Splice is offering the Ozone 9 Elements plugin by iZotope as a completely free download for all users until June 5th, 2020. Ozone 9 Elements is the lightweight mastering plugin by iZotope. Typically priced at $129, Ozone 9 Elements includes all the core features found in iZotope’s flagship Ozone 9 Advanced mastering software. It comes […]
The leaked images were genuine! Moog has just announced a remodelled Subharmonicon that it will take you on an adventure of sequences spiralling through six-tone subharmonic chords and organic patterns.
They say it’s dead easy to use although, to be honest, it doesn’t look or sound like it. It has two VCOs, four Subharmonic Oscillators, two 4-step Sequencers and four Rhythm Generators. It will produce a “rich harmonic kaleidoscope” that turns everything on its head. The inspiration came from the experimental electronic music of the 1930s and 1940s. Joseph Schillinger’s mathematical systems for musical composition and the Mixtur-Trautonium, which employed a series of subharmonic oscillators to generate electronic undertones, and the Rhythmicon capable of sounding multiple harmonically related polyrhythm generators simultaneously. You can read all about that on the Moog website.
So what is it? It’s a semi-modular polyrhythmic synthesizer that uses mathematical ratios to tune its Subharmonic Oscillators and control the timing of its Rhythm Generators. The maths ensures that the tuning and timing remain somehow coherent and musical. The tuning comes from the two regular VCOs and so generates these interesting chord shapes. Each VCO runs two of the Sub-Oscillators and the intervals created are in relation to that VCO. You can keep things together through quantization to multiple scales and tunings or let it run free form.
The chord shapes are animated with the two 4-step sequencers which are clocked by the Rhythm Generators to create layers of timings and rhythms and all sorts. Then get to work on the envelopes, the Ladder Filter and VCA through which the oscillators travel paraphonically to blur the lines between pads and percussion, noise and melody.
Subharmonicon has a nice big patch bay which will be familiar to any Mother-32 owners out there and of course it’s the perfect partnership along with the DFAM for a little Moog powerhouse of creative sound generation.
Probably the best way to understand this machine is through demonstration and so check out the videos below for a window into this weird and fascinating instrument.
Big day for Logic Pro X users! Apple just released Logic Pro X 10.5, the update we previewed a few weeks ago. It’s the biggest update to the macOS DAW since the introduction of the Alchemy synth. Here’s everything new that producers will be sinking their teeth into…
Loops, samples and recordings now live in a new musical grid that lets you perform spontaneously and come up with arrangements to record into the timeline. The feature couples with Remix FX, which is a collection of performance effects like Bitchrusher, Filter, Gater and Repeater. The Logic Remote app for iPhone and iPad comes particularly handy here, as it enables multi-touch control over both Live Loops and Remix FX. So your iOS device becomes a de-facto controller! Neat.
Sampler & Quick Sampler
The EXS24 sampler is now reborn in two incarnates: Sampler and Quick Sampler. The user interface is completely new, but the essential functionality is all there, complete with backwards compatibility. While Sampler is great at mapping and effecting complex sample instruments and patches, Quick Sampler is where you go to to turn any individual sound into an instrument. You are able to import any sound from within Logic, Finder, Voice Memos, or record directly into Quick Sampler. Then trim, loop and play the result as well as adjust basic sound shaping controls.
Step Sequencer & Drum Synth
Apple turned its eyes onto beat creators with the addition of Step Sequencer, Drum Synth and a renovated Drum Machine Designer. The Step Sequencer is a colorful pattern-based sequencer with detailed control over note velocity, repeate, gate, skip, playback direction and randomization. Drum Synth is Ultrabeat’s little brother whose sounds can be mapped to any pad inside Drum Machine Designer and also blended with samples. Speaking of the latter, each Drum Machine Designer pad can now host the Quick Sampler and Drum Synth plug-ins to create a custom kit. You can play that in real time or program it with the new step sequencer.
Optimized for the latest Mac
Finally, Apple has optimized Logic Pro X for the latest Mac hardware, including the new MacBook pro laptops and the Mac Pro. This will make it possible to work with track numbers in the thousands with hundreds of plug-in instances – as many as your Mac can handle, anyway.
Logic Pro X 10.5 is a free update for existing Logic Pro X owners. The application itself costs USD 199 and is currently available on an extended free trial.
Now they’ve done it. Roland has broken free of the confines of their history and takes everything forward into the world of ZENOLOGY and it could be very exciting.
It’s the latest innovation from Roland which pulls the technology out of their still-not-quite-with-us Jupiter-X and realises it in software form. What starts off as a rather dull-looking hyper-preset virtual instrument quickly gathers pace into something very different. I didn’t get it at first, but I think I get what they’re doing. They are taking all their old synths and virtual versions and pushing them onto a new synthesis platform that will push them into deliciously unrecognisable places. It’s a triumph or a tragedy depending on how you feel about the purity of their back catalogue.
What is ZENOLOGY?
ZENOLOGY is an expandable plug-in version of the ZEN-Core Synthesis System. ZEN-Core is based on discrete synth voices—each containing a flexible oscillator, filter, amplifier, dual step-LFOs, and lush effects. It mixes multiple synthesis types, combining vintage Roland oscillators and filters with PCM waves capable of PCM-SYNC and cross-modulation. Layer up to four voices in a single tone for rich, complex sounds, both classic and modern.
So it’s a huge synthesis engine, right? Yes, and it’s already an immense source of sounds. But over time they are releasing new synthesis algorithms and expansions that will expand its potential in all sorts of directions.
This will include all their fabulous old synths like the Jupiter-8, Juno-106, SH-101 and JX-8P, but here’s the crucial bit – they are not arriving in the traditional GUI. They are being reworked into a new unified interface which in one fell swoop ditches the confines of the historical interface and releases them into a new evolution of sound design and possibility. That is completely genius…. and possibly heartbreaking.
ZENOLOGY is part of the Roland Cloud subscription which gives you access to a huge array of sounds including all the plug-in versions of their historical synths. But the big news is that there’s a free version of this software called ZENOLOGY Lite which allows you to run a bunch of sounds and have an active Roland Cloud account without having to sign up to a monthly charge. It’s exactly what Roland needed to do to pull people into the ecosystem. Because once you open that Roland Cloud Manager and see all of that content gleaming at you you start to feel that perhaps a few dollars a month might well be worth it.
Roland ZENOLOGY Lite
Although the first option after Free is “Core” and all that gets you is the sound packs and expansions for ZENOLOGY but without the historical synth expansions. Core is $2.99 a month or $29.99 a year and it looks like a pretty pointless option to me. The next one is “Pro” which jumps to $99.00 a year but for that you get all the ZENOLOGY plus the sample based instruments like Drum Studio, Anthology Collection and the D-50 but from the vintage collection you only get the TR-808. Which brings us to Ultimate for $199 which gives you the lot which really is a huge collection of sounds and instruments.
Roland Cloud Membership
I guess the question is that if ZENOLOGY is going to provide models, and arguably better models than the ACB based models that form the current plug-ins, of their old gear then would you need the individual plug-ins that Ultimate offers? What I can say is the sounds in the Lite version are excellent – really strong in the pad department, lots of great leads, basses and synth noises along with sampled sounds, choirs, strings, flutes and a bunch of drum kits including an excellent 808 and 909. It’s 182 free sounds from Roland – yes please.
All versions also let you now purchase individual lifetime licenses for instruments, sounds and patterns. So you don’t have to subscribe to get those one or two instruments that really appeal to you. So, for instance the Jupiter-8 or Juno-106 is $149 as a one-time purchase. It soon adds up.
So am I going to try the Ultimate? Well, I think I might go for the Pro version and take some time to check out the 30-day free access to Ultimate and see what I can live without. Well done Roland, you got me.
Intelligent audio plug-ins have been all the rage over the past couple of years. MIXROOM from Mastering The Mix is another AI-assisted EQ with algorithms that guide you through better EQ adjustments. It also has a user interface quite unlike anything we’ve seen before.
MIXROOM – Intelligent EQ plug-in
Like its AI-powered brethren, MIXROOM can analyse audio and show you example EQ adjustments to help you start EQ-ing. There are genre and channel-specific EQ target suggestions as well. Reference tracks can be imported to create custom EQ targets and level matching for the output gain helps when comparing dry and processed signal. Additionally, ‘Smart Bands’ can be inserted, matching the target EQ curve and giving you further starting points.
The user interface is novel, presenting frequency bands as big blocks of color that you can move up and down, adjusting their amplitude. This way, you get an immediate visualisation of how the frequency spectrum is laid out and which frequency ranges are dominant. The interface is also fully resizable. Indeed a pleasant sight for those tired producer eyes!
Price and availability
MIXROOM is up for an affordable GBP 49 and a free trial version can be downloaded for testing. It’s available in VST 2, VST3, AU, and AAX formats for Windows and Mac computers.
Here’s a breakdown of the best music production courses you can access to brush up your music production and instrument playing skills during the lockdown. We included the best online music courses that can be accessed completely free of charge for a limited time only. You will also find a couple of excellent music learning […]
Slate Digital is offering 90 days of free access to Slate Academy, its online platform for music production courses. Slate Academy is Slate Digital’s platform for online music production courses. It offers a range of video tutorials about all aspects of the music production process. For music producers who want to learn how to use […]
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