Kilohearts Phase Plant Review In this edition of ‘Should I Buy It?’ Yeuda takes on the behemoth plugin Phase Plant made by Kilohearts. Phase Plant is a modular synth that includes a huge variety of sound generators, effects, and modulation flexibility. It’s almost too much to describe with words, which is why we made a video covering it. Watch below, and read the breakdown below that.       Interface     The interface initializes empty as you have to add your own modules in the provided three sections. Overall it’s a clean look, easy to navigate and strongly serves the signal flow it was designed for. We love that it is scalable vertically and horizontally, it’s 2019 and that should be a standard in plugins by now. Functionally, it actually seems similar to Ableton instrument racks in that you can stack sound generators, assign …

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Top 12 Free Synths Every Producer Should Know

Top 12 Free Synths Every Producer Should Know With the endless new software and hardware synths out it’s hard to keep some money in our pocket. So we figured we’ll make a list of all the free synths every producer should check out. You can make entire albums with great-sounding synths just with this list alone. There are many more free synths out there that are exclusive to windows or Mac machines but we only included the multi-platform (Windows, Mac and some supporting Linux for all you nerds out there) beasts so everyone can download today and start making some awesome sounds for free! If you find yourself using these synths a lot please consider donating to the developer who put hours on top of hours of writing code, designing and developing. Surge   Surge is an open-source synth developed by Kurasu (Claes Johanson) and maintained by a group of …

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LABS – Instrument Update

The last time we wrote about Spitfire Audio’s Let’s All Be Something (LABS) free instrument series we covered their Electric Piano. Well, it’s been a few months and they’ve been churning out instruments since then. In this article, we’ll cover the latest in a series of instruments from the plugin maker. Charango The first instrument to come after the LABS Electric Piano was Charango. The Charango is a stringed instrument similar to a guitar, but native to the Andean culture. It is in the lute family of stringed instruments. It has ten strings that come arranged in five groups of two. This charango — an Andean guitar-like instrument — was recorded back in 2006 by Christian Henson on a KM184 mic in his Soho flat, played by his brother Joe. This was the instrument that inspired Christian and Paul to create Spitfire Audio. It plays quite smoothly for a stringed instrument which can always be tricky …

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SKULPT – New Synth from Modal Electronics

SKULPT – New Synth from Modal Electronics Modal Electronics recently announced the release of their brand new synthesizer SKULPT. This beast has been making major waves for its size and punches it packs, see below the list of features this bad boy comes with: Features 4 voice – 32 oscillator virtual analogue synthesiser 8 oscillators per voice with 2 selectable morphable waveforms Mixer stage for osc levels along with FM, PWM, tuning and Ring Modulation options Monophonic, Duophonic and Polyphonic modes available Multi option Unison / spread to detune the 32 oscillators for a huge sound 8 slot modulation matrix with 8 sources and 37 destinations 3 x envelope generators for Filter, Amplitude and Modulation 2 x audio rate LFOs, one global and one polyphonic Realtime sequencer that will record up to 128 notes and up to 4 parameters. Fully featured arpeggiator with division, direction, octave, swing and sustain controls. …

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Supersounds – FREE Modular Synthesizer Library

Supersounds – FREE Modular Synthesizer Library With our Sound Design Course just starting up recently we wanted to share with you some awesome FREE downloads – Irrupt Supersounds. Supersounds is a sound library containing 412 audio samples and loops recorded at 122.5bpm. All files are available in 4 different formats – 16-bit and 24-bit WAV, 44.1 kHz and 48 kHz, all mono. These sounds were created and collected by the following group of artists: Herr Schneider Patrick Detampel Ebbots Jako Jako Henning Attics Perpetual Ash We at Beat Lab are very thankful to Irrupt for organizing such an awesome pack and especially for making it free! Berlin is the heart of many electronic music scenes and here is what Irrupt had to say about the project, “Creatively engaging with unique individuals is what gets us fired up. Personalities, passionate conversations, sonic exploration and shared discoveries are at the core of the …

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Grandmother – Moog’s New Semi-Modular Synth

Grandmother – Moog’s New Semi-Modular Synth Gearheads rejoice! Legendary American synth builders at Moog have announced the release of a limited series synth called the Grandmother. The synth is a callback to the heyday of Bob Moog’s original lineup of synths from the 1960’s and 1970’s, it’s fully analog with no digital components for saving/recalling presets. The unit features modules for arpeggiation, sequencing, a spring reverb, an analog filter and an external audio input. External instruments can be routed through the Grandmother’s effects modules via that input. The synth has a relatively straightforward layout so those not typically inclined on pure analog won’t have too hard a time getting started right away. For all those sound explorers out there you’ll be pleased to interact with the 41 patch points on the synth, each of which can be routed to external Eurorack gear or Moog systems for further modulation. Moog’s Mother series …

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VSTSID – FREE Commodore 64 Synth

VSTSID – FREE Commodore 64 Synth Igorski recently announced the release of a free VST plugin that emulates the sounds of the original Commodore 64 system – VSTSID. The plugin is designed to resemble the web-based plugin WebSID which is a fun experiment by the same developers built for Google Chrome. VSTSID is exactly the same as WebSID except it is designed for use in your DAW as a VST or VST3 plugin; VSTSID features a Ring Modulator in place of the Delay effect seen on the Web version. VSTSID emulates the sound of the Commodore 64 which is known for its infamous 8-bit arpeggiator. Aside from the ring modulator the adjustments that are possible to make to the timbre of the sound are quite limited. Despite the filter effect not being true to the original, the sound of the pulse-width modulation found on the Commodore 64 computers is quite accurately emulated here in the plugin …

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