Cobalt synthesizer plugin by Sanford Sound Design now freeware

Sanford Sound Design has set free its Cobalt synthesizer inspired by many of the digital synthesizers from the 1980s.

The plugin is now available as a 64-bit VST instrument for Windows, and a version with larger GUI is included as well.

Sanford Sound Design Cobalt

In the early 80s as digital technology became cheaper, many manufacturers designed synthesizers that combined earlier analog technology with newer digital technology. These were known as hybrid synthesizers. Well-known hybrid synthesizers are the Korg DW8000 and DW6000, the Ensoniq ESQ-1, and the Kawai K3.

In analog/digital hybrid synthesizers, the oscillators responsible for generating waveforms are digital while the filter section remains analog. This approach freed designers to use any kind of waveform; they were no longer restricted to traditional analog waveforms such as sawtooth, triangle, and pulse. However, by using an analog filter, these synthesizers retained the warmth earlier analog synthesizers were known for.

Though Cobalt is a purely digital synthesizer, its overall architecture is very much like those early hybrid synthesizers. It features a wide selection of waveforms, most of which were resynthesized from actual hybrid synthesizers, while providing traditional subtractive synthesis capabilities for sculpting its sound.

Cobalt features

  • GUI created by grymmjack.
  • 26 waveforms – many of which were resynthesized from 80s hybrid synths.
  • Flexible modulation routes.
  • Apply PWM to any waveform.
  • LFO delay.
  • Polyphonic Portamento.
  • Key tracked envelopes.
  • Rich overdrive effect based on a custom algorithm.
  • Stereo delay effect with MIDI synchable delay times.
  • Easy to use.

The Cobalt synth is a free download for Windows (VST).

More information: Sanford Sound Design

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