The Software Review Thread - Page 2
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Old 15-06-2015, 06:49 PM   #21
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Re: GlaceVerb from Dasample

Quote:
Originally Posted by A.M View Post
Yeah..same here. I tend to use it a bit, as it gives a great clean sound for epic/ambient-type stuff. I'm kinda stunned when I bump into people online who still haven't heard about it, as it's been around for so long..and free to boot!

But I think you hit it on the head when you said that bit about other reverbs not doing it in certain cases. Like I said in one of the reviews above, each delay or reverb unit tends to offer something of it's own..no matter how costly or cheap they may be..you'll always find a use for each at some stage.
There is a reason to my madness of my Plug In list.Not a single one has not been used in some shape or form.Sometimes you go back to an buddy and go yep that is what I wanted all along. glad I still had you old chum..

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Old 21-09-2015, 03:04 PM   #22
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A1StereoControl

A1StereoControl from A1Audio / Alex Hilton


[Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]


This is a really handy tool to have in your mixing / mastering toolbox, for obvious reasons. It uncluttered interface lets you tweak the stereo image of your musical project in a very intuitive way..and it's really good at what it does.

I know there are other more high-end sophisticated bits of kit out there, most with an equally high-end price tag, but this one is totally FREE and..combined with its ease of use..this is perfect for those on a limited budget, as well as those looking for something quick and simple to use.

The following is taken from the A1Audio site..


"With my A1StereoControl plugin you will be able to expand or
limit the STEREO WIDTH of your tracks using only one single
knob. This powerful technique can be used on single tracks or
groups tracks while mixing or even on a master bus in final
mastering situations
.
"


I've been using this plug now for a while and have to say it's one I always fall back on. It really shines at helping you space out the various layers of a track..letting you fine-tune the stereo placement of each part, as well as assist with the overall gain staging.

Although the guy behind this, Alex Hilton, says it can be used on your mastering bus, I haven't done this to date..I haven't felt the need to, as the results I've gotten from having this on the various individual track elements has been more than enough for what I've been doing.

To be fair, the video linked here doesn't really do this plugin justice imho..and you really need to download it and give it a try yourself to understand and hear the difference it will make to your work.



[Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]


Price: FREE

Formats: VST..AXX..AU..RTAS..in 32/64 bit for both Mac and Windows PCs.



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Old 18-10-2015, 03:06 PM   #23
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Moodal

Moodal from Tritk

I recently got my hands on "Moodal" by Tritk..and it was well worth the €35 introductory price I paid for it! At the time of writing this, it's still on offer at that price until 15th November 2015. By the way, the price includes all future upgrades..which is always handy.


[Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]


So, what exactly is Moodal?

It's marketed as an effects plugin, available for both Mac and Windows, in AU, VST and AAX formats..but if you are into sound design or producing ambient music, then it's usefulness and scope becomes even more apparent.

The following is taken from Tritik's site..

"Make your snare deeper, or change it to a bottle. Send your voice through a phone, or slide it on a string. Give your guitar a new soundboard, or throw some notes over a plate and quickly create rich textures."

..and how does it do all this? The go on to tell you the following..

"At the heart of Moodal is a one-of-a-kind resonance engine. Its underlying thousand resonant filters make Moodal capable to replicate realistic objects such as strings or plates, but also to simulate reverberant spaces such as rooms and halls that require a high modal density."

Audio examples: [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]


In practice, it routes the input signal into as many as 1000 delay channels..each with a pitch and decay time. This basically means you can send a basic sine wave into this thing and what comes out the other end can be epic or dull, depending on the settings you choose to begin with.

That said, it's worth mentioning this plug is very fluid, meaning you don't just pick your settings and end up with one sound when you press a key or play back in your DAW..you can hold down a key on your controller and mess around with the settings in real time, in order to find a sound you like. As for the quality of the sound from this thing..it's impressive.

I've already seen some people making the mistake of comparing this to some of the more well-known reverb units out there, but they seem to be missing the point of this in doing so..this isn't just a reverb plug, though you can use it for that if you want..it's real strengths lie in the area of sound design.

They offer a fully functioning demo version, that you can register later if you buy the license. The demo version works just fine, though the sound drops out from time to time, but other than that, it's not crippled in any way..so it will give you a really solid idea of what this can do for you.

Personally, I love it, as it fits in with the kind of music I make very nicely. Well worth taking a look at I think, if you are into sound design in any way.

Link: [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]


Price: €35 until 15 November 2015, then goes up to €75.

OS: Windows & Mac (32/64b)

Formats: AU / VST / AAX

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Old 29-10-2015, 03:31 PM   #24
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Soundethers Products for NI's Kontakt

Soundethers Products for Kontakt

OK..so this is kinda select, I know, so my apologies to those reading this who don't own the full version of NI's Kontakt. If you're one of those, then just move on to something else on the forum..this isn't really going to interest you all that much.

For those who DO have the full version of Kontakt, then you might find this interesting..that is, if you haven't heard of Soundethers before.

Basically, as they say on their site..


"Soundethers is a small and proud sound design lab, focusing on ambient and subtle cinematic atmospheres. Lead by theater director, composer and actor [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
, who researched for the last 20 years with digital music and live electronics, Soundethers aims at sharing the experience of narrating a story primarily with sounds.


All libraries will be delivered in N.I. Kontakt format. We want them to be easy to use with playable, fresh, unique and deep sounds, and, most of all, we want them to be truly inspirational for your compositions.

Our goal is to make a step further every day, challenging ourselves to build new and better musical instruments to foster creativity."


In short, they produce and sell Kontakt plugins / libraries of high quality, but which they don't charge the earth. At the time of writing this, they currently offer one free plugin library and two fee-based ones, with a 3rd in the works. These are as follows..


Space Evolutions 1.1 (PRICE: € 12.00, $ 13.50, £ 8.50 from diitalgoodsstore.com / sampleism.com) [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]





This offering gives you a selection of animated textures, keys, pads, beats and field recordings that evolve and morph as you play, thanks to it being able to be mapped to 4 knobs on your midi controller, as well as fully exploiting / utilizing the mod wheel feature.
Perfect for use in ambient, cinematic, chiilout and glitch orientated projects.


Free demo here - [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]



Subtle World (PRICE: £ 11.70 now from Sampleism.com, 16 from 5th November at Diitalgoodsstore.com ) [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]



[Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]

Once again, this one offers the ability to speed up work-flow by preassigning automations, enabling you to "morph on the fly" from your midi controller, without having to resort to using your mouse or computer keyboard.

Also..once again..this is aimed very much at those involved in producing ambient, film and game music, underscores to name but a few genres.

FREE FALL (Free)



This is not only a good introduction to the products offered by Soundethers, but also a very practical tool to have in it's own right. You'll need to request a copy directly from them, either via the contact form on their site or by emailing them at soundethers at gmail.com (remove spaces and add the "@" symbol).

THE LIGHT (PRICE: £ 19.00 from [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
,
25 from [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
and $27 from [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
)

The following is taken from their site..

A very unique blend of field recordings and tuned textures. Truly living soundscapes. We went around in Rome, especially in the many churches of Rome... and were naturally moved to simply start recording sounds of people moving, wishpering, walking in those beautiful naturally reverbered ambiences.

You'll also find airports, shops, an old 70's "diesel propelled" train (still running!), a subway train from the eighties, sounds from rare objects as an old crystal lamp from the 1700 (tuned), a long sample of myself breathing underwater with the erogator, a fireplace crackling and rumbling, rain in a beautiful stereo field, and so on... in other words, you'll find a lot of varieties in "THE LIGHT".




All in all, I thought it worth "spreading the word" about these guys and what they offer, simply due to the fact I use these myself and know firsthand how good they are. If you own Kontakt and are into anything ambient in any way, then you should pick these up..and at the low prices they are charging, they're a real bargain.

I know many of us like to do our own field recordings, but there are times when you need to just grab a sound for a project and it's not there for you to put your hand on. These plugin libraries help fill that gap in the production process and really are a solid alternative for such times as those for you to fall back on. Very useful indeed and top quality sounds they are, too., as the above videos demonstrate.



Last edited by A.M; 28-05-2016 at 07:37 PM..

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Old 29-10-2015, 05:08 PM   #25
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Re: The Software Review Thread

^ for those pricess I might have to grab em

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Old 29-10-2015, 05:19 PM   #26
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Re: The Software Review Thread

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Originally Posted by relic View Post
^ for those pricess I might have to grab em
Yeah, I thought the same thing when I first discovered them. I was looking for some sort of catch, but there isn't any..they really are worth more than they are charging for them.

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Old 29-10-2015, 06:52 PM   #27
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Re: The Software Review Thread

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Originally Posted by A.M View Post
Yeah, I thought the same thing when I first discovered them. I was looking for some sort of catch, but there isn't any..they really are worth more than they are charging for them.
Are they one trick ponies as far as variety of sounds you are getting? I realize they are soundscape, scoring, ambient oriented, but are you getting variety inside those boundaries?

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Old 29-10-2015, 07:46 PM   #28
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Re: The Software Review Thread

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Are they one trick ponies as far as variety of sounds you are getting? I realize they are soundscape, scoring, ambient oriented, but are you getting variety inside those boundaries?
Yeah..to a certain extent. I mean you can obviously tinker with the usual things..attack..res..decay..cutoff..sustain and release..and then you can assign high pass/low pass/FX to knobs on your controller..as well as modulation.

As for the sounds that come with them..some are just standalones, which are your basic one-trick jobs, but then there are the multis, which let you swap around the various sounds to make something more your own.

Granted, you can't import your own stuff that I know of..maybe you can..but I don't see these as definiative found sound sources..more like a said, a very good fast fall back for when you need something to fill a gap in a project. Having said that, don't take that as implying these are in any way inferior..they're not..just if you are into sound design, then you might find them a little limited in general.

Mind you, I don't think I've found any 3rd party "thing" yet that comes close to the likes of Alchemy for letting you import and mess around with your own stuff. In fact, I was told recently by 3rd party library producer that making something for Kontakt that lets you import your own stuff is a real pain in the ass, due to mapping of something like that. Don't understand it fully myself tbh, but I get the basics of it.

There is a sort of workaround though, if that's what you want to do..and it's a free front end utility that let's you build your own libraries for Kontakt, without having to dive too much under the hood. I'm going to do a review on that next as it so happens. It's the same tool that they used to build these, so that will give you an idea in advance of how good that thing is.

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Old 30-10-2015, 05:11 PM   #29
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Ambient from Audiobulb Records

Ambient from Audiobulb Records ( Written by Christopher Hipgrave )
[Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]


This is another one for those of you into ambient music and sound design in general. It's one of those programs you seldom here people speak about, but one that you'll find hard to match with something else..it really is very unique, not so much in what it does, but how it lets you do it.

Basically, Ambient is a "standalone" ambient soundscape generator, capable of producing rich undulating ambient soundscapes of all kinds. It does this by allowing you to manipulate in real time, any sound file you load into it and recording your session to disk as you work.

As you can see from the graphic above, you do this by means of a series of control dials, each of which comes with a "pop-up" name tag that appears when you hover your mouse over it (..again, see the graphic above)..so you always know what's what while your working on a project. It's features include:
  • Granular sampler with random pitch function
  • Amplitude envelope with a trigger speed control
  • Three pitch shift controls for adding extra layers to the sound
  • Tape delay
  • Multi-mode filter
  • Ambient reverb
  • MIDI learn
  • Preset save and recall
Here's the kind of results you can get from this program..





Standalone
Runs on both Mac and PC
Price: £10
Link:
[Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]




Last edited by A.M; 06-11-2015 at 05:01 PM..

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Old 30-10-2015, 05:41 PM   #30
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Re: The Software Review Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by A.M View Post
Yeah..to a certain extent. I mean you can obviously tinker with the usual things..attack..res..decay..cutoff..sustain and release..and then you can assign high pass/low pass/FX to knobs on your controller..as well as modulation.

As for the sounds that come with them..some are just standalones, which are your basic one-trick jobs, but then there are the multis, which let you swap around the various sounds to make something more your own.

Granted, you can't import your own stuff that I know of..maybe you can..but I don't see these as definiative found sound sources..more like a said, a very good fast fall back for when you need something to fill a gap in a project. Having said that, don't take that as implying these are in any way inferior..they're not..just if you are into sound design, then you might find them a little limited in general.

Mind you, I don't think I've found any 3rd party "thing" yet that comes close to the likes of Alchemy for letting you import and mess around with your own stuff. In fact, I was told recently by 3rd party library producer that making something for Kontakt that lets you import your own stuff is a real pain in the ass, due to mapping of something like that. Don't understand it fully myself tbh, but I get the basics of it.

There is a sort of workaround though, if that's what you want to do..and it's a free front end utility that let's you build your own libraries for Kontakt, without having to dive too much under the hood. I'm going to do a review on that next as it so happens. It's the same tool that they used to build these, so that will give you an idea in advance of how good that thing is.
Right on. I will probably just save my pennies for Omnisphere 2 then. Maybe they will do a holiday sale, almost everyone in the software world does these days. Thanks for your thoughts as always.

I don't have a hardware synth that is really satisfying me for deep ambiance, though it is probably a bit much to expect a hardware synth to be Alchemy. Absynth is OK, but it was this tendency to sound like Absynth...which I'm sure most listeners won't notice in the mix, but it bugs the friggin' heck out of me.

BTW, there are a few programs, I think, that help automate the process of making multisample instruments for Kontakt. It probably isn't like building one from scratch, but....

This doesn't auto create a Kontakt instrument but looks cool
[Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]


There WAS also Redmatica Autosampler, but it seems Apple/Logic bought them and now you can only get their software through Logic now.

There is also Sample Robot which looks far more extensive and their full suite costs almost 450 USD, but if you just wanted the automatic sampling, looks to be much cheaper:
[Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]


So turns out all I could find are programs that automate the process of sampling software or hardware, you'd still have to make the Kontakt instrument yourself. Still...I may honestly invest that SoundLib SampleIt software. For 139USD seems like a nice lazy way to sample all my hardware patches into my computer where I can do more with them.

------------------------

+1 for Audiobulb Ambient. I have it somewhere on my desktop. WELL worth the small cost even if it is stand alone, you can get amazing results combined with a knobby MIDI controller!

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Old 30-10-2015, 05:55 PM   #31
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Photosynthesis Engine by Jeremiah Pena

Photosynthesis Engine by Jeremiah Pena


Taken for the main site:

"The Photosynthesis Engine is a free interface for Kontakt to make creating your own Kontakt instruments easy. Import samples, then manipulate them with sound shaping, filters, 13 effects, and a rhythm section featuring a step sequencer, filter sequencer, 2 filter LFOs, and gain/pan/pitch LFOs..

The engine is open source and free to redistribute. You can share/sell any instruments you create with it, as long as all samples you used are entirely your creation."

[Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]



In short, this is a really handy tool to have if you own NI's Kontakt..not only does it enable you to create your own sound libraries, but also opens up the opportunity of becoming a 3rd party library producer, making sets to sell or give way to others.

I'm not a coder or anything like that..and practically zero experience of scripting in / for Kontakt, so you'll have to excuse my ignorance on the topic in general, but even I know this tool will half your workload if you are making same said libraries and sets, as it automates a lot of the stuff you would usually have to sit there typing in yourself.

I've personally been in touch with Jeremiah via email and found him to be an intelligent and helpful guy, more than willing to help you get up and running with it if he can..though, having said that, keep in mind he does have a life off-line, so I'm guessing he time might be somewhat limited..so just be patient and allow him a little time to get back to you, if you hit him up for help with this.

It's totally FREE and can be downloaded here - [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]


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Old 30-10-2015, 06:03 PM   #32
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Re: The Software Review Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by relic View Post
Right on. I will probably just save my pennies for Omnisphere 2 then. Maybe they will do a holiday sale, almost everyone in the software world does these days. Thanks for your thoughts as always.

I don't have a hardware synth that is really satisfying me for deep ambiance, though it is probably a bit much to expect a hardware synth to be Alchemy. Absynth is OK, but it was this tendency to sound like Absynth...which I'm sure most listeners won't notice in the mix, but it bugs the friggin' heck out of me.

BTW, there are a few programs, I think, that help automate the process of making multisample instruments for Kontakt. It probably isn't like building one from scratch, but....

This doesn't auto create a Kontakt instrument but looks cool
[Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]


There WAS also Redmatica Autosampler, but it seems Apple/Logic bought them and now you can only get their software through Logic now.

There is also Sample Robot which looks far more extensive and their full suite costs almost 450 USD, but if you just wanted the automatic sampling, looks to be much cheaper:
[Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]


So turns out all I could find are programs that automate the process of sampling software or hardware, you'd still have to make the Kontakt instrument yourself. Still...I may honestly invest that SoundLib SampleIt software. For 139USD seems like a nice lazy way to sample all my hardware patches into my computer where I can do more with them.

------------------------

+1 for Audiobulb Ambient. I have it somewhere on my desktop. WELL worth the small cost even if it is stand alone, you can get amazing results combined with a knobby MIDI controller!

Cheers for that, A..nice one!

As I said before, I meant to post about this topic in the next review, but I was using Ambient early..and touched on it in a post as well, so I thought I might as well do a little review of it, seeing as I hadn't done one already.

But, as you can see, I kept my word and posted up the one on that Kontakt library builder..Photosynthesis Engine..and apologies if anything I said lead you to believe it builds samples for you..my bad..I should have been clearer I was talking about putting together libraries for Kontakt.

Anyway, the PE is a really handy tool to have and get to understand, as it let's you open up Kontakt to do exactly what YOU want and doesn't leave you dependent on other sound producers out there..which is always a good thing in my book.

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Old 30-10-2015, 07:28 PM   #33
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Re: The Software Review Thread

^That's fantastic though, that PE software. I haven't been much into software lately as I have loads of it I don't even use...but combine PE with that SampleIt software and bam...instant personalized Kontakt libraries...


EDIT: Holy hell man...that PE software is awesome...can't believe its free.

Last edited by relic; 30-10-2015 at 07:35 PM..

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Old 30-10-2015, 08:03 PM   #34
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Re: The Software Review Thread

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Originally Posted by relic View Post
^That's fantastic though, that PE software. I haven't been much into software lately as I have loads of it I don't even use...but combine PE with that SampleIt software and bam...instant personalized Kontakt libraries...


EDIT: Holy hell man...that PE software is awesome...can't believe its free.
Yeah..I know..and even if you've only got basic sound design skills, you're up and running when..as you pointed out..combine the two programs. Hell, you don't even really need to go that deep into it..just get some really good quality found sounds of your own and tweak basic sines/saws what-have-you in something else, like Alchemy, Padshop, the Mangle..or even Audacity, and you're good to go.

Guess it all depends on what you want to and the sound you want to achieve really.

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Old 17-11-2015, 12:42 AM   #35
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Re: The Software Review Thread

I'm new to the forum and find the info on this thread helpful.
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Old 28-05-2016, 06:07 PM   #36
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Re: The Software Review Thread

IVOR2 Microtonal Synthesizer VST By Xen-Arts

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Xen-Arts recently released IVOR2, the new updated version 2 of their freeware IVOR microtonal subtractive synthesizer. It comes in both Linux and Windows flavors, but it's only 32 bit, so you're still going to need to bridge this if you have a 64 bit system.

When IVOR first appeared back in 2012, it was one of very few microtonal synths being offered for free and it's compatibility with MTS (MIDI Tuning Standard), allowing you to microtune any MIDI note to any pitch in the MIDI range. Not only that, but it also supported local microtuning (per patch), as well as global microtuning which was applied to all presets automatically. This made it a very useful tool to have in your music-box of tricks.

Now, 4 years later, Xen-Arts releases the next generation of
IVOR2, a virtual analog synthesizer with frequency, ring and pulse-width modulation filters and other more "specific" tonal features. These improvements have really transformed this humble-looking synth into one amazing musical beast..and it's still FREE!


First of all, those of you familiar with the first version of IVOR will notice the user interface has changed a little with an updated design. Even still, its one failing point is its looks..as even the new design looks old, when compared to other new synths on the market.

But, if you look beyond the new design changes and its looks in general, you'll find they've added a few neat new features, one of which is the advanced MOD-GEN (modulation source generator) that..when set to ARO mode..can change the signal, giving you more
complex, expressive and evolving timbres. Also, in v2, the modulation source comes in its own separate section, and can be used to modulate not only the filters, but the two built-in oscillators as well. As for its outputs..it sounds amazing..just as good as any commercial product you can buy.

Some users might find the interface a little intimidating at first glance..but it'll soon become clear what is what ,as everything is clearly marked. Still, those new to synths in general are going to find themselves falling back on the included presets, which currently stand at around 118.

In short, slap a long tail reverb on what this baby outputs and you're in ambient heaven! The end results vary, but this is a synth that clearly works well in the
ambient, microtonal music, electronica, chillout genres.

VST
Runs on: PC (LINUX & WINDOWS)
Price: FREE
Link: [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]

Last edited by A.M; 28-05-2016 at 07:09 PM..

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Old 07-06-2016, 02:23 PM   #37
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Tangle Modular FM Synth from Sound Guru

Tangle Modular FM Synthfrom Sound Guru
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This is the new offering from Sound Guru, the same guy who brought us The Mangle, which was reviewed here a while back. This time round, Tom (Sound Guru) has focused his programming skills on producing a Modular FM Synth that not only looks cool, but sounds pretty fine, too.

At the time of writing this, just as with the Mangle, Tom is currently offering this as a "Paid Beta"..basically meaning if you support him in the early stages by buying the software now at a reduced price, you get future updates of all releases free. It's currently on sale for £19.99.

For those who might have reservations about parting with their cash for a program still in development, I just want to point out that Tom is one of the most ethical guys I've ever bumped into online..and offers really fast support via email and his forum over on KVR. In the past, if and when bugs arise, Tom is on them at once, releasing a fix within a day or two..sometimes even on the same day.


I've been messing around with the full demo, which doesn't let you save and it's really very intuitive..and would make a good fit for not only those long in Modular tooth, but also those just venturing out into that vast Modular land that spans out in front of them.

If Modular is your thing..or you want to give it a try in software form, then this is a good place to start..and it won't cost you the earth either.


Tangle Modular FM Synth - [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]


Price: £19.99 (Reduced time-limited Beta price)

Official Formats: Windows & Mac (
32 & 64bit VST & Audio Unit plugins / OS X Lion 10.7+ or Windows 7+ required)

Last edited by A.M; 07-06-2016 at 02:57 PM..

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Old 07-06-2016, 02:49 PM   #38
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Re: The Software Review Thread

^I doubt this offers something new but for such a price it seems like a good deal. Looks even more simplified compared with AudioMulch. Design reminds me of Reaktor blocks and those new blocky objects in Max 7. They all work in the same name so this might be a nice modular synth for starters.

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Old 07-06-2016, 03:01 PM   #39
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Re: The Software Review Thread

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Originally Posted by ms_ View Post
^I doubt this offers something new but for such a price it seems like a good deal. Looks even more simplified compared with AudioMulch. Design reminds me of Reaktor blocks and those new blocky objects in Max 7. They all work in the same name so this might be a nice modular synth for starters.
I don't think I implied it was offering anything new..apologies if my review gave that impression..that's not the case at all.

And yes..as I already said..it's a good fit for those new to new to using modular soft synths in general

In any case..I'd urge people download the demo and give it a try before making up your mind either way on this one.

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Old 07-06-2016, 03:57 PM   #40
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Re: The Software Review Thread

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