Synclavier goes ios!


Synclavier Digital delves into iconic past to bring seminal Synclavier® II sound engine back to the future as awe-inspiring iOS apps


NOVA SCOTIA, CANADA: having turned heads and opened ears with a show-stopping showcase at The 2019 NAMM Show in Southern California, January 24-27, newly-formedSynclavier Digital is proud to announce availability ofSynclavier Go! and Synclavier Pocket! — placing a re-creation of the seminal Synclavier® II Digital Synthesizer’s sound engine from which they take their names into the respective hands of iPad and iPhone/iPod Touch owners as awe-inspiring iOS apps, allowing all the famed FM (Frequency Modulation) and Additive (harmonic) synthesis capabilities to be brought forward forty years for all to musically marvel, at a fraction of the original’s prohibitive pricing thanks to today’s technology, while also effectively emulating the iconic instrument’s intuitive panels of easy-to-touch red backlit buttons and iconic control knob in easy-to-use user interfaces — as of March 5…
Put it this way: while the still-highly-coveted brand of Synclavier® — synonymous with high-end audio production technology that blazed a trail through the Seventies and Eighties before stalling in the Nineties — is in the midst of a galactic reboot, thanks to Nova Scotia-registered Canadian Corporation Synclavier Digital, established in 2018 to re-create a modern iOS-based version of the Synclavier® Digital Audio System, Synclavier Go!, its inaugural iPad offering, is far from being a clone, however… to all intents and purposes, it is a Synclavier®!
So how, exactly, did yesteryear’s trailblazing technology that commanded a princely six-figure sum end up available on Apple’s pocket-friendly iOS platform in true needs of the many outweighing the needs of the few style? Simply speaking, when New England Digital (NED) went bankrupt in the Nineties, technology finally having caught up with the cutting-edge company concerned, co-founder Cameron Jones — co-inventor of the Synclavier® — bought the intellectual propriety rights to the trailblazing series of synthesizers and digital audio systems sharing the notable name. 
Having held on to those rights and trademarks, Cameron Jones subsequently relocated to Cape Breton, Canada, keeping a comparatively small number of devoted Synclavier® owners happy with minor maintenance and upgrades in the intervening years, before being approached by French music software and hardware developer Arturia about the possibility of a VST (Virtual Studio Technology) instrument for its V Collection of authentic-sounding virtual instruments. Convinced that the time was right, he subsequently spent many long days porting the existing code and firmware for the seminal Synclavier® II DSP (Digital Signal Processing) engine to C Code capable of running on Windows and MacOS. Moreover, side-by-side testing was carried out with original equipment to ensure the systems sounded identical. Arturia’s Synclavier V was released in its own right to widespread critical acclaim in May 2016. People palpably put those striking Synclavier® sounds on a pedestal — not necessarily nostalgia-driven, but rather because they had stood the test of time. The DSP engine involved is clearly capable of producing phenomenal digital FM and Additive synthesis sounds like no other; on the face of it, Arturia had helpfully proved that there was a healthy market to be tapped.
That said, though the Synclavier V’s GUI (Graphical User Interface) worked well for a mouse-driven VST instrument, it remained removed from the tactile experience enjoyed by users when working with the Synclavier® II Digital Synthesizer. After all, the original instrument’s intuitive panels of easy-to-touch red backlit buttons and iconic control knob are the real reason why the Synclavier® was tailor-made for speedy sound and music-making. Whereas the computer GUI seemed to be placing an additional barrier between being creative and the machine itself. Indeed, upon discussing this very issue with a group of techie friends at a Cape Breton bar, the penny dropped for Cameron Jones… NED had always been about creating the very best devices — not only world-class synthesizers, but also world-class interfaces. Therefore, those intuitive panels were tantamount to a touchscreen way before touchscreen technology had been invented, since users could slide a finger across several buttons at once to activate them, while receiving instant feedback as they lit up accordingly.
According to 20-year software veteran Craig Phillips, a friend from the aforesaid techie group, it was clear that the aim of creating easy-to-use interfaces so users could creatively focus their efforts on sound was part ofCameron Jones’ DNA, so should surely be central to any new products that could well be on the cards. Consequently, Cameron Jones formed a new company called Synclavier Digital Corporation Limited, working with Craig Phillips to pursue next-generation Synclavier creation… cue Synclavier Go!and Synclavier Pocket!
Synclavier Go! is an authentic re-creation of the Synclavier® II’s FM Digital Additive synthesizer for Apple’s ubiquitous iPad, so its users can take their sound design studio anywhere. As a pedagogical tool it includes an inbuilt tour that describes how all of the features work on a panel by panel basis. Better still, the intuitive touchscreen is a joy to use. Ultimately, transforming simple sine waves into grungy brass attacks, swishy FM chimes, or charismatic string sounds has never been easier. The original Synclavier’s signature combination of FM and Additive synthesis capabilities that really represented its industry-shaking calling card are all present and correct here, housed in the same red-button-driven panels, only this time those panels can effectively be flipped for rear-side functions. Fortunately, there’s no need to buy more memory modules for more voices — super-efficient DSP code, coupled with the modern processing power of an iPad, means that voices are now theoretically limitless! Luckily, all of the ear-opening original FM and Additive synthesis Timbres(presets)— over 900 of them — are included in Synclavier Go!’s generous preset library with every conceivable parameter being user-tweak-able.Synclavier Go! supports 12 Partials, allowing users to layer luscious sounds with unlimited Frames, so sounds can evolve over time. Those adventurous users who end up creating something that they like the sound of can simply save it to one of their custom libraries.
Last but not least, Synclavier Pocket! is effectively a pocket-sized version ofSynclavier Go! — as implied by name. Needless to say, Synclavier Digital is collectively keen to train a new generation of synthesists in the creative art of sound design, which is why this iPhone-based Synclavier is free. Synclavier Pocket! has the same panels and tour information as its bigger brother, but users cannot save their own Timbres in a custom library — unless opting for the in-app purchase that enables this. That said, it is still possible to listen to the sounds from the original System Disk, as well as two additional authentic libraries. By offering an entry-level Synclavier® on the iPhone (or iPod Touch) for free, Synclavier Digital is maximising the chances of creating the next Suzanne Ciani, Mark Knopfler, Sting, or Frank Zappa, to name but a few die-hard Synclavier® II owners.
Who better to provide a fitting conclusion to this lengthy musical journey, then, than Cameron Jones himself. “Forty years ago, Sydney Alonso and I invented a musical instrument that revolutionised the music industry,” he begins, before adding: “Artists of Frank Zappa’s generation spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on studio equipment to help them realise their musical ideas. Today we are witnessing another landmark in the release of iOS versions of the much-loved, much-coveted hardware. What happens when anyone with a modest budget can buy a Synclavier? I don’t know, but I can’t wait to find out what the new breed of creative people do with our invention.” 

Synclavier Go! can be purchased and directly downloaded from the App Store priced at Tier 30 (US $29.99, UK £28.99, EC 32.99, CN ¥198.00, JP ¥3,600.00) from here: bit.ly/synclaviergo

Synclavier Go! supports three libraries of authentic Synclavier® sounds; 12 Partials; theoretically unlimited voices — depending on iPad processing speed; MIDI — 16 input tracks; Audiobus; IAA (Inter-app audio); IDA (Inter-device audio), allowing DAW interoperability; Ableton Link; audio out — up two 24-bit stereo at 44.1 kHz or 48 kHz — tracks mixed — through headphone jack/lightning or USB; built-in three-octave touch keyboard; Repeat, Arpeggiate, and Portamento (legato) functions can be set per timbre; supports Polyphonic and Monophonic modes with Retriggering settings… for more in-depth information, please visit the dedicated Synclavier Go! webpage here: https://www.synclavier.com/synclaviergo/
Synclavier Pocket! can be directly downloaded for free from the App Store — but requires an in-app purchase called Timbre Design Pro to save Timbres, priced at Tier 5 (US $4.99, UK £4.99, EC 5.49, CN ¥30.00, JP ¥600.00) — from here: bit.ly/synpocket
Synclavier Pocket! supports three ‘Disks’ of authentic Synclavier® sounds; up to four Partial Timbres; theoretically unlimited voices — depending on iPhone/iPod Touch processing speed; mono-timbral MIDI in — for keyboard, pitch bend wheel, and other interfaces; Audiobus and Ableton Link support; audio out — up two 24-bit stereo at 44.1 kHz or 48 kHz — tracks mixed — through headphone jack/lightning or USB; built-in two- octave touch keyboard… for more in-depth information, please visit the dedicated Synclavier Pocket! webpage here: https://www.synclavier.com/synclavierpocket/


Hex Inverter Mutant Rim shot, ZNO, Red Dragon Eurorack modules at NAMM ’17

Hex Inverter the mind behind the Mutant Drums series of Eurorack Modules returns to NAMM 2017 with a new filter, Rim shot and wild noise source oscillator. Winston from Balcones Whiskey steps in to assist with this coverage so big thanks to Winston and the crew at Balcones whiskey.

New Synthesizer Modules from Hex inverter at Namm 2017!

Plugin Alliance advances several SPL Microplugs with new and improved Plus versions

Plugin Alliance, a new ‘Über-standard’ supporting all major plugin formats and uniting some of the best-known international audio companies under one virtual roof, is proud to announce availability of SPL’s Attacker Plus, De-Verb Plus, and Mo-Verb Plus — new and improved versions of three must-have Microplugs created by founding Plugin Alliance development partner Brainworx in close collaboration with SPL, respected worldwide for its innovative and user-friendly approach to developing and manufacturing analog and digital audio gear for the music, film, multimedia, and broadcasting industries since 1984 — as of March 13…

The Attacker Plus Microplug presents part of the same stunning envelope shaping supplied by SPL’s treasured Transient Designer hardware, hitting a home run with software aficionados by replicating the edge and punch provided by the original unit’s ATTACK knob. Indeed, it uses the same so-called Differential Envelope Technology that revolutionized dynamic processing with its level-independent methodology. More meaningfully, though its ATTACK knob lets users dial in all the transient punch needed, Attacker Plus also sports soft peak limiting (LIMIT) access and a DRY/WET control, affording total flexibility across a wide range of material with worry-free workflow in the digital world. With over a decade of hardware modelling experience, Brainworx bestowed a core algorithm upon Attacker Plus that more closely matches the behavior of the original Transient Designer hardware than ever before. Better still, working with Attacker Plus could not be simpler — all attack events can be amplified regardless of signal level, yet such simplicity does not prevent seemingly endless possibilities for studio and live applications. Attacker Plus amplifies just the attack curves of a sound event by focusing on the initial transient instead of specific frequencies to allow instruments to be mixed at lower levels, which, in turn, opens up space in the mix while preserving the relationship between tracks, for example; emphasize the attack of a kick drum or loop to increase power and presence in the mix; adjust apparent ‘distance’ of a microphone by varying the ATTACK values; increase the attack of guitar sounds for in-your-face tone-shaping — anything and everything is possible (within reason)!

Thanks to that same Differential Envelope Technology, the De-Verb Plus Microplug also serves up part of the same stunning envelope shaping supplied by SPL’s treasured Transient Designer hardware in software. It reproduces the attenuation provided by the original SUSTAIN knob — albeit now helpfully labelled as REVERB REDUCTION on the Microplug itself — to reduce or even eliminate the decay of a sound. Similarly sporting soft peak limiting (LIMIT) access and a DRY/WET control, it also allows total flexibility across a wide range of material with worry-free workflow in the digital world. Working with De-Verb Plus is, likewise, disarmingly simple — reverb events can be reduced, regardless of signal level, translating to endless possibilities for studio and live applications! Any sound event’s decay curve can simply be reduced by turning that REVERB REDUCTION knob. De-Verb Plus also offers an OUTPUT GAIN control that allows compensation for level changes after processing the signal — just like Attacker Plus. Combined with the peak limiter (LIMIT) and DRY/WET controls, this ensures simple and safe adjustment of levels while avoiding internal clipping and shaping the decay characteristics of material. Musically shorten the sustain period of a snare; reduce tom-tom ring without resorting to physically dampening; adjust apparent ‘distance’ of a microphone by varying the REVERB REDUCTION values… De-Verb Plus perfectly encapsulates an alternative to noise gates — compared to fixed release times, the decay period is more musically shortened, so significantly freeing a drum kit from unwanted room information within seconds!

 

Similarly, the Mo-Verb Plus Microplug perfectly zeros in on another aspect of the Transient Designer’s distinctive envelope shaping, this time replicating the boost provided by the hardware’s SUSTAIN knob that extends the decay of sounds as a self-explanatory REVERB ENHANCEMENT control, allowing all reverb events to be amplified — again, regardless of signal level. Translating to endless possibilities for studio and live applications, decay curves of any sound event can be emphasized by simply turning the knob in question! Mo-Verb Plus also offers an OUTPUT GAIN control that allows compensation for level changes after processing the signal, which — when combined with the peak limiter (LIMIT) and DRY/WET controls — secures simple and safe adjustment of levels while avoiding internal clipping when shaping the decay characteristics of material. Many effects — such as drawing out the sustain period of a snare to get the tone and grit upfront in the mix or letting every note of a guitar riff ‘sing’ to its heart’s content — would take considerable programming skill when using a typical compressor, but Mo-Verb Plus handles everything easily with only one knob… just like its new and improved Attacker Plus and De-Verb Plus siblings!

 

Attacker Plus ($99.00 USD), De-Verb Plus ($79.00 USD), and Mo-Verb Plus ($79.00 USD) are available for purchase — as a AAX DSP-, AAX Native-, AU-, VST2-, and VST3-supporting Microplugs for Mac OS X (10.8 through 10.12), Windows (7 through 10), and Pro Tools 10.3.10 (or higher) — from Plugin Alliance and select VSSD (Virtual Stock Software Distribution) retailers. (Note that individual Microplug promotional pricing of $29.00 USD is available to owners of legacy Attacker, De-Verb, and Mo-Verb.)

For more in-depth info, including several superb-sounding audio demos, please visit the Microplugs’ respective dedicated webpages here:

https://www.plugin-alliance.com/en/products/spl_attacker_plus.html

https://www.plugin-alliance.com/en/products/spl_de-verb_plus.html

https://www.plugin-alliance.com/en/products/spl_mo-verb_plus.html

The new and improved Attacker Plus, De-Verb Plus, and Mo-Verb Plus Microplugs can be seen and heard in this trailer video: https://youtu.be/NqV3qqACE1Q

 

Monolog Interview

In this interview I speak with Monolog
Producer, Music technology expert, Artist, Music Gear tech etc

Monolog when Not busy making sure the Music software we all use is running properly and doing what we want it to… He is out in the world destroying speaker cones with Bass drops and earth shattering mind melting music from an advanced alien race known to face melt and Chest kick.

We discuss his new albums, Touring, studio work Etc. Be on the look out for his latest releases https://soundcloud.com/monolog-madsl
http://www.adnoiseam.net/store/monolog-aerodynamic_p3412.html
http://www.adnoiseam.net/adn172
http://monolog.fizx-recordings.com/releases/fizx-mg-0001.html