Sonic State Studio / Virtual/Soft synths / BITHEADZ Unity DS-1

Average rating: 6.5/10 out of 10

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daddister a part-timer user from USA writes:
I think this program works great stand-alone, but for the life of me I cannot get it to work properly with Digital Performer. I've tried it on my old G3 300mhz and my new G4 733mhz and it still cuts off sounds, slows down my system, etc. I also have a 466mhz PC with 128 mb RAM and every time I open up Cubase and the Unity DS-1 Engine pops up, it freezes the computer. This is one of the buggiest softwares I've ever used. I currently use Sampletank which is impeccable for sample play-back, yet you cannot assign and import your own samples unless they are first burned to CD in Akai S1000 format. From talking with tech folks at other software companies, I've learned that Unity is a good software to avoid.

posted Thursday, 15-Aug-02 at 0:18
Terry a Professional user from USA writes:
I use the DS-1 daily in a limited capacity...I agree with Eric Oehler for the most part; however I don't care at all for the supplied sample sets. I'm using some imported Akai programs with it in addition to some of my own samples. It integrates well with Performer and Freemidi -- the patch names show up like any other device in the tracks window, and it sounds surprisingly good with the Mac audio outs. However, I'm not fond of the "look" of it -- the graphics design is slightly "toy-like".

This is a remarkably powerful sampler, and my guess is that the future of sampling lies in software instruments like the DS-1. However, the single biggest problem with any software based instrument, in my opinion, including the DS-1, is latency. This has to become a non-issue for software instruments to really succeed. The DS-1 is almost there, provided you use the internal Mac audio (Sound Manager); but it's still noticeably slower in response time than my Akai hardware sampler. And if you want to use an Audiomedia Card for output - forget it! It's so slow it's comical. Also, you'll need a powerful computer to get anywhere near the number of voices advertised -- on my 8600/300 8 -16 voices is realistic.

Rating: 6 out of 10 posted Friday, 07-Jan-00 at 13:46
Eric Oehler a part-timer user from USA writes:
It's a good product, but suffers from a lot of the same pitfalls as AS-1...i.e. weakish effects and slightly cold filters. Plus building a multisample can be kind of a pain, albeit less so than on an old hardware sampler.

VERY memory intensive. Unsurprising, but it does a lot of "duplication" of sounds, especially with the editor open, so you fundamentally have to assign twice as much memory as you plan to use.

On the upside, it comes with some decent sample sets, it has extrememly flexible routing and modulation, it imports a wide variety of formats, product support form bitheadz is excellent, it supports rewire on both's very very close, feature and sound-wise, to being a real match for a good hardware sampler. Has a little ways to go yet.

Rating: 7 out of 10 posted Tuesday, 04-Jan-00 at 14:29
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