Necromare has released some more free sample-based VST instruments for Windows.
What can I say I love building instruments. I think it’s part of being a composer, to finally make the sounds you need and want. I keep coming up with ideas for instruments and there seems to be no end. I already have 50 plus most in the testing stages. Looks like I will be releasing them well into next year.
New Necromare plug-ins
The Panning Piano – Simple piano that automatically pans left and right slowly as you play. Good for filing out a mix. The last octave includes some piano screeches.
Piano Harp – Imagine if you played the piano like a harp? What would it sound like? It would sound like this VST great sound for mystical or romantic moods. Included in the last octave are Gliss samples for effect.
Simple Acoustic Guitar – Straight Foward guitar. Good for picking or sketch work.
Soft Mallet Xylophone – The xylophone played with a soft mallet. Velocity sensitive over 4 octaves.
Toys – Toy Piano, a small scale piano with a tiny sound + an electronic children’s piano with baby xylophones instrument.
VL-1 Drum – Drum sounds from the Casio VL-1 keyboard/calculator.
Zeboo Drum Kit – Acoustic drum kit, GM Mapped. The last octaves are samples of Zeboo himself!
Lucivier – The keyboard produces a celesta like tone while pipes produce flute like sounds at the same time. The bottom octave and the last are the sounds produced by using the three pedals on the bottom.
Kazoo – The only instrument you need little to no experience to play. So why not try a VST. It’s a bit harsh but fun to knock around with.
Gamelan Music – Three Gamelan instruments: Reyong, Gangsa and Calung.
Electric Bass – Simple Electric Bass, keys are velocity sensitive to give a short note on harder strikes. The upper octaves include a classic bass slide.
Whale Song – Made from CC whale song files. Includes a whale purr, a trumpet, gentle underwater sound fx, and more.
Sinsonic Drums – Like many old toys from the past some have actually been used by pros. Mattel Synsonic drums have been used by kraftwerk and others. This is a knock off the original pays tribute to our toys of a bygone era.
Basement Piano – Most homes might have one of these lurking in there corner basement. An old upright that you may have learned to play piano on or liked to beat on. Either way this pleasant piano will convey a warm nostalgic sound for your next tune.
Southern Banjo – For some there is nothing like the sound of a picked banjo. for others they can do without. This is an attempt to faithfully recreate the sound of a great instrument.
The Necromare instruments are available as freeware VST plug-ins for Windows PC.
Soundcells has announced the release of Simple Sampling, a ReFill for Reason 4 and higher.
At first Soundcells started working on a fun ReFill based on a Stylophone only, which was recorded for sampling purposes. Besides programming a patch that matches the real thing, the NNXT sampler in Reason was tweaked to go some extra steps and some fat funky clavinet-style patches caught by surprise.
While producing the Stylofunk mini track (apart from the loop it’s entirely based on stylophone samples) some extra cool stuff was added to this ReFill: a “single-sample-rhodes”, a “single-sample-piano”, a “single-sample-kalimba” and a lot of other nifty stuff… “Simple Sampling” gradually turned into a product full of “simple samples” coming from different sound sources.
If you are looking for sampling like it was done in the old days instead of patches with hundreds of individual samples, you will love this ReFill. Super quick loading patches, very cpu-friendly and most of all full of character and very charming…
Simple Sampling features
101 combinator patches for many different styles of music, subdivided in 6 folders: Bass, Drum Machines, FX & Atmo, Keys, Leads, Pads.
A note by note (a2 – e4) sampled and looped Stylophone including it´s typical release click.
“Simple Samples” coming from the Rhodes Mark 1, Doepfer MS404, Supernova 2, microKORG, G2, VL1…
The modules folder contains the basic NNXT patches which are used for the combinator sounds.
10 Rex loops, 5 Redrum kits.
Simple Sampling is available for the introductory price of 14.90 EUR through October 2010 (regular price 19.90 EUR).
The third volume in Goldbaby’s Tape Drum Machines series of sample libraries features the sounds of another dozen drum machines.
For those new to the concept, the Tape Drum Machines series combines vintage and modern drum machines with tape machines and analog tape effects.
This third volume in the series features nearly 3,500 samples (24bit) from a total of 12 drum machines, recorded with Otari and Rola reel-to-reel tape decks and a Hitachi cassette deck. Add a touch of tape simulation from Kush Audio’s UBK-Fatso and you get Tape Drum Machines Volume 3.
Gear used for Tape Drum Machines Vol 3
Tape Drum Machines Vol 3 drum machines
Casio RZ-1 (238 samples), one of the first drum machines which featured sampling (0.8 sec at 20 kHz).
Kawai R-100 (132 samples), 24 12-bit sounds in 3 kits.
Kawai XD-5 (905 samples), features 256 waveforms, with up to 4 waveforms per drum sound. Has advanced options like envelopes, filters, delay, ringmod and more.
Korg DDM-110Super Drums (83 samples), a total of nine (9!) 8-bit 15.6kHz samples in this lo-fi machine.
Korg DDM-220Super Percussion (71 samples), lo-fi crunchy sounds like the DDM-110, but this time with Latin American percussion sounds.
MFB-522 (453 samples), analog drum sounds from Germany. Features step sequencer and lots of controls for editing the sounds.
M.P.C. Electronics DSM-1 (515 samples), single channel analog drum synth intended to be used with drum pads.
Roland Rhythm 55/TR-55 (276 samples), analog rhythm box with 10 sounds generated by tuned resonance type circuits and white noise.
Roland Rhythm Plus PB-300 (314 samples), analog rhythm machine with 8 sounds (apparently a bit of a mix of TR and CR machines).
Sakata DPM-48 (122 samples), digital drum machine with old school sounds (also manufactured under Jugg Box and Hammond brand names).
Yamaha ED10 (284 samples), electronic drum pad with an analog synthesizer which can produce a wide range of sounds (includes filter+mod, subsonic, click, noise, etc).
Yamaha RX21L (80 samples), features 16 latin drum/percussion samples, in full 12-bit glory.
The sample pack also comes with some patches for Battery and Guru, which is great if you use these instruments. However, samples are categorized in separate drum machine folders so it’s easy to browse the sounds.
The samples themselves have descriptive names indicating the type of sample and what gear was used. For example, RZ1_BDvinyl_7_x_Tape2.wav is vinyl basedrum sound #7 from the RZ1, recorded on the Otari MX5050 1/4 inch 2 track machine with the gain set for more saturation. The “x” denotes additional processing like the use of a filter or equalizer.
The analog machines – DSM-1, ED10, MFB-522, PB-300, and TR-55, have many sounds that were sampled multiple times for use of round robin (also indicated in the filenames). These variations will help you get more realistic results.
Alright, so what do these drum machine samples actually sound like? I made a few demo loops so you can get an idea. The first track is a combination of the loops, the individual ones follow (drum machines indicated in the track title).
All drum/percussion sounds in these loops were done with TDM Vol 3 only. I didn’t use much processing, just some compression and a tiny bit of reverb on some of the samples. For melodic content I used u-he ACE, Sonic Charge Synplant, and Daichi’s Synth1.
So what do I think?
Product: Goldbaby Productions Tape Drum Machines Vol 3 Format: 24bit wav, Battery+MIDI & Guru kits and bundles Price: $29 USD
The third volume in the Tape Drum Machines series includes a huge variety of digital and analog drum machine samples. Not all of them are equally interesting to me though. I am not a fan of digital latin percussion drum machines so the DDM-220, and the particularly nasty sounding RX21L I could do without. Goldbaby’s tape treatment does add value but they’re just not the type of sounds I’m usually looking for. Luckily those only account for 150 out of 3,500 samples.
In general TDM Vol. 3 is a well balanced pack of electronic drum sounds; from the raw digital 12-bit orchestral hits of the R-100 to the warm synthetic analog sounds of the ED10 and MFB-522. My favorites are the RZ-1 – great for lo-fi hip hop beats, and the XD5 which has a surprising large amount of diverse sounds. I love the rough, saturated “tape2″ samples of this one.
TDM Vol. 3 meets the high quality I have come to expect from Goldbaby. If you are into drum machine sounds this one is a no-brainer if you ask me.
Circuit bending has gathered quite a lot of attention in recent years. Sure it’s not for everyone, but blogs like Create Digital Music, GetLoFi, Make, etc. show there is plenty of interest in the art of modifying electronic devices by short circuiting them. If you are not really sure what I’m talking about, check Wikipedia here.
Sidsonic’s Circus Circuit Bending Library isn’t the first sample library that is all about circuit bending. It is however one of the most extensive ones I have seen so far, and the first Kontakt Player based one to my knowledge.
Perhaps not essential but well worth mentioning is the physical design & packaging of this sample library. Where many developers choose to provide downloads only, or simple DVD boxes with half a page worth of info, Sidsonic is doing the opposite entirely.
The box CCBL is shipping in is a proper piece of art (click the image to enlarge). RCA sockets keep the lid in place and a lovely little red dip switch is located on the top right. Useless, you say? Sure there is no need for such a fancy box, but for me it certainly adds value to the product. Even before you get to hear the sounds of CCBL the packaging already shows that these guys are passionate about their work.
The sample library comes with a 36-page booklet that has extensive information on circuit bending, the Kontakt interface pages & controls available, and the instruments/devices used for CCBL and what was done to them to get these circuit bent sounds.
From the booklet:
Already from the first personal experiences of sound bending that emerged from the circuit board of a small electronic guitar and a connecting finger we noticed the potential that Circuit Bending harboured.
Sounds were suddenly able to develop playfully, the likes of which could otherwise have only been possible using complex technology. The first pieces of equipment gathered quickly and it was obvious, that Circuit Bending can be used for far more than for creating just a few typical textbook sounds. The Circus Circuit Bending Library is our way to further extend the art of Circuit Bending and take the distinctive sound of it out into the world. We aim to make it possible by using a simple way to explore the depths of sound bending without having to deal with individual pieces of gear, modification or emerging problems. To this end, a vast array of toys, drum computers and keyboards have been rebuilt, recorded and remodelled so that the emphasis is focused on establishing the largest sound collection possible. The result is a simple, honest remodelling.
Drums and synths
Sidsonic sampled over 18,000 sounds for CCBL, using a total of 14 circuit bent instruments as sound sources. From these samples they constructed nearly 180 synth and drum kits in Kontakt.
Circus Circuit Bending Library instruments
Casio SK-1, SK-2 & SK-200, sampling keyboards from the eighties.
Alesis HR-16, 16-bit drum computer featuring 49 digital PCM samples.
Boss DR-550, drum computer with 48 16-bit PCM samples.
Korg DDD-1 & DDD-5, dynamic digital drums with respectively 18 and 14 sounds, features some typical eighties drum sounds.
Roland TR-505 & TR-626, the 505 has 16 drum sounds, while the 626 comes with 30 (12-bit samples).
Yamaha PSS-140 & PSS-270, two 2 operator FM keyboards that come with 100 preset sounds.
Yamaha VSS-200, 8-bit sampling keyboard, FM synthesizer with 100 presets.
Texas Instruments Speak & Spell; V-Tech, the well known educational toys featuring a speech synthesizer.
Each of these instruments was circuit bent by soldering sound chips, connecting patch bays, adding switches to the devices, etc., resulting in those typical sounds– noisy, raw, dirty, lo-fi, harsh… you know, messed up.
The Kontakt instruments created from the massive amount of sounds (I can only imagine how much work it was to turn over 18,000 samples into 179 instruments!) are categorized in synths and drums. Inside each section the various instruments are listed with a number of Kontakt patches.
Circus Circuit Bending Library Kontakt interface
These instruments are not simply a bunch of samples mapped across the keyboard either. Five custom Kontakt pages are available in each instrument to modify the sounds to your liking. There are many useful controls for envelopes, LFO’s, and various effects (send/insert/master). The drum instruments have five groups (basedrum, snare, toms, cymbal, and percussion) so you can assign filters and effects per group, very handy. Another cool feature is the use of circuit bent sounds in the convolution reverb found on the Send FX page. CCBL comes with 23 long & 21 short “impulse response” files that will turn sounds around in quite unexpected ways.
Check the illustration below for a detailed overview of the signal flow of CCBL’s instruments.
Signal flow of Kontakt instruments, CCBL is not just about the samples
So what does CCBL sound like? I made a few quick demo loops which you can check below.
The Sidsonic Libraries website has some more audio clips.
So what do I think?
Product: Circus Circuit Bending Library by Sidsonic Libraries Format: Kontakt Player 3.5 (VST/AU/RTAS/Standalone) Price: 189 EUR MSRP
If I could only have one circuit bending sample library, Circus Circuit Bending Library would be it. This thing is massive. It is amazing how many Kontakt instruments Sidsonic was able to build from just 14 sound sources. The instruments are really well done, ready to play straight from the box and easily tweaked with the custom Kontakt pages. There’s a lot of noise, glitch and whatnot in the sounds, yet they remain very playable. Especially in the synth section Sidsonic has worked hard to provide sounds which can be played across the keyboard.
This library truly feels like a labour of love, with much attention to detail and an overall high quality in every aspect of the product.
If you are only remotely interested in circuit bent sounds you should probably just pick up some of the free sample packs available on the internet. However, if you are serious about using circuit bent sounds (and you don’t want to do all the hard work yourself) you should definitely check out CCBL. I guarantee you will not be disappointed.
Sidsonic has a free demo (includes a drum and a synth instrument) for your Kontakt Player available to download on the CCBL product page. Try and see how you like it.
Justin Robert has released Mothman Z3000, a virtual synthesizer instrument inspired by the Casio CZ-3000.
The Mothman Z-3000 is the newest sibling of the Mothman synthesizers and this one is the best one yet. It’s a 16 voice polyphonic synthesizer that features two Phase Distortion DCOs, two DCWs, and two DCAs all six feature the famous 8 point envelope section that made the CZ synthesizer so famous. You have the ability to make some of the most complex waveforms you’ve ever heard.
It also has the stereo chorus, noise and LFO just like the original CZ-3000. Also, there’s an added switchable velocity feature that gives greater expression than the original CZ, and an added analog style filter on DCA2 to give even more sound options. You can also pan the different DCOs to give more stereo fx. But other than that, I kept it pretty faithful to the original synth. Programming is very similar to the original CZs, the only difference being that on each 8 stage envelope there is a “scale” feature, which acts like a master envelope control to quickly lower or raise the length of the envelope all around without changing each one individually. You can even use the original Casio CZ-3000 Manual to understand the concepts behind programming this VST.
There are 64 preset slots with 18 presets already created. The sound of this synth is very similar to the real thing. Real phase distortion synthesis is used, real eight point envelopes and a cool “Mothman” design make this synth a must have addition to your VST library.
Mothman Z3000 is available to purchase as a VST instrument plug-in for Windows PC, priced at $24 USD.
Puremagnetik has announced the release of PakBytes, a collection of free sound packs for Ableton Live, Kontakt, and Logic.
PakBytes is a free catalog of sounds derived from Puremagnetik’s content for Ableton Live, Kontakt and Logic. This initial release includes 8 PakBytes with sounds based on products from Buchla, Casio, Atari, Ensoniq and more.
PakBytes catalog includes:
Phazeform Volume 1 & 2 – A collection of instruments, kits and looped clips based on Casio Phase Distortion and VL-Tone synthesizers.
Analog Drums – An assortment of percussives captured from modular analog systems.
Blip – A collection of multisampled instruments sourced from the original Atari 2600 sound chip.
B-System: Percussives, Basses & Leads – A sampling of percussion kits, multisample patches and looped clips recorded from an original Buchla 200e modular synthesizer.
Waveframe – A sophisticated wavetable synthesizer for Ableton Live based on the Transwave concept of Ensoniq’s FIZMO. (for Ableton Live only)
Vector – An advanced wave sequencing instrument based on the classic KORG Wavestation. (for Ableton Live only)
Users must register for the free Puremagnetik plan to gain access to these downloads.
Puremagnetik has announced the release of Phazeform Volume 2, the second installment of the Phazeform series which includes more CZ-1 phase distortion patches, the complete tonal bank from the original SK-1 and a ton of percussion elements.
The mothership of Casio synthesis, the CZ-1 was a remarkable piece of technology in its day, emulated by other leading synthesizer manufacturers. Casio’s CZ line of Phase Distortion synthesizers are incredibly unique devices that used digital synthesis without a filter as opposed to traditional analog subtractive synthesis with a filter. The CZ line used phase distortion to somewhat simulate an analog filter, it had in total eight different waveforms: as well as the standard sawtooth, square, and pulse waveforms, it had a special double sine waveform, a half-sine waveform, and three waveforms with simulated filter resonance: resonant sawtooth, triangle, and trapezoidal waveforms.
The Casio SK-1 is a classic low fidelity consumer keyboard from 1985 and arguably the first toy sampler. Puremagnetik captured all of the uniquely kitsch and useful factory tones and processed voices with the gritty 9.83 khz / 8 bit sampler. You can bask in the raw nostalgic tones of this time machine and make use of these modernized instruments by using native effects in Ableton, Kontakt and Logic.
Phazeform Volume 2 features
Over 20 Phase Distortion sounds.
Multi-sampled CZ library with advanced DAW integration.
A collection of 30 expertly programmed clips.
3 sets of percussion menus.
Custom Ableton Racks, Kontakt KSP GUI and Logic Channel Strips.
Phazeform Volume 2 is now available for Puremagnetik subscribers. Subscriptions start at $5.75 USD/Month.