IKM Uno - how is your experience with DAW integration?

Anything about hardware musical instruments.
recursive one
KVRAF
5637 posts since 7 Feb, 2013

Post Mon Dec 06, 2021 6:18 am

I'm thinking about buying Uno (not Pro, a regular one) and I wonder whether it's actually workable as a DAW controlled/intergated synth (because otherwise it wouldn't make much sense for me).

I understand the app can run as a VSTi plugin, allows editing and saving presets and record automation for all parameters, but doesn't receive the sound from the synth itself, is that correct?

Are there any known unresolved issues in this scenario? (like bugs, crashes, connection/synchronisation problems etc). I'm already aware about that background noise thing, I understand it can be fixed by using TRS cables to hook it to the audio interface or by using batteries instead of running it powered from USB, can it?

I'm on Win 10, Studio One 3.5.
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glokraw
KVRAF
8312 posts since 6 Oct, 2004

Post Fri Dec 10, 2021 10:23 pm

Using the midi cables, I can arpeggiate plugins in Reaper from the UNO flat keybed and controls, and I can arpeggiate the UNO sounds using software arpeggiators in Reaper with my midi controller, and still use the UNO controls. The latch mode is handy, freeing up hands to play along with whatever UNO is outputting.

If firmware flashing is arcane to you, I would insist on getting a UNO with the latest firmware, or have an experienced flasher help out. The newer firmware is needed to use of the editor.
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CapnLockheed
KVRAF
2538 posts since 12 Mar, 2002 from Central NY

Post Sun Dec 12, 2021 11:38 pm

If firmware flashing is arcane to you, I would insist on getting a UNO with the latest firmware, or have an experienced flasher help out.
I'd take that a step further. If you plan to integrate hardware synth/fx etc, into your rig, it's worth taking the time to learn how to flash yourself. It's also handy to become familiar with any software for your gear both for editing and saving/transferring patches.
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bharris22
KVRAF
2186 posts since 3 Mar, 2010

Post Mon Dec 13, 2021 5:39 am

recursive one wrote:
Mon Dec 06, 2021 6:18 am
I understand the app can run as a VSTi plugin, allows editing and saving presets and record automation for all parameters, but doesn't receive the sound from the synth itself, is that correct?
IIRC, you are correct. There is no audio over USB for the Uno - you would need to route the audio back into your computer using an interface.

chk071
KVRAF
30612 posts since 11 Apr, 2010 from Germany

Post Mon Dec 13, 2021 5:47 am

I considered the UNO a few months ago. But, I was put off by the USB noise. The envelopes are obviously not the fastest either.
Plugins and a DAW. On an operating system. Which runs on a computer.

dellboy
KVRAF
1842 posts since 28 Mar, 2007

Post Mon Dec 13, 2021 6:56 am

chk071 wrote:
Mon Dec 13, 2021 5:47 am
I considered the UNO a few months ago. But, I was put off by the USB noise. The envelopes are obviously not the fastest either.
I quickly solved the USB noise with a very cheap noise suppressor from eBay, I think it was 7 euros or so. Its silent now. I have never thought about the envelopes being particularly slow, nor particularly fast,they are snappy enough for a kick drum, claps, etc. I have just sampled into Studio Ones sampler a very nice mono electric piano, which is now of course polyphonic, and that needs quite fast envelopes for the attack. What sort of sounds were you hoping to make that require fast envelopes? Bells?

recursive one
KVRAF

Topic Starter

5637 posts since 7 Feb, 2013

Post Mon Dec 13, 2021 7:42 am

Thanks everyone!

After doing some more research and trying Uno in a store I decided not to buy it, at least for now. Accoridng to various reports, the VST editor (which seems to the only advantage of Uno over Microbrute which I aready have) tends to be buggy and I'm not really convinced by the sound so far, I like the sound of the Mircobrute way more.
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chk071
KVRAF
30612 posts since 11 Apr, 2010 from Germany

Post Mon Dec 13, 2021 8:22 am

dellboy wrote:
Mon Dec 13, 2021 6:56 am
What sort of sounds were you hoping to make that require fast envelopes? Bells?
Percussive stuff mostly, also clicky stuff with snappy transients. I love the Minimoog modelled synths, for example, for their snappy envelopes. The Behringer Pro-1 also seems to have very fast envelopes. In general, I really like it when synths have fast envelopes, it makes sounds possible, which are not possible, or only possible in lower quality/sounding rather undefined and muddy, in synths which don't have fast/snappy envelopes.
Plugins and a DAW. On an operating system. Which runs on a computer.

dellboy
KVRAF
1842 posts since 28 Mar, 2007

Post Mon Dec 13, 2021 9:38 am

chk071 wrote:
Mon Dec 13, 2021 8:22 am
dellboy wrote:
Mon Dec 13, 2021 6:56 am
What sort of sounds were you hoping to make that require fast envelopes? Bells?
Percussive stuff mostly, also clicky stuff with snappy transients. I love the Minimoog modelled synths, for example, for their snappy envelopes. The Behringer Pro-1 also seems to have very fast envelopes. In general, I really like it when synths have fast envelopes, it makes sounds possible, which are not possible, or only possible in lower quality/sounding rather undefined and muddy, in synths which don't have fast/snappy envelopes.
I agree, save the money you would have spent on the UNO and get something you really want. Better still than the PRO1,wait for the Behringer PRO 800, its an 8 voice poly and small. Trouble is they can't get the chips to put it into production yet. Talking about snappy envelopes, I have a Roland SH101 in bits that used to work until a few months ago, I seem to remember the envelopes on that being pretty quick.

AdvancedFollower
KVRian
898 posts since 8 May, 2018 from Sweden

Post Tue Dec 28, 2021 12:10 pm

For me the editor is unreliable, which is a shame because it's nicely designed. I have tried two different MIDI interfaces (plus USB) and Cakewalk, FL Studio, Studio One, Reaper and Cubase.

In some DAWs, the editor loses contact with the UNO if you switch projects or open and close a project, requiring you to power cycle the synth between projects. In some DAWs, like Cubase, this aspect at least works reliably.

However the advertised functionality of saving a patch with the DAW project for instant recall doesn't work in a single DAW I've tried.

For example, suppose you load preset 50 on the synth, make a bunch of changes to it in the editor and save the project (but you don't write the modified patch 50 to the hardware). Then close the project and switch to another preset (e.g. 70) on the synth, then re-open the project. What happens is the synth reverts to the original preset number 50 from the hardware itself, rather than the modified patch you saved with your DAW project. In order to recall the modified patch, you also have to save it to the synth itself, making the benefit of a VST editor rather limited.

I do have to say that the UNO sounds great once you solve the noise issues however. The filter has a very smooth, almost SEM like character (which makes sense since it's 12dB). It sounds even better if you keep the oscillator volume below 110 or so (unless you want to overdrive the filter). The VCO's also drift and beat against each other in a pleasant way. It's a shame the software side of the synth is so janky.

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