Sunday, February 08, 2009
Access has just updated the Virus synthesizer again - this time around it's the second incarnation of the TI hardware for the big brothers in the gang. The Virus TI Snow (pictured above) remains the same - after all, it's pretty recent anyway. Being a synthesizer nerd I had to find out more about all of it, and it's really quite simple facts - I'll add more details as soon as I find out more about it.
The very basic information of the Virus synthesizer is that it's a virtual analogue instrument which has been around for about 10 years now. It's been upgraded from time to time; the first one was the Virus A, followed by B, C and TI ranges. The Virus TI added USB interfacing and does work as a software synthesizer in a modern sequencer, using the synth as a DSP engine, a front end to the software, midi and audio interfacing for other duties as well.
• The new TI 2 models (Key, tabletop and Polar) has improved design visually and features 25% more processing power compared to the original TI range. However, the new 3.0 software is backwards compatible so the "old" TIs are basically just about as cool as the new ones. However, I think the new design is really attractive. Small but efficient changes have been made. The computer plug-in has been updated as well. The 3.0 update adds some interesting effects such as a tape delay and more.
• The Snow model has these disadvantages: It's 4 part multitimbral compared to 16 part on the bigger models. It's got stereo outputs only - where the big brothers has separate outputs and digital in- and outputs (SPDIF). It's unclear if it has less processing power - the PDF brochure states that all models can have up to 110 voices of polyphony. The earlier TI range had up to 80 voices of polyphony. I don't know if the 3.0 update can give the older models more polyphony than that. The Snow model is interesting because it's quite a reasonably priced unit; it's about €1100 where the tabletop TI 2 is about €1700 and the keyboard versions cost about €2300 each. Since audio tracks could be used for recording the synth, 4 part multitimbrality doesn't have to be a restriction - just record it to audio and add more after that.
• In TI mode (TI means 'Total Integration') the instruments does double duties as audio and midi interfaces.
A web presentation of the TI 2 range here!
Access 2009 product catalogue (PDF) here!
And here's some more information - the press release for the TI 2 instruments;
"We is pleased to announce the immediate availability of the Virus TI2 series. The successor of the acclaimed range of totally integrated synthesizers adds 25% more calculating power and sports a redesigned housing and front panel. We also used new materials to bring down the weight of the keyboard versions. On the software side of things, a major feature update, OS3, will be available by the time you read this. The new operating system adds several new FX such as a Tape Delay, Frequency Shifter and several new Distortion algorithms along with a new feature called Character.
Character allows you to adjust the overall tone of a preset reminiscent of several vintage and well-known synthesizers. In addition you can emphasis certain aspects of the patch to allow it to cut better through the mix, or fade it into the background with an extra-wide stereo field.
The new distortions were built from scratch and feature an extreme dynamic range along with sophisticated controls to tailor the sound to your specific needs. They can add everything from warm, tube-like overtones to complete sonic deconstruction more reminiscent of circuit-bending. The new algorithms also include a revamped bit and sampling-rate reduction, allowing you to change the quality and cutoff point with precise, continuously variable control.
The stereo Frequency Shifter and the new Ring Modulator are state of the art algorithms modelled with old '70s stomp boxes in mind.
The Tape Delay goes way beyond the possibilities of the real Tape Delays in the '60s and '70s. It smoothly syncs to tempo, lets you decide if a Doppler effect takes place when changing the tempo, and even switching the delay time between presets is all smooth, making it perfect for performers. Last but not least, a modification to the main "VCA" algorithm enables OS3 users to design gating FX known from electro and minimal influenced music.
Virus Control has received a completely redesigned user-interface thanks to various improvement requests over the last years. The plug-in now features a side chain input allowing you to mangle audio from a sequencer track with the FX and sound engine of the hardware Virus (for selected hosts only). The best news, however, is that OS3 is compatible with all legacy Virus TIs and the Virus TI Snow, thus enabling Access' vast user base to update their existing instruments with all the new software features totally free of charge.
OS3 will be available immediately. The Virus TI2, which comes in the following flavours will also be available shortly after NAMM.
Virus TI2 Desktop 19" desktop synthesizer with wooden front application.
Virus TI2 Keyboard 61 keys (semi weighted) keyboard model with wooden side panels.
Virus TI2 Polar 37 keys (synth action) keyboard model with alloy and wooden side panels.
For pricing information please contact your local dealer or distributor."
Sonic State's video review of the Access Virus Snow synthesizer module.
Upplagd av BITLEY™ kl. 12:45 AM