Waldorf Pulse in VST

VST, AU, AAX, etc. plug-in Virtual Instruments discussion
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KVRist
139 posts since 6 Sep, 2010

Post Sun Apr 04, 2021 11:47 am

I am gonna go ahead and go against my better judgement and post this here. Note: to whom it may concern, I am only really interested in talking to people who have for whatever reason actually been serious about this now or recently. Happy Easter :!:

:help: I am, for my own non-negotiable-motivations, setting out to discover a virtual synth solution to the question of Waldorf Pulse (version 1, if pressed for a distinction).

I am aware of, and uninterested in the various ROMPLER solutions available.

Here's what I have found, and my preliminary conclusions. I am looking for others who have gone further down this rabbithole.

Steinberg A1 - sound is on point, but not as flexible.

LARGO - does not contain the ballsy-ness of Pulse, but has the flexibility (XOR and Sync). Also is difficult (not impossible) to get away from the metallic.

KOMPLEXER - SEEMS TO CONTAIN the ballsy-ness and flexibility of Pulse.

Unexpected player: DiscoDSP Corona - Seems to be MADE to emulate Pulse as it has XOR, Sync, and 23 Pulse waveforms already internal. I have listened to this one the least.

ArcSyn is on the radar too

KVRian
601 posts since 19 Mar, 2001 from berlin / germany

Post Sun Apr 04, 2021 11:33 pm

Hi,

i haven't tried the synths you mentioned, but so far no VST could substitute my Pulse 1. Though if i'm staying in the box for whatever reason i'm using Repro 1 for bass-duties. It's not really comparable feature-wise (less modulation options, only 2 VCO, etc.) but sound-wise it get's in the same hard, bassy ballpark.

KVRian
592 posts since 19 Aug, 2012

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 12:52 am

Yes, nothing can replace my Pulse+. But tone wise, I like the Dagger as an itb alternative. Pity no more updates on that, a 3rd Osc or a sub would be great.
Kaossilatron - Voicillator
Station: Ableton Live 10 Suite, Obscurium, Push 2, Ultranova, MS-20m, Wavedrums

KVRAF
27717 posts since 11 Apr, 2010 from Germany

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 1:24 am

Always hard to "replace" a hardware synth, if there's no dedicated emulation. It simply will sound different, and won't have all the features, or many more features.
Plugins and a DAW. On an operating system. Which runs on a computer.

KVRAF
1579 posts since 2 Jul, 2010

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 2:15 am

I had a little play with Hive's .uhm wavetable language and one can make modulated square-XOR patterns by creating squares that range 0-1 and comparing them with != ("not equals") e.g.

Code: Select all

NumFrames = 256
Wave "1-2*((((phase * 3) % 1)>table) != (((phase * 5) % 1)>table))"
The trouble is that oscillator sync is also done with wavetables, so if you like to play with sync/xor combinations it's going to involve a bit of staring at a text editor.

Sounds great though! Short audio demo attached, using the above wavetable modulated by LFO, plus a square sub and modulated 12dB/oct LP filter in "dirty" mode.
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User avatar
KVRist

Topic Starter

139 posts since 6 Sep, 2010

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 6:54 am

Thanks for the feedback. I am an idiot. I didn't realize EVERYONE was here on KVR. (Wolfram)

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KVRist

Topic Starter

139 posts since 6 Sep, 2010

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 7:34 am

@imrae thanks for going to the trouble of uploading. That sounds locked on to me, or whatever it is in my head I think I am going for.

Yesterday I spent some time with the Pulse and LARGO PDF manuals. As to the XOR sound in Pulse, I gathered that it is FM between two square waves, OSC2, and 3. This is easy to achieve in LARGO, and I proceeded to try. Sounded pretty damm good (to me). I made a "Pulse XOR" template patch. I will experiment. SYNC ON/OFF, and LFO driven PWM on OSC 2. Because in the beginning, I want to start with the exact limitations and capabilities of Pulse.

"Laying the Pipeline" ♫ as it were. Once I think I can make Pulse patches blindfolded in LARGO, I will start to add LARGO's other abilities.

On the sawtooth side of things, I haven't done anything yet, except examine the LARGO sawtooth dry output on a software oscilloscope. There are no balls here. I am sure there is a method to the madness but I have not stumbled on it yet.

I have been looking at Pulse sawtooth recordings in Audacity. From Romplers and Youtubes. Because I do this sort of thing, I did the same with Steinberg (Waldorf) A1 also. There IS a correlation between the Pulse sawtooth recordings and the dry sawtooth output of A1. This correlation does not exist at all in LARGO. Not in it's (LARGO's) realtime generated sawtooth, or the Microwave sawtooth available at the beginning of all the wavetables.

So I don't really know where to go with regard to getting the "balls sawtooth" in Pulse and A1 to come out of LARGO. Adding a sine wave is the knee jerk and it DOES NOT do the job. Not by eye and not by ear. I even tried controlling the exact phase of the sine I added relative to the sawtooth. It's not possible to replicate.

--------------------------------------
Here is Pulse sawtooth, as best I could capture from the sources mentioned.

Image

Notice the round curve extending below the lowest part of the down spike. This is what gives it "balls". It's like a hybrid waveform, like, a saw and a sine had an illegitimate child. Is there a name for this? (anyone?)

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Here is Steingberg A1 sawtooth

Image

The similarity is difficult to ignore.

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Here is LARGO's sawtooth. Caveat: I have the Brilliance set to 64. LARGO manual recommends this setting to emulate the Waldorf Q, which was on my mind at the time. The spikes on top and bottom would be shorter if Brilliance were set to zero. No changes otherwise.

Image

Since LARGO's source audio is written in stone, I proceeded to look through the entire contents of the wavetables to look for BALLS SAW. It did not manifest.

Looking for ideas on how to move foreward ....

--------------------------------------
Jumping tracks now - look at KOMPLEXERS sawtooth:

Image

Friends this is what's missing in LARGO. ULTRA-BALLS-SAW is what I call it. And you can hear it. Anyone can. To me it looks like the illegitimate child of Waldorf Q and Pulse sawtooth.

For this reason alone, I MAY end up jumping ship from LARGO to KOMPLEXER, because of this waveform.

Please discuss

User avatar
KVRist

Topic Starter

139 posts since 6 Sep, 2010

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 7:44 am

Wait a minute. It that a sinewave that's been sync-ed?

KVRAF
27717 posts since 11 Apr, 2010 from Germany

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 7:49 am

Waldorf Pulse is an analog synth though, so, you should use Brilliance set to 0, because, setting it anything higher will result in less resolution for the waveforms, which mimics the older digital synth's wavetable resolution/amount of partials.

AND, if you want ballsy-ness, activate the bass boost on Largo. It's on by default in Komplexer, so, you kind of compare apples to oranges (although the bass boost in Largo is much more pronounced... almost too pronounced for my liking).

Largo is actually pretty similar in sound to Komplexer, but, it's simply quite a bit brighter. And, the filter has a different characteristic, of course, which is probably explained by the advance of tech.
Last edited by chk071 on Mon Apr 05, 2021 7:52 am, edited 1 time in total.
Plugins and a DAW. On an operating system. Which runs on a computer.

KVRAF
27717 posts since 11 Apr, 2010 from Germany

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 7:50 am

MutantHero wrote:
Mon Apr 05, 2021 7:44 am
Wait a minute. It that a sinewave that's been sync-ed?
Turn off the bass boost in Komplexer, and, I'm sure the sawtooth is more of a "traditional" sawtooth, like in Largo.
Plugins and a DAW. On an operating system. Which runs on a computer.

User avatar
KVRist

Topic Starter

139 posts since 6 Sep, 2010

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 8:38 am

chk071 wrote:
Mon Apr 05, 2021 7:49 am
activate the bass boost on Largo
You are the God of Thunder, and I owe you big time. I have spent a lot of man hours on this. I never tried LARGO's Bass Boost while looking on the oscilloscope.

It turns the LARGO sawtooth into ULTRA-BALLS-SAW sawtooth like KOMPLEXER has, identically.

Image


If anyone's curious, this is the best I could do SYNCing a sine wave and playing with the pitch of the "syncer" oscillator.

Image

Thank you again chk071. I am flying high right now. This is great.

User avatar
KVRist

Topic Starter

139 posts since 6 Sep, 2010

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 8:44 am

I am also embarrassed to say I have NEVER noticed the the bass boost option on KOMPLEXER ('till now).

KVRAF
27717 posts since 11 Apr, 2010 from Germany

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 8:57 am

:D

No worries. Especially in Komplexer, the option is pretty hidden...
Plugins and a DAW. On an operating system. Which runs on a computer.

KVRAF
1579 posts since 2 Jul, 2010

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 10:37 am

XOR is not FM, use ring modulation instead. Largo also has this :D

XOR is the logic function "exclusive or", meaning that if one input or the other (and not both) is high, then the output will be high, otherwise it will be low. So given square-wave inputs that have values zero or one, the combinations are:

Code: Select all

in1  in2  out
---  ---  ---
 0    0    0
 0    1    1
 1    0    1
 1    1    0
This function is sometimes used in synth noise sources as a kind of "cheap ring mod". If you apply multiplication to bipolar square waves that take values -1 or +1, then the table is

Code: Select all

in1  in2  out
---  ---  ---
-1   -1    1
-1    1   -1
 1   -1   -1
 1    1    1
So the "like" inputs return high and the "different" inputs return low. This is the inverse of the XOR table above, but for audio rate signals that's going to sound the same!

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KVRist

Topic Starter

139 posts since 6 Sep, 2010

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 10:56 am

imrae wrote:
Mon Apr 05, 2021 10:37 am
XOR is not FM
I am glad you brought this up. It seems to be a point of contention. I will study this. I am VERY MUCH wanting to make LARGO as much like PULSE as possible, at least to start.

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