What makes Thorn unique?

VST, AU, AAX, etc. plug-in Virtual Instruments discussion
145 posts since 15 Mar, 2002 from Ottawa, Canada

Post Thu Jan 10, 2019 7:00 pm

Just checked out Thorn since it was mentioned in the best synths of 2018... I have to say I am totally impressed by the presets, the spread sounds crazy in the oscillators, also soundwise, it has something similar to Discovery with a deep bass presence. But then, there is nothing that unique in its signal flow (ok I don't have another synth with harmonic filter but most presets are not using it). I have synthmaster, falcon, cypher2, strobe2 and too many others - so what do you guys think makes this one unique?


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334 posts since 31 May, 2015 from the Iberian Peninsula

Re: What makes Thorn unique?

Post Fri Jan 11, 2019 1:20 am

Basically it's a kind of additive synthesizer. It has the typical osc -> filter structure but underneath it's not exactly like that: the oscillator does not generate a signal that then gets filtered. It's more like the oscillators first define the volume of each of the possible harmonics, then with the filters you further modify that structure (imagine a list of parameters for each harmonic, that's what is being processed). That allows you to do stuff like the harmonic filter, whose shape you can define by hand (I think, like in Linplug's Spectral right?).

That way is also easy (if you have enough harmonics available) to control the brightness of your waveform easily, to morph softly between waveforms (because you are not doing a volume crossfading, you are rather crossfading the volumes of each harmonic), and other cool stuff.

I might not be right in some stuff though, I don't know the specific architecture of Thorn but if I reckon correctly this is how more or less additive synthesis work nowadays (Spectral, Harmor, Thorn...).

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Tj Shredder
1707 posts since 6 Jan, 2017 from Outer Space

Re: What makes Thorn unique?

Post Fri Jan 11, 2019 7:14 am

For me it was two things. Innovative but easy to grab oscillators and an aggressive sound in a positive sense. It was inspireing to play it expressively with my LinnStrument, immediate connection. Its also fun to let the arpeggiator and other fx do its magic... Whenever we had our Bitwig gathering this was my goto toy to jam...

95 posts since 11 May, 2010

Re: What makes Thorn unique?

Post Fri Jan 11, 2019 8:22 am

I've only played with the CM version, and it quickly became used on a bunch of tracks. I get the most use out of patches that use the glitch sequencer, followed next by lead sounds. They are aggressive without being screechy or annoying if that makes sense.

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