UAD PolyMAX - This thing is Sick

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_leras
KVRAF
Topic Starter
1838 posts since 20 Apr, 2005

Post Fri Dec 09, 2022 2:52 am

jules99 wrote: Fri Dec 09, 2022 2:10 am Did you get these vouchers because you own UAD hardware? Just asking out of curiosity (and GAS).
The sale is already pretty good, but yes I own the hardware, so still look to just buy the plug ins. Even without the extra £20 thanks, £95 with the xmas voucher and 2 plug in bundle would have been pretty good for this and the new reverb.

I've finally got to give this plug in a demo, with some Arpy things and then some chords. I found the arps to be nice and solid sounding, nice solid low mids, really some nice sweet spots to tweak it through, and the chords were generally really present nice range from rich saw type chords to clean gentler sounds.

My impression is that it does have it's own pretty clean sound, but it's also a very present sound. It can get a bit gnarly at times, but even still has quite a controlled present sound to it, not really fluffy (terrible description lol). The noise osc in this synth is really very nice, it can be blended in really nicely at lower levels and really feels just part of the sound and fattening it in a really nice way. To my ears it really gets towards a 'hardware sound', in the same way that the Arturia Buchla Easel does.

It is a fairly simple synth, takes 5 mins to get the main things figured out, but it has a pretty decent range and is really pretty tweakable with some great sweet spots. Overall I think it's a great sounding little synth. I didn't really try and dirty it up with post synth distortion or saturation, but I think as it's such a present sound it would handle that very well.

I wonder if a bit more analogness/drift could be added, as for some chords i.e. only just some G and Ds spread out, the sound seemed to lose a bit or richness collapse a bit where the notes were 'too cleanly similar in frequency'?

I didn't try the fx much yet, but they seem pretty decent, phasor seemed very nice.

Funkybot's Evil Twin
KVRAF
10344 posts since 16 Aug, 2006

Post Fri Dec 09, 2022 9:45 am

Glad you got it. I did the 99 cent Spark sub. I think your review is spot on - though I think you like it more than I do. It's very clean and hi-fi but IMO, lacks the kind of character that would make it interesting. More slop would also be welcome here.

For my money, the UA instruments are a total let down so far. The ones I've used anyway (Minimoog, Poly Max, the B3). I'll harp on and on about the lack of MIDI Learn but even worse, the hardwired MIDI assignments (which is asinine) but the sound falls flat with me too. The Minimoog was a big let down in particular. The B3 is good, but not head and shoulders above the competition (Acoustic Samples, IK Multimedia, etc.). Poly Max sounds good, but I find it too clinical sounding for me. I get why they're branching out into instruments, but they're just not the same quality as their effects IMO. And even their FX have the occasional stinker (I hate the Studer) but overall, the quality of those is consistently among the best, particularly the newer ones.

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_leras
KVRAF
Topic Starter
1838 posts since 20 Apr, 2005

Post Fri Dec 09, 2022 1:52 pm

Synths are definitely something different to fx, which generally have far fewer controls. I have a fair tolerance to a slightly poor workflow, but things like midi learn should be standard. UA maybe need to look again at what's expected these days. This gui is a very good size, but could be a bit bigger.

Yes, it is clean and clinical/hifi at times, and the filter is also clean rather than juicy. But... Adding some filter envelope, noise can definitely spice it up. It does have some really nice sweet spots, so.encourages tweaking and finding them. It's a bit like repro perhaps, in that it's its own instrument and you need to explore it's sound and take what's given. I do really like some of the sweet spots, which include some fat tones, but sometimes it is too clean. I expect it will handle distortion and saturation really nicely though. This weekend I should get more time.

I also picked up the Opal synth recently, and that I think sounded really nice. Dual filters with a drive section in between makes it more gnarly. It's also fairly simple, maybe too compact a GUI, but actually pretty quick to work with once you realise where everything is. I thought Opal sounds great, and approaching tones from modulars in some ways.

I applaud them for trying to use their skills and knowledge to make synths. Hopefully they continue. I quite like not overly complicated synths with their own character.

I havent tried the B3 but I quite like the moog and thought it sounded really nice. I tried it after watching this really interesting Tycho/Kaelin Ellis/Moog video, which is a great and fun overview of the minimoog. I only have Monark to compare it too and haven't A/B'd or anything.

https://youtu.be/G4rR5iwWTTw

nusound mind
KVRist
388 posts since 21 Jan, 2017

Post Fri Dec 09, 2022 3:12 pm

Funkybot's Evil Twin wrote: Fri Dec 09, 2022 9:45 am Glad you got it. I did the 99 cent Spark sub. I think your review is spot on - though I think you like it more than I do. It's very clean and hi-fi but IMO, lacks the kind of character that would make it interesting. More slop would also be welcome here.

For my money, the UA instruments are a total let down so far. The ones I've used anyway (Minimoog, Poly Max, the B3). I'll harp on and on about the lack of MIDI Learn but even worse, the hardwired MIDI assignments (which is asinine) but the sound falls flat with me too. The Minimoog was a big let down in particular. The B3 is good, but not head and shoulders above the competition (Acoustic Samples, IK Multimedia, etc.). Poly Max sounds good, but I find it too clinical sounding for me. I get why they're branching out into instruments, but they're just not the same quality as their effects IMO. And even their FX have the occasional stinker (I hate the Studer) but overall, the quality of those is consistently among the best, particularly the newer ones.
Opal to me is the pick of the bunch. They're all nice imo but nothing i couldn't live w/out due to the synths I already have. The .99cent UAD sub is great so far, I think their eq's and levelers/compressors are great. I also think their organ vst is the best organ vst I've tried. That said idk that I'll re-up it after 3 months. It's the only sub I've tried b/c in principle I'm against subs. A lease / rent to own situation would be far more interesting to me.

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wangeroge
KVRist
428 posts since 19 Aug, 2020

Post Fri Dec 09, 2022 6:22 pm

The PolyMAX is so tiny and has no resize option, right? Should I play that with a magnifying glass? The plugin is only a month old! Or do I miss something?
If you plan on purchasing your first Universal Audio hardware, you can get a free additional plugin. Just send a PM.

Funkybot's Evil Twin
KVRAF
10344 posts since 16 Aug, 2006

Post Fri Dec 09, 2022 6:25 pm

You didn’t miss anything.

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_leras
KVRAF
Topic Starter
1838 posts since 20 Apr, 2005

Post Sat Dec 10, 2022 12:04 am

wangeroge wrote: Fri Dec 09, 2022 6:22 pm The PolyMAX is so tiny and has no resize option, right? Should I play that with a magnifying glass? The plugin is only a month old! Or do I miss something?
I thought it was just right on a 27" 2k monitor.

Would be too small on 27" 4k.

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wangeroge
KVRist
428 posts since 19 Aug, 2020

Post Sat Dec 10, 2022 6:19 am

_leras wrote: Sat Dec 10, 2022 12:04 am
wangeroge wrote: Fri Dec 09, 2022 6:22 pm The PolyMAX is so tiny and has no resize option, right? Should I play that with a magnifying glass? The plugin is only a month old! Or do I miss something?
I thought it was just right on a 27" 2k monitor.

Would be too small on 27" 4k.
iMacs have 5K.
If you plan on purchasing your first Universal Audio hardware, you can get a free additional plugin. Just send a PM.

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