Log InCreate An Account
  1. Plugins
  2. »
  3. KV331 Audio
  4. »
  5. SynthMaster 2
  6. »
  7. Reviews
Was $99.00; Save $50.00 until 2 May 2024!

SynthMaster 2

Synth (Semi Modular) Plugin by KV331 Audio

SynthMaster 2 has an average user rating of 4.44 from 41 reviews

Rate & Review SynthMaster 2

User Reviews by KVR Members for SynthMaster 2

SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By Milkman [all]
July 5th, 2023
Version reviewed: 2.9.16 on Windows

After nearly 2 years of experience with Synthmaster 2 and with the dev, KV331, I have decided to revise my review and drop it to 1 star. I wont be working with KV331 any longer.

Synthmaster 1 and 2, and soon 3, sound very nice and offer a lot of presets. When I originally purchased SM2, I knew it was buggy and had many longstanding issues (you can read about those issues on the KVR forums, inside the KV331 forum), but I chose to support the dev and try it out anyway.

I immediately noticed that SM2's modwheel did not work unless I clicked it onscreen, and the "midi learn" feature would crash the plugin in Cubase. Manual assignment within SM2 also failed. I tried various ways to fix this including reaching out to the dev, but I was never able to solve it and the dev ignored my questions.

Recently the dev emailed all customers about Synthmaster3, and offered a new upgrade deal. I considered this, but wanted to make sure the modwheel issue was resolved before spending more $$, so I asked questions on the dev's forum here on KVR. The issue was denied, it was blamed on Bitwig (I started using Bitwig 6 months ago), and then finally it was very curtly blamed on VST3.

In the end, I have no idea if this issue still exists in SM3, but it certainly exists in SM1 and 2 and I am not interested in working with this developer anymore. The responses to my questions and then later to my frustration were inappropriate and dishonest, and I dont have time or patience for dishonest devs. Im done with KV331.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By Faydit [all]
April 27th, 2022
Version reviewed: 2.0 on Windows

One of the best sounding and most flexible synthesizer plugins, which I know.

Almost too many features, but of course you do not need to use them all, alone the existing presets sound very good. I've also bought some more vintage based expansions, which also up to now did not disappoint me.

More than fair price for the quality and features.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By vata44 [all]
November 3rd, 2021
Version reviewed: 2 on Windows

I absolutely love this synth. I am always drawn to it when looking for a sound or to design a sound. I love the layout, sound, and flexibility. It is quite deep. It allows .WAV file imports, but the only thing is it missing imo is a rompler library with a real Piano and Strings. I know this isn't the aim of the product so I am not disappointed, but if they added this in the future it might be the only thing I ever used.

I think the effects section is great as well, the only thing I would hope for is a ValhallaShimmer-esque reverb.

I like that you can use the Synth as an FX unit as well, but it would be helpful if they had a different GUI for the FX only version. I understand that would probably be a tremendous amount of work, but it would really set it apart and make the FX version less cluttered and more usable.

If you want to buy a virtual synth, I would put this HIGH on my list. I own Diva, Zebra, Lush 101, Korg, and the whole NI suite, but I always come back to Synthmaster and Synthmaster One.

Response from kv331 from KV331 Audio on November 4th, 2021

Hi there, thank you very much for encouraging words! Don't forget to download our latest v2.9.10 update, it has a serious usability improvements, critical bug fixes, and new content (factory presets and skins), and it is the most stable version to date.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By Triplefox [all]
August 26th, 2021
Version reviewed: 2.9.9 on Windows

I just upgraded from Synthmaster One + Synthmaster Player to the Everything bundle and have had the prior two for some years and often bring them out.

Synthmaster is a true "jack of all trades, oftentimes better than master of one". It's established and stable, and its utility as a preset box is enormous, even before getting the expansions. I readily admit to rarely deep-diving the UI, because, while I've been toying with filters and envelopes for 20 years at this point, the presets basically always have something I want. The licensing is, relative to the scale of the product, very hassle-free, unlike most of the big players in plugins. Not only does it have presets, but it also has macro knobs for each preset, so no extra configuration step is needed to get some expressive playing. These are all qualities that are boring yet important when one's attention moves away from noodling and towards quickly producing tracks. Synthmaster plus your multisample rompler library of choice is a fine instrument palette, and anything on top is getting into extra-credit territory and is relatively less important than the studio recording work and effects plugins in making a well-rounded production.

The sound quality is something I've sometimes dinged Synthmaster for and it did keep me away in the past - in a head-to-head demo it's just a little more polite and thin than competitors, on average - but it has only gotten better with time and it's always had a lot of tweakability, and it successfully avoids the trap of glossy over-effected presets that you have to immediately strip down to their bare bones to actually use. For the most part, you can bring quality up to par by cranking the engine quality and doing a little more mixing work to give it some distortion, EQ, transient punch or a touch of reverb. It's just not quite on the level of the high-end analog modellers when doing exposed, filter-intensive patches(yet), and that's the kind of thing that, if it really does concern you that much, you may just want to get real analog gear instead.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By ksertb@hotmail.com [all]
August 3rd, 2021
Version reviewed: 2 on Windows

It is amazing! It can do almost each and every synthesis (hence the name Synthmaster) and the workflow is great. Just try to imagine the sound you want and simply count on Synthmaster. %99 you get the sound you like with high quality.

It also comes with so many presets, more than you can imagine.

Bear in mind that it very affordable in the competition. So please check it out. You will not regret it.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By Duncle22 [all]
July 21st, 2020
Version reviewed: 2.9 on Windows

Great sound and its easy to program. Although its an older synth its still one of the very best.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By godly [all]
September 26th, 2019
Version reviewed: 2.9 on Windows

kv331audio promises it will deliver for version 3.0 a sample editor, wavetable editor and tons of acoustic content. This synth will be killer.

I got the synth for more than a year but just started working with it since i discovered it has sample and sfz import. I like the arp section and that it's CPU lightweight. Getting to like it allot.

What can improve the synth even more?

- a preset compare function (save in a temp when using SHIFT on the save button?)
- preset save without dialog (check the Pianoteq Preset save function, it's super)
- preset recall for a whole set on the FX (see avenger)
- more predefined preset settings, arp and fx. (also sync onine?)
- next/prev preset possibility to assign a cc to it
- put the 8 presets macros on top all the time !
- open the prest browser when left clicking the preset name (right click stays the same)

- 8 layers with mute/solo buttons
- keyboard zones
- audio level meters ! (also signal flow meters on the OSC/filters/ADSR

- drum specific OSC with 1 octave where you can add your single shot samples

- gain level on the osc (samples)
- a simple sample editor will be most welcome. (attack, end, loop, x-fade)

I'd love to see SM as a complete workstation, with keysplit, zones, drums, so we can create 1 key presets.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By rlared [all]
January 6th, 2019
Version reviewed: 2.9.8 on Windows

This synth can do pretty much every type of synthesis at this point. You also get tons of presets, which is nice. And there's lots of filter options and they sound good.

The sound quality sounds a little less "high-fi" compared to some of the newer synths like Avenger, Falcon, etc.

The built-in effects don't sound very good in my opinion..

The developer is pretty engaged and active on KVR which is always a bonus.

The main drawback is the interface. For me, it is very clunky to use. There are a ton of tabs and different screens to jump between. Modulation is painful to work with. Also, in general I find the envelopes in Synthmaster (and Synthmaster One) to be difficult to use.

However, for the money, you can't get much more "bang for your buck" than Synthmaster 2... it's a true bargain. Especially if you want to browse through presets. Other newer synths may have better interfaces or features, but there's a big jump in price for the synth and presets usually.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By ubailey [all]
November 26th, 2018
Version reviewed: 2.97 on Windows

This is a very under rated synth. I got it the other day, and I can't stop using it. Already my number 1 synth. I haven't even began to design sounds as the included patches are so good, that I just have fun tweaking those. If you are in to trap or drill music, then this in my opinion is a top of the line synth to have. The only thing that I can think of to ask the developers is to add some visual feedback to better understand what is playing, as this is a monster synth with a lot of parts to it.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By VELLTONE MUSIC [all]
July 31st, 2018
Version reviewed: 2 on Windows

One of the most advanced synthesizers on the market, amazing amount of modulations for advanced designers, all in one, full pack :).

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By superfirak [all]
April 9th, 2016
Version reviewed: 10 on Windows

Great synth at a great price! Well worth it. Superb sound. It has many presets and many of them sounds good. I really love the cool way of editing and especially love the FM sound.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By Mastrcode [all]
November 6th, 2015
Version reviewed: 10 on Windows

SynthMaster is a very versatile Plugin. Ideal for very complex sound designs. I tried a lot of modular VST/standalone software before, but this piece of a diamont tops them all.

You can do so much things with just one instance of this VST to get outstanding results. Synthmaster is suitable for all kind of electronic sound design, electronic music, even for movie scores or game music or sound effects from another universe.

Two layer sections with awesome oscillators. They are so powerful. With a bright palette of waveforms. Analog waves, digital waves, vintage waves, even waveforms of some big synth legends are available. But the most thing i love about the oscillators is the possibillity to load even own created wavefiles for using as waveforms. So there is no limit for a sound design from another world. Together with the modulation sources like the envelopes, very versatile LFO's, filters, arp sequencer, internal FX routing etc. this is a killer synth. If you take the time and go experimental with this VST, you'll get an awesome sound out of this plugin. I'm also experienced in VST programming and coding, but compared to the programmers of this awesomeness i'm just a small shadow behind you and i have to give very big compliments to the programmers of this masterpiece.

Now let's go a bit into detail:

The Layer section:

There're two layers. Each layer has 2 oscillators, 2 filters, a very good arpeggiator, 3 FX sections with different effects like distortion, lo-fi, ensemble fx, a phaser and an EQ. The oscillators can be modulated by 4 additional oscillators, which are routable as modulation sources. Perfect for FM synthesis, amplitude modulation and destruction of the basic soud of the oscillators. Each layer has its own glide pitchbend range and velocity option, a 8 voice unison with unison detune, unison cutoff and unison panning (stereo spread), each layer hast its own volume and panning control and a coarse pitch.

The oscillators:

The oscillators can load a big bunch of different waveforms. Ideal for any kind of sound creating. And the oscillators have a special option for importing own wavefiles for using them as "wavetables" to make your own waveforms. I love this option. The oscillators can work in multimode with up to 8 voices each osc with a voice mix control, detune, stereo spread, adjustable detune curve, phase spread and tone spreat in the voice section of the oscillators. Each osc has it's own volume and panning control, coarse and fine tuning option, a phase control and a high cut filter control. Very awesome, powerful and versatile oscillators. There should be more VST's with such great oscillators.

The filters:

The two filters of each layer can be split, one filter for each of the main oscillators, then the filters can be switchet to parallel routing or switched in series. Also filters have their own distortion unit to overdrive them. Ten they have a switchable 12/24 dB slope, cutoff, resonance and keytracking control. The filters can be modulated by different sound sources over the mod matrix routing. The filter are sounding very good. they can sound clean, but also harsh and very dirty. I like the sound of the filters very much.

The Arpeggiator:

Each layer has a powerul Arpeggiator with the classic arp modes, a arpeggiate mode, a chord mode for arpeggiated cords, and a sequence mode where you can play own programmed tonal squences with just one pressed note. It has an octave range with up to 4 arpeggiated octaves, a arp stage control with up to 32 stages, a sync control for playing the arp in different synced speed (supports 2/1 to 1/32 bars, 2/1 dotted to 1/32 dotted bars and 2/1 triplet to 1/32 triplet bars) and a velocity control with step, note step + note and step x note. This Arpeggiator is very powerful and the right thing for good arpeggios (as an avid trance musician i love powerful apeggiators like this one).

The Voice Modulation section:

Each layer has 4 routable ADSR envelopes with adjustable envelope curves, two very versatile 2-D envelopes, 2 multi stage envelopes with up to 16 stages, 2 LFO's and a key scaling modulator. The LFO's are loaded with sine, triangle, square, saw, step and glide waveforms, speed, volume, phase and noise control, and an attack and release control with adjustable attack and release curves for fade in/fade out modulation of the LFO's and a final volume control. The envelopes are very fast and crisp, what is very important for my needs as a trance producer. I especially love the possibillity for manually adjustments of the envelope curves.

LFO Section:

There're 4 synth LFO's for each layer. They are the same LFO's with the same functions like the LFO's in the voice modulation settings. They ca be routed via the mod matrix, to control/modulate the individual devices.

The Synth FX section:

The FX section contains:

A vocoder with various modulator inputs: Both layers can be set as modulator with the choice of dry or wet layers, this means with or withot the layer's internal effects. Also an external sound source (audio input) can be routed as modulator input.

2 compressor modules with attack, release, threshold, ratio, knee and ain control and also a sidechain input for the layers and external audio sources.

A nice sounding chorus effect with versatile modulation controls (mix, width, pan, feedback, mod rate and depth, and left and right delay offset).

A tremolo effect, with mix, mod rate, sync left/right ratio and phase settings.

Powerful Delay effect with effect mix control, width, pan, feedback and drive controls, pingpong option and left/right delay times which can be switched to free or synced. Then the delay has a low and high shelf EQ and a distortion effect, which makes it easy to create vintage style delay effects like e.g. tape echos or tube delays.

And finally a very good sounding Reverb. It has a mix, size, time and distance control, early and late reflections section with own EQ's and an early/late mix control. A mod amount and a mod speed control, and finally a diffusion, a density and a damping control. But the reverb can be very CPU hungry with long reverb tails.

The FX section has 5 insert slots for each layer where you can rote the several effects to one of the slots. It also contains a global fx routing section with 2 layer send busses with dry/wet controls for each layer and 5 insert slots per bus, where you can rote the several effects to one of the slots.

The Modulation matrix:

The mod matrix has 64 routing slots, each with source and destination routings of most of the modulator devices and a bipolar amount control for each single slot. With this matrix you can create all your modulation routings like volume/filter/pitch/panning modulations and much more.

The output control:

It contains volume and bypass controls for each single layer, a master volume control with an additional +12 dB boost button and a master tune control.

And finally the main settings option:

It cotains the options for changing the GUI skin, the plugin window scale, the global pitchbend range settings (which can also be set individually for each layer and each single preset), the global engine quality and engine buffer size settings (can also be set individually for each single preset). It also contains settings for default loaded standard saw/triangle/square waves for the oscillators while resetting the preset to default. Then there are controls for antialiased drawing, MIDI CC filter lag, mouse filter lag, bipolar easy knob control, and a hide older presets option.

I also like the preset manager. It's very comfortable and makes it easy to browse between the banks and the presets and the Bank/preset categories.

This VST is awesome, it has so much power. If you take the time and learn, how to use this plugin, this VST can be a huge sound monster. And for its complexity and sound quality it is very CPU friendly. At the beginning it needs a bit acclimatization, but when you then broke the ice, it's very user friendly.

Again, big respect to the programmers, big big compliment for creating such a sound weapon.

This is not just a VST, this is great, great art.

My Points: 10/10.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By Saukar30 [all]
September 12th, 2015
Version reviewed: 8.1 on Windows

My review for Synthmaster is based off of the new update v2.7.5 which has seen a lot of key improvements in an already flourishing product. I conduct reviews differently, as I try to initially give my expectations, the good points and then the points that I feel need to be improved. It also needs to be said I'm am not the deepest guy into making my own sounds, so I may be speaking from a different perspective than most.

My brother purchased Synthmaster a couple of versions ago. I was against it because it looked kind of complicated and around that time Synthmaster was EVERYWHERE. I'm kind of backwards and I like to go for tools (& music) that most don't listen to. However, he was dead set against my opinion and purchased it anyways. About 6 months later he upgraded to the everything bundle which was on sale at the time. I thought he was crazy, but since he is my brother, I couldn't resist trying out for free. (I see you pointing your finger! My brother chose to let me install one of his 5 licenses on my computer. Now back away KVR police!) Needless to say, my expectations initially weren't that high for Synthmaster, mostly because it didn't look like it would be my cup of tea.

I gave it an honest try and I was really blown away by SM's sound!! In fact, of all the synths I tried, SM has the most solid sound. What I mean by solid is SM is unapologetically a digital synth and puts out EXACTLY what you put in. It's like a Kotelnikov of synths and THAT I like. Whatever sound I used, I could definitely see myself using for productions. With the newest update, the CPU for using the analog filters was reduced. My computer is a little newer, so CPU usage wasn't really a concern initially, but now it's really better.

The things I like about SM are that with so many sounds, this COULD be the only synth that you could need/use to make music. Being it's mostly a wavetable synth, you can make it sound like whatever you want to, but have have immense control over the outcome. I usually never get past using 1 layer, but it's nice to know that I have another available. The addition of the oscillator algorithms & unison control gives more refinement to an already powerful synth. Not to mention being able to use the modulators as a sub-oscillators! The effects are simply outstanding and do not feel like they were just added on. The arp is implemented well. I love that you modulate each oscillators with 4 more oscillators AND... the kicker.... the ability to import SFZ files! Though many opcodes aren't supported, I can use sounds from some of the Zampler free downloads and load them up in this baby and have more control. The 4 ASDRS, 2d envelopes, 2 MSEGS & 6 LFOS gives you so much control that it's mind boggling sometimes. The filters are really digital sounding, but are VERY precise. Not to mention, with all of those presets, the browser comes in handy and is implemented fairly well for the most part. There is a mod matrix with 64 slots, 2 buses of effects, 2 XY pads, 8 easy knobs & even an FX version. Again, this is a VST I would use for all of my synth sounds.. ALMOST desert island territory here.

Now, what I don't like is with all of this power going on, most of the time, SM to me feel like it's always a work in progress. There are some quirks that are annoying that have been going on for a long time that are really annoying. For one, after awhile of using SM, some of the waveforms may start to disappear. There is a workaround for this which includes deleting a temp file, but it's something that catches you off guard and shouldn't be happening.

The display really still baffles me sometimes. It's the looks of the GUI but just how it's organized. In all other synths I have ever seen, you will see a familiar flow of oscillator functions first, controllers, filters then maybe routings later. Because the GUI designer was going for something different here, its not bad, but I get really confused when I start working because my eyes are tricked into going down to the Oscillator section first, the crossed over to the filter then down to the controls then at the top left for routing. I just feel this should all be switched around. I could probably just rearrange this myself and make a new skin, but SM has A LOT of elements in which making a new skin seems like too daunting of a task for someone like me. Sometimes, I feel the filters could have a little more UMPH to them as well.

In dealing with SFZ, it's understandable that not all opcodes will be used, but I wish the opcodes that are used was made more apparent in the manual. SM could be used as a basic rompler in this fashion if more people new exactly what was needed. Though there are tons of single waveforms inside, SFZ is a great way to import sounds in the same interface and have all of your sounds coincide (I guess you could also use the FX version for that as well with another sampler if need be).

When making favorites, I wish that there was a convenient way to browse them. As of now, the favorites folder is just a long list (if you have a lot of favorite of course) and it's similar to the rest of the preset browser screens in SM. With so many presets available, I think something like this is necessary. Also, the Bit Depth & Drift knobs have recently been removed from the ASDRs, though not heavily used by others, I personally would like them to stay as I use them to add some personality to my sounds. These are all really annoyances rather than extremities that takeaway from Synthmaster as a whole, but they should be addressed.

Bulent, the developer has stated a timeline of updates that will be coming, including granular synthesis & an internal SFZ editor. These are located on the following thread: http://www.kvraudio.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=6203340#p6203340.

Let's hope that plans don't change at KV331.

Besides that, I really think that you can't really squeeze any more into an already bulging product. The SM Player is also available for those who just want to use the presets (this was released after my brother purchased however) and also an iPad version. It seems that SM is still gaining ground.

Personally, I can't find too much fault with this this synth besides it's layout mostly. For this reason alone it is my #3 synth to use and not numero uno. I'm not the GUI police, but I think with all of the changes a more understandable flow could be perceived. That along with a favorite's browser & stopping those disappearing waveforms, I would be all about using this for every production. The sound is immaculate and on that point alone I recommend that everyone try this synth if you know what you are doing with synthesis or try the player version if you are still learning.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By XFX [all]
November 4th, 2014
Version reviewed: 8.1 on Windows

H'yall, just wanted to say a few nice things about SynthMaster 2.6.

I've been struggling to find time to get things done and SynthMaster is one of those tools that I just got up and running within an hour.

The flow of the interface is something I can relate to, and the ARP section is what I really wanted, after managing the complexity of external ARPs.

Just preferred to use this synth like my old keys like JP8000 or XP80. Select some sources, route them through basic ENV and filters. leave some stuff clean, some distorted and start jamming away on my DAW or micro host for inspiration.

Presets are good, and if you think they're not suited for your setup then tweak and save or build from scratch. I'm getting the vibe of a musician coming back to me as I play this synth. Instead of being an engineer or designer for which I use other soft synths or plugins. Switching between patches is fast enough for producing stuff but I'm not too sure how it'll do 'live' if you have the courage to use it stand alone, on the stage.

Remember to use a good quality headphones when you work with it, especially if you think it doesn't sound good. I have studio monitors, FOH reinforcement speakers and headphones for use when creating new patches/presets, or for just about anything that need to go up, out there.

There's highs, lows and a full range of sounds flowing from this synth, and if I want to add on, there are exciters and psycho acoustic bass enhancers in my software cabinet. I've tried a few more costly soft synths and I prefer this one because of the balanced sound. Either in the filter algorithms or some harmonic processing, whatever it is I was taken in by the vibe of using this one synth for creating, jamming out notes, phrases, chords and ARPs......... YEAH!

Good work KV331 Audio! :-)

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By servolenkung [all]
April 20th, 2014
Version reviewed: 8 on Windows

I wanna make a short review only, because much things are said and some of them are making me really angry.

So here is my opinion:
1. The gui is very intuitive but very complex, too. You get fast results if you know what you do.
If you don't know what you do, look in the manual or buy a synths that isnt as complex as synthmaster!
If you wanna have a gui like Diva, buy Diva! I think, these people go into an Adidas-Shop and say they want a shirt that looks like nike, too. Or they buy a Pc and complain that the PC is much more complicated than the pocket calculator they used so many years without any problems and without reading a manual.

2. The sound and the presets: Sound is fantastic - from hard to soft you can all do it! Especially the presets are genius! Never heard a synth that had so many presets which are used in commercial Dancemusic like Synthmaster! And a preset is a preset, is a preset..... A preset is a startingpoint for your music, nothing more. To the guys that say the presets are uninspiring: Sorry, you are only untalented and uncreative! I hate this presets where you hit a button and "get blown away" or even get a melody, because you can only use them once, or better: you never should use them because 1000ds of untalented guys used the preset already.
And then everybody is wondering why the electronic-scene goes down, noone is earning money any more, because the market is flooded with so many untalented "artists" that are searching for the
"Make a whole song" button in a synth.
I love the presets and sometimes I get an aha experience when I use a preset i didn't like before und play it in a different way, in a different song. "Ahh! Now I know what the
Designer thought as he made the preset....."
Another thing is, that the presets fit perfectly into an modern electronic arrangement. Thats a sign for professionalism!
And!!! Insigna is the best Sounddesigner of all!!!!
And!!! KVR should claim over 200 Dollar only for the Factory-Version! And 200 Dollar is not enough.
And!!! The idea of an online-preset-bank is fantastic! But why are only so few people uploading??? Perhaps they are busy with complaining about uninspiring presets........

If every user uploads 5 of his best presets we had the best and biggest Preset-bank ever!!.

So thats all for today!
Sorry for my bad english.
Thanks to KVR, thanks to Insigna.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By MadAnthony81 [all]
April 5th, 2014
Version reviewed: 7 PRO 64 on Windows

EDIT: I'm rating it an 8 because the GUI freezes easily and its really tedious to program a sound. Also, the factory presets are lame. It's capable of sounding great.

Synthmaster is excellent. Excellent at all around. Excellent at electro. I've heard it excellent at trance and classy house too. Exclent at dub and dup step too for sure. It great with wobbles and that classy pop sound for each genre. Something you can hear on the radio in you car. You know, like the stereo radio like 109.3 or something. Aside from that Synthmaster is difficult to handle is the user programming area. Regardless this is what I have to say.

Synthmaster surerly delves into a new sound on the market. It quite analog on it own is right. It does have multiple synth sound alikes on top of it's own saturation given. The Copy cat kinda of sort of sounds like main analog synths is quite noticeable though of course not exact. It has it's own sound like I said. It's presets are all around but also have many specific genres. Their mixibility within themselves does not really alter in a bad way. They are highly mixable within themselves even the genres, for a "different" sort of mix that is. By the way the presets are fairly boring. Probably more of what you would call typical or lax.

Synthmaster is totally capable of making beyond extraordinary custom presets that can also be saved quite easily and to usb afterwars through windows explorer.

It's subtractive synthesis includes a total of 4 oscillators total. What's cool too, is you can use additive synthesis in substitute or instead of any subtractive synthesis of desire. Maybe possible to sound good that way with hard work, I don't know, I haven't tried really hard at that yet. But it would be difficult. There is also an easy to use make-your-own waveform kind of thing to use but it may possibly be difficult to get useable results from that in which you agree with at first.

It FX synth are good and easy to get once you get the hang of it. All in all the GUI looks seems mathematical but do have copy and paste with a couple clicks. The Synthmaster FX VST is identical. I see room for improvement in Synthmaster for easiness but I rated it high because excellent results are possible.

It's filters are a little touch or seemingly hard to delve and into and use. But what is really cool is the resonance and the options with the 2 filters. The resonance goes super high so it's always there if needed and there's a boost to the filters along with quite a few filter crossover/cutoff types.

Room for improvement is needed with parameter mapping and freezing issues. But it has a smooth analog sound for pop. Enjoy! Great for all kinds of music that gel with pop and excellent programming skills. Not too mention with the right waveform it's one of the grittiest spread out synths iv'e used. MAny waveforms also in all facets. Really cool that way with the waveforms. Real authentic analog sounding and also on top of that original.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By ontrackp [all]
November 11th, 2013
Version reviewed: Lion on Mac

Synthmaster 2.6.8 AU 64-bit Version.

This is a great sounding synth. UPDATE: The worst bugs I mentioned previously in this review were fixed by the developer almost immediately after I wrote in to their tech support, and it now works as it should.


As this is a complex synth with a fantastic set of sound making features, the interface is by necessity complicated. Unfortunately, the one dimensional, mono-chromatic color scheme is hard on the eyes, and it lags far behind the more comfortable graphics used by most of it's competitors. The modules and controls are well organized, with lots of tabs to select the various oscillators, envelopes, LFO's, etc…. but the graphics are ugly. It takes a little getting used to but with practice navigating around becomes easy and (almost) intuitive. This synth allows tons of modulation opportunities, but the modulation matrix display is clunky – it's a list of Source and Targets which can be organized in various ways, but as you pile up modulations, working through the list can be a little arduous. To help, there is a convenient facility to display modulations filtered by Source or Target. I've found the most useful option to be it's "Automatic" mode, which displays the modulation for whichever control you click on – i.e. if you click on the Filter Cutoff control the list shows only the modulators for Filter Cutoff.

The envelope, filter, distortion, LFO's and Oscillator waveforms are displayed as graphs, but they look and feel rudimentary at best. I'm sure this is a stye issue, and the displays are accurate, but they are not at all elegant or fun to look at. When you change any parameters there is a tiny display of the numerical description at the top of the screen, showing the current value and how much you've changed it. This is good information; unfortunately it's pretty small.


I generally program my own sounds or heavily tweak presets, so I can't evaluate the presets that came with the Factory version for stand-alone usefulness. Some of them are really good starting points for programming, and de-constructing them has been useful. They tend to sound better in a mix than by themselves. There are lots of positive reviews of the sound sets you can purchase for SM, so if you rely on presets there seem to be plenty of good ones out there. There is an on-line library of presets also available, that users can upload their patches to, which is a nice feature. UPDATE: There are 50 new factory presets with the new update, and I'm sure they are the same outstanding quality as the other presets.


Soundmaking is kind of clunky. It's not a quick, grab some knobs and make great sounds right away type of device. However, if you have the time to think about what you want to do, and are willing to explore Frequency Modulation, Phase Modulation and Amplitude Modulation, the sound making potential of this is huge. There are several types of oscillators – Basic (for subtractive synthesis), Additive, Wave Scanning, which is incredibly cool, Vector Synthesis and it's also possible to use SFZ samples as a sound source. There are lots of built in wave-forms to use as the starting point for programming.

SM has two independent layers, each layer has two oscillators, two filters that can be arranged in series or parallel, and the opportunity to apply FM or PM modulation in various places during the signal path. This is very powerful and it's easy to drastically change the character of the sound with these modulations. Again, there is huge potential for making really interesting useful sounds. There is also distortion that can be applied pre-filter, post-filter or in the filter, and a wide range of filter possibilities. Almost every control can be modulated, which is great, but as I said earlier, the modulation display leaves something to be desired.

There are also plenty of LFO's, envelopes, multi-segment envelopes (great idea but poorly implemented), 2 Dimensional envelopes, Easy Controls which provide a good way to assign one controller to several functions, as well as a couple of xy pads.

Copying and pasting partial pre-sets now works perfectly, and it's a fantastic feature that makes programming much easier.


There is a robust and good sounding effects section with both layer level and overall routing options. This includes compressors, a vocoder, delays, reverbs, distortion and a phaser. Lots to play with and they sound fine.


For the price (now 50% off for Thanksgiving) this is a great sounding synth. Once the GUI is fixed I think this will be an upper-tier professional synth.


Great sound.

Tons of modulation possibilities.

Impressive (and probably infinite) variety of sound-making possibilities.


Hard to look at for any length of time (ugly)

Poor visual feedback from the screen.

Clunky interface.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By ozmoz2008 [all]
August 19th, 2013
Version reviewed: XP64 on Windows

This is a VST that have evolved a lot in the last years. The GUI is OK now and the number of presets sounds is very impressive. In fact the first time I've tried this synth a little while ago, and I was not really impress by the sounds, but lately I revisit the synth and fund many new presets that were quite interesting and did used them in a production. For me this is a proof of quality.

There is some very deep bass and on the other hand very metallic sounds too. The GUI is OK but it's not my favorite synth display, but it's quite easy to program or adjust the presets to fit your own needs.

I was in fact quite amazed by the quantity of presets that comes with the synth, very good job here.

I would recommended this synth to anyone interested in good sounding synth sounds right at your fingertips.

Thumbs up.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By yessongs [all]
March 16th, 2013
Version reviewed: 8 on Windows

To me synthmaster is one of the best surprises I have ever found while researching vsti's and if you love prog rock you may find its the best vsti available and the cream of the crop for those of you who love progressive music.

Prog to me is a form of music that is transcendent and at the height of its glory days bands like Yes, ELP, Genesis and Pink Floyd would sell out large arenas and stadiums. Traveling in lavish private airplanes living the life of luxury staying at the finest of hotels all the while trying to escape the cameras and ignoring the press. People would dress up in clothes they made by hand to create fashion statements just to go see these extraordinary bands. It was a time that kids today have no clue about.

Now you are in luck because now you can do what I have dreamed of doing for decades and tap into presets/sounds that are dead ringers from the greatest music in progressive rocks past. If your at all impressed by great musicianship and song writing then these sounds and presets are something you likely have dreamed of playing and now thanks to KV331's SYNTHMASTER you can.

This software is downright affordable for all that it does.

Its always on sale if you read through KVR and are half aware of what is available to you and this is officially my new go to synth for everything from organs and mellotrons to leads and pads it does it all. I wouldn't use it for piano parts but I have sonar and the true amber piano for that.

Seriously where have you been if you haven't heard about synthmaster. It's been winning awards and accolades in computer music magazine as its synth of the year and BEAT magazine had it at number 3 but primarily for the other forms of music it excels at helping musicians create because powerful software like this is fully capable of being used for that awful EDM and trance music. Hey guys don't let that fool you this software does prog rock at a very high level. Seriously people if prog rock is your cup of tea the ability to play an instrument and create beautiful masterpieces takes a foundation of bread and butter sounds.

This software perfectly mimics the sounds as used by the pioneers of prog rock and fortunately for us dinosaurs that still love old school progressive rock and even the synthesizer excess of newer progressive heavy metal we can now tap into the sounds that were used by our musical genius heros.

Seriously this is one mean and powerful VSTI. Its been said its the one synth you'd want with you if you crash on a deserted island and can only have one to use. That statement is closer to the truth than not. After testing this synth I have put off plans to purchase other far more expensive alternatives.

There are plenty of organ sounds in this synth for usage with prog rock so I doubt I need to get another virtual organ but hey knowing me I probably will add that later on just for variety when I get more wealthy.

The lead synth tones on this synth are also top notch and as I develop an understanding of this software I will likely create numerous lead tones of my own but just for the Nori presets alone it is worth getting this synth.
How many synths can you say that about.

There are always going to be synth presets you don't like on any synth you invest in but thanks to the resident preset guru at KV331 named NORI I can say that this is the single most important software synth ever created for those of us who love progressive rock and metal. Just listen to those demos he created on soundcloud and it will be obvious to you.

It use to be, you would have to spend many thousands of dollars to go out and acquire the exact gear your keyboard heroes had used. Not anymore go to the website and listen to the sound cloud samples that Nori created and believe me when I say listening to these sounds he designed to emulate great prog rock songs with slight performance differences and that one listen will make you wonder what you can do with these sounds at your fingertips and trust me once you get a hold of them they will not disappoint.

This one piece of software gives you a lot of bang for the buck thanks to Mr. Nori Ubukata. You are the man. I was drawn to this wonderful software due to his perfect knock off demo sound clips that mimicked numerous sounds and songs from YES, Pink Floyd, UK, Genesis, King Crimson and ELP. He also did a preset bank of world instruments that is very promising as well.

G Forces minimonsta has a lot of Wakemans moog presets in it but its considerably more expensive and it doesn't offer you any mellotron, hammond organs or solina strings like synthmaster does while also knocking off the moog signature tones of wakeman and other synth greats.

If your into prog synthmaster can help you to get the sounds of these great bands of the past. If you want to use these presets as models of greatness to build off of and make your own signature sounds then tweaking this software is something you are going to want to learn how to do and it is an easy to tweak synth from the looks of things. I have a thing for using the controls of filters to try and get moogy and this synth lets me do that but what really is special is its organ patches in the art rock preset collection that Nori created.

As a fan of these progressive rock bands I am always researching the many choices for me to purchase from the numerous modeled synths available.

I was actually planning on buying several other synths that this one synth is replacing.

The sounds are amazing and if you want to free up some money to buy other things your band needs then this is one synth you can count on being your main go to synth and being worth more than you paid for it. Now the good news if your reading this now you can probably find it at a significant discount like it has been for the last month or so.

Why risk being disappointed folks a lot of those other synths people talk about are for dance and pop primarily this one is the choice for us progressive rockers. if you don't like the presets others create make your own the preset collcetions only cost you $15 each anyway.

Maybe in a month or so I will have more to report on this synth right now I am going to enjoy learning more and peering under the hood to try and figure out how Nori was able to design such amazing presets for this synth and get so damn close to the real thing that it could fool a prog rock lover like me.

Trust me if you guys love prog rock and your not buying synthmaster your going to be spending a lot more going a different direction, so why not just get this one first and see if I'm right you can always add others as you feel the need if you even feel the need to. It worked out that way for me and I bet you find it solves a lot of problems for you by providing more sounds that are useful and a part of the history of prog rock. You really can't find a better deal on a synth that covers so much ground for so little money.

Synthmaster is already the best choice for bargain conscious musicians that need to sound great and do so on a budget. I already use Sonar producer and will upgrade to x2 from x1 this week with what I saved not having to buy all those other synths I was thinking of getting. Its not like I'm unfamiliar with other synths on the market I have other synths to compare synthmaster to and if your familiar with Z3ta and other CW synths you know that they rock as well and I own VI one as well and synthmasters quality is every bit as good as those and then some simply because of the fact they have a top notch sound designer. Nori is probably the best in the industry. Keep that guy happy KV331 and get him busy designing more prog rock patches because that is what I want to see coming from you guys. I never dreamed one synth could do so much but I'm a major believer now. This is the one synth to rule them all.

Another thing to consider is that as affordable and powerful as this synth is, its likely to sell very well which means that all the top preset designers will be designing presets for it. From reading the forums here at KVR I have learned the history of this synths development and it looks like they regularly improve and upgrade it so those of us who want to back a winner are all going to want to support this company because it truly is the best bargain in virtual synthesizers out there and unless they have figured out a way to fool my ears it is one of, if not the best sounding synth out there FTM and certainly it is the most versatile for the money.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By dakkra [all]
December 26th, 2012
Version reviewed: 2.5 on Windows

Best Synth I have used! Has a warm analog sound along with an amazing selection of oscillator sounds. It's Semi-Modular System is easy to understand and it's GUI is easy to learn. Editing of Envelopes and related items are just clicks, drags, and turns away. It's packaged effects sound amazing for being a synth. It has many different types of oscillators but my favorite is the basic because it can read the single cycle waveforms I make in Mulab which allows me to make pretty much any sound I want. It's sound quality is far beyond my expectations and uses relatively little CPU. I can load Synthmaster and in ten minutes I already have a great sounding melody to start off with. The factory presets sound great and are in a number beyond most other synths. The online library is easy to connect to and you can share your sound easily with it. I'm having trouble finding anything I don't like about this amazing soft-synth.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By NON_73 [all]
December 12th, 2012
Version reviewed: x64 Home on Windows

SynthMaster is a plugin with both a very friendly user interface and modern sound.

First glance 9/10
My first glance at SynthMaster was that it seems to have great potential and has many good features. Just look at the specs list what it has to offer. But I didn't like the user interface.

Easy to use 9/10
When I first sat down to test this VST synth I quickly confirmed that SynthMaster is both versatile and has huge potential. The user interface which I first thought was difficult turned out to be very easy to understand, it provides both a quick overview of the sound set, and it gives a clear view of how the SynthMaster works

Sound 10/10
The sound is very modern but it can also generate the old classic analog synth sounds. SynthMaster can very well be compared with Tone2 ElectraX, Waldorf Largo and Cakewalk Rapture.

Summary 9/10
Except that it is both user friendly and sounds really good, it is also very stable. I had no hassle with installation, just "plug and play".

I would like to summarize Synth Master with three points:
1) It has an intelligent user interface that is well suited to touchscreen
2) It is very stable, no bugs.
3) It sounds really good
These three points makes it very inspiring to work with, and which I highly recommend.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By tommyzai [all]
December 10th, 2012
Version reviewed: 10.7 on Mac

SynthMaster v2.5 by KV331 Audio is a fantastic all-round, do-it-all, hybrid soft synth, unlike anything else out there! For years I've been bothered by the fact that the big name synth companies leave out a cool feature or two — short changing us users somewhere along the way, forcing us to supplemental gear to make up for deficiencies — to fill in the missing sonic pieces. I have often thought to myself, "If they only included this or that it would be a great synth." Well, I can't think of anything to add to this baby! SynthMaster does it all within its semi-modular architecture — Additive, A Mod, F Mod, P Mod, PW Mod, R Mod, Physical Modeling, Wavetable, plus AIFF/WAV and MIDI import, not to mention a lot of cool filters, oscillators, and effects. It has accurately been nicknamed the Swiss Army Knife of soft synths. SynthMaster is complex enough to keep an audio tweaker busy for an eternity and easy enough to keep a novice from throwing his/her laptop out the window in a fit of frustration. The array of features including in this synth is astonishing, but what really stands out is the variety and quality of sound it can produce. It does everything from clean, smooth, and warm to dirty, nasty, and eerie.

There are so many pros — too many to list, but naturally there are some cons. The CPU could be a little more streamlined and the effects could be reduced throughout most of the preset collection. Less is more, especially when working with a sound so organically lovely. Cut back on that FX! Be naked, stand up proudly and declare, "I AM A SOUNDMASTER PRESET AND I SOUND GREAT." Will SynthMaster replace Diva for analog warmth, Predator for aggressive leads, the D-16 line for their niche, or Lounge Lizard for EP? NO! But, will it provide an amazingly powerful core synth that you can call upon to do just about anything? YES! For me, it's not a desert island synth, but it is a tasty dessert, filled with just about every sweet flavor. And, you know what they say, "Life is short, launch your dessert synth first!"

I highly recommend SynthMaster to any professional electronic musician, sound guru, or producer looking for a deep, solid foundation synth. .. or the amateur looking for one good synth that is packed with all the synthesis types that are ready to learn and explore. When I first heard the name and saw the price I assumed it would be a little synth pretending to be big, but I soon discovered it's actually a big synth being offered at a little price. Great value! Tommy Zai gives SynthMaster three thumbs up, 4.5 Stars, and 9.5 on a scale of 1 to 10. Thank you KV331 Audio.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By proletkult [all]
August 31st, 2012
Version reviewed: 2.5 on Windows

Synthmaster has to be closest thing to a musical Swiss Army Knife I have ever seen. If they have forgotten anything,,, it will be something you don't really need.

The first thing that struck me was that the GUI had no frilly bits to detract you eye - this monster is for serious music makers. Dabblers are not wanted here and you soon find out why...

Running through the presets you realises so many of them are really familiar. Time and time again I spotted sounds from chart hits and in film scores alike. This synth is, quite rightly, a staple for a lot of big time music producers and if it's good enough for them - I'd better pay attention. The other thing that struck me immediately was all the presets seem to sit in the mix beautifully. So often I find myself stripping back presets that are designed to impress you straight out of the box but take up too much space when mixed in with everything else. Somehow KV331 Audio have built a synth that creates beautiful, vibrant sounds that are all ready to go straight to work.

Not satisfied with just versatile oscillators KV331 Audio gives you samples and single cycle waveforms to use as sound sources too. Most exciting for me is the fact the Synthmaster lets you load your own samples - I feel a tear welling in my eye. The flexibility here alone is awesome, As you move on through the rest of the architecture you quickly realise everything is at hand and equally flexible. The multimode filters offer more choice than I have ever seen and the step arpeggiator is amazing.

If you want to surgically operate on a sound- the sharpest scalpels are there to operate with. Equally, if you are happy with a sledge hammer- the quick controls are right under your nose.

I found myself reading bits of the manual twice, not because I didn't understand it but because I didn't believe it...use Synthmaster as an insert!!? I opened up the effects rack on my sequencer and there it was! More tears....

Put the price into the equation and not buying it would suggest some need for councelling.

You can't shake the feeling that this is a synth for the big boys but, after a little time getting familiar with it, you soon want to grow up.

A great synth, thouroughly recommended.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By monk_volcano [all]
July 7th, 2012
Version reviewed: 10.6.8 on Mac

First off, let me just say that the rumors are true: you can do "everything" with this synth, and with high quality results to be sure. It does everything you would expect it to do, with some unexpected bonuses thrown in.

Each component of this synth is capable of affecting the sound in a staggering amount of ways. This is complimented wonderfully by the fact that you can save presets for each component. This modular approach is a strong advantage for this synth. Personally I like to make sounds from scratch as I'm writing a track, but with this sprawling synth, having building blocks is a huge aid to workflow. Plus when you're in an experimental mood, you can mix and match elements from your favorite patches and get inspired.

The sound quality is very high throughout. The filters are top notch. I loaded up a saw wave and put em through the ringer, and was way impressed with the results (I encourage you to do the same). I wouldn't say that I prefer analog or digital mode, they both have a distinct sound which will be suitable for different situations. An important aspect of the filter section is the distortion circuit. It can subtley enhance a sound or (of course) destroy it. Also there's a host of modulatable parameters within the filter section (too many to go into) that allows you to make things get super organic and animated.

The oscilators are great as well. SOOOOooo much I could go into here, but I'm going to focus on the wavescanning oscilators. Wavescanning (or as I always call them wavetables) oscilators are my favorite kind. And this is my favorite implementation of them I've encountered. You select the number of individual waveforms that are interpolated between, and then you select each waveform individually from the wave library. This may sound a bit tedious at first, but there's an ace up the sleeve here, and its called the mouse wheel. Just hover over the selector and crank the wheel until you find the right waveform. It's basically the same way you might audition drums sample til you find the one that pops. You can create you're own wavetable oscilators very quickly by just modulating the index with an lfo and then hoverin' and rollin'. I was very happy to discover this. Like I said there's too much to go into in this review, but another great feature of the osc section is that frequency modulation on any type of oscilator is just a couple of clicks away, which opens up yet another splendid can o' worms.

I'm not quite sure why, but the layer system in this synth is working for me a lot better than in other synths. It's just easy to copy and paste a component of the sound from one layer into another, and then take the rest of the components in a different dirrection resulting complex sounds. Also worth mentioning is that the effects are very high quality, and once again have a load of modulatable parameters. This is the way it should be IMO; when effect parameters are modulatable, they stop being effects and become just another module in the synth. kudos for that. Also the unison sounds really great (of course). Another detail that I appreciate is that you have a very fine degree of control on all parameters, which is very important for finding ye old sweet spot. I'm always a little miffed when I see a soft synth that has 127 values for each parameter (its not 1985 ya'll). Which reminds me, the envelopes are very very precise and tweakable. In both the ADSR and multistage you have very fine control of the time and curve of each segment.

So in conclusion, everyone should have one monster synth, and for me it's this one. I know that there are going to be things I realize I can do with synthmaster in the future that excite me, and being a bit of a gear junkie.. that's great. I can remind myself that I'm forever going to be discovering new sounds without having to actually buy a new synth. I could write pages more about this synth, but I'm going to stop here, check it out for yourself!

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By jam92189 [all]
May 28th, 2012
Version reviewed: on Windows

I am going to start out by saying this. I am not very big into synths. I would say 89% of my synths are free because I just use em to adding something in a mix or if there is a space left open and It really needs to be filled i use a synth usually only like a piano or some pads or just a kick and snare with a high hat.

right off the bat I had a problem that was not really a problem.(I know that dose not make sense I will elaborate) Okay so what I really liked about this synth is its also a VST so I wanted to try out how it would song on some audio stuff that i wanted to use the arpagiator section of this on. nothing no audio output,MIDI input still played fine but audio would not work. I contacted the developer I think and I was advised to update and set up the osc 1 to audio input and note C3 I think. after updating it worked like a charm.

Now the other thing is I always have to do that thought not a big problem but would be nice to have a lock on sections (hint)

now on to the sound. This thing is pretty much like a muti tool of synths and effects does it all basically arpatiator bass kicks and some really really nice high hats. and a Million other things the setup seems limited to the user. Like the guy before me I agree not all the presets are great but I found a few good jems that I love to use.Another thing that is nice is that you can connect the the online library of presets and use those and they are nice as hell.

I found that the vocoder on this thing was amazingly nice very very happy with it And even made some synth vocals just for fun. Just to say I did it and they ended up being used in that mix I was doing. the whole way to get around this beast is pretty confusing at first like really confusing. I find myself clicking randomly at times. But after a while you get the hang of it and really get to see the really high quality sounds that this thing can come up with.

What I find are its strong points is the extremely large preset library, the ability to change ANYTHING, and the way that its kind of a jack of all sounds and effects. I can go from bells to loud piercing noises to authentic sounding high hats (I really really like the high hats). The CPU is pretty good considoring that im on a laptop now and I have yet to have it crap out on me with this and the way you can customize the way it looks is very cool.

Overall I would give it a full 10 On sound quality but have to give is a 9 because of the way that I have to update it and constantly change settings if i want to use actual audio with presets.

the things I think could be nice A way to lock section that would effects what the plugin would read as far as MIDI or audio. And I would have to say maybe a limiter just in case Because some presets I notice seem to peak at unity gain and I sometimes have to pull the fader way down.

I would say the few faults of this plugin are easy to fix and not really going to effect your work flow.

The quality and vast number of things you can create with this plugins are just amazing I don't use alot of synths so having a all in one FX and MIDI possessor is just a must have, not to mention the great customer service.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By pheeleep [all]
May 25th, 2012
Version reviewed: 7 on Windows

A few weeks ago I was offered an nfr license of Synthmaster 2.5. Before I even installed it, I found out that Rob Lee makes and sells presets for it. From that moment on, I had a feeling this synth and I would get along just fine. Truth is, I admire Rob Lee, and he only makes presets for great synths. Incidentally, the nfr copy that I received of Synthmaster did not come with the free Rob Lee presets that customers of KV331Audio get when they purchase Synthmaster 2. For the purpose of this review, in regards to presets, I only have the stock presets to refer to. I haven't heard any of the Rob Lee ones (but I am sure they are stellar).

Many times, complaints about synths usually go along the lines of "There's not enough...". In Synthmaster, there's a lot of everything. Example: Most synths give you 8 to 24 slots in their modulation Matrix (if they have one to start with). Synthmaster has 86 slots. Also, it features many different types of modulation (some not found in many synths), and you get several of each type. This synth is semi-modular, which allows a bit more routing freedom than the average synth. It takes a little while to get accustomed to the interface and to all the different tabs. A basic understanding of synthesis is required to operate this synth and I wouldn't recommend it as a first synth. It ain't no V-Station in terms of ease of use. But for intermediate to advanced synthesists (or preset whores), this synth is a great choice. Of course, more features often translates to a more complex user interface and more intricate workflow.

The sound is great! The CPU usage is reasonable and on par with my other better sounding synths. It's somewhat of a Swiss army knife, and packs a lot of bang for the buck. I am not fond of the GUI. It doesn't really show off the quality of this synth. Ugly GUI's never stop me from using an instrument or effect, though. Sound comes first. The synthesis and modulation aspects of this synth is what stands out for me. I find the effects "ok" but this is the one area that could definitely be improved. If you own great effects, you'll be fine, but if you don't, be aware that you will get decent but not mind blowing effects in this synth. The filters sound good, but again, they are not up there with the very best. The arpeggiator on the other hand is great and has several advanced modes. You can even run 2 in parallel. The preset browser is great. My favorite type: 1 click to load a preset. A lot of the presets sound really good. Others are kind of average, but there are more good ones than bad ones. More work could have been put into matching all the volumes of the presets. Some sound quiet, others much louder, but nothing the turn of a button can't fix. Creating presets is fun. Exploring all the different possibilities is fun. The quality of the sound is very good. Happy to add this one to the arsenal. I have been playing with this synth for several weeks now and I feel like I have only scratched the surface. The manual is rather limited.

edit: There are now 3 free Rob Lee preset banks for all Synthmaster 2.5 users. I listened to them and they really show off the great sound this synth has. Many gems in there.
Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By fisherKing [all]
May 13th, 2012
Version reviewed: 2.5 on Mac


i've written several reviews here at kvraudio recently, almost all 10's. i'm writing about the plugins i USE, and therefore appreciate. so, just so you know where i'm coming from…

i've downloaded a LOT of demos lately, trying to find a (very) few plugins to use to make music. i deleted some long-used and very good synths to make room for new sounds (and, importantly, to challenge my work methods).

am new to synthmaster; i played with the demo...and now own the plugin (AND the rob lee soundbanks). so synthmaster passed my 'acid test', and joins my 3 other main synths (sylenth1, dune, and zebra).

more than anything else (architecture, the GUI, features, etc), i care about the SOUND. and synthmaster sounds amazing. there is depth and color in the sound; i love that, some plugins seem very flat, or grey, to me.

there are some great presets in the factory soundbank, and the rob lee banks are (as always) essential.

my biggest concern is the architecture; this synth is quite different from what i'm used to, and i need to make time (a full day or two) to really explore the GUI; it's a bit of a foreign language right now, so…will get to that.

meanwhile, i am really into preset tweaking. i need great starting points, and will then make changes to get what i want. am more into music-making than sound creation (a big subject here at kvraudio).

i did an entire track in synthmaster in the first hour, including drums, and was deeply impressed with it (am talking about the sound of the synth, not my playing…which was pretty good too, come to think of it...).

sounds blend well, yet retain enough personality to be 'heard'; that's a great thing, as i like lots of layers, and contrasting lines; getting a dense sound AND retaining clarity is a huge challenge, and i've worked with synths that don't do that well.

and playing synthmaster is a joy; it feels expressive, and reminds me of my hardware days (mostly, a roland XP-60).


the SOUND.
the options (lots of parameters to tweak!)
a good preset library to start with.
great price.
64bit AU (altho it's listed as a 32bit plugin…).

CONS (minor, really)
the architecture: am a little lost right now. i hate manuals and prefer to explore on my own.
lack of soundbanks; programmers, get to work! we need more preset libraries for SM.

overall, this is one of the best plugins i've found in my search for 'new'…and i've already added it my default template in Logic.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By digitalboytn [all]
April 7th, 2012
Version reviewed: 2.9 on Windows

SynthMaster 2 is a very powerful synth and it sounds great ..

It can be so many things - from digital to analog - with a multitude of programming options every step of the way...

You have to take your time and dig in a little to get the full benefit of this synth, but you're rewarded with a full range of sounds that will cover all of the bases ...

UPDATE 2022-12-05 : There have been significant improvements since I first reviewed SM2 and it's getting better every step of the way...It sounds fantastic and there is so much power under the hood.. This is one of my two most favourite soft synths and it has proved itself to be a real workhorse for over 10 years now...That's a pretty faithful horse.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By VitaminD [all]
March 11th, 2012
Version reviewed: 25.4.149 on Windows

At first, I essentially ignored Synthmaster simply due to the name. Silly, yes. But, to me, the name is a little cheesy (reminds me of comic book action heroes or power rangers) so I wasn't expecting much.

How I was incredibly wrong.

This is one of the single most feature packed synthesizers available today. It rivals U-he Zebra2 in this matter; Synthmaster is a 'swiss army knife' of synths.

The UI is layed out in a manner that I found easy with which to work; I had little problems upon initial run on sculpting a sound with this synth. There are multiple skins (color combination themes) from which to chose too (click the 'Settings' button below the logo) that I found useful.

The GUI, however is static in dimensions. So I will say, I wish there was the ability to increase and decrease the GUI size.

The Preset browser is fantastic! I wish other synths included this sort of feature, one can click on Sound type (Lead, Bass, Pad, etc) and then on various sound/timbre attributes (Saw, Legato, Lofi, Wavetable, etc) to narrow sound selection. Wonderful.

Speaking of which, the included sound bank is rather well made. The included sound bank seems geared more towards Electronic dance music (House, Trance, Dubstep, etc). However, other genres (Chillout, Pop, even Reggae) are included.

The real interesting feature is the developer's promise of included MORE presets in the form of Genre-based Expansions at no additional cost. The first one is already released by Rob Lee (House/EDM set) and it sounds very good. These are song-usable sounds; no need to to sift through a hundred patches that are 'cool' on their own but don't fit in a mix. These fit nicely in a song.

I also enjoy the powerful Arpeggiator that works like a trancegate (tempo synced).

I'm not even hitting on the ginormous amount of synthesis types, combinations, and selections in which to design sounds. You will have to see it to believe it. It reminds me of the V.A.S.T. synthesis on Kurzweil Workstations.

With the latest update as of this review update (, Synthmaster now functions properly in Synapse Audio Orion! No timing issues, no hung notes, nothing but rock solid stable synth-action! woohoo.

I should also probably mention this synth sounds like a digital synth to me.. well, 'of course!' you say.. it runs on a computer! What I mean is, the sound quality is clear and bright but a little thin ...still yet rich; Synthmaster reminds me of Waldorf synthesizers in this regard - it blends well in layers and plays well with other synthesizers.

While there are a few things I'd like to see (more filter choices, GUI resize), this is an interesting synth with deep synthesis possibilities and a suite of well designed sounds. It is very worth it to try this one for a spin.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By orange [all]
March 11th, 2012
Version reviewed: 2.5 on Windows

This review comes as personal and as a request from Bulent creator of synthmaster.


To begin i must say i enjoyed working with this synth cos of the multiple osc/filter choices.

the raw waveforms sound good and clean but i still find that they need the occasional beefing up to make them sound huge and fat.. but all in all the big selection of osc's and waveforms makes up for this.

i can easily make fat sounding basses and organic chords.

i found my self spending more time on the additive oscillators than the rest cos of the simplicity of the implementation.

but still the huge amount of sampled waveforms on the "basic" oscillators give the opportunity of some amazing diverse sound pallet.


this thing can do almost anything.... you can practically send anything anywhere and its also very simple to work with the modulation matrix. sometimes simplicity is the key of producing the best sounds.. but also having a huge amount of modulation slots and destinations gives room for creating some incredible sounds.


The filter section is excellent.. it doesn't have 100 different filters types to choose from but the one that are there are very good, clean, and sound very close to analog like.

i love the dedicated slope in the filters.

the ability to envelope control the drive/gain with choices of pre/after/within the filter is just some smart coding.

all in all good and workable filters that produce clean and alias free filtering.


gui when first looked is clean and easy on the eyes.. but this is the only part i kinda felt lost in.

it does have lots of menu and selections.. the are thousands of options to mangle sounds but it gets kinda confusing some times.. i tend to prefer single window synths but this is not applicable in synthmaster since it incorporates a huge amount of options.

the guy is not for the beginner.. but when used to it its fast and easy to navigate through the different pages.

fx section..

the effects are good..

i specially find the distortion very good and gives in some rather weak waveforms that extra punch and fatness without sacrificing sound quality.

ensemble is also a good one.

i find the use of compressors in the main fx section to be useless it doesn't really offer anything special.. but its good to have.

the reverb although has lots of tweaking options over the space and overall sound and also add some modulation options.. it just doesn't sound very good compared to some other free/payed alternatives.

but with conjunction of the delay and ensemble its usable.


I liked it.. ALLOT.. its definitely going to be used heavily in my minimal techno and prog house tracks.

the semi modular approach on that synth is well executed and gives lots of room for experimentation.

i think this synth is really for the enthusiast patch maker not only cos of its huge amount of sound sculpting abilities but also cos it can produce some truly great and fat sounds.

i would not recommend it to the physical sound makers but mostly on the dance/ambient/drum and bass producer.

in the beginning it does look intimidating and its easy to get lost but after some time its very easy and simple to work with.

i give it a 9 just cos its huge amount of menu and options makes its cumbersome to work out of the box.. it has a learning curve although not a long one but its not for the noob user that will find him self just browsing the presets. but if you give it some time to learn it.. it will deliver and deliver some awesome results.

special thanx to Bulent and the kv331 team.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By mungocherry33 [all]
January 26th, 2012
Version reviewed: XP on Windows

All I can say is I just wish I had this before I bought the slew of synths I have. It covers all the bases nicely and the list of preset makers reads like a "who's who" of heavyweight programmers. This and Zebra are my two favorite synths. I'm just starting to get into programming via the book "How to Make a Sound" and Howard Scar's Virus tutorial, and from what I've learned so far, I see vast and infinite possibilities with Synthmaster. It comes with a very thorough 41 page "quick start" guide which is really comprehensive. At this stage of my life, I'm mostly into ambient music, and there are plenty of great pads and dreamscapes and leads to choose from. Bulent and the guys hit a home run with this one. I am using this on a Win XP 32 bit machine and haven't experienced the slightest hiccup.

If you're just starting out, get this one before you buy anything else and I think you'll find that you won't need much else. Like I said I wish this had been available a few years ago as I could have saved my self a boatload of time and money.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By Sendy [all]
January 16th, 2012
Version reviewed: 2.5 on Windows

I've been approached about reviewing this synth, presumably because of my other numerous reviews on here. Will I gush as usual? ;) Synthmaster isn't something I particularly would have bought at the moment, seeing as I've spent a huge amount of money on my DAW setup recently and pretty much have everything I need and way more ;). However, if I were just starting out and needed a high value, high-quality way of covering pretty much the entire synthesis spectrum, I would probably go for Synthmaster.

First up the name tells us that Synthmaster pretty much does everything, and with additive, subtractive, vector and wave sequencing, unison (available both in the oscillator, or as a multiplying of the entire synth line including filters, with variable spread of pitch, filter cutoff, ect), AM, PM, PWM, FM, sync, audio input processing, and a healthy range of what are very high quality effects and MORE all available and combinable, I feel the name is justly deserved. This all works on a dual layer principle per patch, and each layer has two oscillators and two filters, all the ENVs and LFO modulation you could ever need, and even four modulation oscillators for each audio oscilllaor pair, meaning you can set up FM and similar functions without the fuss of connecting oscillators. All of these oscillators have all the waveshapes you could ask for, and you can bring in your own as single cycle waveforms or.SFZs!

I was disappointed to see little in the way of timbral morphing in the oscillators - PWM is for the square/pulse wave only, and the vector and wavetable oscillators are powered by crossfading, with no spectral morphing options between waveforms *(see note below). There are plenty of ways around this, as you have plenty of oscillator mangling power via the modulation oscillators, but I am a fan of being able to "animate" an oscillator right off the bat, before the modulation magic happens. Other than this, the oscillators have every single parameter you'd possibly need, and you won't go wanting in that regard. Particularly nice is ability to dampen high frequencies with an LPF before you've even got to the filter, and add pitch "slop" without having to set up a random LFO.

Tone quality of the oscillators is very present and well balanced across the spectrum, with the only real aliasing happening right at the very top of the range, in ultra-treble pitches. Clearly this isn't a problem as nobody creates riffs at stupidly high pitches such as these. This brings us on to the filters.

Each oscillator gets two filters, and they're some of the most well spec'ed and complete filtering solutions I've seen! Analogue-style (Moog ladder emulation) and digital-style (razor accurate) filtering is available in almost every filter mode you've heard of, you can change filter slopes smoothly, morph between filter modes, set up double "two in one" filters for dual-peak sounds and super complex filter profiles... Then there's drive and distortion, which can be customised with a designable transfer curve and placed before, after, or IN(!?) the filter. The latter tends to produce extreme sounds which are very interesting to me, and this is a very esoteric and desirable option to have!

The filters sound great - among the best you'll hear. My only gripe is that I couldn't find a way to do filter FM, but I'm pointing this out as a way of saying, this is pretty much the only hole in an otherwise perfect set of filters. And with all the other audio rate mangling going on in the oscillators, it's no biggie. The analogue filters in particular have a pleasing "life" to them, without going overboard in instability. The way the resonance backs off near the fundamental, avoiding those horrible "eoowwwWHUMP"s you get in simpler filters makes me happy. It's tedious callibrating filtersweep ranges so the rez doesn't crash into the first harmonics, so it's good to see this taken care of. Combined with the snappy and flexible envelopes and built in configurable overdrive/fuzz of the filters, a wide range of filter sounds from punchy to fizzley, clean to ripped open, are possible at the filter section. The ground these filters cover is simply huge! The distortions are musically useful, and quite inspiring in themselves, as well!

I'm not going to dissect every parameter in the synth, but rest assured, every other part of it is oozing the same quality and configurability. Overall the end result is a very professional sound which is versatile and dependable enough at extreme settings to be your only synth.

Visually, Synthmaster looks sleek and sexy. WYSIWYG displays for waveforms, filter profiles, envelopes and 2D envelopes, etc, are everywhere, laid out in a common-sensical way. Being new to the synth I found it all a bit overwhelming at first, since there are lots of pages and options crammed into each page, but I can easily imagine how the logical layout would soon become second nature. The modulation matrix felt a bit clunky with it's drop down menu leading off into a maze of options, but it is organized as well as it could be, and it's hardly it's fault - there are TONS of parameters on offer, and these seem to be growing as the synth is in active development with users playing an important part in that development. As far as I can see, pretty much every parameter can be modulated or automated, an impressive feat! To greatly tame this little modulation menu maze, matrix slots can actually be sorted via a few different ways - a very cool idea to add to the workflow streamlining. I also loved the option to switch each LFO between uni- and bi-polar, this makes, for example, pitch trills easier to set up.

In a funny way, Synthmaster could be Zebra's sister in a parallel universe. It covers the same huge ground, wide parameter range, and confident sound, yet operates on a completely different philosophy both in terms of workflow and sound. In this regard, I somewhat prefer, and am more used to Zebra's approach, but I can't dock points for this, because it's a matter of taste. Synthmaster and Zebra play in the same league, but play somewhat different games. If you didn't get on well with Zebra but was wooed by it's power, I'd especially recommend this behemonth of a synth!

This is one of the most powerful and versatile multi-purpose non-modular softsynths available, and for the asking price, it's a steal! If I didn't already have a ridiculous amount of synths in my VSTi folder, I would have bought this a while ago by now. Despite this, I can easily imagine Synthmaster working it's way into my production process, in part due to those lovely filters, and the possibility of using samples as oscillators.

* - EDIT: As of reading the review the developer is looking into ways to impliment some kind of timbral morphing and/or modulation at the oscillator level.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By dinaiz [all]
January 4th, 2012
Version reviewed: 7 on Windows

Probably because I already reviewed some other products here, KV331 asked me to review their new synth master. Well not only it was a pleasure but also a nice surprise. Read on !
I've been doing some electronic music for a while and like most of you I guess, I've been strugling not to have this shinny metallic sound associated with in-the-box mix and VSTs comared to analogue instruments and mixes.
Fortunately since a while now, it seems that developpers get it right : alchemy, sylenth1, OP-X seem to get it right. Let's end up the suspence here : SynthMaster IS one of them. It sounds great, and the presets in the box are very good already. If that's your intended use, go for the demo, and have a listen, you probably won't regret it.
Now, let's get into programming. Let me get that straight : SynthMaster was wisely named. The first times you try to program anything with it, you feel a bit like trying to fly a spaceship to the moon without even having a car driving licence. It's seriously scary. But when you start looking at the feature set, you understand why. You ARE actually flying a spaceship ! From the factsheet : "SynthMaster 2.5 has more than 650 modulation targets and 95 modulation sources...". No need to elaborate right ? But that's not only about quantity : the filters really sound fantastic, especially the analog-modeled ones
So, depending on what you want to do and how deep you want to get involved with a particular VST, it might or might not be the right choice for you, but in any case, it's definitely worth a try, and a few hours of your time.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By goldenanalog [all]
December 30th, 2011
Version reviewed: 2.99 on Windows

If you were to ask me for an example of a soft synth that 'grew up' here on KVR Audio, my first pick would be: Synthmaster. If you were to ask me to name a versatile, reasonably-priced soft synth, again I would say: Synthmaster. but I'd be doing both you, and Synthmaster, a disservice to leave it at that.

Synthmaster is literally the 'Swiss Army Knife' of soft synths. What immediately comes to mind in comparison to Synthmaster is the Korg Kronos. It contains a wealth of different things, thanks to a relentless, pro-active developer who seems to live here at KVR-the Number of revisions that Synthmaster has gone through borders on the absurd, but to great benefit to both the software itself, as well as those of us who love it...over the months, implemented feature requests, refinements, 'fixes', etc. have made it more stable, easier to work with, more versatile, better sounding...virtually ALL areas of Synthmaster have been addressed that would make it one's go-to tool.

My #1 question when it comes to any synth, hardware or software, is how does it sound? It can sound superb; but that's almost a paradoxical question when talking about Synthmaster, because it can sound like almost anything that you want it to sound like, since it uses several significantly different technologies. It can sound sterile and cold, warm and fuzzy...At it's core, Synthmaster has a number of oscillator types which can run concurrently; coupled with a large selection of filters, and filter types; many envelope configurations and modulation options....it is capable of being CPU efficient, and can also overload your computer if you ask it to do too much, which you can. You are given so much with Synthmaster...

And again: It can sound superb.

I think that Synthmaster is one of the best software synthesizer options available for the user that wants to limit the size of his or her toolbox, in order to specialize/get the most out of what they have-Quite frankly: If there is a more versatile, great-sounding soft synth out there, that is constantly refined and improved by an approachable developer here at KVR (kv331), I am unaware.

10/10 all around.

Update: My above original review of SynthMaster was written almost 9 years ago to the day that I'm adding to it, right now! Wow.

So what is there to add? Well: it's managed to maintain being one of the most versatile software synthesizers on the planet; especially in conjunction with the 'ALL' bundle: a SM package with a wealth of professionally done presets that show off just what SynthMaster can do! Trust me: it can do a lot. The past nine years have made it more powerful; more stable; more versatile - in a nutshell: more indispensable to anyone who uses software instruments in their work.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By snadge [all]
December 19th, 2011
Version reviewed: 7 on Windows

KV331 Audio: SynthMaster 2 review

First off I have to say this synth is brilliant and my new “1st out of the tool box” synth, its both easy to use for noobs, intermediates (like myself) or Pro’s, the first impression on the GUI when you load it up is it reminds you of NI’s Absynth as the default view is a big presets window – this is a good thing, you can choose from different options to get to the type of sounds you’re looking for such as Instrument Type, Attributes, Music Style and Author, I love this sort of setup as you can choose your Music Style (such as DubStep) and you get all the sounds that are good for that music style, there is also option to browse an online library of presets which is great and appears to be free, unlike other synths that require subscription to the library or charge for presets, they play upon clicking them too, no need to be redirected to download from websites.

This synth has wayyyy more control and parameters than any normal synth, it has 2 x Layers that control the synths main components, half In one layer and half in the other, there are 4 x Oscillators in total (2 per layer) with 4 x Modulators, 4 x Envelopes, 3 x FX, 2 x LFO, 2 x Multistage, 1 x Key scaling, 1 x Arp, 2 x Filters and 2 x 2D options per layer, each component has so many parameters and options its unreal, It has loads of different waveforms for the oscillator’s including ones from classic hardware synths like Roland, Korg, Moog synths etc, way more scope than your average soft synth, infact Iam gunna have to get the manual out to learn how to use some of the stuff on it!!

It has a decent built in effects panel for your presets, consisting of Vocoder, Chorus, Echo, Reverb, Compression, Tremolo, Layer FX Routing, Layer Sends and Global Effects Routing. Each one has many options to play with and the quality of the effects are top drawer. There is also a Preset window which allows you to enter details about your sounds, you can also see comments or descriptions of built in sounds.
The panel on the right of the synth contains the global settings and Matrix windows, here you have pairs of what appears to be Triggers & Sends. You can also set a global ‘quality’ level so if your PC hasn’t got much punch you can leave it on ‘draft’ but if you have the power you can punch it up a few notches…I love this. There is also a Global ‘Tune’ knob so you can tune it with any other instruments you might be using.

The sounds on this synth are top dollar, very clean and crisp with punch, it’s amazing how good VST’s can sound these days, when you play really low notes where other synths sound like farts this doesn’t, it really does produce hardware like results. The CPU hit is minimal too using about 10-20% of my 1.8Ghz AMD Turion CPU.

My review doesn’t really do it justice, go and download a demo from their website now, you will be very impressed, I will be looking out for other KV331 products from now on.

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By djphenaproxima [all]
December 10th, 2011
Version reviewed: 2.5 on Mac

I was asked by the developers to review SynthMaster. After spending a couple of weeks with the plugin, I have still only scratched the surface. This is my honest review of my impressions, but I'd strongly encourage you to try the demo version and form your own opinion. I don't think SynthMaster is really intended for those people who are totally new to synthesis; it's too complex to grasp immediately if you don't at least know the basics. Overall, I found it to have a really cool sound, and it's definitely a keeper.

I'll admit that I'm not the biggest fan of SynthMaster's interface. It takes a page or two out of Native Instruments' book - the preset browser and page switcher at the top of the interface remind me of Absynth. If SynthMaster is your first synth, the interface might be a little intimidating - but, to be fair, SynthMaster has more features than you can shake a stick at, and it would have been impossible for any developer to pack it all onto a single coherent page. I'm told that SynthMaster includes a skin designer, if you're so inclined - I didn't try it, though, so I can't speak to its usefulness. The default design is useable and reasonably attractive, if rather plain.

SynthMaster sounded quite good to my ears. Its output is bright, clean, loud, and "flat" (in the good way). I felt that it had an appealing harmonic sparkle to it.

WOW! In terms of sheer power, SynthMaster absolutely crushes every other synthesizer I own. Most synthesizers limit themselves to one or two synthesis techniques (subtractive, wavetable, additive, etc.), but SynthMaster does it all. There are two "layers" in a SynthMaster patch, and each layer has two oscillators, making this a four-osc synth. Each osc can be set to use a different technique - single-waveform, additive, wavetable (a.k.a wavescan), vector (four waveforms and a joystick), or audio input. On top of that, the collection of single-cycle waveforms that comes with SynthMaster is ridiculously extensive, comprising all sorts of basic and exotic shapes. In the additive, vector and wavetable synth modes, you could spend the rest of your natural life mixing and matching waveforms before importing your own, which SynthMaster lets you do. Each layer packs four dedicated modulation oscillators for FM, phase, and ring mod.

I especially love the wavetable synthesis, because you can individually set up to 16 waveforms to cycle through. In "basic" mode, each oscillator also has a dedicated tone knob (low-pass filter), stereo width, and up to 8 voices of unison! Excellent.

The filters are no less brilliant, and they have become my favorites overnight. The analog ladder filter, in particular, has a really pleasing character, especially at high resonance - it almost sounds like a formant filter, and I love formants. The filters have a "digital" algorithm too, which is functionally identical to the analog emulation, but with intentionally less character. It goes without saying that the filters are multi-mode (low-pass, high-pass, band-pass), including a few modes I've never seen before.

The number of modulation options available in SynthMaster borders on insane. It packs a colossal modulation matrix. MIDI learn is a snap, and you can quickly set up modulation routings by right-clicking on the controls. Each layer has four standard-issue ADSR envelopes, a pair of "2D envelopes" (which I didn't get a chance to try, but I certainly haven't seen on any other synth), a pair of flexible multi-stage envelopes, a pair of LFOs, and a key scaler.

I confess I didn't get a chance to go very deeply into the FX - some of the presets used them, though, and they sounded fine to me, especially the on-board reverb. SynthMaster packs more effects than any other synth I own except for my personal gold standard, Predator. FX parameters can be modulated too, so overall it seems that you get a very useful and good-sounding FX section.

The manual is all business - concise, easy to understand, and strictly a reference - it's totally devoid of theory, contributing to SynthMaster's "not for newbies" vibe. It's filled with screen shots, which is a plus. I found it pretty useful for learning my way around SynthMaster's interface.

I didn't spend much time using the presets, because the synth itself offers so many things to play with. I scanned through them briefly, though, and although I don't think the preset collection is anywhere near as good as Predator's, it clearly demonstrates SynthMaster's versatility. I enjoyed the fact that each preset can have up to 8 Kore-style macro knobs.

I didn't need any. But as I was approached on KVR for this review, I can only assume that KV331's developers are active members here, and they DO have their own support forum.

You're getting an enormous amount of raw power for a price which can only be described as VERY reasonable. If you want to go very deep into sound design and spend long hours generating all manner of crazy tones, you really couldn't go wrong with SynthMaster. Obviously, you can get relatively simple sounds out of it, but its near-infinite depth invites deep tweaking, and it was clearly designed with that in mind. It might not be the best choice for those who prefer to work quickly.

I wish I could say SynthMaster is rock-solid stable, but it still appears to be rather buggy, and it crashed for me several times. That being said, I was hosting it inside the notoriously crash-prone Ableton Live 8 (the latest beta, no less), so it's quite likely that the crashes were Live's fault and not SynthMaster's. I have no doubt that KV331 will work to resolve these issues, though. Definitely try the demo version before you buy.
Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By FarleyCZ [all]
November 26th, 2011
Version reviewed: 2.5 on Windows

I've been watching SM's development for qite a while. On the first look it could seem like another "look at me, I can do anything!" kind of synth, but there is something cool about it. It uses classical synthetiser "methods" but by it's own very inspirational way.

User Interface 9/10
You need to get used to, but it happens in every "bigger" synth. Pretty clean setup if you consider it's solid structure semi modular with so many features. Unusual thing to see in synthetiser like that is this cool "NI-like" preset browser with sorting. Mod matrix is in front of you all the time, which is a good thing and if you like more "modular-ish" approach, you can route modulations by left clicking on buttons, wich is really comfy... This velocity curve is nice detail too. All around nice and user friendly interface.
If any bad thing, then that these pop-up rolling menus need to be "collapsable". With so many waveforms and modulations, you need a lot of scrolling especially on smaller screens. Also some minor UI bug appear once in a while, but SM is in active development, so I'm not worried about this at all.

Sound 9/10
There it get's interesting. Out of the box, SM sounds airy, light, a bit digital-ish with little VA flavour. Cool already, but while messing with it you start to notice this "little" interesting features like editable OSC drift, editable distortion in filters, in ensemble FX, filters in bit reductions......... and then you get it. Normally designers would set some sweetpoints in this setings and let you live with character they made. SM doesn't limit you like that and lets you kind of build it's character on your own. In my opinion that's where it differs. Expecially the filters are really fun to mess with. Still a tiny bit harsh to my taste, but nicely shapable and editable.
I think SM suits mainly that "glassy" kind of ambiental plucks and some energetic but light distorted grooves.
Downsides are fact, that you need to find that sweet spots, which can take a while. Not much of that "analog thicknes" right away....and the volume levels. You need to watch it all the time, becouse SM always keeps adding new ellements to the sound (like unisono voices, distortions) without any normalization. Also onboard unisono could be a little smoother. But it's really small glitches considering how you can shape it. :)

Features 10/10
...and there it gets mental. (in a good way :) ) A really big toy!
Talked about filters already. You can distort them by custom shape and change slope continuously (!!!). Then some other types. Classic digital, formant, combinator etc... Then OSCs. Huge amount of waveforms (some rally nice vintage wavefomrs here), ability to import your own as sfz or just add new "one cycle wavs" to the folder... Good sounding multi operator FM, AM, phase distortion, little additive engine. Morphing between waveforms is fun... Modulations are huge. Additive, multyplying. The number of sources and targets is mindblowing. Modulating even by unisono index? Really? :D I don't like apregiators that much, but thisone is amazing! Multistage envelopes, 2D envelopes (yep, as wierd as you've just imagined it, but "complexing" fun), keytscalers, cool versatile LFO's, saving presets for every module... You name it. All that in 2 layers and with some sweet FX for polishing per instance... It's may be the most featured "solid structure" synth I've ever touched. And as far as I love Zebra-like semimodulars, sometimes you just want to have some "rich" fun right away with not so much "engineering" in the way. You don't get much better synths for that than SM.

Documentation 10/10
Manual is clear, edited by user base and it covers the synth well. Sometime it uses picture of older version, but nothing confusing. I like how it explains all import options to the oscilator.

Value for money and presets 10/10
Absolutely. Demo it and see for yourself. Good to be synth geek to really apriciate your investment, but even beginners will love SM, becouse presets are amazing. Made by people that you see in the area for a long time. All kind of styles, all sorted, nice sounding. In some synths presets need lot of editing to become contemporary. Not the case here. Preset users will be entertained for qite a wihle, especially thanks to in-synth online exchange. :)

Stability 9/10
Cool. Before 2.5 I remember SM was a really buggy. It's far better now. Really stable and usable. Not a single crash. Only bad thing there would be the CPU usage when using global unisono. Even relatively small indexes can raise CPU load a lot. This could make SM bit limited for some users. Also few minor bugs here or there, but I'm sure these will be fixed as Kv33l does lot's of updates.

EDIT: About CPU, there is second unisono engine inside each OSC which is much more efficient, so don't worry, I was just blind. :)

Conclusion: All around really cool monster with nice clean shapable sound, lot of features, lot's of great presets and reeeeealy fun to make sounds with. If you lack a bit of "fresh feel" to your production, there's one for you. :) And what's important, it's in active development with nice and friendly user base. (as opposite to one really famous synth out there :p) Author is really keen to help and concetrates on every single issue, so I guess it'll get even better and better.

Btw tip: Filter KeyTracking is set to 100% by default, which I like, but it's not comon, usually it's 0 and beginers could be little confused by filter behaviour then...

Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By elipsis1 [all]
November 21st, 2011
Version reviewed: 2.5 on Windows

Synthmaster 2.5 is an excellent synthesizer hybrid offering a wide variety of synthesis options.

The sound quality is amazing, and the gui does a nice job of making it easy to tweak your sound and provide visual feedback.

The presets are excellent, and the onboard Reverb is very rich.

It has been very stable so far.

The online preset browser is a welcome addition :)

Check out the demo for sure, you will fall in love with this synth.

There are many wonderful things you will discover when you start scrolling through the presets.

I was amazed at the filters, they were very musical and deep sounding, tweaking them was an inspiration in itself.

The GUI colors are a nice feature as well.

The CPU usage seemed to be very acceptable on an intel i7 machine.
Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By rectus_dominus [all]
December 25th, 2009
Version reviewed: on Windows

I thought I write a review of my favourite synth. It is mature enough for a review. (Version 2)
I didn't know that it'll become my fave. When I first tried it was just the potential I was liking. I tried to be fair and honest as possible:

Synthmaster welcomes me with a clean, modern user interface. Knobs can be controlled with mouse wheel, modulations can be set in moments, and I can reach every page easily. I'd say that the 2 layers feel somewhat separated. The feel itself is hands-on and ergonomic, but you can't always see what's going on because of the many pages.

The sound is unique. The wavesequencer can make deeply moving ambient/soundtrack pads. You just need to select and set the wavetables and you're ready to go. There are hundreds of waveforms to choose from, finely constructed experimental ones from Galbanum, and the whole vintage muz3um set from fr4ncesco. There's an additive generator module, which speaks for itself. It can be used to made vintage sounds, and thick leads. The envelopes can be fast enough for decent drums, presets been made as drumkits.
There are a number of filters, I won't list them. It's a good thing that there are more filter parameters, and a wider knob range for them. That way it offers more control, and you can make interesting sounds with them.

Featurewise, for me it has a step sequencer, and a really advanced arpeggiator. Usable and intuitive. For experienced sound designers, there's microtuning. The effects are mediocre, they'll get an overhaul soon. There are a number of customizable modulators, some of them can be additional oscillators.
Synthmaster can do FM in many ways, and it offers really flexible modulation possibilities. You just need some time to discover them.
The audio input is going to be activated soon; it'll be able to modulate your existing stuff.

I haven't really read the documentation to be honest. I didn't need to. I took a look on it and remember that there was a long one. :P

Let's be clear, Synthmaster has partial presets for each module, too. They worth more I think. You can quickly construct sounds with these. There aren't, and can't be enough in my humble opinion.
The full presets are somewhat average. Lots are evolved from individual feature testing of the sound designers. I'd like to see more bread'n butter sounds, in case a musician wants to quickly arrange something.
There are spectacular chilly sounds and agressive leads. Synthmaster can do good sounding hypersaws and the preset developers discovered it. There are usable drums, and some effects from mars.
SM2 has a pretty cool preset browser, similar to Kore. It is prepared for a massive amount of sounds.

There's a KVR forum, e-mail support. The customer support is excellent. The developer is a great guy. Curious, open, and enthusiastic. 3 traits for a good dev. Nearly instant response to everything, and determined to help. Quick bugfixing. Open to your ideas, the synth itself is gradually increasing and improving.

Great value for the money, although I got it for free as I was a beta tester (yay). A must have if you don't have a wavetable synth at home, and worth considering if you'd like to reach more in the digital domain. It is a good all-round synth with lots to offer.

On my system, it is 98% stable. There are some small issues, and they are patched quickly. The Jupiter 8V demo crashed my Reaper more times.
Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By Trusty [all]
May 19th, 2007
Version reviewed: 1.0.4 on Windows

Synthmaster is a really great synthesizer, and it comes at a very reasonable price at $99 as well. It has a great sonic character to it that doesn't give that feeling of "heard this before" when you hear it. Considering the endless possibilities of such a feature-packed synth, it would be easy to find the multi-page GUI daunting at first glace, but a second glance after a few minutes of tinkering will demonstrate that the layout is to an advantage. It makes programming the multiple synthesis types easy.

The sound is wonderful and can be as warm and fuzzy or as cool and harsh as you like. I found that the patches I have used so far sit nicely in a mix and it stands on its own against more expensive commercial synths. It is nice that such a versatile synth that can be both thick and thin, and the amount of control over the sound the user has works in favor of its usefulness in a mix instead of against the mix like some newer overblown commercial synths hitting the market these days that want to dominate tracks regardless of the actual output volume.

The features are heavy, but using them couldn't be easier. This is in part due to the clear and easy layout of each page of the GUI. Everything is big, and easy to navigate.

Synthmaster is both a great addition for pros and a probably the best option for the hobby musicians wanting to get out of presetville and get heavier into programming patches. A pro will appreciate the features and functionality of the depth of the synth's capabilities, but a novice programmer (like me) will find that learning to program from scratch is made very easy thanks to the layout, and also the wonderful tutorials included in the presets that are set-up in a way so users that wish to settle down and learn synthesis can get first hand response of what different things on this synth, or really any synth, (that has both the basic functions and parameters and the more complex parameters) can do. This synth would be my first recommendation to those looking to dive deeper into patch programming. It really is the master that can teach willing students how to program synths.

Its $99 value has been tripled in terms of what this synth has been worth for me considering the understanding of synthesis in general it has given me and these lessons have translated into great results when working with other synthesizers in my arsenal.

The sound is great, complimented nicely by the wonderful filters on Synthmaster, and the effects are decent enough. However, it is the arpeggiator and step sequencer that are quite excellent standouts, and considering that I normally ignore those functions on synths in favor of my host's capabilities in that area (Project5), this is quite a compliment.

I would like to see some more of the effects that aren't quite as common on every other synths as well...these programmers seem quite capable to pull of some interesting stuff, as this synth well demonstrates...so the future does seem bright in that area.

There are a few kinks that pop up concerning its stability, but nothing too serious to hamper its use, and the commitment by the developers has shown that every kink gets ironed out.

I'd say the only other drawback is in the presets. The ones that are there mostly sound good and they do the synth justice in terms of sonic capability, but leave a lot to be desired in terms of actual usability. After the wow factor of some of the more outlandish presets wear off, it is easy to be wanting a more rounded bread and butter selection to work with (this problem seems to be more and more common these days with the newer feature-laden synths). While programming couldn't be easier on Synthmaster, a great set of presets are now considered a requirement these days in terms of softsynths and this one in particular could be better served with more, and more in the bread and butter sounds.

All in all, Synthmaster certainly does live up to its namesake. Great sound, great features, and a great price make this a nice addition to any arsenal, and it stands out as the must have synth for newbies and novices that want to go deeper into programming synthesizers than the usual preset tweaking. Highly recommended!
Read Review
SynthMaster 2

Reviewed By Debutante [all]
April 15th, 2007
Version reviewed: on Windows

+++ This review was given for Synthmaster V1. Much is changed in V2; much improved - not only do I still stand in praise of the original, V2 improvement is an enourmous accomplishment by KV331Audio. Phoenomenal plugin allround+++

Coming to grips with so many different kinds of synthesis so easily could not have been made simpler. SynthMaster is a fat, fat feature packed plugin that has reignited an excitement about synthesis for me in a way I haven't felt since I first discovered VSTs.

...and it's all because of control. From your choice of simple subtractive, additive, phase distortion, AM, or FM synthesis (or ALL at once), the very aptly named SynthMaster is at heart a sound designer's synth. And even though it's robust mechanical specs avow a remarkably cultured and highly adaptable instrument, it's the meld of this immense power with a clear and functionally brilliant workflow that elevates Synthmaster high above its peers.

It takes NO time to find your way around SynthMaster. In fact, if you are already lightly familiar with synthesis, then you probably know this synth inside-out before you've even used it. This means that you can comfortably indulge in the business of sound design in courting and unimpeding fashion.

So where would you start? At the simplest functional level, each one of the three OSC's comes with 8 voices tweaked by a rich compliment of controls that include unerring phase, tone, and harmonic adjustment, syncing options, and a flattering equalisation scale - all tamed by highly flexible envelopes that should make for some pretty rich patches own their own, well before you've started toying with the cross-modulation and effects features that exponetially multiply SynthMaster's potential.

And if I had to choose a synth to begin exploring the product of cross modulating synthesis then this would be it. AM, FM and phase distortion synthesis are masterfully covered in SynthMaster - by their ease of induction and intuitive exposition; easily THE greatest strength of this plugin. These are arguably the most challenging kinds of synthesis, but because of the way SynthMaster accomodates them, the level of control provided, and the ease in exploring and manipulating tone and timbre feels... absolute.

Another highlighting feature of SynthMaster lies in its paragraphic EQ - 5 configurations possible for 8 bands, with each band having 18 possible distortion algorithms. Lots more fun to be had here. The 3 filters available are equally impressive with just as many options in distortion and 3 selective configurations that can shape each OSC individually or in combination.

The effects section leaves little wanting from a chorus/flanger, delay, vibrato, tremelo and 8 algorithm reverb. Oh yeah... there's also 2 step pattern sequencers, an arpreggiator, and a vocoder that functions with internal and external audio input. More features please? SynthMaster will also operate as an effect plugin, allowing use of it's unique temperment with other audio sources... or as a standalone.

Automatability in SynthMaster is yet another fantastic feature. Whether through assignable internal LFO's, the host, or MIDI, the synth is fully configurable and supportive of automation.

So shaping sound in SynthMaster pretty much comes down to one's imagination. What I feel makes it really special is the way it shepards the user into trying complex new things while still being able to maintain a firm grip on everything that's happening. The degree to which one can temper sound design in SynthMaster will accomodate even the most discerning tastes, and I still can't stress enough on the ease with which it operates. It also happens to be very CPU friendly, and in that price range, absolutely has no competition in my opinion.
Read Review

Latest 41 reviews from a total of 41

Comments & Discussion for KV331 Audio SynthMaster 2

Discussion: Active


25 July 2012 at 9:16pm

try uninstalling it then restart computer with the update that worked when I was having problems



27 July 2012 at 1:21pm

@Electronicaz: Your "registered" email address is your paypal email address. If you need to change it please shoot us an email at support@kv331audio.com

@4damind: Such a "biased" review. You couldnt even run the plugin and you are writing a review...

27 July 2012 at 6:56pm

honestly it seemed like someone who was just trying to talk shit. It took me some time to get a good hold on it but its a all you ever need synth I like it. its not for a new to synths person though.

6 September 2012 at 8:40am

I really don't get this VSTi. It supposedly does everything but I'm not hearing anything special.So, I purchase what seems like one of the better soundbanks, designed by 'an expert' and still the results are just tepid, mild, bland and uninspiring. My 2C. YMMV.

6 September 2012 at 8:46am

basically It can do any effect you can want but that is also a problem it does everything. and the layout is not very easy to understand right off the bat. its a good vsti so far I like it but i have little need for many vsti stuff.

13 September 2012 at 7:10pm

What's your "special" threshold ? For us it is giving the user best value/money. We dont claim to do everything "perfectly"

15 March 2014 at 6:06pm

dear kv331 my name is nikita konstantinov i want to create VST instrument i mean the modular synthesizer what program or language you had used for creating SynthMaster?

13 September 2012 at 7:11pm

and we're open to "constructive critisizm"

17 March 2013 at 11:16am

I feel the same. I've downloaded the demo a few times wanting to like it but it never convinced me to purchase.

26 September 2012 at 11:58pm

Well, as with anything related to music -- it is all very subjective... I got it a week ago, and having wonderful time with it. Already put it in production use, and it is VERY inspiring for ME. One thing I would agree -- the main rule of GUI design had been broken (do not surprise the user). Very powerful and fat sounding. Arpeggiator section just blew me away. My 2C.

27 September 2012 at 6:17pm

Hey Sasha,

Main rule of GUI design, what's that?

We really want to improve the GUI. What would you suggest?



28 September 2012 at 6:58am

well maybe for some people setting things up with more of a tab setup would be better. honestly I cant think of any real things to improve on for something that kind of does it all. to much to really slim down.

28 September 2012 at 6:59am

I like some of these sounds I am going to pick up a few when I get paid.

28 September 2012 at 9:42pm

Sorry, If I wasn't too clear, let me expand on that.

But first, let me thank you one more time for the product. Special kudos for CPU/ASIO utilization. Very light, great programming indeed.

After spending more time with the synth, I really can suggest only couple of things, both of them are related to the preset browser:

1. Search. it is asking for it, really. Alphabetic sorting is good, but... You know :)

2. Grouping is a bit confusing, especially with not quite so obvious with italic fonts and all.

Do I make sense?

Once again -- thank you. Having so much creative fun!

2 May 2014 at 1:24am

Agreed. This post is over a year and a half old, and still there doesn't seem to be a search bar when looking for a preset... (i just bought it two weeks ago)

and the manual for this AWESOME synth is sorely insufficient. This is a very, very powerful synth with a lot of capacity, but given that, a more in depth explanation of some of the controls, routing, tabs, drop menus, etc (I can't even find anything in the manual telling me how to load presets I have saved o my computer) seems appropriate...

8 December 2012 at 5:12pm

Can you elaborate on the issue of not being able to "identify" what's possible?

I'm actually overwhelmed by this synth capabilities and I'm working with Zebra, Blue and Diversion ATM.

I bought it long ago for less but today I would spend way more to have it.

The optional expansions really shows off what it can be done (and and I'm with you for the standard presets not being enough to demonstrate the depths of this incredible synth) but there too, the expansion are far from covering the enormous spectrum of sounds that Synthmaster can achieve with the different synthesis types available.

The interface it's trying to deal with the multiple, quite a luxury indeed, tools at your disposal and to be fair they did a good job indeed but I don't think there is much more that can be done without changing completely the approach.

Zebra is unique in that sense.

Yes, a scalable GUI would be welcome and popsUp windows such the wave shaper of the old z3ta for detail work on some envelops.

11 December 2012 at 2:33pm

Would be nice if it had Polyphonic glide/portamento.

4 January 2013 at 3:11pm

How would Synthmaster track poly glide? If you have a chord consisting of two notes and you switch both of them how would SM know wich note to glide to its' second note?

12 February 2013 at 6:35pm

Poly glide is currently not supported.

26 September 2019 at 11:28am

I love to see this also.

10 January 2013 at 7:03am
I think you should make the GUI more analog-looking, as opposed to 100% digital. I like the look of something like DUNE or DIVA where there's a more real-life look to them. Synthmaster is more like Straightliner as far as looks go. I just think the more genuine feel is visually appealing. The synth sounds great though. No need to change much there. The ocillators sound incredible.
20 March 2013 at 6:46pm

Which Nori preset pack are you talking about specifically - the Art Rock pack? Thanks.


19 May 2013 at 11:25pm

great organs and trons in that preset pack but if you are into YES, Genesis, Pink Floyd, ELP and other prog rock greats then Nori has other preset banks you will want and these alone make it worth getting synthmaster and in fact it being a true desert island synth if you could only have one this is it.

25 May 2013 at 8:23pm

I wrote a review on Synthmaster and am told now, I need to have ten posts on the forum before reviewing the product? Is this a joke? I'd actually guess, I don't need to post for no reason, just to be able to write a review. Having bought and used the product is a basis to review. Not posting random stuff in advance.

So I'm gonna post mine here then:


A lot of people have described all the positive things and I don't want to just repeat these. There are indeed a lot, that make this VST stand out from others. Yet I haven't read much about the disadvantages, limitations and problems, that come with Synthmaster.

So instead of singing a hymn on the sound and things it's capable of, I'm gonna focus in this review on the opposite and will try to point out some issues and expectations, that aren't fulfilled .


1. The very first thing that got my attention, was the rough, inaccurate parameter handling in Synthmaster. Values displayed in the panel don't change, while the knob indicator does. That means for example, when you're changing a filter cutoff frequency, the knob indicator counts from 34.0 to 34.1, 34.2, 34.3 etc while the related frequency value remains all the time the same with 87,7 Hz. At 35.0 then it immediately switches to 92.9 Hz. What happens in between? I've tried to setup my own formant filters this way, which turned out to be an impossible taks with a parameter handling like that. On higher frequencies the gaps between the displayed values have a size of up to 1kHz! Why aren't the values in between displayed? How is anyone supposed to do accurate settings this way, like e.g. absolutely essential and necessary for formant filters? It's simply impossible.

The even worse thing is, this inaccurate knob behavior goes for absolutely ALL knobs spread over the GUI. Working with something like this in a production is a plain horror to me.

2. No matter what natural instrument you play, if you plug a string, play a key or hit a drum. It usually is a single sound that comes from the instrument on a hit, strike or what ever you want to call it. No instrument does any layering of the ADSR from the former played notes, when you hit the exactly same key again and again and again. The sound would always start over from the beginning. Maybe with a variant sound, but: it starts over! And that's exactly NOT, what Synthmaster does everytime a ADSR phase hasn't arrived at its end. Synthmaster just keeps playing the sound and simply layers a new voice over the exactly same note. The support confirmed this unlogical and unnatural instrument behavior. In practice this produces amplitude layerings without any need and can easily produce volume peaks and other sound problems without any intention or anything wrong in the actual sound design or usage. And of course the result is also redundant CPU usage without any need.


1. There are three filter structures offered in the Layer section: split, parallel and series. The fourth possible configuration (split series = OSC1 -> Filter1->Filter2, OSC2 ->Filter2) for some reason is completely missing. If you're heading for this config, this forces you to waste the second Layer and also setup all the things like filters, envelopes, etc. a second time. Though you'd actually require all these only once. But more on THAT later.


1. The Detune knob has its own life. As soon, as you switch to multiple voices for a unison sound, the dedicated Detune-parameter loses its bipolarity and you instantly get a pitchwise 50% spread sound. Okay. If you now go the other way around and change back from a non-spread and well pitched unison config to a single voice, the result usually is a horrible detuned single voice. That'd make a kinda sense, if there wasn't any Fine Tuning knob and the Detune knob had a double function. But there IS a Fine Tuning knob and the behavior of the Detune appears like pure nonsense. Simply deactivating the Detune parameter, when only 1 voice is selected, would easily solve this. In the Layer section the Detune works exactly like that. In the Oscillator section instead you get these off-pitch results, that make your eyes look cross over your nose, as soon as you hit a key.

2. The Modulators
This to me is one of the real disappointments. There is no real modulation matrix. The modulation routings are predefined by some fixed configs, instead of offering a completely flexible and open matrix like in FM8, Toxic Biohazard or Sytrus for example. And more sad, you can't modulate your carrier with any resonance filtered modulators. Instead, with the "Tone" knob only some kind of very simple (and non-resonant) lowpass filter on the waveform is available. Cross-Oscillator or Cross-Layer modulation isn't possible at all. Most of the currently hip FM growl and scream sounds are actually almost impossible to do with the usual standard waveforms and these limitations.

Beside that there are bugs like for example this one:
When selecting "mod 3+4" as modulator for an oscillator, the display says "mod 2+4" then. Is this a typo or a real misconfig now? I have no idea. I didn't feel like figuring out, how it's now handling this.

3. Synthesis Types
- For the "Basic" synthesis, if you need to inverse your waveform, you have to render it handish yourself and add it to the user library. Way too complicated and time consuming, when a simple "Inverse"-button could easily solve this for all waveforms. Additive Synthesis has this button.

- "Additive" synthesis comes with 8 bands only. An old Hammond B3 organ has 9. The well known Kawai K5000 from 1997 had 128. Of course you could simulate more bands using prepared waveform cycles, but that's not really additive synthesis anymore. The additive synthesis engine in Synthmaster is a VERY basic aproach only. To me this part appears more like an 8-part waveform layering engine. Useful in a way, but far away from being an additive synthesizer with a practical use as such for complex, really additive sounds generated with sinewaves.

1. What I'm missing really bad here, is a vowel/formant filter, capable of at least the standard vowels. Like described above, the rough parameter handling additionally makes it impossible to setup your own.

Envelopes & LFOs:

This to me was the main reason to buy Synthmaster. It appeared like a huge, damn LFO modulation monster. And in some way it is indeed. But have you ever tried to sync your LFOs?

1. Multi-Stage LFOs (Mstg1+2)
These are actually very powerful tools and helpers. Actually. It turned out, in Synthmaster they are completely useless. At least if your trying to create something else than insane and random chaos in your sound. NI Massive uses this kind of LFOs to achieve accurate sequencing of varying filter sweeps and wobbles for example. Those typical moving and driving dubstep sounds you can enjoy by pressing a single key. If you try to do something like this in Synthmaster, you'll find yourself very soon near a mental crack-up. Absolutely nothing on these LFOs makes any sense or works like expected. Manual timing doesn't work because of the above mentioned rough parameter handling, so you're unable to set accurate timing by hand. Using the Sync option also has absolutely no effect. What you get then, is a kinda grid, that doesn't make any sense at all, nor obviously is related to accurate host timing. Activating the Sync option also doesn't tell you, what you are synced to now. 1/1? Per single field of the grid? 1/16, 1/8? Per loop points? How do I set the speed of these LFOs? None knows and meanwhile having tried everything I can imagine, I'd actually think, these LFOs are synced to the moon phase of some random planet far far away, or maybe your neighbours VST host tempo, inverted and divided by Pi. Adding "Stages" in these LFOs adds spline curves, with absolutely no relation to the synced timing. Start & End of the loop are related to what? The stages? Sync Points? Again something none knows, because their settings lead to results, that don't make any sense at all. Using two Stages and setting the Loop start to 1 and End to 2, with infinite loops should actually repeat these two stages then, right? Well, it doesn't. Setting the end to 3 does, so this might be related to the Stages end points. Maybe. But then, even with Sync enabled and considering the Stages end points, your totally unable to get a synced sound.

I've reported the whole thing as a bug and got the response, I'd get a proper working example preset sent. Well, I didn't receive any till today and am not really surprised about it. The whole Multi-Stage LFO-feature is a total fail on absolutely all levels and does absolutely NOTHING of what you'd expect it to do.

2. LFOs
A quite standard thing you'd think, right? Well, they are and they work properly, when you're using them for unrelated stuff. But then again there's that thing about host syncing. Since the Multi-Stage LFOs don't work, you'd have to use the standard LFOs for some less complex wobbles, right? And of course these would have to be synced again. As you might already expect, this too isn't as simple, as it might seem. First let me say, at least some of the expected syncing works, if you regard a few things. For the standard LFOs you can choose a sync resolution, set the LFO speed knob to 127 and... that's it. End of sync story. Your LFO will work accurate only with exactly that speed you chose and you're not able to change that speed while keeping the whole thing in sync. Setting your sync to 1/16 and changing the LFO speed via button to 50% would lead to 1/8 you think? Well, it doesn't. The result is something near 1/8. Just the rough paramter handling you already know from the rest. This is just one example with some obvious values. It also doesn't work with other values. Okay, what now? We could modulate the resolution setting instead, right? Wrong! You can't change it, neither from within the synth, nor from the host via instrument automation. Accurate wobbles with changing speeds in Synthmaster? Dream on and enjoy your dream. Because reality has an ugly face.

Each and every synced wobble sound with varying speeds you get on synthmaster will be out of sync. And it's not the sound designers fault. It's a pure Synthmaster problem. I've also reported this as a bug and got the response, the sound designers hadn't complained about this yet. Well, I'd guess it's about time then.

3. Synth LFOs & envelopes
Why I make this a point is, I can't understand why it's possible to spend global LFOs to the synth, but no global envelopes. I find it quite annoying, to be forced to setup the exactly same ADSR envelope twice, when I actually only need one. Why aren't there global Synth Envelopes, when LFOs of the same state are possible? Another thing, that doesn't make any sense to me. And even if it's necessary to stay with separate envelopes, a copy or transfer functionality from layer to layer would be a nice help. Which actually goes for all component paramters of layers and oscillators, that could be shared. But it's not there.


Okay, enough for now. This became already longer than intended. :) But I guess, this gives a good view on the "less shiny side". In fact it's not all 10/10, if you're caring about designing sounds yourself. Withotu a doubt, the things Synthmaster does like expected are done really well. And it sounds outstanding in many ways and for several reasons. But there really isn't only light all over the place.



29 May 2013 at 2:28pm

Just some clarification, refering to my posting above. :).

This was/is just very detailed description of some momentary issues remained. Remained in a very complex project. Happens. Period. Because of these things, that are constantly debugged anyway, Synthmaster still and for sure has no reason to hide. In fact it is, easily despite the things I mentioned, my absolutely favorite synth atm. And believe me, I'm really using it on hardcore level. Most "normal" users probably won't even ever come along half of the issues. And let's face it: Describing all the positive things on the same detail level, would easily have taken tens of multiples of the space the issues required.

So please, don't fool yourself by reading my recent posting in a way it's not meant. I agree on almost all positive things the users before me listed and just didn't want to repeat them all. Still it's all there. And I appreciate it all. so, if you've got the chance to get your hands on Synthmaster, I strongly recommend to get it! You hardly will find something better for your money atm.

The passion kv331/Bulent works with and the frequency he provides enhancements and updates with, makes me feel confident to give Synthmaster 11/10 with my next review in a while. ;))) Okay, that was kinda bootlicking. :-D.

But seriously, I felt the need to avoid misunderstandings and clarify that. Cheers.

4 August 2013 at 12:33am

I just purchased this two days ago and I still haven't picked my jaw off of the floor. After spending 12 hours on it straight today, still haven't encountered any obstacles preventing me from making the sounds I want... and just when I come up with another whacky idea for a sound, I find KV331 has already provided the means to achieve the routing. I truly think it's safe to say that everything seems to have been thought of in advance!
Okay, I'll admit that I too was a bit daunted by the GUI at first, but after I figured my way around it, there's no going back. If I could post a review, I'd give this a 10/10. Since I can't, this will have to do:
This VST is worth every damn penny and more.

11 August 2013 at 1:03pm

I just purchased this for myself and my daughter. I've been producing for years but she is 14 and I wanted something we could learn together and for her to have one versatile synth to get deep into. I'm in to program rock and she is in to Dub and EDM. Synthmaster has us both covered with tremendous versatility. I want to say thanks for a very reasonably priced, very powerful softsynth. I'm looking forward to further development. Particularly in the wavetable area.

I have one big feature request that I'll post over in the forum: Please move the settings and presets to the user appdata area in Windows like the majority of other synth makers.

Thanks again.

12 August 2013 at 3:37am

I am having some exxxxxxtremely annoying issues with this synth, which really pains me because i am trying to master this synth and make it my go-to. One glaring issue i am having right now is that i am copying the patch FX Tri-Pipe by Insigna to study. I have copied every parameter, and i mean eeevvvry parameter exactly the same as the original but my patch sounds a lot duller in comparison. One thing i am noticing is when i copy the parameters for the easy controls, the settings to not match up at all. In the original they are set to (+) modulation as are mine but for example my delay wont start affecting the sound till the knob is at 50% and passed that the delay cascades like crazy, whereas in the original the delay begins affecting the sound withing the first 50%. Does this have anything to do with the way the Dry/Wet settings are set prior to assigning the easy controls? Could somebody else please try to copy this patch and get back to me cuz i am literally dieing right now haha. I can't figure this out and i feel like i've wasted so much time programming on a faulty synth. another thing that happened when i was building this sound is that the original sound completely disapeared and all that was left was reverb, regardless of the dry/wet setting. did not work again till i reopened synthmaster. And when i try to map an ADSR envelope to the frequency of the multiband eq in order to sweep the band, synthmaster crashes, as soon as i select the envelope as a modulator. Your help is greatly appreciated, i want this to be my favorite synth again... I am pretty sure i am using the latest update 2.6.3, is there a way i can tell from the GUI? and i am using the current generation 15 macbook bro, fully loaded.

P.S. I am absolutely positive i have copied all parameters the exact same. such a pain....

Your assistance is GGGGRRRREEEEAAAAAATTTLLLLYYYYY appreciated.


14 August 2013 at 12:32pm

I think I know what the problem is: His easy parameter settings are unipolar. i.e. between 0 and 1. Later on we made the easy parameters bipolar between -1 +1. So when copying his easy parameter settings, please add offset to the easy parameters.

For instance if the easy parameter value was at zero, you set it to 64 (12 o clock).

I hope this helps, I'll try to fix this in general.

3 October 2013 at 7:58pm

I really like the way this synth sounds. UNFORTUNATELY, I cannot run it for more than 5-10 minutes at a time without it fatally crashing Ableton. Every. Single. Time. So, it is now completely useless. Plus, tech support is a complete joke - emailed them numerous times about the problem, got 1/2 of one response, and now nothing for months. What kind of show are you guys running here? I use a number of other VSTs with no problems - Massive, Nexus, Komplete, Sylenth, you name it - ONLY this plug in is guaranteed to crash my system within minutes of use. I can't speak for how well it works with other DAW's, but their lack of customer service would make me wary regardless. It's really too bad because it DOES sound good, but that's not much use if you CAN'T USE IT.

12 November 2013 at 10:02am

I asked for step by step test case to reproduce the issue. Unless I have a reproduceable case I can not fix the issue.

12 August 2015 at 12:48am

As an update, the 64-bit runs flawlessly in Ableton, so there's that. Recently re-discovered it after switching to an all 64-bit system and it's been working great. Not sure if the customer service has improved but they certainly seem quick on the reply on here at least.

14 January 2014 at 9:45pm

I like Synthmaster a lot. It has a great sound which is really warm and smooth, great possibilities and for me as a wavetable fan, I can load any waveform I want and switch through them easily in the basic oscillators. It would be great though to have that back and forth button for waveform selection in all other oscillators that can use waveforms too! And I would find it REALLY inspiring if Synthmaster would have a "select random waveform from all waveforms available"-button wherever waveforms can be used. Now that would be great.

Most people complain about the GUI here, I find it absolutely straight forward for what Synthmaster can do it pretty much allows me to access everything quickly. I like it a lot! I also didn't need much time to get into it. You just have to get your head free of the "it must look like all other synthesizers or it must look like an analog synth".

21 March 2014 at 7:41pm

Anyone know a simple way to make favorites a selectable bank? I have a lot of them...Thanks.

22 March 2014 at 1:18am

A preset yes.

A bank no.Maybe for a next release...

21 April 2014 at 5:22am

Id like to say first of all, synthmaster sounds excellent. Its great for electro. I find that synthmaster is tedious to program because theres of little buttons to push. It would be nice if buttons wre consolidated and larger. It freezes on me and takes lots of CPU.

All in all, im a proud owner of Synthmaster for my dubstep and electro. Its possible with work to get real real gritty, but it is still a smooth synth right to the end.

21 April 2014 at 5:40am

Id like to say first of all, synthmaster sounds excellent. Its great for electro. I find that synthmaster is tedious to program because theres of little buttons to push. It would be nice if buttons wre consolidated and larger. It freezes on me and takes lots of CPU.

All in all, im a proud owner of Synthmaster for my dubstep and electro. Its possible with work to get real real gritty, but it is still a smooth synth right to the end. Real even.

21 April 2014 at 6:10am

Have you downloaded latest update 2.6.15 ? We changed the unison implementation a little bit to limit polyphony further. We have lots of presets with unison AND analog filters and they DO consume a LOT of CPU.Reducing polyphony, or using Osc Voices instead of Unison DO help a lot.

21 April 2014 at 6:10am

Have you downloaded latest update 2.6.15 ? We changed the unison implementation a little bit to limit polyphony further. We have lots of presets with unison AND analog filters and they DO consume a LOT of CPU.Reducing polyphony, or using Osc Voices instead of Unison DO help a lot.

22 April 2014 at 5:28pm

ok so i chnaged the skin to the grey player and cant change it back?

was really enjoying my seesion until then.

22 April 2014 at 5:39pm


Several of us did the same thing. Bulent posted the solution on their Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/synthmastersoftsynth

It's easy to go back to the SynthMaster skins: On the top header (of Player), click on the left/right arrows to change the current displayed parameter, until Global Skin is shown. Then, click on the skin name to select the new skin from the dropdown menu. Close/reopen the plugin window and you're back!

Make sure you go to GLOBAL skin not the first skin page you get to.


10 July 2015 at 6:48pm

It's always a matter of "how it sounds" and how comfortable I feel when I use a plugin: and Synthmaster sounds great to me. Whatever else counts nothing. It's a matter of taste, of course.

My 2 cents.

12 July 2015 at 10:00am

I tried SynthMaster yesterday and as a wind controller player, I fell in love with the modulation options. I'm not keen on all the Echo on a majority of the factory patches but that's dead simple to adjust. I'm probably going to buy the Everything Upgrade now.

11 August 2015 at 11:57pm

Awesome Synth with almost unlimited capabilities...also a great value for the money. A little slow on responding to email requests for tech support though.

12 August 2015 at 12:37am

Hey, when did you contact us? did you do that through our website ?

10 November 2015 at 8:52pm

Great review, mastrcode. Inspiring to read and just cured my GAS. Will try to go in-depth with synthmaster ;-)

And thank you for your great plugins too.

27 November 2015 at 7:10pm

I've bought synthmaster player and one expansion pack on 21st of november, last saturday and wouldn't download because my music-pc wasn't ready yet. Now I would use the mailed download link today, but it runs into nothing, a failure site comes. What the hell is that? Is my money lost? I'm very angry about that - and nobody did answer till now on my emailqestion.

I feel cheatet - 15 Dollars are burned...

How can I get my payed software? Who can give me a new, but functional, link to download, what I have payed?

Hope, that someone can solve that big problem.

27 November 2015 at 9:11pm

Did you contact us at http://www.synthmaster.com/contactus.aspx.

We can not help you over here without knowing your name and email address.

28 November 2015 at 12:06pm

Thank you - the support was 1st class.

That have to honored - because this is not selv-evident, that on complaints will be so fast and satisfactory answerd.

Now I can try synthmaster and fiddle around it ;-)

Nice Advent to all.


23 May 2016 at 5:25am

Top-notch support! Very responsive.

20 March 2017 at 9:32pm

Could I use Synthmaster for new patches inside Fishman TriplePlay ?



28 December 2017 at 8:16pm

so the other 999 never crashes your DAW? OMG! I sent you a PM so that we could resolve your issue quickly.



9 January 2018 at 1:51pm

Against every logic i still develop sounds for this beautiful synth :)

19 June 2018 at 1:14pm

I enjoy both SM1 and SM2, have not come close to tapping their power. One thing I like, however, is vibrato. This would be vibrato activated by the mod-wheel. Lush 101 has numerous, if not most, voices already programmed with a natural-sounding vibrato, and I don't know why SM has so few voices with vibrato, let alone natural sounding, and not lurching or goofy sounding. I prefer to use presets and perhaps tweak them, but I don't want to spend any time programming a sound, and I wouldn't know how to create vibrato anyway.

28 September 2019 at 7:31am

To Godly:

There are a lot of skins out there already. Guess one of them is already to your liking.

What I miss the most in Synthmaster: A better browser. It does not "pick up" all the libraries and display them in a unison way.

27 November 2019 at 2:54pm

Really love both SynthMaster and SynthMaster One.. created couple of tutorials:
SynthMaster One: https://youtu.be/HPlAeEZfa9o
SynthMaster: https://youtu.be/LHtTDWyR8Rk

All three three synths (including the player): https://youtu.be/Lah8_r-c-oI

2 May 2022 at 6:24am

The SM One review is still online, but the video for SM 2 is not available.

I thought I'd chip in and add a less than 3 minutes short tutorial (no talking), on how to use SM 2 as a standalone fx unit:


23 December 2020 at 1:39am

There are no new skins in 2.9, it just shows the old ones.

23 December 2020 at 8:29am

Are you really really sure that we did not include any new skins ? Did you install v2.9.9 ? Do you know how to change the current skin? It's written in the user manual. Thanks.

23 December 2020 at 9:02am

I did not have SM2 installed so i installed a fresh copy from your website and it was the old version. I found out that this only worked after opening sm2 and choosing to update from the software.

23 December 2020 at 9:09am

Ok so we confirmed that there are new skins in v2.9.9 :D.

23 December 2020 at 3:41pm

Yes, the update is spectacular sir. It looks like serum but better imo.

2 May 2022 at 6:47am

I jumped onboard with SM 2 around 2015/16 (I think), and have since then bought many of the VSTs out there.

The biggest ones being Reaktor and Melda SoundFactory. SynthMaster remains a favorite, that I gladly fire up. While the sound quality isn't as refined as in in, say Pigments or SoundFactory, these two simply can't sound like SynthMaster and I like it and return to it for it.

That, and the CPU efficiency have been the top reasons, apart from an enjoyable programming experience. It has a great toolset, and SM3 looks to further expand on the status of "Swiss army knife" status of SynthMaster, with promised granular capability, new layers functionality and the ability to load SM One (and perhaps simple SM 2?) patches into each of those layers(!). Well, there goes CPU efficiency out the window, but what can you do? :) Of course, using it as it is now (May 2022) will stay as an option, so the low tug on resources remains of course.

Here's a less than 3 minutes short tutorial (no talking) I did some time ago, on how to use SM 2 as a standalone fx unit, as they are of high quality and holds their own ground:


Please log in to join the discussion