AJH Synth has introduced “Dark Edition” MiniMod modules – Eurorack synth modules based on the circuits of the classic Moog Minimoog Model D.

Company head Allan “J” Hall brought the new MiniMod modules to the Cymru Beats modular meet in Cardiff, England, and demonstrated them for Nick Batt of Sonic State:

The “Dark Edition” MiniMod modules are now in production, joining their existing line, which features traditional silver Eurorack styling. Both variants share the same classic Minimoog analog circuit designs.

Here’s what Hall has to say about the MiniMod:

We have recreated what was probably the most epic and fattest sounding portable monophonic synthesizer of all time and adapted it to Eurorack modular synthesizer format.

First and foremost the MiniMOD had to replicate the sound of the vintage Model D as closely as possible, so we have used exactly the same internal circuitry and every module runs at the same internal signal and control voltage levels as the original.

The MiniMod is based on the circuitry of the very early R A Moog Mk1 Minimoog model –  with its unique VCO design, the core of which uses discrete transistors only. The transistor ladder VCF is also based on the early design, which uses fully matched transistors throughout.

Less than 300 Mk1 Model D’s were built with this very early VCO design, out of a total of around 17,000 which were produced between 1970 and 1981.

MiniMod Eurorack modules comprise separate VCO, VCF, VCA, Dual Contour and Glide/Noise for maximum flexibility so that they can be easily integrated into a larger Eurorack format Modular synthesizer. All of the modules can be used independently in a Eurorack system.

MiniMod modules are available in two styles, Vintage Black or Classic Silver. They are electrically identical, only the cosmetics are different.

Here are some of the extra features that have been included:

  • VCO: – added External Sync (2 Types), Linear and Exponential Modulation, fully adjustable PWM instead of fixed pulse widths and voltage controlled PWM.
  • VCF: – added Voltage Controlled Emphasis using a vactrol and an extra overdrive capability, switchable using an internal jumper.
  • VCA: – added voltage control for each individual VCA (yes, the original design had two VCA’s in series!), along with an overdrive capability, switchable using an internal jumper.
  • Dual Contour: – added individual manual trigger buttons for both envelopes and envelope status LED’s
  • Glide + Noise: – added glide up only and glide down only modes in addition to the standard glide mode. We have also increased the range of the glide from the original 44 notes to 5 octaves.

Via Synthtopia

Rob Papen’s Reason Rack Extension Vecto is released today and you can find a video covering quite a few of the presets in my previous post. I find this release particularity exciting because ROMpler, S+S, vector and other similar synthesis flavors are typically underrepresented within the virtual realm. I’m also very curious to see if this is going to go stand alone, VST, AU etc. as well.

From what I can tell from the presets demo, this looks (and sounds) equal parts ROMpler and (the now defunct) Camel Audio’s Cameleon 5000. That definitely sounds like a cool combination to me and if Rob doesn’t come out with a stand alone version for you non Reason users out there, you can pony up just 50$ for Reason Essentials and another 99$ for Vecto. Still, 150$ US for a synth like this plus all of the goodies thrown in from Reason ain’t half bad. Not to mention, that’d also give you access to Reason’s RE library and there quite a few goodies in there as well at great prices.

Anyway, that’s just some food for thought! The official copy is as below…

Virtual instrument and effects plug-in developer Rob Papen Soundware is proud to announce availability of VECTO — a serious sound-shaping vector synthesizer that truly testifies to the creative company’s mover and shaker status in the wonderful world of Rack Extensions (RE) for Swedish music software application, interfaces, and technology standards specialist Propellerhead Software’s revolutionary Reason, billed by its creators as being about perfecting the process of music-making — as of June 10…

That Propellerhead’s proprietary platform has proven so popular is beyond reasonable doubt… and when the Swedish music software application, interfaces, and technology standards specialist first introduced its revolutionary Rack Extensions concept — custom-built plug-ins for Reason, Rob Papen himself promptly pronounced it as being “…a brilliant concept.” Continuing, he subsequently summarised its inherent value to the likes of his namesake company as well as added fringe benefits for all concerned: “Clearly, what we face as a developer is having to have a PC version and a Mac version, and if you run them in your regular host, you can crash your host. That’s a real big battle. People, if they use Reason, learn that things are connected. It’s cross-platform; everything works. It’s a major leap forward for Reason, and productions coming out of Reason will sound totally different. Reason remains Reason, but, now, it’s open.”

Open to the likes of Rob Papen — actually amongst the first wave of virtual instrument and effects plug-in developers — to develop distinctive and desirable third-party Rack Extensions for Reason. Revolutionary and evolutionary even, and they definitely don’t come much more so than VECTO, a serious sound-shaping vector synthesizer that truly testifies to the creative company’s mover and shaker status in the wonderful world of Rack Extensions. End game? Getting so much better all the time — to (partly) paraphrase another musical phenomenon — is perhaps closer to the musical mark, for Vecto veers towards another soft synth victory for Rob Papen, proof positive of how much musical mileage can be so successfully squeezed out of Reason Rack Extensions… safe in the hands of one of the most talented team of developers around, of course!

Cleverly, as implied by name, VECTO is a vector synthesizer that allows users to draw in VECTOR paths to shape the resultant sound in many wondrous ways. As always, it is presented packed with Rob Papen’s trademark flexible features and a profusion of professionally-programmed presets — remember: Rob Papen is a world-renowned sound designer in his own right, replete with a talented team of programmers, graphic designers, and fellow sound designers at his conceptual disposal — fashioned from four oscillators and much more besides. “After releasing QUAD, we decided to make more use of the X/Y pad, which appears in a lot of other Rob Papen AAX-/AU-/VST-compatible virtual instruments, such as Blade, BLUE-II, and RAW,” reasons Rob Papen. “The change in sound between the four oscillators offers a lot of sound options in itself, including drawing the movement between them, as well as preset movements and additional features like Time Quantize and Space Quantize. In fact, all movements are tempo-based and they can also be changed dynamically.”

Due to the wide range of oscillator waveforms on offer — from classic analogue models to additive, spectrum, and high-quality samples, the sound options are dazzlingly deep! Take two FILTERS, each with 28 different types to choose from, then try bringing two top-notch FX processors into the highly creative musical mix, and audio routing is brought to a blistering finish. Of course, multiple MODULATION options additionally abound, as do performance-elevating fanciful features such as a step-based ARP (arpeggiator). Adds Rob Papen: “The routing of the four oscillators is another cool feature of VECTO. Why? Well, instead of sending the oscillators direct to the FILTERS or FX, why not send an oscillator to another oscillator? This results in FM-type sounds. Or try combining that with two ‘normal’ oscillators. Each oscillator also has a special menu for additional volume control. But that’s not all. Each oscillator also has an option to ‘re-trigger’ the next sample in tempo-based values, or to delay the start of a sample. Besides this, there is a ‘sub-oscillator’ that even works in combination with the onboard samples! Surely creativity rules in every respect!”

Indeed, it does. Developmental homework having so stylishly paid off for all to see and hear, the time is right for Rob Papen himself to happily draw an appropriate conclusion: “Feature-wise, VECTO is a synthesizer that’s sure to keep the synth geeks happy. However, most important of all is the sound that it produces using those high-quality oscillators, FILTERS, and FX, because, ultimately, that’s what you hear.”

Herein lies the musical key to unlocking levels of programmability and playability hitherto unseen and unheard of in the wonderful world of Reason Rack Extensions… until now, that is. Indeed, VECTO variously represents another amazing soft synth deftly developed by the talented Rob Papen team to enable Reason to sound like never before, this time thanks to those varied and variable VECTOR movements. Make music… like no other. Over, then, to the Rob Papen founder for one final footnote: “This has always been our creative focus — developing inspirational synthesizers for making music, whatever the platform.”

VECTO can be purchased and directly downloaded for €99.00 EUR/$99.00 USD directly from The Propellerhead Shop.

Propellerhead Software operates a 30-day try-before-you-buy service for those wishing to test Rack Extensions — simply click on the TRY button before committing to purchase!

For more detailed info, please visit the dedicated VECTO product webpage.

Vecto should be released as a Rack Extension tomorrow.

Synth guru Rob Papen has released a new video that showcases some of the 600 presets that he’s created for Vecto, his new Reason Rack Extension synth.

We’re still waiting on specs for the new instrument, but the good news is that it’s scheduled for release on 10 June, so all should be revealed in a matter of hours. Whether Vecto will also be made available as a plugin remains to be seen.

Via MusicRadar

The video comes from a three-part BBC documentary series, Sound of Cinema: The Music That Changed The Movies. Composer Neil Brand hosts the series.

The documentary features some great examples of electronic and synthesized film scores. The highlights, though, are the composer interviews and the historic footage of them at work.

Video summary:

Synthesizers In The Movies

Neil tells the story of how the 1956 science fiction film Forbidden Planet ended up with a groundbreaking electronic score that blurred the line between music and sound effects, and explains why Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds has one of the most effective soundtracks of any of his films – despite having no music. He shows how electronic music crossed over from pop into cinema with Midnight Express and Chariots of Fire, while films like Apocalypse Now pioneered the concept of sound design – that sound effects could be used for storytelling and emotional impact.

Neil tracks down some of the key composers behind these innovations to talk about their work, such as Vangelis (Chariots of Fire, Blade Runner), Carter Burwell (Twilight, No Country for Old Men) and Clint Mansell (Requiem for a Dream, Moon).

Via synthtopia

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