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All reviews by CadeBryant

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Reviewed By CadeBryant [all]
May 11th, 2005
Version reviewed: 1 on Windows

Atmosphere is an extremely useful and inspiring tool for just about any electronic composer/arranger......not only for new age and soundtracks and special effects (which Atmosphere is obviously well suited for), but also for pop, dance, and even classical.

Most of the sounds fall into the categories of evolving soundscapes, lush pads, bell tones, and complex unusual timbres that can be dreamy, spooky, trance-like, and eerie.

But one of the big surprises for me was the string patches: they are simply gorgeous, and they instantly inspire all kinds of melodic/harmonic ideas. you can get lost for hours sitting at your keyboard with the Cathedral Strings or Adagio Expressivo patches. Unlike most ROMpler/workstation generic string pads, these strings are actually good enough for classical arrangements! It's true that a "dedicated" orchestral library like GPO or EWQLSO Silver will give you more "realistic" sounds and a greater range of articulations........but those sounds, in all their pristine purity, don't "inspire" me to make music the way the Atmosphere strings do. You can really fatten up your orchestral arrangements by layering these sounds behind your "real" string parts.

My only real gripe is that, just as with Trilogy, some of the patches don't come with enough velocity sensitivity for my taste, and you have to manually adjust this to get it just right.
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Reviewed By CadeBryant [all]
May 11th, 2005
Version reviewed: 1 on Windows

I recently bought Trilogy and am satisfied. I don't use synth basses all that much; I got Trilogy mainly for its electric and acoustic basses, and these are excellent. I haven't used Yellow Tools Majestic or EWQL Hardcore Bass or any other competing products, so I'm not sure how Trilogy compares to them. But the sound quality definitely blows away any other bass sounds I've used (with the possible exception of some of the basses that came with my copy of Kontakt).

Very usable basses that will add life and realism to your tracks. Admittedly, it is very hard to create a convincing bass line using conventional synth/ROMplers and sequencers. If you do a lot of tracking that includes upright basses, electric basses, etc., and you find that they end up sounding too MIDI-ish and unrealistic, adding Trilogy to your soundware arsenal will definitely help.

My only gripe is that most of them have very little velocity sensitivity, but this can be user-edited. This is a bit of a pain, having to do this for each patch you want to use.
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Reviewed By CadeBryant [all]
January 13th, 2004
Version reviewed: 1 on Windows

No one workstation is going to meet everyone's needs - nor was I expecting Hypersonic to do so. I own other synth-sampler plugins. I primarily wanted a "scratchpad" with which I could have immediate access to my creativity. In this regard, Hypersonic is more than satisfying. I can always go back and substitute sounds from other VSTis later.

User Interface: very intuitive and easy to learn. sounds are categorized by type, they load quickly, and it's easy to set the mix for each patch. Many commonly-tweaked parameters such as attack/release can be adjusted on the fly via "dials" on the bottom of the display. And any changes that you make to a sound are saved when you save the host sequence file.

Drums: there are some good drum sounds, and the way the kits are programmed makes it easy to set pan, effects, etc. for each sound group (kicks/snares/etc.) The "Drum Kit Constuctor" is the coolest and most intuitive method I've seen for customizing your own drum set: you can use the wheels to dial in the sound you want for each drum on the fly.

Synth sounds: a lot of good synth pads and bells. Not a loser in the group. Huge selection.

Pianos: the grand piano is very usable and works well within a mix. The sound may be a little bright for classical, but it works well for pop....definitely a cut above the pianos found in the average hardware workstation. The electric pianos, however, I was not as impressed with; they lack dynamism.

Strings: the ensemble strings have a realistic "body" - but the ensemble sound is a little too small and thin for my taste (I prefer rich, lush string pads). In addition, the abrupt attacks and releases sound Mellotron-ish (this problem can be mitigated somewhat by editing the envelopes). But within a mix, these strings work well.

Unfortunately there are no solo or section strings.

I wasn't too impressed with the harp....sounds more like a new-age "synth harp" than a real concert harp.

Woodwinds: unfortunately this was disappointing. The flute seems to have too much of an octave overtone, and if you strike a note hard it does an octave pitch leap (which is not always what you would desire). In addition, there is no oboe or english horn; the double-reeds are represented only by a fuzzy-sounding bassoon.

The alto sax is excellent - but the bari sax sounds like the alto sample tuned an octave lower....not cool. Where's the buzzy edge, the bottom-end kick?

Percussion: some good sounds here (particularly the ethnic percussion), but the "tubular bells" aren't realistic at all.

(In all fairness, most "workstation" keyboards don't have great orchestral sounds either. Since I have GPO and SR's "Symphony Strings" on order, the lack of good orchestral sounds in Hypersonic doesn't bother me).

Bottom line: a good all-around workstation for expanding your palette and sketching out your ideas. For $300 you can't go wrong. Have a look at it before buying SampleTank.
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