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Vir2 Phoenix

Vir2 Phoenix

Vir2’s Phoenix is a one‑stop shop for rises, hits and whooshes.

Sound‑design elements such as risers, hits and whooshes (a riser that also includes a similar tail/fade portion to the sound) are now a common production element in all sorts of musical contexts. While building these sounds using old‑school manual sample layering from scratch is a lot of fun, it’s also time consuming. Thankfully for busy composers and producers, the last few years have seen the arrival of a selection of tools designed to take the heavy lifting out of this task. Vir2 are the latest developers to pitch their hat into this particular ring. So, if you need to rise, hit and whoosh with the very best, is Phoenix less mythical, but just as magical, as its namesake would suggest?

It Is No Myth

Conceptually, Phoenix is fairly straightforward in that it builds directly on the DIY process of sample layering. In essence, therefore, what you get is an underlying 14GB collection of rise, hit and whoosh samples, a user‑friendly engine for combining, manipulating and triggering your chosen combination of samples, and full control over their timing and sync to your host project.

In principle, this is very similar in nature to a number of the other tools designed for the task such as NI’s Rise & Hit or UVI’s Meteor. The relative appeal of Phoenix will therefore depend upon a) the capabilities and user experience it offers and b) the quality of the underlying samples (although, as we will see later, Phoenix includes a cool twist in this regard). Let’s consider these two key elements in turn.

Phoenix Sighting

Phoenix’s extensive snapshot‑based preset collection can be accessed from Kontakt’s top‑most control strip, while Kontakt’s virtual keyboard displays the well‑thought‑out trigger key mapping. Phoenix’s controls themselves are contained within a number of tabbed pages. The upper third of the UI can be toggled between Time, Sample, Mods and Effects displays, while the lower zone can be switched between the Waveform and Edit screens.

Switching the lower portion of the display to Edit view provides access to more detailed controls for each engine.Switching the lower portion of the display to Edit view provides access to more detailed controls for each engine.

This lower zone shows the four engine lanes (layers), each of which can be configured (via the buttons located on the far right) to operate as a riser (on the left side) and hit (on the right side) combination or, spanning the full width of the UI, a whoosh engine. Each engine can be toggled on/off individually as required. The Waveform view provides access to some key controls (for...

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