|Developer||Sanford Sound Design|
|Type / Tags||Synth (Hybrid)|
Cobalt is a VSTi software synthesizer inspired by many of the digital synthesizers from the 1980s.
In the early 80s as digital technology became cheaper, many manufacturers designed synthesizers that combined earlier analog technology with newer digital technology. These were known as hybrid synthesizers. Well-known hybrid synthesizers are the Korg DW8000 and DW6000, the Ensoniq ESQ-1, and the Kawai K3.
In analog/digital hybrid synthesizers, the oscillators responsible for generating waveforms are digital while the filter section remains analog. This approach freed designers to use any kind of waveform; they were no longer restricted to traditional analog waveforms such as sawtooth, triangle, and pulse. However, by using an analog filter, these synthesizers retained the warmth earlier analog synthesizers were known for.
Though Cobalt is a purely digital synthesizer, its overall architecture is very much like those early hybrid synthesizers. It features a wide selection of waveforms, most of which were resynthesized from actual hybrid synthesizers, while providing traditional subtractive synthesis capabilities for sculpting its sound.
- GUI created by grymmjack.
- 26 waveforms - many of which were resynthesized from 80s hybrid synths.
- Flexible modulation routes.
- Apply PWM to any waveform.
- LFO delay.
- Polyphonic Portamento.
- Key tracked envelopes.
- Rich overdrive effect based on a custom algorithm.
- Stereo delay effect with MIDI synchable delay times.
- Easy to use.
Reviewed By contrary
December 3, 2008
Just as any self respecting vsti synth whore should , I tried this baby when it popped up around KVR . Being a bit jaded with soft synths ( see aforementioned whore reference !)
I have to admit my expectations were low .
Pleasant suprize folks !!! If your not a big reader , then just go slap down your twenty five and get it . (get while it's so underpriced !!)
I don't usually hype like that , but it's sound is apart from the usual VA pack , and has lots of potential on top of that .
A little dark,some controls a little smallish . The developer worked out a bug that caused problems for users with custom DPI settings very quickly once he was made aware of it.
This is why your sweaty fingers should be clicking and downloading the demo now . Try it , you'll like it!
Xenos has covered the tech details better than a less than average so-called "sound designer" like me ever could!!. ( and get his free patches whilst you are demoing , or your and idiot :-).
Well about the only thing I could fault would be not having what any self respecting '80s poly type synth might want ... 5 or 6 point envelopes . I'm sure the developer wanted to keep it simple so good old adsr envelopes will do the trick . It's not like most of us know what to do with extra break point and ramp stages anyway ... maybe in a future version after an army of kvr'ers buy it ( subtle , subtle hint) that will increase time to tinker with it for leslie.
Much better than most , but you gotta buy the synth to get it !!
Thats why you better spring for the $25 , so sound designers see the potential market and get busy . There are some 300 , which are good ! More from Xenos ( subtle hint !) would be great.
Great , quick responses
Value for money;
Are you kidding ????
; ... I can only think that the developer must be unstable to sell this so cheap ............. and the instrument never caused any guff on my system.
OK get the demo , and , ...Then , ... of course you'll buy , ... then , ... you owe me !!!
Reviewed By Xenos
November 13, 2008
On with the fine details.... The user interface is clean and very easy to navigate. Your oscillator, filter and modulation choices are all conveniently accessable via drop-down menus on Cobalt's single-page GUI.
The sound quality is very good and certainly has the character of those Korg DW series synths. You can dial in all manner of early to mid 80's Synth Pop type sounds that have the typical signature glassy quaility, thanks to the additional osc. waveforms. Cobalt is also very much capable of some rough and nasty sounds that would please musicians who specialize in Industrial, Hardstyle and other, edgy musical genres.
Features-wise, for the price, Cobalt excels. At this writing, there are about 26 oscillator choices. You have 2 LFO's that can modulate PWM (which ALL osc's have), osc pitch, filter cutoff and panning. For effects, you have a stero delay that also has a sync option. I would have liked to see dotted note values included, but for now you can work around that with careful settings in normal mode, though you would have to adjust accordingly depending on your song's tempo. The Chorus effect has its own character and the quality is actually quite good. Many synths in higher price brackets have a chorus effect that is just plain bad. Not so here. It even has a feedback option for decent stereo flanging. I think Leslie would do well to add a HP filter option to this effect so that you can use some wild flanging on a bass sound without the boominess you would get otherwise. There is one other feature that is missing in Cobalt that I think all the Trance/Techno guys would appreciate...adding "modwheel" to the modulation options for the filter. Maybe in a future update...
As far as the included presets go, the original factory set is a mixed bag. You have Leslies own, vintage-oriented sounds which are quite good and usable. Then you have a few of the other contributions which, though I liked personally, may not be very useful to more mainstream composers. Nonetheless, those presets make for a good creative whack upside the head for someone who likes to roll their own sounds. Nothing like thinking outside the box :). I recently contributed a new soundbank available on Leslie's website that would hopefully satisfy those with more standard personal tastes (though I got some wacky one's in there too, lol).
All in all, Cobalt is an excellent value for the money bound to please skinflints everywhere :). I recommend this synth both for seasoned professionals who already have the latest gear but need something quick and simple and for newbies on a tight budget looking for their first quality VST synth outside of what is offered within their DAW software.Read more