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Synthesizers

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    Sound Modules

  • 8198

    Synthesis / Sound Design

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    Synth Secrets

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    Emu Vintage Pro

    Sample-based Vintage Keyboard Module

    10 years on from the Vintage Keys module, Emu are looking to repeat its success, this time with 128-note polyphony, 32 MIDI channels and 32MB of sample ROM. But is it a fine Vintage, or past its best?

    Reviews Apr 2003
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    Alesis Air Synth

    Motion-controlled Synthesizer

    Alesis brought us Air FX, a motion-controlled effects unit, just before they ran into financial trouble in 2001, so the planned synth version never really appeared at the time. Now that they're back, the Air Synth is with us at last...

    Reviews Mar 2003
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    Roland MC909

    Sampling Groovebox

    The latest in Roland's line of MC-series workstations is their best (and most expensive) yet, incorporating synthesis, sequencing, real-time control, and sampling. But in an increasingly software-driven world, can a Groovebox still cut it?

    Reviews Mar 2003
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    Vermona Perfourmer

    Four-voice Analogue Rack Synth

    Formerly the East German state synth company (a great concept in itself), Vermona re-emerged last year with the MARS monophonic analogue synth. Clearly determined to win back their reputation, they've returned with the four-voice Perfourmer...

    Reviews Mar 2003
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    Dave Smith Evolver

    Hybrid Analogue/Digital Monophonic Synthesizer

    Dave Smith, creator of the Prophet 5 and Wavestation, moved into software synthesis in the '90s, but now he's back with what he calls 'the ultimate dongle' — a hardware analogue and digital synth. We find out if he's still evolving...

    Reviews Feb 2003
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    Kurzweil ME1

    Sample-based Sound Module

    Kurzweil are well known for their high-quality sounds, but less so for affordable hardware in which to house them. Is the new £350 ME1 the answer?

    Reviews Feb 2003
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    Novation KS4 & KS5

    Modelling Synth Workstations

    The monotimbral K-Station offered keyboard players an affordable Novation -- but now, for a bit more money, the company have released the KS4 and KS5, which add plenty of new features, better keyboards and multitimbrality. The perfect marriage at the perfect price? We find out.

    Reviews Feb 2003
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    Analogue Solutions Vostok

    Analogue Pin-matrix Synth

    Pin-matrix synths, like EMS's legendary VCS3 and Synthi A(KS), are fairly scarce these days, but Analogue Solutions' Vostok revisits the concept in a more affordable form. Is it a vintage-inspired classic, or is it just history?

    Reviews Jan 2003
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    Edirol SD80

    GM / GS Sound Module

    The latest Studio Canvas module from Edirol aims to expand the sound palette available to those who need GM and GS compatibility.

    Reviews Jan 2003
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    Korg Microkorg

    Modelled Analogue Synthesizer & Vocoder

    Korg's Electribe grooveboxes presented their analogue-modelling technology in an affordable, dance-friendly format and were a smash success. Now, using the MS2000 virtual analogue synth as a starting point, they're hoping for similar budget triumph with the fun-sized Microkorg...

    Reviews Jan 2003
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    Software Technology VAZ 2010

    Software Synth [PC]

    The latest version of the popular VAZ software synth combines the simplicity and low cost of a preset design with some advanced options from the full-fat VAZ Modular.

    Reviews Jan 2003
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    DUY SynthSpider

    Virtual Modular Synth

    Host-based programs allowing you to build your own synthesizers from virtual modules have been around for a while. Thanks to DUY, Pro Tools TDM and HD owners can now join in the fun.

    Reviews Dec 2002
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    Yamaha S08

    88-note Weighted-action Synthesizer

    Finding an affordable keyboard with a good weighted action and a healthy selection of sounds suitable for studio and live use isn't as easy as you might think. Could Yamaha's S08 be the Holy Grail?

    Reviews Dec 2002
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    Roland XV2020

    Synth Module

    Designed to replace the JV1010 as Roland's entry-level synth product, the XV2020 is diminutive, affordable, and crammed with those great XV sounds. But what's it like to use?

    Reviews Nov 2002
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    Access Virus Indigo 2

    Modelled Analogue Synthesizer

    Hot on the heels of the recent Virus C comes the Virus Indigo 2, now upgraded to include the new Virus C synth engine. And what a difference it makes!

    Reviews Oct 2002
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    Vermona MARS & MARS Control

    Analogue Synth Module & Controller

    The German team behind the inexpensive MARS have been responsible for several SOS-reviewed products in the past, although the MARS is the first under their own brand name Vermona. But is it more of a Trabant than an Audi?

    Reviews Oct 2002
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    Access Virus C

    Modelled Analogue Synthesizer

    Access have managed to add some excellent features to their Virus synth in the past simply by upgrading its OS, but the march of progress means that a hardware revision is eventually necessary. Does the new Virus C do enough to keep up with the virtual-analogue crowd?

    Reviews Aug 2002
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    Red Sound Elevata

    Modelled Analogue Synthesizer

    Elevata is a 16-voice polyphonic, eight-part multitimbral modelling synth from UK innovators Red Sound. But with a number of virtual analogue synths available at the same price point, does the Elevata offer enough to distinguish itself?

    Reviews Aug 2002
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    Edirol SD90

    USB Sound Module & Audio Interface [Mac/PC]

    The Edirol SD90 combines Roland's Sound Canvas sound set with a USB audio and MIDI interface.

    Reviews Jul 2002
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    Korg Triton Studio

    Production Workstation

    Korg's Trinity and Triton have led the workstation market for so long that updating the concept can't have been easy — after all, how do you improve the best? So what's new in the Triton Studio, and will it keep Korg ahead?

    Reviews Jul 2002
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    An operator editing window, with the graphic envelope display showing on the right. At the bottom left of all operator windows is an Amplitude Modulation grid. Many modulation sources are assignable in the main Modulation Matrix, but to save you from cons

    Native Instruments FM7

    Virtual FM Synth [Mac / PC]

    Virtual analogue plug‑in synths are now common, and as DX‑style FM was the next great leap forward for real synths, a virtual FM synth was only a matter of time. So how does FM7 measure up to the original DX?

    Reviews Jul 2002

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