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XILS Lab X505

Software Synthesizer By Gordon Reid

XILS Lab X505

XILS Lab have recreated a classic Roland string synth, and made a few improvements to boot.

The Roland RS505 is not particularly well known, but it's nonetheless important because it's the keyboard that coined the term 'Paraphonic' for instruments that could play multiple notes simultaneously but had only one VCF and VCA to shape all of them. It offered bass, synth and strings sections, but it was contemporaneous with the Prophet 5 and Oberheim OBX so, while it was cheaper, players' expectations had moved on and it sank almost without trace. Today, its rarity makes it interesting so it's perhaps not surprising that it has now been recreated as a soft synth.

More Is More

Far from being a slavish recreation, X505 considerably extends the RS505's capabilities, starting with the top-octave signal generator itself, which now features a Waveform control that morphs the basic wave from an approximation of a sawtooth to something with suppressed even harmonics and more of a 'square' tone. This was part of the...

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Published August 2020