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05-Sep-23 - HEDD Audio launches HEDDphone TWO

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Powered by new advances in Air Motion Transformer technology and informed by profound user feedback, the new HEDDphone has undergone a turbo-charged evolution. With a folded Kapton diaphragm over three times larger than of traditional dynamic, planar, or electrostatic driver designs, the sound of HEDDphone TWO has reached new heights—it precisely tailors subtle transients and creates a transparent, natural musicality. It delivers a speaker-like, evenly balanced soundstage with stunning definition, permitting long listening periods with very little fatigue.

Building on the success of its predecessor, used by award-winning producers and engineers like Tchad Blake, Hildur Guðnadóttir, and DJ Jazzy Jeff, this headphone is crafted with particular focus on the needs of mastering engineers, mix engineers, and producers—without forgetting the broader spectrum of consumer headphone enthusiasts.

Several breakthroughs have been achieved in the three and a half year process of developing and designing HEDDphone TWO. HEDD Audio’s R&D team reconstructed the driver from scratch, using lightweight materials like carbon fibre and magnesium to achieve a staggering 25% weight reduction from the original. Furthermore, an all-new mechanical design was developed that enhanced the product’s durability while simultaneously making the entire unit more compact.

Extensive material and reliability testing has allowed HEDD to offer a rare and extended five-year warranty for HEDDphone TWO, available to customers via product registration.

A patent is pending for the all new unique headband (HEDDband) that provides users with a true custom-comfort-fit experience. HEDD have gone all-out to invent a smart strap system, allowing parameters like height, width, curvature, and even the clamping pressure to be tweaked and adjusted to the head shape and taste of an individual listener.

To ensure highest flexibility straight out of the box, HEDDphone TWO includes a carrying case as well as additional balanced and unbalanced cables, making it easy to take HEDDphone TWO to recording projects... and even on vacation. Heavy users will appreciate the spare set of ear pads, also included.



HP2: Price and Availability

Priced at 1999€ (incl. VAT), HEDDphone TWO will be available in late September (North America) and from mid to late October (Rest of the world).

HP2: Specifications

Concept: Open-back over-ear
Driver: Full-range Air Motion Transformer (AMT)
Diaphragm: Kapton polyimide film
Frequency range: 10Hz – 40 kHz
Sensitivity: 89 dB/W
Impedance: 41 Ohm
Weight: 550g
Power Requirements: minimum 200mW, recommended 1000mW or more Cable: Kevlar-infused, graded
Vegan-Leather ear pads and head cushion
Made in Germany

HP2: In the Box

HEDDphone® TWO
Travel case to fit HEDDphone® TWO and Accessories 1x additional set of spare ear pads
1x 2.2 m unbalanced cable with 6.35 mm termination 1x 2.2 m balanced cable with 4.4 mm termination
1x unbalanced adapter from 6.35 mm to 3.5 mm
1X balanced adapter from balanced 4.4 mm to XLR

HEDDphone TWO is hand-built in Berlin, Germany


04-Sep-23 - OXI Instruments introduces Coral as only multitimbral synth module marketed for Eurorack

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Having hitherto made musical waves with its inaugural OXI One product release as a battery-powered performative sequencer, controller, and composition tool with four fully-independent sequencers (originally raising 1,178% of its fixed funding goal with American crowdfunding website Indiegogo in 2021 and regularly updated with new features since shipping), inspirational and innovative music-making tools-crafter OXI Instruments is proud to announce (limited stock) availability of Coral as the only multitimbral synthesizer module marketed for Eurorack — embracing eight-voice polyphony (freely splittable into different parts and allowing every parameter to be independently set for each voice or part) and several sound engines (each assignable to different voices) all accessible via a colourful, organic interface arranged around an anodised and beautifully silk-printed aluminium panel, premium finished with custom aluminium knobs, empowering users to create basslines, drones, drums, pads, and riffs while effortlessly manipulating voices independently to craft complex patches out of the box — as of August 30…

Ultimately utilising lots of computing power to deliver rich-sounding engines in an eight-voice package that could conceivably be termed the ultimate multitimbral synthesizer — depending on the sound engine involved, one voice can have up to eight oscillators, meaning up to 64 oscillators playing at once making for a massive sound, for example, Coral can be played in a number of ways. While it is fair to say that it breaks free from conventional polyphonic synthesizer behaviour, Coral can conveniently be played polyphonically using only one CV (control Voltage) and gate connection, allocating a new voice every time it registers a new note — be that part of an arpeggio, strummed chord, or pad with long decayed notes — on the oct (V/Oct) input. Independent filter, amplifier, and modulation envelopes are available to each of those voices — in fact, every parameter can be independently set for each voice, including individual effect sends! It is also possible to play all eight voices in unison — all voices playing the same note for drones and thick textures, as well as triggering the internal envelopes with the trig input or directly controlling the amplifier level with the amp CV.

Coral also benefits from full MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) integration, meaning multitimbral operation is a given while also allowing for control over any part’s parameter via MIDI CC (Continuous Controller) commands. Indeed, its eight voices can be freely split into different parts; this time, every parameter can be independently set for each part to craft complex patches out of the box. But there’s more: once those voices have been grouped across different parts, users can distribute the modulation signals across them using the part CV; so, for instance, if there are two parts, the first part will be addressed if the part CV voltage is between 0 and 2.5V while the second will be addressed if the voltage is between 2.5 and 5V.

But better still, several sound engines can be assigned to each of Coral’s voices; included instances available from the outset are Virtual Analog, Waveshaping, FM (Frequency Modulation), custom Wavetable, MDO (Multiple Detuned Oscillator), String, HiHat Synth, Snare Synth, Digital Kick, and Wav Player, now boosted by new Additive with Wavefolder and Diode Distortion additions. As one such sound engine implies by name, Coral supports almost any kind of WAV file — 16-, 24-, and 32-bit mono or stereo — with no limit to playback time! Thinking outside the box comes easily when working with Coral — add overdrive to samples, sculpt them using the filters and envelopes, pitch them up and down in tune, and even modulate the sample file or folder in real time using the CV inputs or MIDI CC commands! It is possible to load any wavetable WAV file to the SD card for Coral’s Wavetable engine; wavetables can even be morphed into three dimensions using OXI Instruments’ OXI Wave app — based on the amazing Wave Edit app created by Andrew Belt — that makes creating and editing them both fun and interesting in equal measures.

Clearly, Coral can go far beyond the realms of a conventional polyphonic synthesizer, then, thanks to the comprehensive voice management and manipulation on offer. On the face of it, those powerful sound engines speak volumes in and of themselves — as does Coral’s full-featured polyphonic sample playback plus built-in space (deep atmosphere) and chorus (rich ensemble) effects potential. It is, indeed, the only eight-voice polyphonic, multi-engine, multi-part synthesizer module marketed for Eurorack, one whose freedom of voice management is even hard to match in desktop gear. Going from rich polyphonic patches to a fully-fledged groove box with basslines, drums, and leads comes quickly to Coral, which, of course, can be fully controlled using MIDI and CV — or both! All available to all in a compact (14HP) form factor for a reasonable price — particularly when pitched against a conventional polyphonic synthesizer.

“The introduction of Mutable Instruments’ Plaits module was a revolution in terms of compact, multi-engine synth voice modules,” maintains OXI Instruments CEO & CTO Manuel Vázquez Rodríguez, good-heartedly giving credit where credit is due before digging deeper to end on a high note: “Thanks to their open source contributions, we have taken some of their algorithms and put them into a tasty, compact package that contains eight ‘instances’ of that module with custom-developed engines alongside new ingredients like independent envelopes and filters per voice, effects, full MIDI implementation, and a colourful, organic interface. On top of that, custom wavetables and a sample playback engine are also available per voice. But we didn’t want to just create another polyphonic synth, so, to allow users to make the most of every voice, we’ve introduced the multi-part concept. Consequently, users can arrange and use the eight voices as they wish — with eight monophonic parts, one polyphonic part of eight voices, or any combination thereof, such as two polyphonic parts of three voices each, plus two monophonic voices in the same module, meaning Coral can be corralled into acting as a versatile and powerful polysynth, drum machine, groovebox, and sound exploration module… all at the same time! We won’t stop there, though, adding more features in future through regular firmware updates — just like we’ve been doing with OXI One!”

Limited stock of Coral is available to order online directly from OXI Instruments’ Store (https://oxiinstruments.com/product/oxi-coral/), priced at €399.00 EUR (excluding VAT) for EU (European Union) countries (with VAT being added at checkout for individual EU customers) and €459.00 EUR for ROW (Rest Of the World) countries (where duties and taxes may be charged on delivery) with worldwide shipping available.



About OXI Instruments (www.oxiinstruments.com)

OXI Instruments is focused on crafting innovative tools that offer a refreshingly new and inspirational approach to music-making. The trigger that brought the company into existence emanated from the ideas of one Manuel Vázquez Rodríguez, a young Spanish engineer with a passion for music and a background in music production spanning several years. While working in a non-related sector, he started working on prototypes of what would ultimately become OXI One, its inaugural product release realised as a battery-powered performative sequencer, controller, and composition tool with four fully-independent sequencers (originally raising 1,178% of its fixed funding goal with American crowdfunding website Indiegogo in 2021 and regularly updated with new features since shipping). Subsequently he quit his day job to focus full-time on providing products with which users can create and perform music in new, easy, intuitive, and fulfilling ways, working with several like-minded colleagues in order to do so.


15-Aug-23 - Universal Audio's Lexicon 224 reverb plugin at its lowest price ever!

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Offer ends 21st August 2023 - Universal Audio are doing a deal on the Lex 224 plugin for a super-low $89 bucks (USD). You get the Native & Apollo versions so don't worry if you dont have the UA hardware to run plugins on, this can also run Native.

From the moment it was unleashed in 1978, the Lexicon 224 Digital Reverb — with its tactile, slider-based controller and famously lush reverb tail — single-handedly defined the sound of an entire era.

From Talking Heads' Remain In Light to U2's The Unforgettable Fire, the Lexicon 224 remains one of the most popular digital reverb units of all time. Now you can track and mix with this singular piece of audio history with the Lexicon 224 Reverb plug-in.


Included Versions

  • UAD Native - Runs on your Mac or PC without UA hardware.

  • Apollo Realtime & UAD‑2 - Runs accelerated on Apollo interfaces and UAD‑2 hardware.


  • Track and mix with the legendary Lexicon 224 Digital Reverb, using the same algorithms as the original hardware

  • Employ eight classic reverb programs and one chorus program on drums, vocals, guitars, and more

  • Use the Plate and Concert programs for vintage '80s sounds

  • Mix with presets from famous Lexicon 224 users Chuck Zwicky (Prince), Kevin Killen (Peter Gabriel), and others


You can also try a demo for 14 days to see if you like it first..




15-Aug-23 - Golden Age Audio announces availability of Pre-73 MKIV

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Studio hardware and microphones maker Golden Age Audio is proud to announce availability of Pre-73 MKIV — angled as the latest and greatest update to its best-selling ’73-style preamp series, spiritually bringing back to life the musically warm, punchy, and sweet sound of classic British consoles, adding tone and colour to microphone favourites or keeping things clean while also doubling as a line-level preamp and DI (Direct Inject) box for electric guitar and bass — as of August 15…

As a versatile, colourful, and affordable British-style mic preamp and DI box, Golden Age Audio’s Pre-73 MKIV allows its users to achieve vintage colour and punch by cranking up the GAIN knob without fear; after all, a dedicated OUTPUT control allows attenuation of the signal, so it is perfectly possible to drive the preamp without overloading any associated audio interface inputs. It is also possible to engage the -14dB OUTPUT PAD for even more control of hot signals, or keep things clean and transparent by backing off on the GAIN and turning up the OUTPUT. On top of that, further tone-sculpting capabilities come courtesy of the selectable LOW-Z low-pass filter to eliminate unwanted low-end rumble at the source, and/or using the selectable — 3dB/6dB — AIR EQ to add some shimmer and presence to the top-end. Toggle between 1200Ω or 300Ω resistance using the LOW-Z to hear how connected mics react!

Connecting condenser and dynamic microphones is not a problem, thanks to Pre-73 MKIV’s switchable +48V mic input, while its 80 db of GAIN make it ideal for use with sensitive ribbon microphones on delicate sound sources. Sensibly, LINE- and instrument-level inputs allow for further connection to almost any audio source, and a rear panel-positioned INSERT jack is provided for using external processors like EQs and compressors. Choosing from TRS or XLR OUT (output) options is, of course, a given.

True to the classic preamps of yesteryear, Pre-73 MKIV was designed with a focused attention to component choices and build quality not found in other preamps near the same price. Put it this way: no surface-mount components or integrated circuits are used, and all inputs and outputs are transformer-balanced affairs using two different purpose-optimised transformers. Indeed, its external power supply eliminates the risk of self-noise, and its metal half-rack chassis is both portable and sturdy.

Saying all that, then, getting classic console tone and getting the most out of anyone’s mic locker is what Pre-73 MKIV is all about — and all keenly priced to go!

Pre-73 MKIV is shipping and available at an MAP (Minimum Advertised Price) of $349.00 USD — RAD Distribution acts as exclusive North American distributor for Golden Age Audio products (https://raddist.com/en/brands/golden-age-audio) — and an SRP (Suggested Retail Price) of €374.00 EUR — including VAT (Value Added Tax) — in the EU (European Union).

For more in-depth info, please visit the dedicated Pre-73 MKIV webpage here: https://www.goldenageproject.com/outboard-hardware/preamps/pre-73-mk-iv


About Golden Age Audio (www.goldenageproject.com)
Golden Age Audio effectively established itself as a groundbreaking company — called Golden Age Project, previously — by bringing its first Neve preamp ‘clone’ to market back in 2009; today it is recognised within the music industry at large for its complete line of outboard offerings alongside condenser and dynamic microphones based on classic designs delivered at a consumer-friendly price point.


06-Aug-23 - IK Multimedia Releases UNO Synth PRO X

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IK Multimedia releases UNO Synth PRO X, a powerful analog synthesizer that invites its user to embark on a liberating sonic adventure, exploring a world of infinite possibilities where technology meets the timeless allure of analog warmth.

From offering exciting new sounds to becoming the centerpiece of more complex rigs, UNO Synth PRO X represents the sweet spot between an expandable and versatile analog sound engine, hands-on controls, portability and price, making it the perfect choice for seriously fun sound design anywhere.

From Classic to Brand-new Sounds
Inside UNO Synth PRO X, users will discover a unique analog sound engine that they can sculpt to be anything they desire. With a fresh layout, the new UNO Synth PRO X gives players immediate control over its dual-filter, 3-oscillator paraphonic design, 256 presets, 64-step sequencer and much more.

To add more color to the sound, there's a warm and organic true-analog overdrive, plus 10 studio-quality effects (including a new shimmer reverb and uni-vibe-like modulations) in three simultaneous slots: modulation, delay and reverb.

External signals can be routed through the filters and the effects in addition to UNO's original thru-put for daisy-chaining multiple units together without using a mixer.

More Ways to Play and Perform
UNO Synth PRO X offers a 64-step paraphonic sequencer with parameter automation including CV and Gate. It has step and real-time recording with a sequence randomizer (following the scale selected) to create intricate and evolving soundscapes. UNO Synth PRO X also features a 10-mode arpeggiator with pattern designer.

In addition to legato, mono and paraphonic modes, users will find a new Bassline mode which modifies the behavior and interaction between core parts of the synth like the filter and envelopes in exciting and inspiring ways.

Comprehensive, Easy-to-use Controls
UNO Synth PRO X offers the simplicity and familiarity of classic synths with added modern control elements. It provides over 30 hands-on controls plus a 16-slot modulation matrix. Users can easily design the most sophisticated modulation scheme with both internal and external sources including MIDI controllers.

UNO Synth PRO X stores 256 user-editable presets, each capturing the full state of the sound engine from oscillators to effects. Presets can be further managed with the included Editor/Librarian. The Editor works as both a standalone application and as a plug-in inside a DAW allowing users to program and play the UNO Synth PRO X just like a virtual instrument.

Connectivity includes USB-C and 5-pin DIN MIDI In and Out making it easy to integrate with other synths and Mac/PC, while assignable CV/Gate connections let UNO Synth PRO X interact effortlessly with Eurorack or other modular systems.

The Sonic Sidekick
Compact and weighing less than a kilo, UNO Synth PRO X is the ideal traveling companion. It can be powered via USB-C and includes a standard power supply unit with barrel for the power-in jack. It has a dedicated 1/8" stereo headphone out as well as balanced stereo outputs for superior audio quality in any situation, whether on a plane or on stage.

No other synth in such a portable format places this amount of sound design tools at one's fingertips. UNO Synth PRO X truly frees users to create the sounds they seek, whether emulating classic analog synths or shaping new unique sounds all their own.

Options, Pricing and Availability
UNO Synth PRO X is available now from the IK Multimedia online store and from IK authorized dealers worldwide for $/€499.99.*

*Pricing excludes taxes



01-Aug-23 - InMusic Announce AIR Sprite A Multi Effects Plugin That Goes Beyond Audio Magic

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AIR Music Technology announce AIR Sprite, a modern take on the studio hardware staple of the 80s and 90s – the multi-effects processor. Sprite does things not possible in a hardware unit. Even better, Sprite is a plugin that is as simple, or as complex as the user desires. Make synths shine, bring guitars to life, and sprinkle audio fairy dust on vocals. The simple user interface gives fast control of every element, offering sound shaping of effects in seconds, but this is just the start.


AIR Sprite – At A Glance

  • Powerful multi-FX processor for a massive range of breathtaking, unique sounds.

  • Stunning user interface with intuitive macros page for immediate control of key parameters.

  • Massive range of ready-to-use presets, organised into categories for instant gratification.

  • Distortion section featuring nine distortion models with smoothing, hi/lo pass filtering and mix control.

  • Two modulation slots with eight classic modulation types. Choose between Flutter, Wow, Tremolo and Auto-pan in one slot, with rate, drift, stereo and depth controls as appropriate.

  • In the second slot, choose between Chorus, Multi-chorus, Phaser and Flanger with rate, depth, feedback, depth and mix controls as appropriate.

  • Dedicated and incredibly powerful delay and reverb section.

  • BPM syncable delay engine with Single, Dual and Cross modes, independent left and right time controls, feedback level and 24 feedback setups, width and mix control.

  • Reverb with eight distinct room characters, pre-delay, damp, time and volume controls.

  • Pitch-shifter with adjustable depth, assignable mix target, interval and algorithm.

  • EQ section with high and low cut and shelving controls.

  • Compressor section with assignable routing, attack, release and depth controls.

  • Width and balance controls.

  • Dedicated output EQ section featuring 31 character presets, plus a manual mode for detailed shaping of low, mid and high frequency content.

  • Envelope follower to automatically control delay feedback and delay & reverb mix based on incoming audio levels.

  • Final width, gain and limiter controls.





AIR Sprite – In Depth

Unlike many ‘magic’ or ‘single control’ plugins, the user has access to the ‘secret sauce’ behind the sound, allowing them to go deeper and craft the effects to audio perfection.


AIR Sprite’s powerful edit mode allows the user to shape every part of the multi-effects just how they want. There’s enough control to take the distortion from a little added warmth to extreme breakup and multiple ways to modulate the sound taking it from a gentle movement to a sweeping jet flanger. Delay offers everything from super clean to gnarly tape, and reverb can sit the effects in anything from a tiny room to a huge stadium. Add EQ, compression and pitch shift and Sprite is the ultimate sound design effects toolkit where originality is the name of the game.


Sprite is perfect for both music production enthusiasts and professionals, think of Sprite as your springboard to sonic nirvana, only limited by your desire to explore. With Sprite your perfect sound is just a few adjustments away.



Windows: VST, VST3, AAX







30-Jul-23 - Slate Digital Unveils New Web-Based Assisted Mastering Service ‘VIRTU’

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Slate Digital is thrilled to unveil VIRTU™, a brand new web-based assisted mastering service available exclusively to All Access Pass members. Combined with beloved tools like Virtual Tape Machines, Virtual Buss Compressors, Virtual Mix Rack, and the recently released FG-X 2, VIRTU makes the All Access Pass a one-stop mixing and mastering shop for users of all experience levels.


VIRTU gives your mixes the clarity, space, and depth they need to compete with your favorite chart-topping hits. With the help of curated Style profiles and easy-to-use Advanced Controls, VIRTU takes the guesswork out of mastering. Just upload your mix, select the style that best fits your track, and pick your loudness target. You also have the option to adjust some more advanced controls, like the frequency balance, compression and stereo width of your master.



Once you’re happy with your selections, click ‘Master’ to process the entire track. Then, all that’s left to do is download your mastered song from the library, where it will stay for 30 days. These masters can be confidently distributed to streaming platforms like Spotify and Apple Music, are perfect for testing in clubs or other live settings, and make excellent references for professional mastering engineers.

"VIRTU Assisted Mastering is an exciting release for this company," said Slate Digital CEO John Bastianelli. "Not only is it another excellent addition to our already feature-packed subscription package, but it's also a step forward into new territory. VIRTU makes the All Access Pass the only tool you need to record, mix and master your music from start to finish. We're excited to keep evolving the scope of our product offerings, and we can't wait to see how VIRTU helps our users along their creative journey."

Based on the Slate Digital processing and expertise you trust for recording and mixing your projects, VIRTU’s step-by-step process makes it easy for anyone to achieve a polished, professional master.



VIRTU™ is available exclusively as part of the All Access Pass. Not a member? Join or start your free 30-day trial today to experience VIRTU and the rest of our full plugin suite, plus professional mix templates, over 20 GB of boutique samples, and hours upon hours of educational content in Slate Academy.

All Access Pass members get three free mastering credits per month, with additional credits available for purchase at $2.99 each. 30-day trial users will also receive three complimentary mastering credits, as well as the ability to purchase additional credits. Additionally, anyone who joins the All Access Pass and logs into VIRTU before August 26th will double their masters, receiving six total mastering credits in their account at no extra cost.


About Slate Digital

Slate Digital, part of the Audiotonix family of brands, is a music production software company based in Los Angeles, California, USA, and Grenoble, France. Slate Digital has built its reputation on highly accurate digital reproductions of some of the finest pieces of analog hardware ever introduced to the audio world. Today, we’re a team of passionate developers, producers and artists who take pride in delivering innovative musicking tools for creators of all styles, genres and experience levels.



30-Jul-23 - Solid State Logic Launches G3 MultiBusComp Plug-In

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The SSL G3 MultiBusComp is a must-have tool for any audio professional looking to achieve the SSL sound in their mixes, delivering the classic SSL "glue" compression sound across 3 independently configurable frequency bands.

With powerful sidechaining features, intuitive feedback and per-band harmonic drive options, the G3 MultiBusComp is the perfect solution for achieving polished and professional mixes and masters that has made SSL the industry standard for decades.

G3 MultiBusComp's advanced parameter linking saves you time and effort, by allowing you to automatically apply inverse changes between selected parameters – hold down the shift key while changing the input/output gain or the threshold and makeup gains in each band. With automatically gain-compensated per-band drive inspired by SSL’s '4K’ drive circuit, you can add character and warmth to specific frequencies all while maintaining full dynamic control.


  •  3 bands of classic SSL "glue" compression.

  •  Per-band '4K' drive harmonic control for adding warmth and character.

  •  Powerful per-band sidechaining routing and processing.

  •  Parameter linking.

  •  Band graph view.

  •  High-Quality mode.

  •  And so much more...


The band graph view allows you to set your threshold and frequency crossovers with ease, and the sidechaining and filtering options allow you to create custom sidechain filters that are unlinked from the band crossovers, accentuating or diminishing the response to certain frequencies using the per-band bell filter, or driving the dynamics from a different frequency band or external signal.

The G3 MultiBusComp's auditioning features offer mutually exclusive soloing on each band and each band's sidechain input, allowing you to hear each band in isolation and make informed decisions about your mix. And with a resizable GUI that can be adjusted from 50% to 200%, the G3 MultiBusComp provides a comfortable user experience that can be customized to your specific needs.

G3 MultiBusComp is available now as part of SSL Complete, starting from $14.99 per month (T&Cs apply), SSL Rent To Own plan, and full perpetual purchase – it's your choice.

We've just reset SSL Complete trials for everyone. Jump over to the product page to demo the new G3 MultiBusComp. If you haven't already tried SSL Complete free for 30 days, come check it out!


25-Jul-23 - PulseSetter-Sounds ships HANDPAN : MACHINA, multi-sampled KONTAKT instrument

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PulseSetter-Sounds is proud to announce availability of HANDPAN : MACHINA — multi-sampled Halos injected with the cinematic sound design company’s distinctive brand of creative modern processing to produce otherworldly pads, drones, plucks, and loops shaping up as its most powerful KONTAKT instrument yet, one which involved closely collaborating with award-winning film and television composer Greg Tripi to combine his unique Halo playing and style with a modern hybrid approach to virtual instrument-making, duly designed by composers for composers as a highly-capable and complex tool hiding behind a simple GUI (Graphical User Interface) that truly inspires, its bird’s eye view of all effects and controls creating a simple approach to working with several types of sounds that can easily be mixed and matched with effects and sequences to even go as far as producing full music cues in one pass owing to its extensive flexibility and content — as of July 25…

It is fair to say from the outset that HANDPAN : MACHINA is far from a typical multi-sampled hand pan KONTAKT instrument. But before digging deeper into what, exactly, it is and does, it is worth looking back, briefly, at the origins of its source samples before putting them into their rightful context. History has it that a Halo is the original American hand pan — itself a term for a group of musical instruments that are classified as a subset of the steel pan. As a circular piece of steel with circular indentations in it that — once shaped — looks more like a UFO (Unidentified Flying Object) than a musical instrument, its soft, yet highly-energetic, ethereal sound combined with its simple playing method are beloved by both experienced musicians and novices alike. An American company called Pantheon Steel, founded in 2004 by expert steel pan-maker and accomplished tuner Kyle Cox, can be credited — with significant contributions from fellow artisans along the way — with creating the Halo that to this day rightfully represents its flagship instrument.

It is little wonder, then, that award-winning film and television composer Greg Tripi — truly talented as a multi-instrumentalist and synthesist based out of Los Angeles, California — got turned on to the Halo in a never-ending quest for new sounds and inspiration in pursuit of his chosen craft. Composing credits for television include The Fix (ABC), Manhunt: Unabomber (Discovery/Netflix), and The Knick (Cinemax), collaborating with well-known American film composer Cliff Martinez on the latter. Meanwhile, motion pictures benefitting from his musical input include Ma, Drive, Contagion, Rememory, Dark Places, and Hotel Artemis, while he has also worked on a number of Academy Award- and Emmy Award-winning independent films, as well as video games and commercials.

Duly designed by composers for composers as a highly-capable and complex tool hiding behind a simple GUI that truly inspires, it is little wonder, too, that PulseSetter-Sounds closely collaborated with top-tier industry player Greg Tripi to combine his unique Halo playing and style with a modern hybrid approach to virtual instrument-making. As a result, HANDPAN : MACHINA is effectively a combination of natural and sound design elements with PulseSetter-Sounds carefully crafting no fewer than 342 cinematic loops and pulses from the most pristine Halos available. Indeed, it is far from a typical multi-sampled hand pan KONTAKT instrument, instead seamlessly combining those multi-sampled Halos and loops with the cinematic sound design company’s distinctive brand of creative modern processing to produce otherworldly pads, drones, plucks, and loops, shaped as its most powerful KONTAKT instrument to date.

Dual XY pad environments are central to the KONTAKT instrument in question’s powerful GUI; the left one for performing and automating four layers of samples capable of combining loops and multi-sampled instruments — themselves the result of Greg Tripi going above and beyond the call of duty with his Halos, while the right one is dedicated exclusively to controlling custom mixes of several effects, so users can perform full cues in real time while recording or automating almost anything. It is worth noting here that there is an independent effects sequencer for each layer’s LFO (Low Frequency Oscillator), ENV (envelope), FILTER, DIST (distortion), EQ (equalisation), and DELAY, as well as four advanced sequencers with three modes — namely, Chord (plays chords that repeat), Arpeggiator (plays one note at a time), and Sequencer (whereby each step can be set to a specific note). Out of the box, HANDPAN : MACHINA is a powerful KONTAKT instrument with 15.80GB of content and 12 menu instruments ready to be used. Ultimately, however, it offers more experienced users a deep and versatile programming experience, with hundreds of options and much in the way of control, covering synth-like capabilities — like LFOs and envelopes, for instance.

It is also fair to say, though, that HANDPAN : MACHINA can conceivably be thought of as a live performance instrument — route its XY pads to a MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) controller, and it feels like a living machine. Musically speaking, this is incredibly useful when composing to picture, allowing users to perform in real time and save a lot of time while doing so. It is often observed that deadlines are your friend, but — on the strength of HANDPAN : MACHINA alone — PulseSetter-Sounds is friendlier!

For example, HANDPAN : MACHINA’s performance matrix makes it easy to control and manipulate those four layers of samples capable of combining loops and multi-sampled instruments since users can see all the layers with their parameters, effects, modulation, and effect sequencers in the same window for quick access, while it is also possible to edit the parameters for all the — SPACE and COLOR — macro effects, the master — FILTER, EQ, COMP (compressor), DELAY, VERB (reverb), LIMITER, and MASTER FILTER — effects, and the four sequencers.

Saying all that, then, HANDPAN : MACHINA is not simply a typical yoga class-sounding Halo. Having had a lot of fun processing the hell out of the loops and multi-sampled instruments involved in its creation, HANDPAN : MACHINA rather represents the musical manifestation of PulseSetter-Sounds duly designing it with the working composer in mind, allowing them to quickly lay out cues when needed using its carefully curated instruments or dive deeper into its programming capabilities to create custom instruments that contain all available instruments in the sample library itself. It is finally fair to say that with so much material and modulation possibilities to play with, serious users would need to spend some serious time to fully explore HANDPAN : MACHINA as a highly-capable music production tool — one which is worthy of taking the cinematic production company concerned’s notable name to the next level in KONTAKT instruments designed by composers for composers.

HANDPAN : MACHINA can be purchased as a 15.80 GB (9.17GB compressed) KONTAKT instrument for a time-limited introductory promo price of $69.99 USD — rising thereafter to its regular price of $99.99 USD — via its dedicated webpage, which also includes more in-depth information (including some superb-sounding audio demos), here: https://www.pulsesetter-sounds.com/product/handpan-machina/ (Note that HANDPAN : MACHINA requires the full version — 5.8 or above — of KONTAKT, Native Instruments’ advanced flagship instrument platform for macOS and Windows.)


HANDPAN : MACHINA in action in PulseSetter-Sounds’ contextual walkthrough video 



PulseSetter-Sounds’ tantalising trailer video for HANDPAN : MACHINA


About PulseSetter-Sounds (www.pulsesetter-sounds.com)

PulseSetter-Sounds is a cinematic sound design company, creating sound sets, loops, and sample-based products for film and video game composers, owned by award-winning composers Freddy Sheinfeld and Guillermo Silberstein. As a group of media music producers and sound designers living in Los Angeles, the company clearly knows that a strong theme tune helps tell the story and evolve emotions in a film score. Since they are also huge sci-fi-fi — yes, you read that right! — fans, the company collectively created its own ‘PulseSetter theme’ based on a futuristic dystopian-cyberpunk character who lives in one of several megacities where people have huddled together after several world wars; mixing new and old tech, this anti-hero lives for music and sounds in a world more into overthrowing the megacity overlord. Obviously this theme helps PulseSetter-Sounds propel its own sound story into hybrid and new sonic territories.


20-Jul-23 - IK Multimedia Releases TONEX Tone Partner Collections

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IK Multimedia releases new TONEX Tone Partner Collections with over 100 collections on offer now representing nearly 2,000 new Tone Models to play and record across the entire TONEX ecosystem including TONEX Pedal, and bringing the total of available Tone Models on ToneNET to over 15,000.

Tone Models are IK's ultra-accurate AI Machine Modeling™ recreations of iconic guitar amps and effects, connecting users to an endless stream of the most sought-after guitar gear, captured by today's top tone designers and fellow users.

All Tone Partners have been chosen for the gear they own and their expertise in creating and capturing great tones. Here is the list of select Tone Partners who have joined the TONEX ecosystem for the launch with their premium collections:

Amalgam Audio, Big Hairy Guitars, ChopTones, Dan Leggatt, Drum And Tones, Gitarrenlehreronline, IP Sound, Jason Sadites, Keith Merrow, Live Ready Sound, Mad Steex, Matt Fig, Rattly And Raw, Sonic Drive Studio, Taylor Danley, The Studio Rats, Tone Junkie, Top Jimi, TSFAHTPS.

Just the Beginning
Tone Partners are active creators who will regularly add new collections to the store with even more collections becoming available as new Tone Partners come onboard. Covering all styles and genres of music, Tone Partner Collections are an exclusive and affordable way to quickly expand any player's tone toolkit.

A Sonic Well of Inspiration
Each collection is meticulously captured to each Tone Partner's specifications with their preferred settings, mics, outboard gear and cabinets using TONEX's award-winning AI Machine Modeling technology. Users will find incredibly realistic captures of amps from vintage to boutique to modern high-gain, plus classic and modified preamps, pedals and everything in between. Many collections also offer amp-only DI captures so users can add their favorite cabinet IRs or IK's VIR Cab technology.

Free Trials and Tone Models
Users can demo any Tone Partner Collection before purchasing. Furthermore, over 100 new free Tone Models from these collections are available to all TONEX hardware or software users to download for free and use just like any TONEX Tone Model to record, play or practice.

Instant Access
Tone Partner Collections can be browsed and purchased via ToneNET, IK's online tone-sharing and social platform, or within any version of TONEX Mac/PC including the free TONEX CS. After purchase, Tone Partner Collections become activated inside TONEX software by selecting "Restore Purchases" in the Account panel, which instantly downloads all collection Tone Models to the user's local library ready to play.

For AmpliTube Too
Tone Partner Tone Models work seamlessly inside AmpliTube 5. The TONEX amplifier and pedal gear models function just like other AmpliTube amps and pedals. They can be used together to build custom signal chains and save as presets for easy recall. The combination of TONEX and AmpliTube 5 represents the most advanced tone powerhouse on the planet today.

Best of all, AmpliTube 5 presets created using Tone Models can now be uploaded to ToneNET's preset sharing section. Tone Partners and users alike can combine their favorite Tone Models with all of AmpliTube 5's hundreds of stompboxes, cabs, mics, rack FX and more to craft complete rigs and share them with their fellow users around the world.

Pricing and Availability

TONEX Tone Partner Collections are available now to browse and purchase via ToneNET and within any version of TONEX for Mac/PC starting at just $/€6.99.*

For more information about TONEX Tone Partner Collections and to hear the tones, please visit: