Review: Bronto Scorpio Music Future Retro soundset for u-he Diva

Dennis Harms aka Bronto Scorpio has contributed many patches to various u-he plug-ins — including Zebra and Uhbik, and some of his sounds are also included in the third party patches that ship with Diva, the “Dinosaur Impersonating Virtual Analogue” synthesizer that takes virtual analog to a whole new level.

With Future Retro for Diva, Dennis releases his first commercial soundset.

Diva is famous for the ability to authentically recreate the great synthesizers of the past. However, I tried to go a different direction with this set. Many sounds are inspired by the past, and use Diva’s great sound design potential to go way beyond vintage sounds into the future!

Bronto Scorpio Future Retro
One of my favorite patches in the set, a wonderful lush pad called “Beautiful Colours”.

Future Retro includes 64 presets, categorized as follows:

  • 12 x Bass.
  • 9 x Drum.
  • 9 x FX.
  • 10 x Pad.
  • 6 x Sequence.
  • 18 x Synth.

Most sounds within the set are pretty unique with very little overlap. The patches are well designed and include controller mappings of modwheel, aftertouch, velocity etc. linked to things like filter and LFO parameters.

Some patches require quite a lot of horsepower, since they are designed to run on Diva’s “divine” quality mode. Alas, this is life with Diva at the moment. Quality comes at a price and I am more than happy to work in draft mode and render audio until I upgrade my computer in the next few years.

Check out the Future Retro demo clip by Dennis below to get an idea of the kind of sounds included in this set.

If you want to get hands on with these sounds, there’s a free demo bank with 10 presets available to download here.

So what do I think?

Product: Future Retro by Bronto Scropio
Format: .h2p patches for u-he Diva
Price: 10 EUR
Like: Quality sounds, musical, affordable
Don’t like: Perhaps a bit divergent for some
Verdict: 8/10

Diva already comes with a large number of impressive presets by seasoned sound designers. Nonetheless, Future Retro manages to bring a good collection of new sounds. Many of them don’t necessarily stand out all that much, but they do have a certain quality: musicality.

The soundset includes a wide variety of sounds, suitable for diverse electronic music styles — perhaps a result of Dennis’ personal taste in music. I can imagine some people might think the set as a whole is a bit confused, having modern sounding dubstep wobble basses and things like vintage pads and brass sounds in one and the same set, but to me everything seems to fit together quite nicely. The idea was to take vintage and bring that into the future and I think Dennis achieved his goal. Moreover, even if you only like half the sounds I reckon Future Retro is well worth the asking price. My favorite sounds are in the pads sections. The sound of “Beautiful Colours” just captivates me.

Check it out (and if nothing else get the free patches) at the Bronto Scorpio website. And if this is the first time you’ve heard of Diva make sure to visit u-he for some more detailed information about this amazing synth.

More information: Bronto Scorpio Music

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