2016. Wow. My all time favorite soft synth is still working with Windows 10 (as a VST via 'polac's' awesome dxshell v1.0.4b wrapper). Here are 10 reasons I still love and continue to use this amazing synthesizer:
1) Practically zero CPU usage. 2) Zero aliasing. Seriously - if it does, then I certainly can't hear it and I have ears like a freaking BAT. 3) Best sounding PWM on any softsynth. Period. 4) Tuneable noise wave! Hardly any synthesizer (hardware or software) has this feature. Perfect for video game sounds, percussion and FX. 5) Solid, chunky, fantastic sounding raw oscillators (based on the Commodore 64 SID chip, apparently). 6) Characterful and gutsy sounding filters. Resonance can go from smooth and silky to ear-shreddingly distorted. 7) Separate user envelope to effect PWM, Cutoff, Pitch (osc 1 or 2), FM or AMP. 8) Separate PWM LFO. 9) Separate vibrato LFO (with delayed start - perfect for lead sounds) 10) Key off - a really quick and dirty way of making staccato sounds without having to program/edit note lengths. Lovely.
Sure there are more specialist soft synths available with plenty more bells and whistles, but this is my desert island synth. I can (and have) made entire songs with Dreamstation, including drums. I've also attempted to replace it over the years with 'better' soft synths, but I keep returning when I hear an older track which used Dreamstation.
It's the all rounder synth that nobody should be without and its interface is the most well laid out and simplest of any synth I've ever used.
The best part? It's free. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain by giving this one a try.
LFO Speed mod destinations, and a stereo delay just for the helluvit, and I would have the damn perfect VA
Overall good documentation with an excellent reference section.
I'm not really a preset banger myself, but if i were the type to find a preset to tweak into something more personalized, I would probably be very pleased with the default bank. It is very utilitarian.
This product has reached the end of its life cycle, therefore there is no official support provided by the developer, yet it has it's own section at the Audio-Simulation forums (the developer). I have never experienced a need to receive customer support for this product, although I am pleased with the developer's support for products that are in active development from Audio-Simulation, especially considering the youth of said product (DreamStion II(the host)).
It's free. Instant 10.
It's never crashed or behaved unpredicably for me. As I've already said its sound is very predicable. So i cannot give any negative marks here.
In short, this synth is a no-nonsense general purpose synth, with a broad sonic potential, and is free.
I've heard a lot of people complain about DreamStation, about this or that, but honestly I don't know why. Nearly every time I need a solid, bread-and-butter VA sound out of a soft synth, I end up using DreamStation. Lots of other VA soft synths have more features and are better at certain things, but none are as flexible and usable as DreamStation.
In particular, I've heard people complain the sound is thin or uninspiring. Frankly, I have no idea what they're talking about. I've gotten tremendous basses and nice pads out of DreamStation. And the brass! Wow, you can get a lovely Vangelis CS80-style brass out of this thing, complete with delayed vibrato.
DreamStation lacks only two things really. First is a mod matrix. DreamStation is a very simple VA model, with hardwired modulation, which limits the diversity of sounds it can make. Again, it makes bread-and-butter stuff wonderfully, but if you need a 'different' sound, you'll have to look elsewhere.
Finally, the UI on it is just too small! The knobs are so tiny that sometimes I have to squint to see them clearly. Not that it isn't a nice UI - it is, and very well designed. If it was about 50% bigger, it would be perfect.
I had a very different support experience than the other reviwers: I purchased Cakewalk Plasma and received the DreamStation with it. Overall, a very good deal. I wanted to use DreamStation with Fruityloops and was horrified to get an intermittent clicking noise. When I emailed the program author, it took a few weeks but he kindly emailed me the version that was optimized for FruityLoops. I was very pleased with the support as this solved my issue completely. I have also had stuck notes with this synth, but adjusting the polyphony can minimize the problem.
Now for the sound: It's very analog sounding, but often in a buzzy, aggressive way... I'm not thrilled with the Filter. I recommend never turning the resonance up more than 60% unless you like squealing. For a smoother analog VA subtractive synth I'd have to recommend SimSynth or daAlpha instead. Having said this, I'm still glad I have it in my arsenel. It has an excellent FM knob and a cool 2nd assignable envelope that can be used to alter the FM amount in addition to other destinations. Its random LFO is good to. What irks me most about this synth is that the freestanding version has an exceptionally thick chorus effect that would really smooth out the sound... but they didn't include it in the DXi!
Three things that it excels at: * hard synced oscillator sweep sounds (ala Gary Newman) * TB 303 bass simulation * Small, dark, clinky FM arpeggiator sounds
One thing it sorely needs: Velocity Sensitivity!
dreamstation is yet another VA synth. It is simple to operate and comes standard with sonar. I'm not going to go into the sound of this thing and all that crap because in the end it is all a taste thing, suffice to say that it has its own sound and it is clean. The UI can get a little fiddly and a return to 0 function on the knobs would be handy. It is rock solid in regards to its stability and has a great manual which pops up the first time you open it. I wasn't too sure about this synth at the start but it has gradually been creeping more and more into my work. It has a lot of really interesting and contemporary sounds that are hard to get on a lot of other synths. The filters are GREAT and so are the envelopes. Dreamstation doesn't try to be anything that it is not. Once you accept it for what it is, it will respond by being a great little synth to cherish and enjoy. :) Highly recommended.
The Dreamstation DXi could have been a kickass instrument. It sounds good, comes with a ton of decent presets and is very easy to program. I really love the sound of the instrument, but really couldn't get into it because of the lack of support for it. I have a registered version of it that I purchased from the Fruityloops site and it generates false tones aka sticky keys. I tried to get this problem resolved at the Fruity site where I brought it but my posts go unanswered there. I tried Audio Simulations, but it only seems that they support the stand-alone. My experience with the Dreamstation DXi has lead me to advise people to stay away from it for the lack of functionality and support.
At first the DreamStation seems like just another basic analog emulating synth.
But the interface is friendly, and the sounds it creates are very usable.
There are quite a few presets, with a lot of variety. They are good starting points for creating your own sounds.
The DreamStation lets you assign the Mod wheel to almost any parameter, and has portamento, distortion, and a lot of other features that add up to make it more than just your average analog synth.
I must disagree with Tomz.I love the sound of Dreamstation.It has some of the best analog lead sounds I have heard from a softsynth in it's price range.I have the standalone version so I can't speak for the Dxi version.The standalone has the ability to use a sample waveform.The pictures I've seen of the DXi didn't seem to have this feature.In my opinion Dreamstation simply blows away junglist,Rainbow2,scorpion and others.Of course it's all a matter of preference.I love big fat synth leads and that's what the Dreamstation excels in.For 35.00 bucks,I think it is a steal.
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