Rob Papen releases Blade “cutting-edge” synthesizer plugin

Rob Papen Blade

Rob Papen has released Blade, a virtual synthesizer instrument for Windows and Mac.

Born of a synth fanaticism of epic proportions and forged in the darkest depths of a legend’s mind, BLADE rises to rid the planet of mundane music…

At the heart of BLADE, ready to twist and transform your musical mind, lies the Harmolator. An additive synthesis system, which rather than using the system of changing additive partials, uses global controls which capture the essence of additive synth in an intuitive way making the creation of sounds much easier than using other additive synths.

The nine Harmolator controls allow you to create a vast range of sounds so you get all the amazing sounds that additive synthesis can generate with the added simplicity of traditional subtractive synthesis.
The Harmolator allows oscillator spreading, fattening the sound and also square / sine wave sub-oscillator. What’s more, the sound can be modified further by the 21 per-voice distortions types and 14 filter types.

Blade offers total control of the sound over time using an array of different modulation controls.

Rob Papen BladeRob Papen Blade synthesizer

Blade features

  • 16 voices, operating in poly , mono 1/2 , legato 1/2 and arp modes.
  • Harmolator Oscillator with 9 controls, harmolator wave settings, two types of spread functions and extended sub-oscillator.
  • 21 Distortion Units operating per voice (ahead of filter).
  • 14 Filter Types including 6/12/18/24 low/high pass, 12/24 band pass / notch, vocal & comb filter.
  • Filter separation function for unique filter stereo soundAmp section with Volume, Velocity and Envelope control.
  • XP Pad with 12 amount controls for each X and Y, which can modulate the 9 Harmolator parameters, Filter Cutoff, Filter Q and Volume.
  • XY Pad which can operating either directly or with recorded paths, in poly, mono or free modes.
  • XY Pad playback can be tempo synced, with different tempo settings, and with loop & bi-directional loop options.
  • XY Pad movement speed control.
  • XY editing options at right mouse menu
  • Dedicated Harmolator velocity, LFO and envelope controls.
  • Pitch LFO and Pitch Envelope, 2 Free Harmolator control sources, 2 Free Envelopes, 2 Free LFOs and 4 modulation sources.
  • All of Blade’s controls can be used as modulation destinations, and there are a full range of modulation sources including midi controls and internal controls.
  • 2 FX units with 27 effects, including distortion, reverb and tape delay plus many more.
    16 Step Arpeggiator with each step having its own pitch, velocity and free amount, which can also be used as a sequencer for modulation purposes.
  • Easy Page allows control of the main parameters in a flexible and easy way.
  • Preset handling with copy, paste, clear and compare function.
  • ‘Quick Browser’, ‘Recently Browsed’ and ‘Favorite’ functions.
  • Preset Manager screen allows you to easily find and organize presets and banks.
  • Full midi control over all parameters included the X/Y Pad.

Blade for Windows and Mac (VST/AU/RTAS) is available to purchase for the introductory price of 99 EUR (incl VAT) / $119 USD until the end of May, 2012.

More information: Rob Papen / Blade

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Chad Kroeger Jr.Voltage DiscipleRonniemelime Recent comment authors
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looking at the gui like alot of the vst/au plugins where to start and everything is soooo small ! the synth might sound cool but gui design doesnt make much fun programming sounds.


The amount of controls might seem a bit overwhelming but if Blade is anything like Rob’s previous plugins the workflow will be great. This one also has an easy page: “Easy Page allows control of the main parameters in a flexible and easy way.”

Voltage Disciple
Voltage Disciple

This synth is harmonically rich and awesome sounding .We had a great time making presets for it which are included.

Chad Kroeger Jr.
Chad Kroeger Jr.

No matter how it sounds, it wins in category of the MOST UNINTUITIVE INTERFACE for software synth in 2012., hands down. Just look at those clusters of identical blue leds and knobs… and that hideous blade header, like it was designed by teenager horror fan. Cutting edge of cheapness.


I would certainly love an nBeat or Limeflavour skin yeah…