Arturia have just announced the release of four new products: the MiniFreak hybrid polyphonic synthesizer, the MiniFuse 4 audio interface, the MiniLab 3 MIDI controller, and Augmented Grand Piano, a software instrument that combines high-quality piano samples with modern synth engines.
Following on from the success of the MicroFreak, the MiniFreak is a hybrid polyphonic synthesizer that features two digital sound engines, analogue filters, a 37-note keyboard, built-in stereo effects, and a wide range of modulation and sequencing abilities. The instrument boasts six-voice polyphonic, 12-voice paraphonic, monophonic, and unison configurations.
An expanded modulation matrix provides users with even more control over shaping, transforming, and evolving their sound, and is equipped with features such as polyphonic ADSR envelopes, customisable multi-segment LFO shapes, FM & Ring Modulation, as well as the company’s Spice & Dice randomisation feature.
The instrument features stereo outputs and three digital effects slots with ten types of effects on offer including chorus, three-band EQ, distortion, and more. In addition to its sound design capabilties, MiniFreak’s 37-note velocity-sensitive keybed with aftertouch and spontaneous sequencer and arpeggiator functionality make it an equally expressive performance instrument.
The synthesizer also comes with a dedicated VST counterpart, allowing users to integrate its unique hybrid sound and presets into their DAW productions and vice versa. Using identical sound engines, modelled filters, presets, and completely synchronised controls, users are provided with an identical experience in both the hardware and software variations.
MiniLab 3 is a compact 25-key plug-and-play MIDI controller that has been designed to fit into any setup, from bedroom studios to live performance rigs. The keyboard is joined by flexible pads, faders, and knobs, offering integration with Analog Lab as well as control over DAW parameters, with custom scripts available to enhance integration with Ableton Live, FL Studio, Logic, Bitwig, and Reason. Additional features on offer include a built-in arpeggiator, a Chord Mode, and easy transposition capabilities which help to deliver an accessible music making experience.
Arturia say that the controller is also the world’s first eco-designed MIDI keyboard. Built with longevity and sustainability in mind, MiniLab 3 utilises high-quality components and comes with a five-year warranty. The unit is constructed from a minimum of 50% recycled plastic, and is also supplied in 100% recyclable packaging.
MiniLab 3 also comes with a full package of premium software, including:
- Analog Lab Intro
- Ableton Live Lite
- UVI Model D
- Native Instruments The Gentleman
- Loopcloud sample packs & subscription
- Melodics subscription
The MiniFuse 4 is a four-in/four-out audio and MIDI interface, which completes the MiniFuse family of easy to use interfaces and offers expanded connectivity when compared to the previous models in the range. The device also features a Loopback feature, enabling users to record audio from their computer alongside the interface’s inputs.
Two XLR/TRS combo sockets on the front panel provide inputs for microphone, line-level and instrument sources, whilst a pair of quarter-inch TRS sockets on the rear panel offer two additional line-level inputs. Another four quarter-inch TRS sockets on the rear panel provide the device’s four line-level outputs, and both a MIDI In and Out are also present, each utilising 5-pin DIN sockets.
Connectivity to a host computer is taken care of by a USB-C connector, and the interface also acts as a USB hub, with users able to connect other gear via a pair of USB-A sockets. MiniFuse 4 also comes supplied with Ableton Live Lite, Analog Lab Intro, and Native Instruments Guitar Rig LE 6.
Augmented Grand Piano
In addition to the new hardware releases, Arturia have also announced the latest virtual instrument to join their Augmented Series, the Augmented Grand Piano. Combining high-quality piano samples with modern synth engines, the instrument promises to offer users a refreshing piano palette which is ideal for film scoring, video game soundtracks, and library music production.
The samples featured in the instrument have been captured from a 80s Steinway Grand and embellished with unusual techniques such as bowing and tape processing. The results have then been fused with synthesis, resulting in the creation of fresh and exciting piano sounds. Arturia say that a wide range of sonic options are on offer, from theatrical concert grand sounds, to cinematic textures and barely-recognisable hybrid effects.
A Morph control allows users to blend between layers, combining the instrument’s acoustic and synthetic elements and making broad changes to multiple aspects of a sound possible from a single control. Augmented Grand Piano also features macro controls which can be assigned to a range of parameters, offering a wealth of control over dynamics, articulation, and timbres. Even deeper control over the instrument is provided by an Advanced panel, which offers complex modulation options, smart arpeggiation, and fine-tuning of sound layers.
Pricing & Availability
All of the new products are available to purchase now, with pricing as follows:
- MiniFreak - $599€599
- MiniLab - $109€99
- MiniFuse 4 - $219€219
- Augmented Grand Piano - Introductory, standard and bundle prices available on the Arturia website.