You could drive through Vermont to see fall colors, or you could just get Analogue Solutions' first two new SynthBlocks modules! More on those below, as well as the rest of the compelling new gear we have to share from this past week ...
Find of the Week: Analogue Solutions Mr. Hyde and Dr. Strangelove
British boutique synth maker Analogue Solutions has kicked off their new SynthBlocks line. As opposed to complete synths or modules for Eurorack owners, the SynthBlocks are stand-alone desktop modules intended for computer-based musicians who want to add some analog sound and processing to their rigs. The first two products in this new line are Mr. Hyde and Dr. Strangelove. Mr. Hyde is an analog filter capable of self-oscillation and nasty enough saturation that it might have to address Janet as "Miss Jackson." Dr. Strangelove is a combination of ring modulator, echo, and LFO. Each is $279 USD, and you can go to the company page for more info. In North America, distribution is being handled by Voltage & Company. We know from experience that everything Analogue Solutions makes is excellent, so it's great to see some accessible and approachable modules for the Euro-curious.
Synthesis Technology Cloud Terrarium
The model E352 Cloud Terrarium is a voltage-controlled digital wavetable oscillator in Eurorack format. It outputs two waves at once, and combines two of the company's previous modules - the E340 cloud generator and E350 Morphing Terrarium - while adding over 30 new features. It allows three user defined banks of waves, each consisting of an 8 x 8 matrix of individual waveforms one can then smoothly morph between. Two-operator FM is also supported. The price is in pounds at £387.50, and Matttech Modular has a thorough description of it here.
ALM Busy Circuits Akemie's Castle
Holy DX9, Batman! Here is a dual, four-operator, voltage-controlled FM synth module the company says uses "new old stock Yamaha ICs" for tone generation. You get selectable waveforms for each operator (so given that the DX9's operators did only sine waves, that suggests these ICs must be from something else - a TX81Z, maybe?), six algorithms, and independent feedback for each operator. In addition, a chord mode facilitates chords of up to five voices. It's not exactly cheap - £449.00 - but it's about the best thing we've seen for getting a more flexible version of classic DX-style FM into your Eurorack. More info here.
Amplesound Ample Guitar Twelve
This AU, VST, AAX, or RTAS plug-in instrument uses 6.1 GB of samples to capture the sound of the Taylor 956CE acoustic 12-string guitar. Notably for version 2, the developers re-recorded every sample with newly acquired and better gear. Playing convincing guitar parts from a keyboard is challenging, and Twelve eases the process with tools such as a Riffer, Strummer, and Tab Player. Capo Logic also makes sure chords are voiced according to "guitar rules." Check out this insane demo:
Ample Guitar Twelve costs $135 USD. More audio and video examples are here.
Winter Modular Eloquencer
This powerful Eurorack sequencer is designed around what the manufacturer calls the "controlled chance" concept, meaning that the user can define how much randomness will show up when and where. Nominally the Eloquencer features eight 16-step tracks, but with the ability to define larger bar counts or chain patterns to build multiple song parts of 256 steps each. There's an OLED screen next to the sequencer matrix, and much much more. More info here. Price: about $550 USD.