Favorite Cherry Audio Synths

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imrae wrote: Tue May 21, 2024 11:56 pm Surely most of the saturation mojo of those digital synths is on the DAC and output buffer? We can slap on our favourite plugins for that (maybe chipcrusher for exaggerated artifacts and Saturn for grind...)
No, it’s the VCA and VCF.
Zerocrossing Media

4th Law of Robotics: When turning evil, display a red indicator light. ~[ ●_● ]~

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zerocrossing wrote: Wed May 22, 2024 7:48 am
imrae wrote: Tue May 21, 2024 11:56 pm Surely most of the saturation mojo of those digital synths is on the DAC and output buffer? We can slap on our favourite plugins for that (maybe chipcrusher for exaggerated artifacts and Saturn for grind...)
No, it’s the VCA and VCF.
Ah, right you are! For Prophet VS and ESQ-1 that will be important.

I was distracted by mention of K1, which I think is full-digital?

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I think its really a mixture of internal parts, design choices plus the available components at those times. The output stage certainly also has an impact on the overall sound and mostly the older ones are considered even 'warmer' sounding. There seems to be something magical about those old DX-7 DAC's, or the MPC 60, EPS and SP-1200. This also goes for the Synths of that Era for sure. Our most beloved Emulations of those might also be the ones which take all of those interacting variables into consideration.
The art of knowing is knowing what to ignore.

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El°HYM wrote: Wed May 22, 2024 9:31 am I think its really a mixture of internal parts, design choices plus the available components at those times. The output stage certainly also has an impact on the overall sound and mostly the older ones are considered even 'warmer' sounding. There seems to be something magical about those old DX-7 DAC's, or the MPC 60, EPS and SP-1200. This also goes for the Synths of that Era for sure. Our most beloved Emulations of those might also be the ones which take all of those interacting variables into consideration.
I have a theory that what you were hearing in those “magical” synths wasn’t as much their output stages, but was what they were getting plugged into. We drag an icon onto a virtual mixing board and all of the sudden, expect it to sound like the synth that went into an old mixing board, and from there, into a reel to reel and during mix down, back out to the mixer, with a myriad of processing happening to it. I’m reminded of an argument I got into about the System 1 hardware vs. the plugin. I had a 1m and I could not hear the slightest difference, yet some dude on Gearspace assured me that the hardware sounded a lot better. We went back and forth for a while, until he finally admitted that when he was hitting some old mixer pretty hard before it got to his computer. Mystery solved.

If I were Arturia, I’d release an update that had their preamp emulation, or maybe some truncated version of them, as part of the synth. Not even in the effects area. Next to the output volume, maybe a little box to toggle it on and off. Maybe a drop down that selects one of the types. Release a free preset pack that uses it on all the new presets. Until that happens, it’s pretty easy to load up one of thousands of preamp emulations, and maybe even a tape emulation for good measure. Try it yourself. I use it on FM8 all the time, as I love the feature set, but not always the cold character. Works like a charm.
Zerocrossing Media

4th Law of Robotics: When turning evil, display a red indicator light. ~[ ●_● ]~

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zerocrossing wrote: Thu May 23, 2024 5:48 am
If I were Arturia, I’d release an update that had their preamp emulation, or maybe some truncated version of them, as part of the synth. Not even in the effects area. Next to the output volume, maybe a little box to toggle it on and off. Maybe a drop down that selects one of the types. Release a free preset pack that uses it on all the new presets. Until that happens, it’s pretty easy to load up one of thousands of preamp emulations, and maybe even a tape emulation for good measure. Try it yourself. I use it on FM8 all the time, as I love the feature set, but not always the cold character. Works like a charm.
Do you mean overloading their preamp ?
Image

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zerocrossing wrote: Thu May 23, 2024 5:48 am
I have a theory that what you were hearing in those “magical” synths wasn’t as much their output stages, but was what they were getting plugged into. We drag an icon onto a virtual mixing board and all of the sudden, expect it to sound like the synth that went into an old mixing board, and from there, into a reel to reel and during mix down, back out to the mixer, with a myriad of processing happening to it. I’m reminded of an argument I got into about the System 1 hardware vs. the plugin. I had a 1m and I could not hear the slightest difference, yet some dude on Gearspace assured me that the hardware sounded a lot better. We went back and forth for a while, until he finally admitted that when he was hitting some old mixer pretty hard before it got to his computer. Mystery solved.
But that's probably not what's happening in those Youtube videos I posted. (It's possible, but seems very unlikely.)

While you can add saturation from other plugins, one big question is to what extent these synths were fine-tuned to sound good with the specific saturation provided by the hardware components. So finding saturation plugins and settings that work equally well (or better, in your estimation) could be a time-consuming challenge (though I'd suppose it could be sped up by AI matching and flexible saturation settings).

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zerocrossing wrote: Thu May 23, 2024 5:48 am I have a theory that what you were hearing in those “magical” synths wasn’t as much their output stages, but was what they were getting plugged into. We drag an icon onto a virtual mixing board and all of the sudden, expect it to sound like the synth that went into an old mixing board, and from there, into a reel to reel and during mix down, back out to the mixer, with a myriad of processing happening to it. I’m reminded of an argument I got into about the System 1 hardware vs. the plugin. I had a 1m and I could not hear the slightest difference, yet some dude on Gearspace assured me that the hardware sounded a lot better. We went back and forth for a while, until he finally admitted that when he was hitting some old mixer pretty hard before it got to his computer. Mystery solved.
Luna adds multiple stages of clipping/saturation automatically. Et Voilà, suddenly every synth sounds good.

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carrieres wrote: Thu May 23, 2024 6:56 am
zerocrossing wrote: Thu May 23, 2024 5:48 am
If I were Arturia, I’d release an update that had their preamp emulation, or maybe some truncated version of them, as part of the synth. Not even in the effects area. Next to the output volume, maybe a little box to toggle it on and off. Maybe a drop down that selects one of the types. Release a free preset pack that uses it on all the new presets. Until that happens, it’s pretty easy to load up one of thousands of preamp emulations, and maybe even a tape emulation for good measure. Try it yourself. I use it on FM8 all the time, as I love the feature set, but not always the cold character. Works like a charm.
Do you mean overloading their preamp ?
Yeah. Doesn’t have to be full in the red, just push it a bit. Use your ears.
Zerocrossing Media

4th Law of Robotics: When turning evil, display a red indicator light. ~[ ●_● ]~

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Ou_Tis wrote: Thu May 23, 2024 7:14 am
zerocrossing wrote: Thu May 23, 2024 5:48 am
I have a theory that what you were hearing in those “magical” synths wasn’t as much their output stages, but was what they were getting plugged into. We drag an icon onto a virtual mixing board and all of the sudden, expect it to sound like the synth that went into an old mixing board, and from there, into a reel to reel and during mix down, back out to the mixer, with a myriad of processing happening to it. I’m reminded of an argument I got into about the System 1 hardware vs. the plugin. I had a 1m and I could not hear the slightest difference, yet some dude on Gearspace assured me that the hardware sounded a lot better. We went back and forth for a while, until he finally admitted that when he was hitting some old mixer pretty hard before it got to his computer. Mystery solved.
But that's probably not what's happening in those Youtube videos I posted. (It's possible, but seems very unlikely.)

While you can add saturation from other plugins, one big question is to what extent these synths were fine-tuned to sound good with the specific saturation provided by the hardware components. So finding saturation plugins and settings that work equally well (or better, in your estimation) could be a time-consuming challenge (though I'd suppose it could be sped up by AI matching and flexible saturation settings).
I didn’t see your posts, but it’s honestly not that hard to get good results with any number of plugins that offer a bit of saturation and EQ. One of my favorites is Strymon’s Deco plugin. The tape saturation algorithm sounds great on everything.
Zerocrossing Media

4th Law of Robotics: When turning evil, display a red indicator light. ~[ ●_● ]~

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Uncle E wrote: Thu May 23, 2024 7:47 am
zerocrossing wrote: Thu May 23, 2024 5:48 am I have a theory that what you were hearing in those “magical” synths wasn’t as much their output stages, but was what they were getting plugged into. We drag an icon onto a virtual mixing board and all of the sudden, expect it to sound like the synth that went into an old mixing board, and from there, into a reel to reel and during mix down, back out to the mixer, with a myriad of processing happening to it. I’m reminded of an argument I got into about the System 1 hardware vs. the plugin. I had a 1m and I could not hear the slightest difference, yet some dude on Gearspace assured me that the hardware sounded a lot better. We went back and forth for a while, until he finally admitted that when he was hitting some old mixer pretty hard before it got to his computer. Mystery solved.
Luna adds multiple stages of clipping/saturation automatically. Et Voilà, suddenly every synth sounds good.
I’m generally not a fan of this type of processing, unless it’s easy to bypass and configure.
Zerocrossing Media

4th Law of Robotics: When turning evil, display a red indicator light. ~[ ●_● ]~

Post

zerocrossing wrote: Thu May 23, 2024 5:48 am
El°HYM wrote: Wed May 22, 2024 9:31 am I think its really a mixture of internal parts, design choices plus the available components at those times. The output stage certainly also has an impact on the overall sound and mostly the older ones are considered even 'warmer' sounding. There seems to be something magical about those old DX-7 DAC's, or the MPC 60, EPS and SP-1200. This also goes for the Synths of that Era for sure. Our most beloved Emulations of those might also be the ones which take all of those interacting variables into consideration.
I have a theory that what you were hearing in those “magical” synths wasn’t as much their output stages, but was what they were getting plugged into. We drag an icon onto a virtual mixing board and all of the sudden, expect it to sound like the synth that went into an old mixing board, and from there, into a reel to reel and during mix down, back out to the mixer, with a myriad of processing happening to it.
many years ago, i was asked to stand in on a friend's bands tour. i got to hear various reaktor (2008 era) synths, through large concert hall systems, and eff me, they sound very different :o

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zerocrossing wrote: Thu May 23, 2024 8:30 am I’m generally not a fan of this type of processing, unless it’s easy to bypass and configure.
It's easy to bypass and configure. It only defaults to everything being on because I leave it that way.

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zerocrossing wrote: Thu May 23, 2024 5:48 am If I were Arturia, I’d release an update that had their preamp emulation, or maybe some truncated version of them, as part of the synth. Not even in the effects area. Next to the output volume, maybe a little box to toggle it on and off. Maybe a drop down that selects one of the types. Release a free preset pack that uses it on all the new presets. Until that happens, it’s pretty easy to load up one of thousands of preamp emulations, and maybe even a tape emulation for good measure. Try it yourself. I use it on FM8 all the time, as I love the feature set, but not always the cold character. Works like a charm.
For even more fun run two instances of FM8 one 5-10 cents sharp and the other 5-10 cents flat run one of them into one preamp and the other into a different preamp. Pan one hard left and the other hard right. You will get crazy wide stereo spread that super phat

But since this is a thread on Cherry Audio Synths just set this all up inside of Voltage modulator using the VST host modules and set it up as a preset

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IvyBirds wrote: Thu May 23, 2024 4:26 pm
For even more fun run two instances of FM8 one 5-10 cents sharp and the other 5-10 cents flat run one of them into one preamp and the other into a different preamp. Pan one hard left and the other hard right. You will get crazy wide stereo spread that super phat
You don't get too much for a nickel or a dime these days...

So I think that you have to at least put in quarter :wink:
No auto tune...

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digitalboytn wrote: Thu May 23, 2024 7:19 pm
IvyBirds wrote: Thu May 23, 2024 4:26 pm
For even more fun run two instances of FM8 one 5-10 cents sharp and the other 5-10 cents flat run one of them into one preamp and the other into a different preamp. Pan one hard left and the other hard right. You will get crazy wide stereo spread that super phat
You don't get too much for a nickel or a dime these days...

So I think that you have to at least put in quarter :wink:
Actually 25 cents would be a difference of 50 cents or half a semintone and wouldn't sound very good

But maybe you don't understand what a cent means in music theory

Hint it's a unit of measure between two semitones which in case you don't know refers to notes on the keyboard. There are 100 such units if measure which is why they are called cents. Cent in English being from French cent, Italian cento, or Latin centum meaning "hundred"

FM8 is based on the DX7. Yamaha has a rack unit called the TX816 which stacked up to 8 separately DX7 modules together in one rack. This would mimic stacking 2 of them as recommended by Yamaha in the user manual

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