Tuesday 3 September 2019

Ashun Sound Machines (ASM) announce Hydrasynth wave morphing synthesizer with Polytouch™ polyphonic aftertouch


Newly-formed music hardware company Ashun Sound Machines (ASM) is proud to announce (upcoming) availability of Hydrasynth — a wave morphing synthesizer representing its inaugural hardware product, produced as a keyboard version (featuring an ASM Polytouch 49-note polyphonic aftertouch keyboard and a user-assignable ribbon controller) and desktop version (with 24 velocity- and polyphonic aftertouch-sensitive pads, plus an included 19-inch rack-mount kit).

Hydrasynth itself is an eight-voice, three-oscillator synthesizer anchored around a unique wave morphing synthesis engine. OSC 1, OSC 2, and OSC 3 can all make use of any one of the 219 single-cycle waveforms available, while Wave Scan mode (for OSC 1 and OSC 2 only) flexibly facilitates defining eight waveforms into a list and then morphing from one to the next using modulation sources. 

Said synthesis engine also features four mutators, allowing for further tonal modification. MUTANT 1, MUTANT 2, MUTANT 3, and MUTANT 4 have an ability to perform complex FM (Frequency Modulation) synthesis; each include three different types of pulse width modifiers, hard sync, harmonic sweep, and a Wavestack function that generates five detuned copies of the incoming waves for super-dense sounds. Furthermore, flexible routings within the mutators make available (almost) unlimited options for tweaking, twisting, and turning sounds inside out.

On top of that, the synthesis engine also contains two filters that can be configured in parallel or series. FILTER 1 features 11 filter models spanning new and classic filter modes, while FILTER 2 is a continuously-variable multimode affair.
As modulation sources add much-needed movement into a synthesized sound, Hydrasynth far from disappoints in that regard with five envelope generators — ENV 1, ENV 2, ENV 3, ENV 4, and ENV 5 — capable of looping as well as tempo synchronisation and five LFOs (low frequency oscillators) — LFO 1, LFO 2, LFO 3, LFO 4, and LFO 5 — capable of acting as step sequencers or one-shots. The modulation matrix — MOD MATRIX — offers 32 modulation slots with which to route sources to destinations. Such sources and destinations can also be received or sent via MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) CC (continuous controller) messages or front panel-accessible CV (control voltage) INPUTS and OUTPUTS.

Of course, connectivity to the wider world is as far reaching as it comes, courtesy of that full-blown MIDI implementation (via the usual connection compliment of MIDI IN, MIDI OUT, and MIDI THRU on five-pin DIN as well as USB) alongside CV/GATE connections (for playing nicely with the likes of today’s ever-widening world of Eurorack modular gear, vintage synthesizers, and more).

Hydrasynth has brought back one of the most requested features in synthesizers and controllers — namely, polyphonic aftertouch. As such, its unique polyphonic aftertouch keyboard breathes life and dynamics into otherwise static sounds, so users can create expressive musical passages using a standard-sized traditional keyboard. It is not necessary to learn a new keyboard technique to be able to play and perform with the Polytouch keyboard.

Alternatively, a desktop version of Hydrasynth — dispensing with that Polytouch keyboard and the user-assignable ribbon controller in favour of 24 velocity- and polyphonic aftertouch-sensitive pads — is available to those not needing to add another keyboard to their studio or stage setups; saying that, all other performance attributes are still at hand, including an adaptable ARPEGGIATOR and dedicated FILTER CONTROLS, with crisp OLED (organic light-emitting diode) displays duly providing welcomed visual feedback across the easy-to-follow front panels of both versions of ASM’s inaugural hardware product... when it comes to working with a sensational synthesis engine, the choice is out there!
Expected to ship in November 2019, Hydrasynth will be available through ASM’s growing global network of authorized retailers at an MSRP of $1,599.00 USD ($1,299.00 USD MAP) for the keyboard version and at an MSRP of $999.00 USD ($799.00 USD MAP) for the desktop version.

For more in-depth information, please visit the ASM webpage here: http://www.ashunsoundmachines.com

About Ashun Sound Machines (ASM) (www.ashunsoundmachines.com
ASM is a new music hardware brand started in 2019, based in Hong Kong, Los Angeles, and Shanghai. The brand is wholly owned by Medeli, an established electronic musical instrument developer founded in Hong Kong in 1983. Passionate about using technology to create exciting products that spark creativity, the core company team comprises Fanny Cheng (President), Daniel Troberg (VP of Sales and Marketing), Glen Darcey (VP of Products), Dominic Au (Product Manager), and Chen Jiejun (Director of Engineering). © 2019 Medeli Electronics Co., Ltd.

Thursday 29 August 2019

Spitfire Audio announces collaborative calling with London launch of BBC SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA at Barbican Centre keynote


Having teased with the telltale This is London calling... video, intriguing in advance of its biggest release to date, the wait is finally over for all as Spitfire Audio is proud to announce (upcoming) availability of BBC SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA — launched during a captivating keynote at London’s legendary Barbican Centre as a world-class orchestra within the sound-specialising British music technology company’s award- winning standalone plug-in, providing a solid foundation for any composer’s toolkit and workflow within a single sample library like no other; the expansive result of an extraordinary, one-of-a-kind venture created in partnership with BBC Studios, the British television production and distribution company that is the commercial arm of the oldest entertainment organisation in the world, and in collaboration with the world-renowned BBC Symphony Orchestra to which it obviously owes its notable name.

BBC SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA is a universal starting point for orchestral sample libraries, letting everyone talk the same language. It is so much more than a product release; rather it is the start of a movement. After all, the BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation) is a worldwide, trusted institution of huge cultural significance, and, much like Spitfire Audio, its core values are rooted in both accessible learning and innovation. Indeed, as a world-class, cohesive concert orchestra known for its standard in playing and commitment to innovative education work, the BBC Symphony Orchestra has been at the heart of British musical culture since its creation, coming up to its 90th year. Yet the BBC has happily put its name — and its principal broadcast orchestra — behind BBC SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA. Is it little wonder, then, that this represents Spitfire Audio’s most expansive and ambitious project to date? Duly it is worthy of being launched with such collective company pride during a captivating keynote at London’s legendary Barbican Centre, a world-class arts and learning facility famed for pushing the boundaries of all major art forms, including dance, film, music, theatre, and visual arts — This is London calling... indeed!

Watch the BBC SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA launch live stream here: 
Innovatively recorded to trusted superlative standards by Spitfire Audio at London’s legendary Maida Vale Studios — a complex of seven BBC Sound studios sited in one of the BBC’s earliest premises, pre-dating Broadcasting House, and the centre of the BBC News operation during World War II, before being used to record thousands of classical music, popular music, and drama sessions for BBC Radio 1, BBC Radio 2, BBC Radio 3, BBC Radio 4, and BBC Radio 6 Music from 1946 to the present — and performed by an orchestra renowned for its remarkably homogenous performances, honed from playing some of the best and most challenging works together for years and selling out concert halls the world over, the comparatively youthful sound-specialising British music technology company has pulled out all the stops with BBC SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA, creating a future-proof classic comprising the finest strings, woodwinds, brass, and percussion.

Put it this way: with BBC SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA, Spitfire Audio has succeeded in creating a comprehensive, professional product made up of 99 players, 55 different instruments, 418 techniques (180 String, 110 Woodwind, 84 Brass, 44 Percussion), 33 legatos, and a staggering 20 signals — two mixes, five spill signals, 11 mic positions, and two atmos (front/rear) — for ultimate creative control. It is the definitive symphony orchestra made accessible to all through the cutting-edge technology of Spitfire Audio’s award-winning standalone plug-in, providing a solid foundation for any composer’s toolkit and workflow within a single sample library like no other. As a collaborative platform that is perfectly positioned to take orchestral music into the future, sampling has truly arrived and the possibilities are endless. This is just the beginning.

BBC SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA can currently be preordered as an AAX-, AU-, and VST-compatible plug-in that loads directly into a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) for a time-limited introductory promo price of £679.00 GBP (inc. VAT)/$749.00 USD/749.00 EUR (inc. VAT) until November 14, 2019 — rising thereafter to an RRP of £899.00 GBP (inc. VAT)/$899.00 USD/899.00 EUR (inc. VAT) — from here: https://www.spitfireaudio.com/shop/a-z/bbc-symphony-orchestra/

Spitfire Audio recommends that customers purchase BBC SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA on its SSD (Solid State Drive), which will come with custom packaging specifically for the product with an RRP of £199.00 GBP (inc. VAT)/$199.00 USD/199.00 EUR (inc. VAT); please note that the last day this can be ordered to be delivered by the release date is October 14, 2019. 


About Spitfire Audio (www.spitfireaudio.com) 

Spitfire Audio is a British music technology company that specialises in sounds — sample libraries, virtual instruments, and other useful software devices. It collaborates with the best composers, artists, and engineers in the world to build musical tools that sound great and are exciting to use.

Friday 23 August 2019

Spitfire schools itself in achieving organ sound in imaginations with SYMPHONIC library latest


Spitfire Audio is proud to announce availability of SYMPHONIC ORGAN — achieving the hitherto unachievable sound of the organ in imaginations to access those powerful cinematic sonics popularised by blockbuster film scores such as 2001: A Space Odyssey, Interstellar, and Tron, courtesy of an immensely powerful, cathedral-sized organ built into Rugby School Chapel, creating an epic but immediate sound like no other, professionally captured and creatively presented as a definitive library like no other, comprising carefully curated, ready-to-play presets perfect for fitting well with the sound-specialising British music technology company’s other SYMPHONIC range releases already available for Native Instruments’ KONTAKT sample playback engine.

As a highly versatile instrument, now widely used beyond its original church or horror film score setting, the pipe organ is perfectly positioned for adding beauty, depth, and power to orchestral scores and compositions. Celebrated symphonic works such as French composer, conductor, organist, and pianist Charles-Camille Saint-Saëns’ 1886-completed Symphony No. 3 in C minor, Op. 78 — better known as the Organ Symphony — clearly make much use of an instrument that also provides the foundation for countless film scores spanning various genres, including 1958’s Vertigo (Bernard Herrmann), 1968’s 2001: A Space Odyssey (from Richard Strauss’ 1896 work Also sprach Zarathustra), 1982’s Koyaanisqatsi (Philip Glass), 1982’s Tron (Wendy Carlos), and 2014’s Interstellar (Hans Zimmer), to name a notable few. For no other orchestral instrument can go lower in pitch, providing thunderous sub-bass-like depth that is felt rather than heard.

It is little wonder, then, that as soon as Spitfire Audio co-founder and composer Paul Thomson heard (and felt) the Rugby School Chapel organ — housed in one of the oldest independent schools in Britain’s polychromatic chapel designed in 1875 by well-known Victorian Gothic revival architect William Butterfield, he knew he had to sample it. In fact, Spitfire Audio had to sample it! Heard in the opening sequence to American animator, artist, director, filmmaker, and writer Tim Burton’s 2007 Academy Award-winning mystery thriller, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, the contrast of this monstrous, cathedral-sized organ — featuring four manuals (keyboards) with 55 speaking stops (controls) and a total of 3,721 gilded pipes — with its intimate chapel setting creates an epic sound with a unique intensity and immediacy unlike any other. Obviously capturing the unique power and beauty of this impressive instrument built by Bray’s Kenneth Jones & Associates in 2001 with a 33-feet-high new oak case substantially in front of the existing organ chamber at the north side of the chancel to enable the organ itself to speak directly into the chapel was far from easily achievable. 

As such, Spitfire Audio’s crack team of engineers and developers collaborated closely with world-renowned composer, producer, and organ expert Andy Richards — whose decisive discography spans working on fashionable films scores, such as the aforesaid Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (music engineer, score mixer, organ, and additional music) and the Danny Boyle-directed, 2008 Academy Award-winning British drama Slumdog Millionaire (score mixer), as well as performing, programming, and producing an array of records by iconic artists like Frankie Goes To Hollywood, Grace Jones, George Michael, Pet Shop Boys, Rush, and much more besides — to record every pitch of the Rugby School Chapel organ with multiple microphone positions to achieve authenticity as well as capturing the natural sound of the room with which it interacts architecturally. Also working with celebrated organist James Williams, who regularly plays the organ in question as the Head of Academic Music at Rugby School, Spitfire Audio was able to conduct detailed exploration and experimentation to ensure that it got the very best out of the impressive instrument and its stunning surroundings. 

Since the Rugby School Chapel organ has an (almost) endless combination of stops and pedals, it can clearly be overwhelming for anyone not familiar with its intricacies. Fortunately for its users, Spitfire Audio’s SYMPHONIC ORGAN library leans heavily towards instant playability, putting a comprehensive range of readymade stop combinations created by Andy Richards and James Williams into anyone’s hands. Having the hard-won outcome of such specialist curation readily at hand saves a huge amount of time and energy, enabling anyone to get the very best out of the impressive instrument and its stunning surroundings into DAWs (Digital Audio Workstations) worldwide, with inspired compositions (hopefully) flowing forth for all to hear. 

Watch Spitfire Audio co-founder Paul Thomson’s ‘traditional’ video walkthrough of SYMPHONIC ORGAN here:

Helpfully, SYMPHONIC ORGAN users can choose from 16 Manual (stop) combinations, 13 Pedal combinations for achieving that sub-bass-like sound, and eight Ensembles that span the whole organ. On top of that, the carefully captured natural room sound spans the (default) curated mix through to mix-and- matching six professionally-placed microphone positions for further control. Choices range from mics inside the organ itself for an amazing, full-tilt sound to ambient mics for a wider, more resonant tone. The layout is presented in dynamic order — from quietest to loudest, created by stop presets, and it is possible to choose any or all of the stop combinations, as well as 50 mind-bending, warped presets presented in Spitfire Audio’s acclaimed eDNA engine! 

SYMPHONIC ORGAN is the sound of the organ in your imagination that you’ve never been able to achieve; we’ve done all of the hard work, so you can just open and play — everything from beautifully soft lyricism to ear-shattering power,” proudly proclaims impressed instigator Paul Thomson

SYMPHONIC ORGAN can be purchased and digitally downloaded for a time-limited introductory promo price of £149.00 GBP (inc. VAT)/$179.00 USD/ 179.00 EUR (inc. VAT) until September 12, 2019 — rising thereafter to an RRP of £199.00 GBP (inc. VAT)/$249.00 USD/249.00 EUR (inc. VAT) — from here: https://www.spitfireaudio.com/shop/a-z/symphonic-organ/

SYMPHONIC ORGAN needs Native Instruments’ KONTAKT PLAYER (5.6.8 or higher) — a free version of the KONTAKT sample playback engine (included in the purchase) — to run as a fully NKS (NATIVE KONTROL STANDARD®) supporting plug-in instrument for Mac (OS X 10.10 or later) or Windows (7, 8, or 10 — latest Service Pack, 32/64-bit), while Spitfire Audio’s free Download Manager application allows anyone to buy now and download anytime.

For more in-depth information, including superb-sounding audio demos, please visit the dedicated SYMPHONIC ORGAN webpage here: https://www.spitfireaudio.com/shop/a-z/symphonic-organ/

About Spitfire Audio (www.spitfireaudio.com) 
Spitfire Audio is a British music technology company that specialises in sounds — sample libraries, virtual instruments, and other useful software devices. It collaborates with the best composers, artists, and engineers in the world to build musical tools that sound great and are exciting to use. © 2019 Spitfire Audio Holdings Limited 

Wednesday 14 August 2019

Antelope Audio advances acclaimed audio interface series with workhorse Orion Studio Synergy Core ‘hot-rod’

Trailblazing pro audio manufacturer Antelope Audio is proud to announce it is taking preorders on Orion Studio Synergy Core — advancing its acclaimed audio interface series’ workhorse with ‘hot-rodded’ hardware from the ground up to include six ARM-based DSP (Digital Signal Processing) processors paired with two proprietary FPGA (Field Programmable Gate Array) chips, creating Antelope Audio’s state-of-the-art Synergy Core effects processing platform (producing phenomenal onboard computing power to free up host computers from running the cutting-edge company’s effects); upgraded D/A (digital-to-analogue) converters (capable of delivering 130dB dynamic range on both pairs of monitor outs) and discrete transistor mic preamps (perfectly matched to bring out the best in Antelope Audio’s acclaimed Edge and Verge modelling condenser microphones); and access to today’s fastest, most versatile data connection, ThunderboltTM 3 (with custom high-performance, low-latency drivers for Mac and Windows).
As implied by the Synergy Core wording boldly blazoned across its finely refreshed, familiar front panel, Orion Studio Synergy Core cleverly lets users offload Antelope Audio effects to the audio interface itself; in turn, this frees up the host Mac or PC to record and play back more tracks, and run CPU-hungry virtual instruments and native time-based effects. Ultimately, users of Orion Studio Synergy Core can take on big projects, build intricate mixes, reduce latency, and keep their system stable — all thanks to that perfect pairing of six ARM-based DSP processors and two proprietary FPGA chips creating Antelope Audio’s state- of-the-art Synergy Core effects processing platform. Put it this way: with such staggering processing potential onboard, Orion Studio Synergy Core can comfortably accommodate any growing studio setup; after all, its effects processing capabilities have been doubled to 32 channels strips, each of which are able to host up to eight effects slots, potentially allowing for 256 effects instances in any given session!

Speaking of processing potential, Orion Studio Synergy Core comes complete with 50 of Antelope Audio’s acclaimed real-time effects on tap (https:// en.antelopeaudio.com/products/orion-studio-sc-real-time-fx/) — namely, ALT-436C (compressor); FET-A78 (FET compressor); SMT-100A (compressor); VCA-160 (compressor); Stay-Levin (compressor); FET-A76 (FET compressor); x903 (compressor/limiter); PowerFFC (compressor); BAE-1023 (EQ); NEU-PEV (passive EQ); NEU- W492 (EQ); NEU-W495 (EQ); VEQ-4K BROWN (EQ); VEQ-4K ORANGE (EQ); VEQ-4K PINK (EQ); VEQ-STU 089 (semi-parametric EQ); VEQ-STU 169 (inductor EQ); VEQ-STU 900 (semi-parametric EQ); VEQ-1A (tube EQ); VMEQ-5 (tube EQ); ClearQ (parametric EQ); VEQ-HLF (passive high/low filter); Gyraf Gyratec IX (tube mic preamp); BA-31 (mic preamp); AuraVerb (reverb); Master De Esser (de-esser); PowerEx (expander); PowerGate (gate); Plexi 59 (UK) (tube guitar amp); Bass SuperTube VR (tube guitar amp); DarkFace 65 (US) (tube guitar amp); Top30 (UK) Bright (tube guitar amp); Tweed Deluxe (US) (tube guitar amp); Overange 120 (UK) (tube guitar amp); Burnsphere (DE) Lead (tube guitar amp); Marcus II (US) Lead (tube guitar amp); Modern (US) CH3 (tube guitar amp); Rock 75 (UK) (tube guitar amp); Rock 22.10 (UK) (tube guitar amp); Darkface 65 2x12 (guitar cabinet); Top30 2x12 (guitar cabinet); Modern 4x12 (guitar cabinet); Green 2x12 (guitar cabinet); Vintage 4x12 (guitar cabinet); Green 4x12 (guitar cabinet); Caliper 50 1x10 (guitar cabinet); Bluelux 1x12 (guitar cabinet); Clst 1x12 (guitar cabinet); England 4x12 (guitar cabinet); and Bass Tube 1x15 (guitar cabinet). All told, that is a sizeable collection of top-tier compressors, EQs, and mic preamp emulations, plus guitar amp and cabinet models, and more with which to bring tracks to life! Let it be said: since Synergy Core architecture allows access to the processing muscle power users could conceivably want to simultaneously run as many of those acclaimed real-time effects that their sessions could conceivably need, heavy lifting clearly comes naturally to Orion Studio Synergy Core!
But back, briefly, to that finely refreshed, familiar front panel; there the ThunderboltTM and USB interface with 12 Mic Preamps wording makes Orion Studio Synergy Core’s raison d’être perfectly plain for all to see. Perfectly positioned as a cross-platform audio interface, Orion Studio Synergy Core offers both ThunderboltTM 3 and USB (Universal Serial Bus) 2.0 connections to the DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) host computer — complete with custom high-performance, low-latency drivers for both Mac and Windows.
With ThunderboltTM 3, it is even possible to power/charge an Apple MacBook directly from the audio interface itself!

When it comes to working with Orion Studio Synergy Core, however, hearing is believing. After all, those 12 mic preamps are based on Antelope Audio’s Discrete MP (https://en.antelopeaudio.com/products/edge-strip/), a Discrete Dual Ultra-Linear Microphone Preamp, while Orion Studio Synergy Core’s Accusonic 3D modelling engine lets users transform Antelope Audio’s acclaimed Edge (https://en.antelopeaudio.com/edge-family/) and Verge (https:// en.antelopeaudio.com/products/verge/) modelling condenser microphones into expensive-sounding replicas. And anyone recording line-level signals need not fret for Orion Studio Synergy Core’s Direct In function hard-bypasses the mic preamps themselves, so signals sail straight into the A/D converters with 124dB DNR. Do not fear, for Orion Studio Synergy Core far from disappoints in the D/A department, delivering 130dB DNR on both pairs of monitor outs (MONITOR A and MONITOR B), which can run simultaneously or in A/B mode. Whatever way Orion Studio Synergy Core users choose to record, though, the truth is in there!

That’s not all. As the soon-to-be ‘brain’ behind professional studio setups the world over, Orion Studio Synergy Core provides robust, flexible tools for routing and monitoring, so sending audio anywhere with the digital patch bay and latency-free mixer made easily accessible via its software control panel is a given. Globally, top-tier recording and broadcast facilities rely on Antelope Audio's renowned rock-solid audio clocks; with its world-class WC (Word Clock) IN and OUT, Orion Studio Synergy Core similarly syncs studio setups with the cutting-edge company’s 4th Generation Acoustically Focused Clocking technology, employing 64-bit DDS (Direct Digital Synthesis) to keep audio in lockstep at up to 192 kHz!

Clearly, then, those ThunderboltTM and USB connections combined with 12 of Antelope Audio’s discrete mic preamps, extensive analogue and digital I/O totalling 30 simultaneous inputs and 22 simultaneous outputs (including DC-coupled I/O for CV control of analogue modular synths), upgraded D/A conversion, and unprecedented onboard processing power with access to those 50 included real-time effects make for a well-oiled machine like no other audio interface in its class. To power up Orion Studio Synergy Core is to see and hear this ‘hot-rodded’ workhorse make light work of any recording or mixing project put in its (superior signal) path! 

Orion Studio Synergy Core is available for preorder — priced at an RRP of $2,795.00 USD — through Antelope Audio’s growing global network of authorised dealers (https://en.antelopeaudio.com/dealers/). Or order online directly from Antelope Audio via the dedicated Orion Studio Synergy Core webpage (https://en.antelopeaudio.com/products/orion-studio-sc/), which also includes more in-depth information.

Explore Orion Studio Synergy Core’s included real-time effects here: https://en.antelopeaudio.com/products/orion-studio-sc-real-time-fx/ 

About Antelope Audio (www.antelopeaudio.com
Antelope Audio is a leading manufacturer of high-end professional audio equipment. Founded in 2004 and reinventing the industry with its flawless master clock technologies and versatile multi-channel interface solutions, the company has been steadily expanding its portfolio over the years under the guidance of visionary engineer and CEO Igor Levin. Antelope Audio’s products offer the best of both analog and digital technologies. Among its most recent innovations are compact interfaces with discrete mic preamps, hardware-based effects modelled to the component level running on a Synergy Core of DSP and FPGA processing, and next-generation modelling microphones. These are distributed through Antelope Audio offices in Europe, the Americas, and Asia, and highly acclaimed by users all over the world.The company’s customers include GRAMMY® award-winning sound engineers, top- tier producers, world-class artists, and some of the most renowned, recording, mastering, and post-production facilities around the globe. 
© 2019 Antelope Audio