Author Topic: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?  (Read 3715 times)

Julio Di Benedetto

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1073
    • View Profile
    • Digtalvoices
Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« on: October 20, 2016, 04:36:22 PM »
Hello fellow gearheadz......for a long while I have said no, software cannot do analog and please understand the most exciting things currently happening are in the digital domain "soft und hard", so this is no analog snobbery :)

I have had my Oberhiem Matrix 12 for for about 8 years and it has been and still is for me the most amazing piece of kit to play on. 

Arturia have done a software version of Matrix 12 synth...perhaps familiar to some. Well, watching this video I have to say the software really shines.

The Matrix 12 is a huge synth in size and yet you only have primarily six knobs to turn, so even though its massive its not in architecture yet it works brilliantly, it actually helps you to focus on one central area......ok, enough, Im drifting here, yet in a way this limited interactivity of the physical synth may makes it software friendly.

Take a look at the video and brush up on your Japanese. ;)

 
« Last Edit: October 20, 2016, 04:44:38 PM by Julio Di Benedetto »
"Life is one big road, with lots of signs, so when you ride to the Roots, do not complicate your mind, ... "  Bob Marley

http://digitalvoices.bandcamp.com/
http://databloem.com

stargazer

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 126
    • View Profile
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2016, 03:09:13 PM »
I also would say that there are differences between software emulation and hardware. Especially the high ends are sounding more crushed than smooth. It is a typical sounding that I personally dont like. But thats a personal view. Also, I like the easy approach to hardware instead of the mostly complicated mouse handling. By  the video, I assume the Oberhein Matrix 12 has less options than the software-emulation?

APK

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2583
    • View Profile
    • DataObscura
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2016, 05:28:39 PM »
What about sample based soft synths ?
www.dataobscura.com
http://dataobscura.bandcamp.com
The Circular Ruins / Lammergeyer / Nunc Stans

APK

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2583
    • View Profile
    • DataObscura
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2016, 05:29:55 PM »
One thing is for sure ... analog synths have no hope of emulating what todays digital synths can do.
www.dataobscura.com
http://dataobscura.bandcamp.com
The Circular Ruins / Lammergeyer / Nunc Stans

Julio Di Benedetto

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1073
    • View Profile
    • Digtalvoices
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2016, 08:56:16 PM »
One thing is for sure ... analog synths have no hope of emulating what todays digital synths can do.

Yep thats very true APK...my most exciting sounds and processes in my modular synth are digital, not analog.  Analog is analog and there is plenty of it around if you choose to use it and because of this theres no need to wonder about those vintage synths anymore. 

From what Ive heard the new Oberhiem OB-6 it has all the qualities of whatever vintage OB8, OBX, Xpander etc with contemporary engineering. Theres no need to go to past for these sounds.  Yes the electronics in these old synths did create a unique signature and if you have to have it then you will pay.  Im lucky to have one of these synths but I would not look in that direction again.

I have Alchemy that came with Logic X though I have not delved into it but many have spoken highly of it as a sample based soft synth.  The most interesting to me is Omnisphere.  The latest version of Omnisphere has the new feature of dragging and dropping your own samples into it......this is exciting as I could create modular sounds and then use those sounds as sound sources within Omnisphere.  This appeals to me and the possible sonic palettes.
 
« Last Edit: October 21, 2016, 09:05:25 PM by Julio Di Benedetto »
"Life is one big road, with lots of signs, so when you ride to the Roots, do not complicate your mind, ... "  Bob Marley

http://digitalvoices.bandcamp.com/
http://databloem.com

stargazer

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 126
    • View Profile
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2016, 11:48:14 PM »
What about sample based soft synths ?

I have good experiences with sample based soft synths. I used Kontakt, Omnisphere and Miroslav Philharmonic (for example).
Now I play these sounds from my two digital synths.

One thing is for sure ... analog synths have no hope of emulating what todays digital synths can do.

I also see the limits of analog hardware.
« Last Edit: October 23, 2016, 05:20:08 AM by stargazer »

petekelly

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 829
    • View Profile
    • LuminaSounds
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #6 on: October 22, 2016, 03:26:46 AM »
One thing is for sure ... analog synths have no hope of emulating what todays digital synths can do.

That's a good point, I usually steer clear of these discussions as I'm not really a keyboard player. However, I still find a synth like NI's Razor to be far more interesting than any analogue synth. Saying that, that could be because I never really used them in the past and what I do know about (guitars / amps) , the 'analogue' equivalent - a real amp and cabinet, is not there yet in any kind of emulation (that I've heard)

Altus

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 333
    • View Profile
    • Altus - aural journeys for the mind's eye
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #7 on: October 22, 2016, 07:44:55 AM »
Pete, it's funny you mentioned Razor. I just re-discovered it a few weeks ago and been making some great music with it since.

NI Guitar Rig does amp and cabinet emulation. I don't have enough experience with the real thing to tell you if it's any good, but running guitars (and other instruments) through it sounds great to my ears. The amount of effects built in are pretty staggering. (17 amps, 27 cabinets, 54 effects according to their site)

Back to analogue emulation, has anyone tried NI Monark? It sounds great, but as others have mentioned regarding emulation, it eats A LOT of CPU cycles, especially since it's only one voice. ;)
Mike Carss -- Altus : aural journeys for the mind's eye
www.altusmusic.ca

Julio Di Benedetto

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1073
    • View Profile
    • Digtalvoices
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #8 on: October 24, 2016, 06:30:23 AM »
One thing is for sure ... analog synths have no hope of emulating what todays digital synths can do.

That's a good point, I usually steer clear of these discussions as I'm not really a keyboard player.

Im not really a keyboard player either, Im a drummer so thats no excuse Pete  ;) ;D

"Life is one big road, with lots of signs, so when you ride to the Roots, do not complicate your mind, ... "  Bob Marley

http://digitalvoices.bandcamp.com/
http://databloem.com

Julio Di Benedetto

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1073
    • View Profile
    • Digtalvoices
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #9 on: October 24, 2016, 02:08:26 PM »
After watching this hang drum video with omnisphere I bought omnisphere 2.  Downloading now.

https://vimeo.com/153832119
"Life is one big road, with lots of signs, so when you ride to the Roots, do not complicate your mind, ... "  Bob Marley

http://digitalvoices.bandcamp.com/
http://databloem.com

Altus

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 333
    • View Profile
    • Altus - aural journeys for the mind's eye
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #10 on: October 24, 2016, 07:09:27 PM »
Omnisphere 2 allows you to import your own audio files, so you aren't limited by the built-in library. Complaining about the GUI is purely a personal matter, and comes down to what you're comfortable with.

Have fun with it, Julio. There's so many facets to explore within that plugin that I still discover new things fairly regularly.
Mike Carss -- Altus : aural journeys for the mind's eye
www.altusmusic.ca

Julio Di Benedetto

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1073
    • View Profile
    • Digtalvoices
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #11 on: October 25, 2016, 05:36:09 AM »
After watching this hang drum video with omnisphere I bought omnisphere 2.  Downloading now.

https://vimeo.com/153832119

why lol ? because of the nice sounding hangdrum ?

Because of what omnisphere did to the nice sounding hang drum....not interested in the sound of a hang drum unless I had one and they are near impossible to find.
"Life is one big road, with lots of signs, so when you ride to the Roots, do not complicate your mind, ... "  Bob Marley

http://digitalvoices.bandcamp.com/
http://databloem.com

Julio Di Benedetto

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1073
    • View Profile
    • Digtalvoices
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #12 on: October 25, 2016, 05:56:18 AM »
Omnisphere 2 allows you to import your own audio files, so you aren't limited by the built-in library. Complaining about the GUI is purely a personal matter, and comes down to what you're comfortable with.

Have fun with it, Julio. There's so many facets to explore within that plugin that I still discover new things fairly regularly.

Thanks Mike.....the ability to import my own audio files was the reason I purchased it, that and the spirit behind the software development. Spectrasonic seem to be sonic wizards with an interest in the wonderfully strange. The hybrid nature of digital oscillators and sample  and the amazing sounds that have been created  That appeals to me.  Now whatever oddities I craft on my modular synth I can slide that into omnisphere and evolve the sound into.....?

"Life is one big road, with lots of signs, so when you ride to the Roots, do not complicate your mind, ... "  Bob Marley

http://digitalvoices.bandcamp.com/
http://databloem.com

Altus

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 333
    • View Profile
    • Altus - aural journeys for the mind's eye
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #13 on: October 25, 2016, 09:01:35 AM »
I think ominsphere looks really dated now days, they need to rethink it all completly, it has been looking pretty much the same since atmosphere.. which is like over 10 years old
The problem is if they drastically change the interface, they'll anger the long-time users. "Don't change what isn't broken," they'll say. Whether or not it's broken is, again, a personal matter. Does it look dated? Sure, the design is kind of grandiose. But I'm comfortable with it, and I can easily navigate through its functions. Just as you are with Alchemy. :)

Julio, I hope you have fun mangling your sounds. I came across this video recently. The guy is a goof, but it's a good example of what you can do.


On that note, I think we've derailed this topic.  :P
Mike Carss -- Altus : aural journeys for the mind's eye
www.altusmusic.ca

Julio Di Benedetto

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1073
    • View Profile
    • Digtalvoices
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #14 on: October 25, 2016, 02:55:11 PM »
That video says it all....the guy is funny.  Sounded really interesting just with grain effect.  I loaded a few simple modular patches into omnisphere preset patch after removing the original sounds sources to use the existing modulation etc.....oh boy this is going to be fun.

yeah the thread is derailed but its got us all talking!
"Life is one big road, with lots of signs, so when you ride to the Roots, do not complicate your mind, ... "  Bob Marley

http://digitalvoices.bandcamp.com/
http://databloem.com

APK

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2583
    • View Profile
    • DataObscura
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #15 on: October 27, 2016, 11:05:20 AM »
Just a note. I think the Arturia soft synths are very usable now that we have ver 3 with larger, re-sizable GUIs and better preset management. You can actually dig into them much more easily. The Matrix is great. The Solina is fun. I've been enjoying most of them. Yep, there are similarities in sound. But there is considerable variety in interfaces, structures, and filters and modulation possibilities. I like 'em.


www.dataobscura.com
http://dataobscura.bandcamp.com
The Circular Ruins / Lammergeyer / Nunc Stans

APK

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2583
    • View Profile
    • DataObscura
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #16 on: October 28, 2016, 05:08:10 PM »
They were just emulations, not the real things.
And obviously they are now deep into making hardware synths. Seem to be doing a good job.
www.dataobscura.com
http://dataobscura.bandcamp.com
The Circular Ruins / Lammergeyer / Nunc Stans

Julio Di Benedetto

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1073
    • View Profile
    • Digtalvoices
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #17 on: October 29, 2016, 05:33:30 AM »
Sort of interesting how Arturia started out emulating the major vintage analog synths and now their own synths are only analog I believe.....they jump right over the virtual analog....no Im wrong they have or had a synth called Origin I think filled with all their software.  Word was it was pretty good.

I have often thought of picking up a Minibrute, really good little mono synth and cheap!
"Life is one big road, with lots of signs, so when you ride to the Roots, do not complicate your mind, ... "  Bob Marley

http://digitalvoices.bandcamp.com/
http://databloem.com

Altus

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 333
    • View Profile
    • Altus - aural journeys for the mind's eye
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #18 on: October 29, 2016, 06:32:59 AM »
I have often thought of picking up a Minibrute, really good little mono synth and cheap!

My brother has a Microbrute and manages to produce amazing sounds with it. It's a fun little unit. :)
Mike Carss -- Altus : aural journeys for the mind's eye
www.altusmusic.ca

APK

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2583
    • View Profile
    • DataObscura
Re: Can software synths really emulate hardware synths?
« Reply #19 on: January 18, 2017, 06:57:49 AM »


Might as well buy the software and map a controller to it, lot cheaper than the hardware and sounds the same !
www.dataobscura.com
http://dataobscura.bandcamp.com
The Circular Ruins / Lammergeyer / Nunc Stans