To state my opinion up front; this synth is VERY good. But I'll elaborate on that.
First of all, Guitarbro (the developer) choose to leave any effects like a chorus and a delay out of the design and I think that decision was a very good one. Because of that you get to hear what this synthesizer is really capable of. It's oscillators sound very analog and the filter is among the best I've heard in a software synthesizer. They are so good that Logana sounds quite impressive WITHOUT any effects. There are not that many software instruments that can pull that one off.
However, when you download Logana you'll find a very capable multi-FX unit in the package that can be used on other instruments as well.
The GUI is made by Limeflavour which means it is top notch. It makes Logana very inspiring to work with. It is laid out very logical and makes it a good synth to start with if you want to learn sound construction.
Being mainly a run of the mill VA, Logana does have some very nice features; 3 oscillators where the third can act as a normal oscillator, a sub-oscillator and as a modulation source. It has a highly optimized filter that goes up to 36db slope, which sounds incredible, and a modulation section that let you cross-modulate the oscillators in a number of ways. It's not your modular monster but it has a nice balance between complexity and usability.
All this makes Logana a very useful instrument, I would almost say for 'bread and butter' sounds. It can do screaming leads and nice bases but also very fat pads and synstrings. Throw in the FX-unit and it can easily match many other good synths including some commercial ones. For myself; let's just say I don't need a Little Phatty anymore (yes, I think it is THAT good).
There is no manual or other documentation, and as Logana is quite new, it will take some time before the tutorials start to pop up on Youtube. However, Guitarbro is active on the forum here on KVR, and besides being a nice guy he's very active in listening to the users and updating Logana accordingly. Several small bugs have already been ironed out in the current version and the patch-memory, originally holding 16 presets has been changed to 128 slots.
Logana currently comes with just a few presets but they show off the great sounding oscillators and filter. More presets will come as several users (including myself) are working on patch-banks for Logana.
If you like VA's then definitely give Logana a try. It's one of the best (FREE) ones in it's class.
The user interface is rather big, but then again, there are a lot of knobs on it. The interface is made up of two major sections. The top section that has the master controls and all the sound settings that act on the current selected pad. The lower part consists of sixteen pads that can contain one drum sample each. There are also volume and panning controls on each pad and a big button that you can use to audition the sounds. The buttons even move when you play back your drum pattern so you can see which sound plays when. The knobs are moved by a vertical movement of the mouse (my preferred way). They also have the little pop-up function that shows an exact value when you move a control. All very familiar when you have seen a Muon synth, but also very useful.
Read the complete review at Orion-central: http://www.orion-central.com/reviewsr202.shtml
It's a fairly simple unit so don't expect any miracles. There are no velocity layers for example, but most freeware drum units don't have those. There are no filters or bit crushers. Actually, each sound only has volume and panning. Besides this you can assign each sound to one of four stereo outputs. There are also three mute groups that you can use to cut sounds based on another one sounding. So far this sounds like the next average sample player, but the fun starts when you find out that the whopping 48 sounds you can load, can be played in reverse at the same time. This makes the LoopAZoid very useful for all kinds of experimental drum programming and what else.
Read the complete review at Orion-central: http://www.orion-central.com/reviewloopazoid.shtml
The user-interface is BIG and it will fill a 800x600 screen completely. But it is big for a reason: there are 54 pads to load sounds into and all controls that are available to process a sound are available on the same screen. There is also a preview of the sound wave you are working on, that shows al kinds of manipulations as curves over the waveform. Because of this, working with Battery is a breeze and the learning curve is very short. Besides this there are several settings for each and every part of the instrument and everything is accessible by little buttons that are placed right on the spot where you need them. I have to say that I didn't touch the user manual once while exploring the possibilities of Battery.
Read the complete review at Orion-central: http://www.orion-central.com/reviewbattery.shtml
As I hinted in the introduction, this synth sound wonderful. It's filter is magnificent and with two oscillators there is not much to be wished for. Well, a noise generator and Hard-sync between the oscillators would make it a VERY complete synth. Because there are clearly some very high quality sound routines used in programming this synth, it does use a rather big amount of CPU power. There is a polyphony setting that let you limit the amount of voices to keep things in order though. Besides this, the CM-101 has some hidden tricks like reversible Envelope and LFO modulation on the Filter section and reversible modulation amounts on the Oscillators as well.
read the full review at Orion-central: http://www.orion-central.com/reviewcm101.shtml
The Tau Pro sounds impressive, certainly for a bassline. It is clear that no other bassline can produce the wide array of sounds that the Tau Pro is capable of. You can use the Tau Pro for more than only basses and the excellent set of presets that comes with it shows what it can do as a lead synth too. However, I don't see it producing wide pads or such but that is no point, as the Tau Pro is advertised as a bassline synth. And from that perspective it sounds unbelievable phat and versatile.
Read the full review on Orion-central: http://www.orion-central.com/reviewtaupro.shtml
Should you buy it ? The Rainbow 2 is clearly in the same league as the gakstoar Delta. If you are aiming at experimenting with sound but don't want to get into modular monsters, then the Rainbow 2 is certainly worth a look. I think the interface could be a tad more intuitive but after playing around with it for a while it's starting to make sense. And then the fun starts. The Rainbow 2 is a great synth.
Read the full review on Orion-central: http://www.orion-central.com/reviewrainbow2.shtml
If you buy only one additional synth plugin for Orion, this is the one to get. The PPG has such a broad range of sounds that you could use it for anything. If you are looking for an additional synth to add to your already available pile of plugins, the PPG can add sounds to your arsenal like no other synth can. The PPG Wave 2.x is definitely a plugin synth with a very high "want to have" level.
Read the full review on Orion-central: http://www.orion-central.com/reviewppgwave.shtml
Do you need it? If you like to use all kinds of different synths then you can't beat the price on this one. If you are the not so patient kind that like to load a synth, grab a preset or quickly patch up a nice impressive sound, pass on this one. The JX220 certainly has a distinct sound of it's own and can be a nice addition to your synths, if you take the time to program it properly. If you do, it can be a gem. This is clearly a synth for real men, persistence is the word here. But it being free, you can't go wrong in trying, now can you.
Read the full review on Orion-central: http://www.orion-central.com/reviewjx220.shtml
Eventually it comes down to sound. And the JX10 doesn't look real good, but it certainly sounds great. Until I stumbled upon this little gem I thought only a commercial synth like the Pro52 was capable of such a broad spectrum of sounds. As with the Pro52, the filter is so incredible smooth that it's very close to the fatness of a real (hardware) analogue synth. The fact that I'm holding the JX10 against the Pro52 (which is the best VSTi recreation of an analogue synth to my opinion) should give you an impression on how good the JX10 actually sounds. In short: I'm impressed.
Read the full review on Orion-central: http://www.orion-central.com/reviewmdajx10.shtml