Tone2 Audiosoftware

Tone2 has released Icarus2 for Windows and macOS.

Icarus2 is a synthesizer-workstation. The audio-engine provides a very large sonic range, offers high sound-quality and creates a wide range of sounds. Icarus2 ships with 1,600 hand-picked patches created by professionals.

Icarus2 offers 54 different synthesis methods. The audio engine is not only able to create all classic synthesizer sounds. It can produce fresh sounds, which are difficult to create with other products. The '3D wavetable synthesis', which is exclusive to Icarus, can create sounds with lots of dynamic expression and acoustic movement. Besides that many other unique synthesis-methods are available that can be combined freely.

Icarus comes with a large collection of filters. The audio-engine offers many advanced features like a drum-sequencer, a built-in vocoder, re-synthesis, a glitch-sequencer, a wavetable-editor, a very flexible oscillator section, MSEGs, ... A user-friendly interface with drag & drop support provides help, visual feedback and immediate acoustic results. The audio engine has been optimized to offer the highest possible sound quality with low demands on the CPU.

Synthesis

Icarus2 employs a large number of synthesis-methods: 3D wavetables, classic wavetables, resynthesis of samples, vocoder, additive, subtractive, analog, FM with up to 6 operators, formant synthesis, waveshaping, PWM, sync, ringmod, AM, noise, physical-modeling, phase-distortion, granular, time-stretching, pitch-shifting, samples, harmonic-morphing, FFT-filtering, lofi, import of custom waveforms and wavetables and many other modes, exclusive to Icarus.

Filters

Icarus2 offers 63 filter types. All filters are designed to be musical useful and have different sonic characteristics. There are two modular filter-blocks available. Each one is equipped with true stereo-architecture, flexible routing and multi-mode filters. Two stereo-distortion-sections, each with 9 different modes, allow to further shape the sound. An animated display shows the frequency-response and gives immediate visual feedback. This makes it more easy to understand and tweak the filter-behavior.

Arpeggiator

The arpeggiator supports advanced features such as glide, swing, shuffle, split, smart note-sorting, matrix-integration and gives precise control over play-direction and velocity. Playing aids like auto-chord can speed up the production process. It is also possible to load and save patterns.

Drums

Icarus2 has been extended with a drum-sequencer. It is a X0X-style sequencer-module. It comes with a wide variety of drum-sounds, noises and waveforms. It is possible to import a user's own samples and save own templates. A collection of 100 drum-patterns created by professional designers is included. The drum-sequencer supports swing, shuffle, loop-length, effect-send, key-split, roll, mono-samples, stereo-samples, looped samples and looped waveforms. The sounds can be passed through punchy, BPM-synced envelopes, which allow a quick creation of 'gated-drum-sounds'. It is also possible to stretch WAV-files with drum-loops or any other rhythmic content so that they automatically sync to BPM. Furthermore, the drum-sequencer is not only limited to playing drum-sounds. It is also a small synthesizer that is able to play looped samples or waveforms with or without pitch-tracking. It does come with a smart auto-accompaniment which automatically resolves chords to play a bass-line that 'fits'.

Effects

Icarus comes with a flexible effects-section. 54 different effects, feedback and a limiter can be combined in modular slots. It is possible to create custom effects which can be saved and loaded separately. The ducking-module can make the mix sound more transparent and lush. It dynamically adjusts the volume of the effect-mix and prevents delays clashing with the original signal.

Microtuning

Icarus offers 21 different microtuning-modes. The engine can slightly detune certain voices to make chords sound fatter, harmonically rich and warm. Tone2 also developed several new algorithms that are not longer limited to the usage of a certain tonality. Icarus is able to analyze the played content in real-time and can enhance chords automatically.

Glitch-sequencer

Icarus2 has been extended with a grid-based glitch-sequencer. It is possible to chop sounds and create modern glitchy, pitchstop, trancegate or stuttering effects. 'The Glitch' works similar to a multi-effect sequencer. The incoming audio is passed through 10 different effect-modules. Each effect is controlled by up to 16 segments to adjust the parameter of the effect. Furthermore, it is possible to adjust the speed, groove, routing, mix, smoothness and loop-length. Random-buttons allow a quick creation of new sequences. It is also possible to load and save own templates.

Equalizer

Optionally an equalizer with dynamic bass-boost and psychoacoustic-processing is provided to make the sound sit right in the mix. The EQ is easy to tweak because a display visualizes the frequency-response in real-time.

Interface

Icarus still remains easy to use. Animated displays give visual feedback and one can instantly see and hear the results of the actions. Context sensitive tool-tips explain the function of the currently tweaked control. The GUI can be displayed with 12 different sizes and three scales: Small, normal or big. It is also possible to hide parts of the interface, like the keyboard. The customize-able interface allows you to select from 26 color-schemes.

Patch-browser

The patch-browser gives access to a library with production-ready sounds. Icarus2 comes with a collection of 1600 patches created by professional designers. All patches have been sorted into categories. A ranking-system to tag the favorite patches is available. An on-screen keyboard allows an audition to the sounds.

Modulation

It is possible to use drag & drop or the modulation matrix to connect dozens of sources to all important sound parameters.

Multistage-envelope-generators

Two MSEGs are available as additional modulation-sources. The MSEGs can be operated as LFO or envelope and allow the creation of custom shapes. The MSEGs offer very high precision and support frequencies up into the audio-range. The MSEGs can be synced to BPM, sync with the arpeggiator or run freely. Triads or dotted rhythms are also supported. It is possible to define loop-points and start points.

MIDI

Icarus2 supports MPE (MIDI Polyphonic Expression), which can add several additional dimensions of dynamic expression to the sounds. MIDI-learn is also supported. It is possible to assign CC's with a right-mouse-click.

Wavetable-editor

Icarus comes with an advanced wavetable-editor. It can be used to create custom-waveforms and wavetables or to edit the ones that are included to Icarus. A random-generator allows a creation of new and musically useful wavetables. The spectral editor can turn Icarus into an additive synthesizer, giving you detailed control over the partials and phase. It is also possible to draw custom waveforms using the mouse.

Icarus' open file format allows sound-designers and artists to create their own soundsets, waveforms and wavetables. Many common file-formats are supported. It is possible to import and export wavetables or waveforms from-and-to other synthesizers. The editor includes over 100 tools to tweak wavetables. This includes basic features like, cutting, mixing and filtering, as well as advanced tools such as de-noising, enhancing, re-synthesis, vocoder, spectral modification and phase manipulation.

Resynthesis

Icarus' wavetable-resynthesis can rebuild sounds with a mouse-click. It works with nearly any kind of audio-material and mostly produces good results. After clicking the resynthesis-button and selecting a WAV file, Icarus will automatically create a patch, which sounds like the original. Optionally, it is also possible to shape the sound with morphing, BPM-synchronization, time-stretching, the filters, the effects or other modules. Traditional sample-import, auto-tuning, beat-slicing, pitch-shifting, noise-reduction and granular playback is also supported.

Vocoder

With the built-in vocoder it is possible for a user to create their own phrases. The vocoder module has 1024 bands and is easy to use: After clicking on 'Vocoder' and selecting a WAV file, Icarus will analyze it and automatically create a patch. Optionally, it is further possible to shape the sound with a wide variety of tools.

Technical Data

Summary:

  • Icarus2 is a synthesizer-workstation.
  • Icarus2 is a very advanced wavetable-synthesizer, but not limited to wavetable-synthesis.
  • The audio-engine can do 54 different synthesis modes and is able to produce all important synthesizer sounds.
  • The 3D-wavetable-synthesis allows an additional dimension of dynamic expression.
  • Very high sound-quality with low CPU-requirement.
  • Easy-to-use interface with animated displays and context-sensitive help.
  • Wide sonic range.
  • Over 1600 presets by professional designers.
  • GUI with 12 sizes, 3 zoom-levels and 26 color-schemes.
  • Drag & drop modulation.
  • Drum-sequencer with 100 drum-patterns.
  • Arpeggiator with autochord-support, shuffle and swing.
  • 3 x 53 effects, vocoder.
  • Glitch-sequencer.
  • 10x stereo hypersaw, unison, stacks, chords.
  • Polyphonic, monophonic, several legato modes.
  • Dual multi-mode filters with 62 filter-types and 8 distortion-types.
  • Customize-able user-interface.

Features:

  • Sound engine with true stereo-architecture.
  • 3D-wavetable-synthesis: Waves can be morphed in 3 dimensions.
  • Multicore-processor support.
  • MSEGs with BPM sync (multistage envelope generators).
  • Flexible mod-matrix with precise modulation up to the audio-range.
  • Efficient patch-browser.
  • Very advanced Wavetable-editor.
  • Spectrum-editor for editing single harmonics.
  • Re-synthesis.
  • A random-buttom allows the creation of new sounds.
  • Sample-import and automatic tuning.
  • 54 different synthesis-modes that can be combined.
  • Dual multi-mode filters with 2 x 62 filter types.
  • 2 x 8 distortion types.
  • 3 x 53 effects, vocoder, trancegate.
  • 10x stereo Hypersaw, unison, stacks.
  • Polyphonic, monophonic, legato.
  • Up to 256 waveforms per wavetable.
  • Random-generator for wavetables.
  • MIDI-learn.
  • MPE-support (MIDI polyphonic expression).
  • Context sensitive help.
  • Drag & drop modulation.
  • Punchy envelopes and very fast LFOs.
  • Expandability.
  • Customizable user interface.
  • Can import and export samples, waveforms or wavetables in WAV format.
  • Standalone version for PC.
  • Flexible preset-management.
  • Microtuning for enhanced chords.
  • Equalizer with dynamic bass-boost and psychoacoustic processing.
  • Free support and updates.

Modulators (all can be used simultaneously):

  • 2 MSEGs (loop support, BPM-sync).
  • 4 AHDSR envelopes.
  • 14 Decay envelopes.
  • 2 Hold envelopes.
  • 16 LFOs with sine waveform.
  • 3 LFOs with 45 morphable waveforms and BPM-sync.
  • Step-LFO / gate with custom-waveform.
  • Arpeggiator.
  • Various MIDI CCs.
  • 4 Noise sources.
  • Key-split.

Synthesis methods (can be combined):

  • 3D wavetables / classic wavetables.
  • Resynthesis of samples.
  • Vocoder.
  • Hypersaw / stereo hypersaw / supersaw / unison.
  • Stacks / chords / autochord.
  • Additive.
  • Substractive / analog.
  • FM with up to 6 operators.
  • Speech-synthesis.
  • Formant-synthesis.
  • Wave-shaping.
  • PWM.
  • Sync.
  • Ringmod, AM.
  • Noise.
  • Physical-modeling.
  • Phase-distortion.
  • Granular.
  • Time-stretching.
  • Pitch-shifting.
  • Samples.
  • Harmonic-morphing.
  • FFT-filtering.
  • Lofi.
  • Import of waveforms and wavetables.
  • Many other innovative modes, exclusive to Icarus.

Effect types (can be combined for new effects):

  • Reverb Medium, Reverb Big, Reverb Plate, Reverb Glass, Reverb Dark, Reverb Infinite, Reverb Feedback, Reverb Spring, Reverb Trance, Reverb Cheap, Reflections.
  • Delay, Pingpong, Multitap, Delay Fat, Delay Dual, Delay Diffuse, Delay Band, Tape Delay, Echo.
  • Chorus, Smart Unison, Ensemble.
  • Phaser, Phaser Stereo.
  • Flanger, Flanger Stereo.
  • Vibrato, Vibrato stereo.
  • Autopan, Surround Pan, Rotary, Tremolo.
  • EQ High Cut, EQ Low Cut, EQ Param.
  • Saturate, Soft Clip, Hard Clip, Rectify, Bitcrush, Warp, Waveshape, Amp Sim, Multiband Distortion, Degrader, Multiband Degrader, Noise.
  • Compressor, Limiter.
  • Surround Encode.
  • Trancegate.
  • Glitch-sequencer with Repeat, Gate, Pan, Tremolo, Lowpass, Highpass, Bitcrush, Degrade, Detune, Pitchslide.
  • Feedback.
  • Microtuning.
  • Psychoacoustic processing.
  • Bass-boost.

Filter types (can be combined):

  • Low-pass: Digital 12dB, Digital 24dB, Butter 24dB, Curtis 12dB, Curtis Analog, Tone2 24dB, Tone2 Analog, Tone2 Scream, 303 18dB, 303 Analog, Chain 6-48dB, Elliptic, Octave, Shaped, AM, HighQ.
  • High-pass: Digital 12dB, Analog 12dB, Analog 24dB, Chain 6-48dB.
  • Band-pass: Digital 12dB, Digital 24dB, Analog 12dB, Analog 24dB, Boobs.
  • Equalizer: Notch, Peak Tight, Peak Medium, Peak Wide, Shelf Tight, Shelf Wide, Bandlimit.
  • Vocalic: A, U, I, IEA, AOU, IYU, IEAOU.
  • Comb-filters: Phaser 2x, Phaser 2x FB, Phaser 3x, Phaser 3x FB, Comb+, Comb-.
  • Fractal-filters: LP 1, LP 2, LP 3, LP 4, FO 1, FO 2.
  • Ring-modulation: Ringmod, LP, LP2, FM Lowpass, AM.
  • Pysical-modeling resonators: Guitar, Flute, Odd, Even.
  • LoFi: Resampling, Sample & Hold.

Price: €149 / $169.

System requirements:

  • PC: Windows XP / 7 / 8 / 10 / Vista (32-bit or 64-bit).
  • PC formats: 32-bit VSTi, 64-bit VSTi, standalone.
  • Mac: Mac OS X 10.7 or higher.
  • Mac formats: 64-bit VSTi, 64-bit Audiounit.
  • 1 GB free hard-disc space.

What's new in Icarus2?

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