WNAMM02: Spectrasonics - New Virtual Instrument Division

... and mighty groovy it is too      04/02/02
At NAMM, it's always worth taking a peek at the Spectrasonics stand - in many people's view, they're the 'Rolls Royce' of the Sample CD world; if Bonnie Prince Charlie was into sampling, I'm sure they would bear a "By Royal Appointment" moniker... "Purveyors of Fine Sampleware". The big news from them this year is that they've teamed up with Univers Sons of Paris, and Audioease from the Netherlands to create custom instruments, based on the 32 bit Universal Virtual Instrument (UVI) engine. Like they say:- "These new products represent a new type of software plug-in instrument concept, that integrates a custom three gigabyte core library of thousands of new sounds with a powerful user interface for shaping unique variations of the core sounds.
Each virtual instrument opens as a native plug-in inside host applications like Digital Performer, Logic, Cubase, Nuendo, or Pro Tools and instantly supplies the user with thousands of sounds - and millions of variations - at their fingertips." Impressive stuff. At NAMM, Spectrasonics showed three products: Atmosphere™ Dream Pad Module, Trilogy™ Total Bass Module, and Stylus™ Vinyl Groove Module. According to Creative Director, Eric Persing:- "All of the sample material in each instrument is brand-new, with nothing reused from Spectrasonics' existing sample libraries. Each module supplies a massive core library of new sounds, along with controls for modifying and layering them, for virtually limitless, customized variations. The controls for each module vary, and are specifically suited to the type of sounds the instrument produces. By tailoring the controls in this fashion, Spectrasonics Virtual Instruments are easy to use and produce results very quickly." And he's not wrong, folks. I saw a demonstration of the Trilogy Bass module, and was well impressed. It seems you can choose any one of a thousand bass samples, then add a layer and choose another bass (giving a million different combinations) and finally tweek & snarble the whole shebang. Great stuff. Bass solo, anyone? No, honest....
  • Stylus (VST MAC/PC MOTU, MAS, RTAS) - Available March 2002 - $299
  • Atmosphere (MAS, RTAS and VST Mac/PC) - April 2002 - $399
  • Trilogy (MAS, RTAS and VST Mac/PC) - May 2002 - $399
  • www.spectrasonics.net
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