when i first heard this, and went throught the presets i thought wow! The sounds that come out of it, are kinda evil and harsh sounding. The thing is, once you get into it, it seems extemely limited. The sounds I got out of it, sounded similar to the presets supplied (and there wasnt that many), and within a few months id gone completly off it. It eats up your CPU too. It has got a distinctive sound, and would probably work well in some techno tune, but unless thats your sort of music, i wouldnt put this high on my recomendation list.
Mercury hasn't got the sexiest look on the planet, but it's functional and the controls are well sorted. I tend to be using Mercury for the same sounds over and over again, but it's just so good at them. Either as a reso bass, or as an attack synth or as a brutal lead sound. It's great, say, if you have a rock band and the chorus just hasn't got enough drive. It's not the most versatile animal, it has it's own characteristic sound, but it is very good at what it does. It comes with a great number of presets, all of which are well programmed and useable.
Its price, unfortunately, seems to be the shadow of past times and, in my view, should be rethought.
The single most annoying thing about Mercury is that it 'forgets' presets when used in Logic Audio. Also, if you zap through presets, select one, then modify it, for some obscure reason you can't go back to switching through the presets, as the controls to do so are then inoperative. For logic users, Mercury is a nightmare simply because of this little, yet devistatingly irritating bug.
Still, Mercury is a good synth, and it is truly an animal of a kind, with a strong character and good useability.
I tested it after hearing about it in the video interview with Eric Persing (in Cubase.net) , although he used a simple patch for the bass line , I liked some other sounds - and compared to Dreamstation , Rainbow and other analogs (except maybe for the cronosX which is also on my wishlist )- it sure had a distinct sound , a very powerfull one. Another BIG PLUS is for the vertical sliders - I just hate those knobs - they are nicer but less usefull while editing!
As others have stated - being monophonic is a bit annoying - and the price tag is abit high. I sure fantasize on purchasing it in the near future. It will complement my current hardware setup. Documentation and support was given medium rates as I do not know enough.
I downloaded the trial version and in less than a day of playing with it I decided it was the best VST synth I'd heard yet. It's not packed full of features but it does have pretty much what you'd find on an older analog synth. It's great for leads and basses and sound effetcs. I could totally see myself buying it in the near future except for to one big problem and one lesser problem. The first is the lack of a polyphonic mode. I know there are several good poly VST synths out there, but I don't use synth enough to want to buy more than one good one. The main reason why I won't be buying it at this point is because the thing has high note priority. As small a thing as that sounds it makes playing it very contrary to what I'm used to in a mono synth,. I emailed TC Works about this and asked whether it was switchable and they said no, it was modeled after a Moog synth with hi note priority (which one I'm not sure). They said they were considering making it an option in a future update.
one of the best VSTIs out there IMHO. its understandable if people got mixed feelings about it though.
it isnt a feature packed monster by any means, just the bread and butter type analog synth. but the point is, it is by far the BEST SOUNDING bread and butter analog synth. i dont know what exactly it is, cause at times it sure isnt perfect, i.e. parameters arent interpolated, envelopes are a bit rough too, but for some reason it simply sounds better than other, similar VSTIs. so its definetly worth the money IMHO, i use it in every song, most of the time one voice for bass and maybe one for some agressive hookline (did i mention the awesome distortion? :-)
plus: best sound. and thats what counts at the end of the day, isnt it :-)
minus: CPU hungry (make sure to mute voices you dont use) the monophonic mode uses highest note priority and not last note priority. thats really totally stupid, cause if you dont edit note lenghts all the time, timing might be off. doh :-)
You won't find it anywhere... given that it was not free. All the copies you will find (except in warez sites but it's not at all my cup of tea) are locked copies used as a limited demo as long as you don' register.
Here is the Wayback Machine copy of the registration page of Mercury-1: