I was asked to make some official presets for D16’s LuSH-101 software synthesizer. It’s a very easy synth to program. You get 8 full synth layers, effects and arpeggiation (with shuffle) per layer and master effects. You can do some really great things with that. Take a listen to some of my presets. These of course swing towards weird and techno such as that’s what I do. I think I had as much fun naming the presets as I did making them. There is a free demo of LuSH-101 so try it out for yourself!
“LuSH-101 is a synthesizer created from modules that can be found in many modern virtual synthesizers, all combined into a single compact and logically intuitive design. However, this basic simplicity combined with its multilayer architecture turns it into an easy-to-use but extremely powerful instrument that can be programmed and tweaked quickly, almost effortlessly leveraging its maximum potential.” – d16.pl
Here’s some music I recorded for a German female producer. It’s in her court to add vocals for this and send it back to me. You’re hearing two slightly detuned Yamaha CS5 lines. Both are going through D16 Devator’s. You also hear white noise from the CS5 modulated through Ableton’s Auto-Pan. Assorted booms are my own recordings and swing is up.
I don’t know how to pronounce D16’s new synth Shioitor. However, I clearly know how to say Roland SH-101 (Wikipedia link) and that’s the target of the Polish crew this time. I used to own a red Roland SH-101 with a handle and it was always the first thing anyone made a comment about when they entered my studio. A few months ago D16 asked me to make some presets for Shioitor so I’ve heard this synth in action. If you liked the original you won’t be disappointed.
“D16 spent many hours analysing analogue synthesisers and creating DSP code to replicate the hardware in software. As a result, Shioitor has a very true sounding analogue filter with constant Q and a very warm character. Resonance is constant across the whole frequency domain which makes the filter sound totally authentic – especially when controlled using envelopes or an LFO. Turning resonance to maximum and turning off all oscillator volumes will produce a pure analogue sine wave as the filter self-resonates. Innovative oscillator algorithms developed by D16 make Shioitor sound like the hardware synth which inspired it. There is no aliasing in the oscillators – even at 22kHz from the note’s base frequency. The level of aliasing around the highest produced frequency is about -70dB.” – d16.pl
Besides presets you get a few niceties the original didn’t have including arpeggiator shuffle, polyphony and key zones. You also can choose your favorite color!
D16 have released their Roland TR-606 clone called Nithonat. I love all the D16 drum machines because they sound fairly close to the original hardware they emulate and also have terrific internal sequencers. My favorite feature is the random function. It is well worth reading the manual if you try/buy any of the D16 drum machines so you get the most out of them. Here is a set of samples I created from the new box:
I love the D16 drum machine clones. Drumazon and Nepheton have the Roland TR-909 and TR-808 covered respectively. With careful mixing you can fool almost anyone into believe you have the original expensive hardware boxes. Certain aspects of these software counterparts kill their hardware companions such as a random function and swing adjustment. Happily today D16 announced their next drum machine clone will be for the Roland TR-606. Nithonat is “coming soon” and will be available for Mac or PC in AU or VST.
As some follows of Wire to the Ear know I moved from Berlin, Germany back to New York about three months ago. I bought an apartment in the city that needs a complete renovation. Not only do I have a new apartment to renovate I also bought a two car garage I am turning into what I hope will be an amazing studio. Because the apartment needs a complete gut my wife and I have been staying in the upstairs apartment in my mother’s house in Rockland County. Rockland is a typical New York suburb just about 20 minutes north of the city. It’s actually quite nice and I am very familiar with the area because I grew up here. The photo above is Ma’s house.
When I was in College at Suny Purchase I took a class called Social Sciences in the Arts. I never forgot a lesson the professor thought was important. The basic gist was that no artist made any art without an audience in mind. This ties into my Rockland chat above because I’ve been doodling a lot music wise on my laptop over the past three months and realize I am making tunes for my mother and Doug (her husband). Little diddy’s about the car they own, a song about the fact that my mother is top sales lady at her office and a song about Milo their dog. Milo is incredible cute (see photo below) but without a doubt is the boss here. He has these treats called “Dingos” which he demands often. When I say he demands them I mean it. A few of us will be in the kitchen talking and he will walk in, bark and growl loudly until someone gives him a Dingo. So without further ado here’s the song I did called “Milo the Bad Dog”:
Please keep in mind this is no way an official song or anything that I will ever release for sale. It’s just a fun blip that took about 40 minutes last night. I used the few simple plug-ins I have on my laptop and I sang in the bedroom using the Macbook Pro’s built-in mic. The drums are an Ableton Impluse with D16 Devastor on them. The synths are an old ReFx Vanguard and Fabfilter Twin.
Today when I got back from the gym the birds in the driveway were extra loud so I took a photo of the tree they were all in and recorded 30 seconds of audio for you. I used the Griffin iTalk app on my iPhone. You can hear the birds and cars going by on Route 340.
Something tells me when my apartment is ready I’m going to miss suburban life.
Vintage color is the special sauce audio producers crave when producing. We want the sound of Mic pres from the 70s, spring reverbs and even that classic sampler sound. Decimort is a new plug-in from the ever impressive Polish software freaks D16. There are a host of bit crushers on the market but Decimort specializes in recreating the effect of old EMU Emulators and Ensoniq samplers.
“Electronic music producers (especially in Hip-Hop) have always been aware that classic samplers (such as early Akai and EMU units) had a character and sound of their own. They added a “grit” and “colour” to the samples and loops they played back which made them sound “Fat” and sit well in a mix. This sound colouration was due to the encoding techniques, lower sample rates, lower bit rate and conversion circuits which these early samplers used. Decimort recreates this colouration and adds the vintage sampler magic to any loop, bass line or sound played through it. It also acts as the perfect bit crusher with filter.” – D16.pl
You can hear some very good Decimort samples in the context of full songs on the D16 site: click here However, below I recorded and posted some straight forward clips. Each clip starts with the dry sound then I click on Decimort:
A choir sequence from the basic Reason soundbank. I chose the choir samples because you could find very similar samples in The Fairlight CMI:
A computerized vocal which I think shows off Decimort quiet nicely:
A simple Roland TR-808 loop through some Decimort presets:
One thing I really like about Decimort is that is has a wet/dry knob, something I wish all plug-ins had! Also, automating the Frequency in Decimort sounds very potent. Overall it’s a nice plug-in that I could see using many instances of. I like to try using filters and bit-crusher before I’ll grab an eq.
Decimort is Mac/PC AU/Vst for 35€. Demo available: click here
D16’s newest plug-in Fazortan has come out of beta. It’s part of their Silver Collection. I use Phaser effects to make pads and string sounds shimmer. Want to see over 80 photos of vintage Phaser pedals? Head over to PedalHeaven the online guitar effects museum: click here
Have you ever wondered where does that unique magical breeze so audible in most of Jean Michael Jarre’s tunes come from. Suprisingly the backbone here isn’t the synth itself but the effect unit coupled with the synthesizer, saying more precisely – analog phaser of which our Fazortan seems to be a fine equivalent.
Therefore You can think about Fazortan as of the exact copy of a retro phaser taken out from 70’s and redone to become a virtual unit. – D16.pl
I installed Fazortan and can happily report it sounds nice and doesn’t crash or anything weird. I recorded some audio samples of Fazortan inserted over a simple Sawtooth wave from Fabfilter Twin and a TR-808 loop. My examples have the LFOs going a bit more crazy, tremoling than you probably would use them. In fact, I recommend going to D16’s Fazortan page to hear a more conventional use of a Phaser (it’s hard for me to be subtle!). The player will load each sample in succession. The first sample is the loop 100% dry, no effect:
Get ready phasor freaks because D16 has announced thier new plug-in Fazortan. It’s the second release in thier “Silver Line” follow the wicked Devastor.
Have you ever wondered where does that unique magical breeze so audible in most of Jean Michael Jarre’s tunes come from. Suprisingly the backbone here isn’t the synth itself but the effect unit coupled with the synthesizer, saying more precisely – analog phaser of which our Fazortan seems to be a fine equivalent. Thanks to the analog modelling technique we were able to implement allpass filters comprising characteristics identical to its analog counterpart based on Operational Transconductance Amplifiers. – www.d16.pl
Fazortan is available for pre-order. 29€. PC/VST, Mac VST/AU. Audio samples are online: click here
Here is a screencast I put together showing a few features of D16‘s incredible Roland TR-909 emulator Drumazon and their new distortion plug-in Devastor. I really like both of these. After watching the video I encourage you to head over to the D16 website and download the demos.
I’ve owned a real Roland TR-909 for many years. In fact I bought mine from Chaka Kahn! I can honestly say Drumazon is a better replacement. It’s a joy to use and you get all the nicesties of software (presets). You also get features a real 909 doesn’t have like random and automation. When you add a quality multiband distortion unit like Devastor to it you can’t help but smile. This is audio software at its best.