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Poly-Ana 2.x feature wish-list

VST, AU, etc. plug-in Virtual Instruments discussion

Moderator: Moderators (Main)

How should Poly-Ana 2.x improve on GUI and manage screen size better?

Add scrolling + switchable frame sizes
6
6%
Switch between different pages for Synth, Key and Performance section, FX, etc
33
31%
Make the interface 2560 x 1600 pixels in size
18
17%
Hide controls under little pop-out menus, windows, secret panels, etc.
5
5%
I like fishsticks.
46
43%
 
Total votes : 108
AdmiralQuality
KVRAF
 
6310 posts since 10 Oct, 2005, from Toronto, Canada

Postby AdmiralQuality; Tue Dec 20, 2011 3:25 pm Poly-Ana 2.x feature wish-list

Shameless market research project here. We're starting plans for Poly-Ana 2.x, and here's your chance to request features before we even start the design stage.

Remember, Poly-Ana is meant to emulate vintage analog mono and poly-synths, so try to keep the scope of the features within that context. Our general rule for the original Poly-Ana was "don't design anything you couldn't have implemented in 1977 with real electronics". Let's up that to, say, 1980. But still, we're not building a DX-7, Synclavier, Emulator or Fairlight. Think ARP, Oberheim, Sequential, Moog, Roland, etc..., and the effects that go well with them. (An effects section is the major new feature for Poly-Ana 2.x The synth voice architecture will hopefully be backwards compatible with old patches, but will add some new features as well.)

What new feature(s) would you like to see in Poly-Ana 2.x? Why? And how do you imagine their use in a workflow perspective?

It can be a sound feature or control/UI. Everything is fair game at this point. We will steal all good ideas and implement them!

Once a pattern of suggestions develop we may add a poll.

All opinions are welcome. Have fun!
Last edited by AdmiralQuality on Sun Jan 22, 2012 5:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Echoes in the Attic
KVRAF
 
3711 posts since 12 May, 2008

Postby Echoes in the Attic; Tue Dec 20, 2011 3:40 pm

Glad you asked, I have strong opinions about this! The truth is, layout-wise and soundwise I don't want it to change much. Keep it as simple as possible without too many more controls. But there are a few things that would REALLY help:
-A step arpeggiator. Must have swing and must have tie/glide. Take a look at some synths like Albino, Rob Papen synths, Zebra, Sylenth and Alchemy as examples.
-Multiple filter models/types. The 12 db filter on Poly-Ana is ok. The 24db I can't use at all really (and don't really see it used in any presets either). Try to have less loss of volume with rasied filter resonance. Some more filter types would really expand the ranges of sound. You can do so much with a 3 osc, 2 filter setup, but more filter models will enhance that so much more.
-A less 3D look. Hardware look is great, but a straight on perspective tends to work better for everyone (Look at Minimonta, DIVA, ACE, impOscar, ElectraX as some great examples)
-A preset browser. A whole page view that fills the display. The kind that lets you filter by attributes (think Omnisphere, Kore, Massive, Absynth etc.)

That is honesty probably all I would change. I personally wouldn't even add effects. I'm quite happy to add effects on using other plug-ins. But I understand that they add value to some people. I would definitely put more of a focus on a bigger preset bank to wow people. And effects can certainly help there.

Looking forward to it!
This is a block of text that can be added to posts you make. There is a 255 character limit. Once I have something clever, I will certainly fill it in.
Mogular
KVRist
 
201 posts since 30 May, 2005

Postby Mogular; Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:07 pm

Echoes in the Attic wrote:-A less 3D look. Hardware look is great, but a straight on perspective tends to work better for everyone (Look at Minimonta, DIVA, ACE, impOscar, ElectraX as some great examples)


I have to put my hand up for this as well. I often pull out the demo of Poly-Ana and I love the sounds. But I love programming as well and the GUI just confuses and stresses me out. Nothing is easy to see at a glance. I have to search around and often find myself zooming in on the screen (control-scroll wheel on the mac) just to see things properly.
Consequently I dont go very far with programming. I have some nice synths. I would love to add Poly-Ana to my collection but the gui is a major stumbling block. A flat GUI with clear signal paths would be an instant sale for me.

I am sure I am not alone with this.
AdmiralQuality
KVRAF
 
6310 posts since 10 Oct, 2005, from Toronto, Canada

Postby AdmiralQuality; Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:14 pm

P.S. I'm going to stay out of it for at least a few pages, but I will get back to you eventually in response to your comments. Thanks again!
himalaya
KVRAF
 
3944 posts since 23 Mar, 2006, from pendeLondonmonium

Postby himalaya; Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:22 pm

GUUI = Give Us Usable Interface

:D
http://www.electric-himalaya.com
VSTi and hardware synth sound design
User avatar
Resonator63
KVRAF
 
3631 posts since 1 Oct, 2006, from Um! Where is this?

Postby Resonator63; Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:24 pm

+1 for the arpeggiator :)
User avatar
EvilDragon
KVRAF
 
9652 posts since 6 Jan, 2009, from Croatia

Postby EvilDragon; Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:26 pm

himalaya wrote:GUUI = Give Us Usable Interface

:D


Yep! :)
Echoes in the Attic
KVRAF
 
3711 posts since 12 May, 2008

Postby Echoes in the Attic; Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:35 pm

Mogular wrote:
Echoes in the Attic wrote:-A less 3D look. Hardware look is great, but a straight on perspective tends to work better for everyone (Look at Minimonta, DIVA, ACE, impOscar, ElectraX as some great examples)


I have to put my hand up for this as well. I often pull out the demo of Poly-Ana and I love the sounds. But I love programming as well and the GUI just confuses and stresses me out. Nothing is easy to see at a glance. I have to search around and often find myself zooming in on the screen (control-scroll wheel on the mac) just to see things properly.
Consequently I dont go very far with programming. I have some nice synths. I would love to add Poly-Ana to my collection but the gui is a major stumbling block. A flat GUI with clear signal paths would be an instant sale for me.

I am sure I am not alone with this.


Just a quick FYI - You can turn the knobs into drop down menus which clearly display the modulation source (the knobs are very hard to read).

In V2 I hope you keep the label for mod sources or at least the option to have the drop down box still. The combination of a knob the mod amount and a drop down label for mod source, always works well. Like in Zebra. And with the mod sources just being a drop down box, it gives more room for slightly bigger mod amount knobs.

I love that every single parameter and mod source, swtich or button, is all automatable in Poly-Ana so an automap template works well.
This is a block of text that can be added to posts you make. There is a 255 character limit. Once I have something clever, I will certainly fill it in.
Funkybot's Evil Twin
KVRAF
 
3696 posts since 15 Aug, 2006

Postby Funkybot's Evil Twin; Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:36 pm

I'd suggest trying to modernize the sound even if it's at the expense of CPU (think DIVA, ACE, and D-CAM). I'm not sure what it is about those synths (osc's, filters, envelopes, all three?), but even at Poly-Ana's highest oversampling rate, it sounds a little long in the tooth by comparison. So, modernize the sound, but keep the original character.

I'd also like a more clear GUI in terms of what's being modulated by what and the current knob values (the dropdown mode helps). Perhaps you want to add an inspector to display the current values for knobs in a large font (think D-Cam, DIVA).

A simple arpeggiator would be a really nice addition, as would a chorus (needs Ensemble and Juno modes) and a delay effect (though that's probably as far I'd go with the effects).
User avatar
Bronto Scorpio
KVRAF
 
5596 posts since 13 Feb, 2006, from Wiesmoor, Germany

Postby Bronto Scorpio; Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:40 pm

EvilDragon wrote:
himalaya wrote:GUUI = Give Us Usable Interface

:D


Yep! :)
:tu:

Cheers
Dennis
User avatar
Resonator63
KVRAF
 
3631 posts since 1 Oct, 2006, from Um! Where is this?

Postby Resonator63; Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:49 pm

Funkybot's Evil Twin wrote:I'd suggest trying to modernize the sound even if it's at the expense of CPU (think DIVA, ACE, and D-CAM). I'm not sure what it is about those synths (osc's, filters, envelopes, all three?), but even at Poly-Ana's highest oversampling rate, it sounds a little long in the tooth by comparison. So, modernize the sound, but keep the original character.

I'd also like a more clear GUI in terms of what's being modulated by what and the current knob values (the dropdown mode helps). Perhaps you want to add an inspector to display the current values for knobs in a large font (think D-Cam, DIVA).

A simple arpeggiator would be a really nice addition, as would a chorus (needs Ensemble and Juno modes) and a delay effect (though that's probably as far I'd go with the effects).


I like the sound as it is.To my ears Poly-Ana sounds more ballsy than Diva,Ace and D-Cam.I'm not knocking any of them.they are excellent.Probably just my personal taste.An improved GUI,Arpeggiator and a nice lush chorus would be the icing on the cake :D
Timfonie
KVRian
 
1218 posts since 6 Jan, 2004, from The Netherlands

Postby Timfonie; Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:50 pm

Bronto Scorpio wrote:
EvilDragon wrote:
himalaya wrote:GUUI = Give Us Usable Interface

:D


Yep! :)
:tu:

Cheers
Dennis

:ud:

The GUI is the dealbreaker for me as well
How can I get that mp3-player out of my brain?!
Funkybot's Evil Twin
KVRAF
 
3696 posts since 15 Aug, 2006

Postby Funkybot's Evil Twin; Tue Dec 20, 2011 7:32 pm

Resonator63 wrote:I like the sound as it is.To my ears Poly-Ana sounds more ballsy than Diva,Ace and D-Cam.I'm not knocking any of them.they are excellent.Probably just my personal taste.An improved GUI,Arpeggiator and a nice lush chorus would be the icing on the cake :D


I'm by no means a synth nerd, so excuse me if I mis-attribute what I'm hearing, but let me try and explain.

The envelopes in ACE, DIVA, and D-CAM all feel super fast and snappy with strong transients. They can all do really punchy (from a transient perspective) basses, leads, etc. Poly-Ana doesn't do this as well.

The other thing is that the oscillators sound like they're covering much more of the frequency range with open filters. A Moog square wave in DIVA with the filter open sounds HUGE. There's bass, there's highs, it's just a wonderful sound on it's own. Again, even at the highest oversampling settings, Poly-Ana just sounds a little long in the tooth.

Same for the filter, the DIVA filters in particular are just the most brutal, colorful things I've ever heard. I'm convinced I'd be able to identify the different filters in a blind test (Korg, Moog and Roland) as they just have a ton of character and sound very unique. I can't think of other filters I've used where I could do that. Plus they distort, and self oscillate, and just do wonderful weird things. For instance, I have a sample and hold patch that uses the MS20 filter and the low end thumping I get with that just rocks my monitors and hits up against my chest.

Now, Poly-Ana is several years old and was (for my money anyway) the best analog available at the time. In fact, I still love the overall character and vibe of Poly-Ana and don't want that to change. After all, I'm definitely an Admiral Quality fan, and Mike's been an all-round good guy and cool to talk to, with excellent support when needed. So I'm by no means trying to beat up on Mike or Poly-Ana, but I think the last few years have seen enough advancements in the sound quality on these softsynths that there's room for improvement to the sound engine behind the old girl. I've certainly got the CPU for it...
Echoes in the Attic
KVRAF
 
3711 posts since 12 May, 2008

Postby Echoes in the Attic; Tue Dec 20, 2011 7:43 pm

I think the oscillators sound great and should stay the same. But yeah the filters, as I said, could use some new models with a little more balls.
This is a block of text that can be added to posts you make. There is a 255 character limit. Once I have something clever, I will certainly fill it in.
APZX
KVRist
 
86 posts since 4 Nov, 2006, from Misawa, Japan

Postby APZX; Tue Dec 20, 2011 9:18 pm

I will admit that the GUI of Poly-Ana at first is a bit much, but once learned it is very easy to program and very fast to program. I have yet to encounter another synth that manages that that like Poly-Ana. But it is a bit much at first. So, I say leave the GUI basically as is.

I'd like to see an arpeggiator, but what I'd love to see even more is a Mod Sequencer. That would really shine. Being able to control the Pitch, Resonance, or Cutoff rather than just controlling the pitch would be much handier than just an arp IMO. Not to mention add even more flexibility to the synth.

It would also be nice to have another LFO or two. But then again one can never have too many LFOs. Or possibly make the third ENV able to repeat.

The one thing that I really love about Poly-Ana is the voice assignment system. With that being said I still feel it is lacking in a couple of places. The Unison mode is great, but most of the time I find that the amount of detune that can be placed simply isn't enough. It would be nice to have more detune.

The one section where I feel some improvement could be made is with Poly-Unison. I get the idea behind it and I think it is a good idea in theory, but I've rarely found a use for it. Simply because it doesn't do what I want or "expect" it to. It works, but only if used in a particular fashion. Say, I set it to 6 voices. If I play a single note it acts just like Unison except with 6 voices. Play two notes and it is three voices per note etc . . .. Well, I think it would be awesome if it were possible to limit the amount of voices that could be applied to each note. So, for example I set the synth for 6 voices. But I limit it to two voices per note. So, if I press one note I get 2 voices rather than 6. Then when I press another 2 more voices come on. Etc . . .. That would be simply awesome!

Now, I agree that the sound could use a face lift sure. But part of Poly-Ana is the way it sounds. Try not to destroy it in the process.

Finally, to the true wish list. I'd like see at least a BPF mode be added to the filters. As it is the only way to make a BPF is to use both filters. While this isn't inherently a bad thing, it does limit the options a bit when making sounds. A chorus would be nice to have, but not a requirement.

Okay this is where I defend Poly-Ana a bit. If you cannot make super snappy sounds it isn't the fault of the synth. There are three different kinds of ENVs on the synth with the ability to morph between them. Plus, the ENVs themselves have the ability to go from pretty much Instant to 60 seconds. They are incredibly flexible. They can be incredibly snappy, incredibly long, or anywhere in between. Also, having made a total of three using pretty much nothing but Poly-Ana I will say that to truly make snappy requires use of the filter and making it a little faster than the amp (not always but most of the time).
nox ad umbras lucem misit.
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