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Review: Cableguys Curve 2 synthesizer plugin

Related: , , , , , Posted in reviews on Sep 04, 2013 - comment 0 comments

I reviewed the first version of Curve about two and half years ago, and most of what I wrote there goes for Curve 2, but recently I have been designing some more sounds with this synthesizer so I thought it was a good time for an additional version 2 review.

For those who haven’t heard of Curve before, it is basically a subtractive synth with some tricks up its sleeve.

Curve is a software synthesizer with an irresistible waveform editor, huge sound library and slick interface. Ideal for both experimentation and detailed tweaking at an excellent sound quality.

Feed Curve’s oscillators, LFOs and envelopes with custom waveforms. For anything rhythmic from wobbles to FX loops and evolving pads. For broad oscillator timbres from deep basses to shrill, aggressive snarls.

Cableguys Curve 2
Curve 2 comes with a new layout, improved workflow, and a black skin.

I would say the main attraction of Curve lies in the drawable waveforms that can be used for the oscillators and LFOs. This allows for great control over partials/harmonics of the sounds and it welcomes experimentation which I reckon most sound designers will enjoy lots.

With version 2, you now can also use the same functionality with all three envelope (velocity + 2 custom) modules. This makes Curve an even more flexible synthesizer to work with, since you can now create/draw your own multi-stage envelopes right there in the main display.

Also new is the fact that you can combine two waveforms in a single oscillator, which likewise really opens up the way for new sonic exploration.

Curve 2 Marco settings
Macro knobs in Curve

A workflow improvement comes in the shape of macro knobs, to which you can assign a number of parameters for modulation.

Of course you could automate this kind of thing without macros just fine, but it where’s the fun in doing that when you can create sonic mayhem with the turn of a single knob instead?

The 2 filter units are still there, and with version 2 you can now also route them individually to each oscillator, either single or both in series or parallel.

Curve 2 has a more refined, and more user friendly interface. I have to admit I wouldn’t mind seeing a white/grey edition though. The new dark skin looks great but it can be a bit straining on the eyes, to me anyway. That said, it is still a lovely GUI and the workflow is great.

Add to that the ever growing online presets database (well over 2,200 last I checked) which includes tons of high quality sounds, and you will find Curve 2 to be a versatile synthesizer that can easily stand its own ground.

Check out Myagi’s video on how to create a supersaw synth bass with Curve 2 for a good overview of how to design sounds on this plug-in.

So what do I think?

Product: Curve 2 by Cableguys
Format: VST/AU/RTAS
Price: 119 EUR / $159 USD inc. VAT
Like: waveform drawing, very flexible, sound designer’s dream, presets database
Don’t like: –
Verdict: 9/10

Cableguys offered something new and exciting with Curve’s flexible drawable waveform based instrument, and they confidently lift the powerful synthesizer to a higher level with Curve 2.

The improved envelopes, extended oscillators, macro knobs and workflow adjustments all contribute to creating an instrument that motivate the sound designer in me.

The only thing missing is the effects section, and to be honest, I don’t really miss it at all. It is still refreshing to hear what you can achieve without reverb, delay, and whatnot, and if need be there are plenty of other tools to get that job done anyway. If nothing else, the lack of effect units makes me design my sounds more carefully. Browsing the many beautiful sounds in the presets database, I realize I still have a lot to learn.

So, whether you want to create your own unique sounds, or simply enjoy the thousands of presets provided by the community, Curve 2 is definitely a synth that deserves your attention.

More information: Cableguys / Curve 2

Plugin Boutique Partner Focus: 25% off Cableguys Curve 2

Plugin Boutique has announced that it is offering a 25% discount on the Curve 2 synthesizer plug-in, as part of its Parter Focus on Cableguys.

Cableguys Curve 2
Curve is a software synthesizer with an irresistible waveform editor, huge sound library and slick interface. Ideal for both experimentation and detailed tweaking at an excellent sound quality.

Feed Curve’s oscillators, LFOs and envelopes with custom waveforms. For anything rhythmic from wobbles to FX loops and evolving pads. For broad oscillator timbres from deep basses to shrill, aggressive snarls.

A huge library will get you started, with quality presets by well-known preset designers such as Michael Kastrup, Pluginguru, Myagi, Xenos Soundworks, Soundsdivine, and hidden pearls from the Curve community.

Curve 2 provides completely new possibilities for experimentation and detailed tweaking, with a simple to use, immediate, slick interface.

The sale ends August 14th, 2013.

More information: Plugin Boutique / Curve 2

Cableguys releases VolumeShaper 3.1.3 and WaveShaper CM 1.1.1

Cableguys has updated the VolumeShaper and WaveShaper CM effect plug-ins for version 3.1.3 and 1.1.1 respectively.

VolumeShaper and WaveShaper CM can now be used on mono channels, too. If you’re using Logic, you might need to select and rescan these plugins in Logic’s Audio Units Manager.

VolumeShaper for Windows and Mac (VST/AU/RTAS) is available to purchase for 15 EUR / $20 USD. WaveShaper CM comes free with Computer Music magazine.

More information: Cableguys

Cabelguys WaveShaper CM – FREE with Computer Music magazine

WaveShaper CM

Cableguys has announced WaveShaper CM, a waveshaping distortion effect plug-in for Windows and Mac.

Free with Computer Music magazine, WaveShaper CM is a plugin effect that lets you design your own distortion curves and analyse signals with a built-in multi-function oscilloscope.

WaveShaper CM features

  • Design your own waveshaping curves using soft, hard and sharp points.
  • Oscilloscope with Stereo, Left or Right view and Waveform zoom and freeze, syncable by tempo, frequency or MIDI note.
  • Online preset sharing system with tons of ready-to-go presets.
  • 32-/64-bit Mac VST/AU.
  • 32-/64-bit PC VST.

WaveShaper CM is included in the lastest issue of Computer Music magazine online.

More information: Cableguys / WaveShaper CM

Cableguys updates Curve synthesizer plugin to v2.1

Related: , , , , Posted in news on May 07, 2013 - comment 0 comments
Cableguys Curve 2

Cableguys has updated the Curve virtual synthesizer instrument for Windows and Mac to version 2.1.

Curve 2.1 brings an important bug fix for Curve’s aliasing mode plus some minor other fixes.

Also, we’ve improved the syncing of Curve’s presets with the online preset library—the major change, besides a speedup, is that with Curve 2.1 also your private presets will be backed up online.

If you ever set up a new computer, simply click “Sync” and not only your public presets and ratings, but also your private presets will be in place again (given you synced them before, of course).

Curve 2 for Windows and Mac (VST/AU/RTAS) costs 119 EUR / $159 USD. It is also included in the Cableguys Bundle, priced at 149 EUR / $199 USD. Prices incl. VAT.

More information: Cableguys / Curve 2

Cableguys updates Curve synth plugin to v2.0.6

Related: , , , , Posted in news on Apr 22, 2013 - comment 0 comments
Cableguys Curve 2

Cableguys has released version 2.0.6 of its Curve software synthesizer instrument for Windows and Mac.

Curve 2 is our “superb synth with slick customisable waveforms and a brilliant cloud-based preset library. The addition of multistage envelopes makes a huge difference to the sort of sounds Curve 2 can make, and nudges it into the same league as instruments costing much more.” (ComputerMusic, January 2013)

The new version fixes a bug with hanging notes, which could occur with legato and mono modes.

Curve also has many presets up for download via Cableguys’ online preset database, which was recently upgraded to a faster server.

Simply hit “Sync” from within Curve 2 (demo or full version), get a coffee, and a bit later Curve will contain more than 117 pages of presets!

You’ll get “everything from thunderous dubstep bass wobbles to shimmering pads, advanced, complex sequences and eerie effects.” (MusicTech Magazine, November 2012)

This includes quality patches by preset designers such as Michael Kastrup, Pluginguru, Xenos Soundworks and community designers Konrad, Earworm, EdT, to name a few.

Curve 2 (VST/AU/RTAS) is available to purchase for 119 EUR / $159 USD incl. VAT.

More information: Cableguys / Curve 2

Cableguys updates Curve to v2.0.5

Cableguys Curve 2

Cableguys has announced version 2.0.5 of Curve, adding tons of new patches to its software synthesizer for Windows and Mac.

Curve 2.0.5 is out now. The new version fixes a bug with hanging notes (which could occur when switching presets or toggling mono/legato modes while playing multiple notes), and can can load all presets of Curve 2 CM. Simply hit “Sync” from within Curve 2.0.5 (demo of full version), get a coffee, and bit later Curve will contain more than 110 pages of presets!

This adds new quality patches by preset designers such as Michael Kastrup, Pluginguru, Xenos Soundworks and community designers Konrad, Earworm, EdT, to name a few.

Curve 2 (VST/AU/RTAS) is available to purchase for 119 EUR / $159 USD incl. VAT.

More information: Cableguys / Curve 2

Cableguys releases PanCake 2 free panning effect plugin

Cableguys PanCake 2

Cableguys has announced the release of PanCake 2, a freeware panning effect plug-in for Windows and Mac.

PanCake is an innovative plugin that allows you to create flexible pan modulations.

New in version 2: A precise display of channel left/right volume for helpful visual control, an option to trigger the LFO via MIDI notes, a dry/wet control, plus a redesigned interface.

PanCake 2 features

  • Creative Modulation Tool: Create complex pan modulations with ease.
  • Unique Waveform Drawing Capabilities: Construct your own modulation curves in a very intuitive manner. Waveforms can be easily drawn using soft or hard control points, thus producing gentle transitions or sharp bends in the waveform.
  • Customized Waveforms: Up to 10 customized waveforms can be stored.
  • LFO Speed: LFO speed can be set free-running from 0.02 Hz to 5.24 kHz. It can also be set in rhythmic units synced to the host sequencer, from a fast 1/128 note modulation up to 32 bars.
  • Always in Sync: The LFO will always stay in sync, even when you make tempo changes in your host software, or jump ahead to different parts of your track.
  • Complete Parameter Control via Automation: Absolutely everything in PanCake can be automated. Even the shape of the modulating waveform can be automated. And if you want to use more than four modulation curves in a song, you can automate the plugin to switch between them.
  • New in version 2: A precise display of channel left/right volume for helpful visual control, an option to trigger the LFO via MIDI notes, a dry/wet control, plus a redesigned interface.

PanCake 2 is available as a freeware plugin for Windows and Mac (VST/AU/RTAS).

More information: Cableguys / PanCake 2