AudioThing is a small independent laboratory specialized in the development of sample libraries for Kontakt and patches for hardware/software synthesizers. Following the apps for smartphones concept, the motto is “high quality, low cost.” Their latest product is called SX1500 and is, in practice, a Jen SX1000 emulation
Pagina del prodotto: http://www.audiothing.net/instruments/sx1500/
The Jen SX1000 (Synthethone) is a glorious late 70s analog synthesizer, produced by the Italian company Jen Electronics. Often considered the “poor-man moog”, the SX1000 is a monophonic synth, with a single oscillator, a filter at 12 dB / Oct, two envelopes, an LFO. The library developed by AudioThing instead called SX1500, almost wanting to show a step ahead of the original. In fact, looking at the features of the software, we notice several additions to the SX1000:
For the development of SX1500 were sampled all three oscillator waveforms, key by key, the two noise sources (white/pink) and even the sound of dusty potentiometers that “caw.” Everything was assembled using the internal Kontakt Script language, top feature of the Native Instruments sampler .
The library can only be purchased via download and is quite light. The file is sent in a zip file about 76 MB. Inside you will find a Documents folder with the manual, in English, for the SX1500, a folder for Samples in wave format, and finally, the library in Kontakt format.
There are two screens, and Rear Panel. The first (Fig.1) includes all the most important parameters of the synthesis chain . The second (Fig.2) instead, includies additional parameters such as oscillator drift and the amount of noise generated by potenziometri.Il drift control is a very interesting, because you can emulate the old analog oscillators with not perfect pitch “holding”. The library consists of 24 presets, including lead, bass, pad, a “pianet” and even an organ.
From the Panel interface you can either choose the 24 factory presets or save the ones you have created (in the User Preset). This is a great advantage because it is often tedious having to save individual instruments in Kontakt as external files every time you create a sound.
The samples are 44.1kHz/24bit: a key for each waveform for the two noise and the sound of croaking knob.
I really liked the idea that the samples have not been recorded at 96 kHz, this would have been just a waste of memory and an overburdening of the library.
The library in this way, it is very light and functional, although it will never be a true representation of the old analog synths, with all their (loved, damn nice, real pleasure for the ears) problems of harmonic tuning and random changes: however, melancholy aside, I can confidently say that it comes very close. I would recommend that any user of these libraries, find a controller to handle real-time knob of these analog synths.
The genre of this library can range from IDM to Prog rock, it all depends – of course – by the user, its needs and tastes. Surely synth leads and basses are most appropriate categories, but given the polyphonic nature of the software you can find some nice pad very “present” and characterizing.
The decision to use the Kontakt version 4.2, penalizing users who have older versions, is dictated by circumstances: from Kontakt vers. 4 onwards, NI has expanded the possibilities of the kontakt scripts. First, in other words, you could not create the custom interface with all custom controls and other “mischief” of those who demand maximum customization for any occasion business or pleasure. And then, that’s all pictures of the knobs have been built by the author.
Library with a sound very different from the standard to which we are accustomed.
I would have preferred the creation of sound categories and some more pads.
This type of synth lends itself well to experimentation, to get different sounds from the classic sounds that are found in standard libraries. To make the most of it takes a few precautions.
Not everyone can afford to have good outboard to make it a more “authentic” sound: Then, just gear up a little to be able to get even more interesting effects. In addition to advising you to use the plug to give some relief to characterize this kind of library, look for an old tape recorder, guitar pedals, old PRE for hi-fi, or synth with analog inputs and so on your imagination suggests, pass the sound from these products and you will see – to the surprise – you feel like playing with a real analog. Always careful not to overdo it. Personally, for example, I tried the plug in the studio with a beautiful MaxxBCL with Maxx Bass section frequently positioned at 60 Hz and a good dose of intensity 70 – not forgetting a section with the limiter threshold to 65dB (with compressor off ) – I found a wonderful effect. I tried, then, even in passing from an old tape recording and taking control of the input sequence, I recorded my part played. Of course who is my age and has “played” with that experience – today perhaps a little ‘retro -, knows that when you pour the contents into the computer have a problem with intonation and pitch that changes randomly (still speak of consumer machines). Do not worry: we transform this handicap into an opportunity. We add to our synth leads, pads or any other sound that we used and put in our take, take another pass even with the original sequence from a PRE virtual guitar. We take the 2 with different volumes in our song, taking care to keep our pitch with the lowest, and we start the song. You will realize that the sound becomes more interesting and less abused.