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The Glue [read all reviews]
Reviewed By Rabid [read all by] on 13th November 2012
Version reviewed: 1.2.1 on Windows
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
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My approach to compression and The Glue is very different than the first two reviewers. My experience with finalizing a mix is limited. My comfort zone was always with playing music and my old musician ears are losing the detail that makes me comfortable mixing. What I need is a compressor for idiots and with a light touch The Glue does that very well. On the final bus and with a light touch it does bring the mix together.

I have a few of the compressors available in the UA system. The Glue is half the price, not bound to hardware and both competes and compliments the UA compressors. It may be a bit early but right now I would call The Glue the must have compressor for any budget. It is nice that most any budget can afford it.

Lounge Lizard EP-4 [read all reviews]
Reviewed By Rabid [read all by] on 28th January 2004
Version reviewed: 2 on Windows
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
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This is a purchase that I put off for a long time because I hate the
challenge-response method of copy protection. Once I finally gave in I wish I had bought Lounge Lizard earlier. At least registration process immediately sends you the registration key. As for sounds there is nothing for the PC that comes close when you need a variety of ep’s. It handles Rhodes and Whurly equally well. Some may complain about the Lounge Lizard sounding darker or duller than the Emagic product, but Lounge Lizard sounds like a real Rhodes or Whurly. If you want that bright, clean, clear and heavily processed sound then you only need to follow it with some effects, just as you would the real hardware. The phaser, tremolo, and other effects sections can be programmed for the sound you want, and turned on and off at will. This doe not work well when you are pulling up a sequence. It is a bit CPU heavy, but so is most good VSTi's. You can always cut back the polyphony when sequencing, then mute other VSTi's and up the polyphony when you want to record Lounge Lizard to HD.

Positive:
True Rhodes and Whurly sound.
Authentic effects like we used on the originals.
Easy to dial up sounds.
No irritating key mapping or velocity sample changes. It does not use samples.

Negatives:
Challenge response copy protection.
Skimpy customer service.

The best option available for the PC if you want authentic electronic pianos. This is a must buy.

Robert
EMM Knagalis [read all reviews]
Reviewed By Rabid [read all by] on 28th January 2004
Version reviewed: 1 on Windows
4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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Ok. Let’s get down to the facts. This is not your normal subtractive VA. This is not FM. It is not like 500 other VSTi’s around. But is this a positive or negative? Good products get copied until there are hundreds of copycats. 100’s of different products fail and are quickly forgotten. So do you need something like EMM Knagalis? If you don’t have a subtractive VA, you need that instead. If you don’t have FM, you need that instead. If you don’t have a drum machine or sampler, you need those more. But, if you have the basic covered then go for something different. Does anyone really need 10 different VA’s?

Knagalis brings a bit of variety and flavor to my VSTi lineup. Sometimes this is just what is needed to give a bit of inspiration. It is not something that I would grab for most songs, but it is something that I can play around with and come up with an idea that may not have happened with a standard VA. For this reason it is a nice addition to a mature lineup.

Pro’s:
Good sound.
Easy interface.
Different.
Great support.

Con’s:
May not be as useful as many other VSTi’s that you probably already own.

Robert
pHATmatik Pro [read all reviews]
Reviewed By Rabid [read all by] on 22nd December 2003
Version reviewed: 1.1 on Windows
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To be honest I hardly use this VSTi in the intended method. It is nice for what it does and is great for mangling loops. But for me the real use is to pull those loops apart. My host has supported drag and drop since I first bought this VSTi, so my primary use has been to pull an Acid loop into PhatmaticPro, edit the slices, then pull those slices over into Battery. I have created some very nice kits using the combination of PhatmaticPro and Battery. Not drum kits, but scratch kits, vocal kits, effects kits, etc. Another alternative use for PhatmaticPro is to extract the “feel” of a loop to a MIDI file. PhatmaticPro not only breaks a loop into slices, it creates a MIDI information to play those slices in correct time. That MIDI information can be use in some host as a source for creating a groove template or feel. Start with a loop that has a nice funky feel, and end with applying that feel to sequenced drums or arps. I will defer to other reviewers as to how well it works for playing loops.

Pros:
More than just a loop player.
Drag and drop ability.
Ease of use.

Cons:
Occasional stability issues.
Customer support is sometimes a bit unfriendly.
Slow updates.
Future PC update is in question.

Note: There are no presets so my preset rating is an average of the other ratings.

Robert
Atmosphere [read all reviews]
Reviewed By Rabid [read all by] on 22nd December 2003
Version reviewed: 1 on Windows
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
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I have long been a fan of Roland ROMplers and was very excited when I heard that Eric Pershing was releasing a VSTi dedicated to pads. Since getting Atmosphere I am not disappointed. When buying this products you are not just getting samples and patches, you are getting a lot of extensive work done with a large variety of sound sources and effects. While the price of Atmosphere may seem high, consider the price of just renting all of the units used to create these sounds, not to mention the time involved.

Make no mistake, this unit is for pads. Long, lush pads. It can be used for other parts, but pads is the strong point. As with any ROMpler the danger here is when too many people use the same presets. You can mix and match combos of sounds, and edit those sounds within the VSTi, but it still comes down to the original sample. Some of these sounds are very good, and that makes a lot of people want to use them in their songs. Too often the evolving part of the sound is samples rather than synthesized with the VSTi so there is not really that much you can do to change the sound without a loss of quality. This is a very basic synth playing samples of some very nicely processed synths and effects.

As mentioned before, the LFO does not sync with MIDI. This is a major limitation when trying to do any sequenced effect. But, if you are creating these patches with a real Moog Modular or Oberheim SEM then you will also be without MIDI sync. What this lack of MIDI sync does is restrict the ways you can use Atmosphere. Even so, it is a great deal considering the usefulness and quality.

Pros:
Sound quality.
Sample quality.
Amount of detail in creating the samples that make up the patches.
Great use of effects in the sample creation process.

Cons:
Lack of LFO sync to MIDI.
Much of what makes up a fantastic sound is sampled rather than created with the synth engine. This makes for limited editing of patches.
Challenge Response copy protection.

Robert
Trilogy [read all reviews]
Reviewed By Rabid [read all by] on 22nd December 2003
Version reviewed: 1 on Windows
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
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I find this to be “almost” one of my most useful VSTi’s. I like the concept of having all types of bass sounds available in a single VSTi. It helps that the sound quality and production is so good. The major short fall for me is the lack of LFO to MIDI sync. The importance of this depends on the part I am playing, but in modern VSTi’s the lack of LFO sync is almost inexcusable.

In both Trilogy and Atmosphere it is easy to be overwhelmed by the number of sounds and patches. Learning this instrument takes time and everyone should make a list of favorite patches to use during the first few months.

So where does this VSTi fall when comparing it to other bass sound sources? Even though it is a bit expensive, it is a good value. For someone starting out, or someone wanting an all in one solution this is a great kit. It is not going to replace a collection of good VSTi’s and sample collections dedicated to bass. And many times it is easier to dial up a desired bass sound in The Beast or some other VSTi than find the patch I want in Trilogy. But it does give you a very good collection of samples that are already programmed and processed. Most VA’s cannot compete solically with a good sample of a Moog or Roland. For this reason, a good set of VSTi’s dedicated to bass will also not replace Trilogy.

Pros:
Sound quality.
Patch quality.
Sample quality, especially samples of analog instruments.
All in one unit for bass.

Cons:
No LFO sync to MIDI.
Challenge responce copy protection.

Robert
CronoX [read all reviews]
Reviewed By Rabid [read all by] on 9th December 2003
Version reviewed: 2.04 on Windows
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
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CronoX seems to be one of those synths that you either love or hate. For me, this purchase just never worked out. To begin with, when I tried the demo it refused to work on either of my systems. All I ever got from customer support was that the problem must be with my system because it worked fine for them. I suggested that it might just be a problem with the demo version but that went nowhere. It was not until after I purchased the Bundle and reported that the real full version worked fine but the demo still refused to work that they found a problem with the demo. This was a frustrating first contact with a normally good company. That along with lots of early denorm problems probably kept me from using this synth as much as I might have.

As for the sound, I can see where it might be useful, but I don’t really like it. The sound is very digital. This can be good in some respects, but it is a thin digital sound. Way too thin for the CPU resources it consumes. The patches I do like easily spikes my P4 into overload. It can be useful on percussion, but it is more like a timbale than a deep, oak tom-tom. The concept is very nice and you can do a lot with sounds you load, but the quality of the filters are not up to the level of the rest of the instrument. Of all the LinnPlug instruments I own, this is the least used and most troublesome. Every few months I pull it out and give it another try, then put it away and go back to using other instruments.

Robert
Tassman [read all reviews]
Reviewed By Rabid [read all by] on 9th December 2003
Version reviewed: 3.02 on Windows
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
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I’ve had a love-hate relationship with Tassman since it was included in my purchase of Sonar XL. The Origional DXi version was full of problems. I eventually paid for the upgrade to the full version and the VSTi Tassman was a bit more stable. I now have version 3.02. It is more stable than earlier versions. The only other problem I’ve had with Tassman was the Pace protection they used. Customer service is also pretty bad. I get better response from posting on KvR than I do posting on the official web site. But, lets move on to the sound.

There is not real competition for Tassman that I am aware of. It does physical modeling, and does it well. Some hardware manufacturers do physical modeling but it is limited and expensive. Once Nord Modular G2 is released this may change. The Tassman sound is pretty good and it is much easier to construct instruments in Tassman than in Reaktor or Vaz. I will say that both Reaktor and Vaz seem to have more routing and modulation options. The available instruments are good but you will not find an ep that can compete with LoungeLizzard. If you have a collection of VA’s modulars, FM and additive synths, then physical modeling will give you some variety. Tassman can do the VA bit, but not as well as Reaktor or Vaz. The effects are just ok and the GUI takes a bit more space than necessary.

One problem to note, many included instruments have the polyphony limit set way too low. Especially the ep’s. There is also a repeatable bug that I encounter when using sustain pedal on ep’s. It seems to affect the filter. I have reported multiple couple of times but never received a response.

Pros:
Sound
It does physical modeling
Ease of constructing instruments

Cons:
Customer support
Challenge response copy protection
CPU usage is a bit heavy but getting better with updates
Occasional bugs

Robert
DirectiXer [read all reviews]
Reviewed By Rabid [read all by] on 9th December 2003
Version reviewed: 2.5 on Windows
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I love this thing. I purchased DirectiXer not long after getting Sonar I and it has been one of my best purchases. I did not realize how nice it is until I got the Cakewalk adapter with the purchase of Project5. I much prefer DireciXer because of the ease of use. Big K is right on top of updates and quickly handles new features. He also seems to be a help to other developers when they are having difficulty tracing down problems in their VSTi’s. The only thing I don’t like is the copywrite system, but I totally understand when software is a developer’s primary income. I did loose my number once after a bad HD caused me to loose everything. After emailing for customer support I had my SN within 5 minutes. If you use Sonar, you need DireciXer.

Pros:
Ease of use.
Stability
Quick support of new features and new VSTi’s.

Cons:
Copy protection.

Robert

PS: The review system forces you to select a value for sound and presets. I set them to 9 becaue that is close to the average rating for the rest of the areas.
Free Alpha [read all reviews]
Reviewed By Rabid [read all by] on 9th December 2003
Version reviewed: 2.? on Windows
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Was it helpful to you? Yes No
This is one of the better free VSTi’s. Quality wise it matches up with Triangle I and Triange II, both of which are mono. If you want that LinnPlug sound and don’t have the money, try this synth. If you are not sure how the LinnPlug sound will sit in your mix and don’t want to create a song with demos, try this synth. I like it best for the softer pads. The simple architecture does not have the modulation matrix of Delta III or Albino, but it still sounds good for simple part, and not every part in a song needs to be a complex pad. I also believe in using the most basic synth for the part as to help with CPU efficiency, along with the efficiency of the person writing the music.

Pros:
Free
Decent sound.
Good for basic pads.
Easy to use and learn.

Cons:
None for a free synth that works well and sounds good.

Robert
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