Your basic 3 oscillator subtractive synthesizer with course, flanger and delay. This synth is pretty fat and does well with analog pads. The processing function is a nice twist and this synth has more options than most in the same price range. Overall the synth is useful for pads, but not for bass or leads. To me it did not seem to be snappy enough to cover those duties.
In use I notice strange CPU problems with this synth. Not the common denrom problem that presents itself after you raise your hands from the keyboard. Rather sometimes when playing chords and moving around the CPU varies wildly from the normal efficient low end to spikes in the 80’s. Repeating the same chord pattern does not result in consistent CPU spikes.
Pros: Good value. Lots of sound options that set it apart from other subtractive synths in the same price range. Good sound for thick pads.
Cons: Strange CPU activity. Difficult control of knobs when editing patches. Not really tight enough for lead or bass.
If you plan to buy I suggest checking out the package that includes SpaceSynth, Voxynth, and the effects collection. I hope that the developer will one day update Fatsondo and Voxynth to address the CPU problems.
Fatsondo is a real gem of a synth, capable of some fantasitic sounds, but let down in a couple of areas.
The sounds it can produce can be truly beautiful, lovely rounded sounds that sit well in a mix. It is equally adept at lush pads, thick basses and cutting leads, making it a great all-rounder. A lot of the quality is added to the sounds as a result of Mikael's obvious expertise in the effects department. The chorus and delay effects work very well and the processor section adds an extra dimension to this. The flanger also works very well and the presets show off the synths capabilities.
Haven't had much contact with Mikael, but the little I have had has been prompt and polite. Looking at the website, updates of synths seem to happen at regular intervals. It's a bit of a shame that he doesn't have a forum and presence here at KvR, as it would give his synths a bit more publicity.
But, with every great thing must come some bad:
The GUI: Well, it's not mind-blowingly attractive and it isn't one your friends will gasp in awe at, but hey, I'm a grown man and I can deal with that, just so long as it is functional. Unfortunately, that is where it lets me down. A number of the knobs (especially the oscillator waveforms) are *very* small and difficult to operate. The "feel" of the knobs is also a let-down as they are difficult to make precise movements with. The sliders work well though.
The "quirky" bank loader: Maybe it's me, but I'd like to see a more conventional bank loading system. The idea of having to remember the exact name of my bank without browsing is a bit of a pain (as it is with all MHC synths).
Those two points aside, this really is a quality sounding synth that is easily accesible to anyone at any level. If Mikael could use his obvious talents at synth programming and hire in someone to make a better interface, this would be up there with the big boys.
I feel compelled to submit a review about this VSTi simply because I, like many other people, possibly judged it by the image above. Simply, don't do so - that would be a mistake.
OK, the downsides first - 1. the interface which really doesn't do it justice and can be a little fiddly in operation 2. the preset management is a little awkward and 3. you'll find your CPU usage often getting a touch high at times.
On the positive side, the array and depth of sounds you can extort from beneath that interface is worth a listen, from lush pads delivered with smooth aplomb through to some very intense leads (see preset number 5 aptly named ***BIG***) which are as good as any you'll hear for a synth in this and somewhat higher price ranges. The presets showcase the instrument off well. Unlike the Space Synthesizer which specializes in certain sounds, Fatsondo very quickly shows itself to be useful across the board.
The "processor" section is a really intriguing feature here - one tweak to it and you can transform sounds completely. As a whole the instrument is immediately gratifying and it has that important engrossing "tweak" factor.
I've seen many more VSTi's for a lot more money failing to deliver the quantity (there are lots of options here) and quality that you get with this.
Do yourself a favour... ignore the interface image above and give this a go. I hope that Mikael will do some work on the GUI because I have no doubt that by doing so and possibly getting outside help it will send this little beauty into better company... company it deserves to be among. I have been evaluating Fatsondo heavily over the past few days and feel I have really only scratched the surface, which I think says a great deal about it.
[customer support rating solely based on the web site and ordering process]
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