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Synthesizers

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    Sound Modules

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    Synthesis / Sound Design

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    Synth Secrets

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    Synthesizing Realistic Cymbals

    Synth Secrets

    Having analysed the complex process by which a cymbal makes its sound, it's time to synthesize our own...

    Techniques Jun 2002
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    Roland SH32

    Virtual Analogue Synthesizer

    Roland released the JP8000/8080 virtual analogue synth way back in 1997, but never really followed it up. Now they've combined the modelling synth idea with their Groovebox concept, presenting it in compact form with a wealth of hardware control options...

    Reviews May 2002
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    Analysing Metallic Percussion

    Synth Secrets

    The task of synthesizing convincing metallic percussion defeated many synth giants — you only need to listen to Kraftwerk's weedy cymbals on 'The Model' to be persuaded of that. So why is it so difficult? We find out...

    Techniques May 2002
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    ARP Quadra: Part 2

    Keyboard Synthesizer (Retrozone)

    In Part 1 (of 2) last month, we finished with the question: 'What is the Quadra? Is it a turkey of the first order, or a misunderstood and overlooked masterpiece?' This month, we'll take a closer look at the instrument itself to find the answer.

    Reviews May 2002
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    Macbeth Systems M3X

    Analogue Synthesizer

    The M3X is the first product from Macbeth Systems, the Scottish company founded by former DIY analogue synth enthusiast Ken McBeth. Will all turn out well, or is the M3X destined for a tragic end?

    Reviews Apr 2002
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    Novation K-Station

    Modelled Performance Synthesizer

    Novation seem to be on a roll. Scarcely had the monotimbral A-Station made the cover of our December 2001 issue, when news broke of a £500 keyboard version. We look at one of the first UK production models.

    Reviews Apr 2002
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    Oberheim OB•12 v1.5

    Analogue Modelling Synthesizer

    The Oberheim/Viscount OB•12 was already a well-specified virtual analogue synth when it was launched in 2000, but it failed to gain much of a following. Now, after an OS upgrade and a cut in price, it's seriously good value for money...

    Reviews Apr 2002
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    ARP Quadra: Part 1

    Keyboard Synthesizer (Retrozone)

    Combining strings, a monosynth, a bass synth and a polyphonic synthesizer, did ARP create the keyboard equivalent of 'Wash and Go', or a jack of all trades and master of none?

    Reviews Apr 2002
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    Practical Snare Drum Synthesis

    Synth Secrets

    Last month, we revealed just how hideously complex the sound-producing mechanism of the snare drum can be. Nevertheless, synthesizing the sound is not as hard as it seems, as we find out with the aid of a Roland SH101...

    Techniques Apr 2002
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    Synth Secrets 0302 header artwork.

    Synthesizing Drums: The Snare Drum

    Synth Secrets

    If you thought synthesizing realistic bass drums was complex, that's nothing compared to snares. So how is it that the analogue snare sound is so well known? And how do you go about creating it? We find out...

    Techniques Mar 2002
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    Emu Proteus 2500

    128-Voice Expandable Command Module

    Emu's synths may have broken no new ground since the 1999 launch of the Proteus 2000, but the new 2500 plays to their strengths, offering the best of their sound library, plus excellent sequencing and real-time control capabilities, at a very attractive price.

    Reviews Mar 2002
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    Moog Sonic 6

    Analogue Synthesizer (Retrozone)

    The pioneering Sonic 6 has a complex and intriguing background, featuring not only the synth industry's most famous name, Bob Moog, but also that of an unsung hero called Gene Zumcheck - a shadowy figure now, but one whose contribution to synthesis deserves acknowledgement.

    Reviews Mar 2002
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    Figure 1(a): A patch to synthesize the bass drum.

    Practical Bass Drum Synthesis

    Synth Secrets

    Moving from last month's theoretical bass drum synth patch to its practical application on affordable analogue synths, we also take a look at how the world's most famous drum machines produce this fundamental rhythm sound.

    Techniques Feb 2002
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    Roland Fantom FA76

    Keyboard Workstation

    Korg's Triton has dominated the workstation synth market for several years, but the past 12 months have seen challenges to this position firstly from Yamaha, with their Motif, and now from Roland. Does this Fantom have what it takes?

    Reviews Feb 2002
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    Korg M1 (Retrozone)

    Digital Synth Workstation

    The all-time best-selling synthesizer, Korg's M1 laid the groundwork for synths that followed. We go behind the scenes to reveal the secrets of its success.

    Reviews Feb 2002
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    Bass Drum artwork header image.

    Synthesizing Drums: The Bass Drum

    Synth Secrets

    Ever wanted to synthesize unpitched membranophones? No? Well, you might if you knew that bass and snare drums are of this percussion type. We show you how...

    Techniques Jan 2002
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    Figures 1,2 and 3

    Practical Percussion Synthesis: Timpani

    Synth Secrets

    Building on the theory of what makes up the sound of timpani, this month's Synth Secrets reveals how to synthesize realistic kettle drums using a Korg MS20 and a Yamaha DX7.

    Techniques Dec 2001
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    Synth Secrets Nov 2001 artwork image of timpani and percussion.

    Synthesizing Percussion

    Synth Secrets

    Synth Secrets turns its attention to the synthesis of percussion instruments, beginning with pitched drums.

    Techniques Nov 2001
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    Synth Secrets Oct 2001 Parker Fly electric guitar header image.

    A Final Attempt To Synthesize Guitars

    Synth Secrets

    Having proved that subtractive synthesis of an acoustic guitar is completely impractical, Gordon Reid tries his hand at the electric variety, and deconstructs some past attempts to emulate the sound via analogue means.

    Techniques Oct 2001
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    Figure 1: A simple six-oscillator synthesizer.

    The Theoretical Acoustic Guitar Patch

    Synth Secrets

    Having explained last month the reasons why analogue synthesis of guitar sounds should be well-nigh impossible, Gordon Reid puts the theory to the test...

    Techniques Sep 2001
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    Synth Secrets Aug 2001 header image of acoustic guitar being played.

    Synthesizing Plucked Strings

    Synth Secrets

    Having dealt exhaustively with the mechanics of brass instruments and how to go about synthesizing them, we turn to instruments that use plucked strings to generate their sound, taking the complexities of the acoustic guitar as an example.

    Techniques Aug 2001

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