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Zephyr

Good reasonably priced synth/sampler?

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I have a little spare cash on hand and am looking to expand my workstation. I'm looking for a good software synth/sample library/generator to enhance my sounds that's relatively cheap, but a good value that won't limit me too much, I don't want to be limited by what I can do with it (primarily for a synth, which is what I'd like to get) but something that I can also make simple sounds with without too much trouble. I'd like something VST compatable that works well inside a DAW. I've been using mainly synth1 up to this point, and while it's great for the simple sounds, I'd like to get something a little better.

Any suggestions!?

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I'm looking for a good software synth/sample library/generator to enhance my sounds that's relatively cheap, but a good value that won't limit me too much, I don't want to be limited by what I can do with it (primarily for a synth, which is what I'd like to get) but something that I can also make simple sounds with without too much trouble

http://www.kvraudio.com/get/214.html

IMO don't waste money buying softsynths. There's free synths out there that are just as good, if not better than most of their commercial counterparts.

Sample libraries are a different matter though. Not very many good free ones there :( but what kind of samples are you looking for?

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http://www.kvraudio.com/get/214.html

IMO don't waste money buying softsynths. There's free synths out there that are just as good, if not better than most of their commercial counterparts.

i agree and disagree.

there are many awesome freeware things out there.

and then there is the komplete synths package from NI. (massive, absynth, pro-53, fm8 ) since i got this last year, i rarely use anything else.

(edited for weird emoticon/punctuation issue)

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For a good value in terms of sounds/price/quality/functionality it is really hard to beat Wusikstation.

Freeware: (there are def more good freeware out there!)

RGC:Audio Triangle2

SuperwaveP8

Crystal

Helix

Some easy to use payware synths:

(lower in price)

ReFX Vanguard

Linplug Alpha3

Tone2 Firebird+

ConcreteFX Kubik

Image-Line Toxic Biohazard

Cakewalk z3ta+ (PC only, prob will never be updated again)

(harder to program)

Anything by GForce (vintage synth emulations)

Some more advanced payware:

(expensive)

Linplug Albino3 (made with Rob Papen)

u-he Zebra2

Rob Papen Predator

LinPlug CronoX3

LennarDigital Sylenth1

Vember Audio Surge

(these can be a bit harder to program)

Anything by Arturia (vintage synth emulations)

Anything by Native Instuments

Rob Papen Blue

Image-Line Sytrus

Image-Line Morphine

Tone2 Gladiator (the UI is HUGE and if you don't have a big monitor you will run outta screen space)

More importantly what type of sound are you looking for? Every synth has it's own unique character that lends well itself well to different artists.

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I can't stand Wusikstation. I've tried to like it, I really have, and I just think it sounds thin with annoying, weak presets and a flimsy interface. Bleh.

Zebra 2 is my recommendation for a soft synth. It is incredibly powerful with a character like a hardware synth but an incredible ability to sit in a mix well, plus one of the most powerful (and easy to use) synth engines anywhere.

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I can't stand Wusikstation. I've tried to like it, I really have, and I just think it sounds thin with annoying, weak presets and a flimsy interface. Bleh.

Zebra 2 is my recommendation for a soft synth. It is incredibly powerful with a character like a hardware synth but an incredible ability to sit in a mix well, plus one of the most powerful (and easy to use) synth engines anywhere.

I gotta say, if you are going to get Zebra2, buy the presets Zircon made for it, the included presets are complete ass, and unless you are super into synths, I found the programming to be needlessly obtuse.

I won't argue that good sounds can be achieved with it (Zircon is a great example), but it was not working for me at all, and I ebayed it after flailing for a few months.

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Seconding the Komplete Synths package; it's a truly great collection now that Massive's included.

Otherwise, http://www.kvraudio.com/news/8865.html looks to be very interesting. It's got some great UI principles going for it.

A few pieces of freeware are truly great; however, most of the SynthEdit things are shovelware.

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As far as cash, I've noticed that the average cost for a good synth is about $200, and I wouldn't like to go much higher than that. I've downloaded the demos for zebra2, z3ta+, vanguard, albino, FM8, and absynth, but I doubt I'll get very in depth into any of them, I'd rather pick one to get used too. I'm more interested in what most of you guys use, whether it be freeware, or payware or whatever else. What's YOUR favorite?

I've been using Synth1 for a while now and I'm starting to be limited by it. Even though I'm still relatively new to electronic music, I'd rather spend a little extra cash now rather than have to upgrade 5 times to meet my needs. As for the type of sounds I want to make, like I said, I don't really want to be limited by it. I'd like to be able to make anything from ambient pads to crazy lead synths. Thanks for your help so far, keep it coming!

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If you are wanting to focus on one versatile synth that def narrows the list down.

Albino3

Zebra2

Absynth

Blue

Rapture

Out of those 5 IMO Absynth is prob the hardest the wrap your head around, with Rapture coming in a close second. The big thing to remember that while all 5 are extremely versatile they all have a slightly different sound. They are all extremely flexible when it comes to their oscillators or available sound sources (you can load wav files in Rapture or Absynth).

I own Albino3, Blue, and Absyth. I never use Absynth because it is a pain in the ass to program and I don't care for it's sound. My fav is Albino3 for many reasons. It's easy to program, sits well in a mix, and EXTREMELY versatile. You can have up to 16 oscillators in one patch. Adjustable unison on every OSC too.

I really like Blue but it has a very buttery digital sound to it. It doesn't always go with every type of song. It also is a lil too fat. It sounds VERY big and doesn't always lend itself to really simple sounds that sit well in a mix. But if you want big fat digital sounds for dance music holy crap is it awesome.

Both Blue and Albino3 come with almost 2000 factory presets made by Rob Papen. (one of the best preset designers EVER)

Zebra2 is an incredible synth and one I really wished I liked. It is def the most versatile synth on the market. I have demoed it a bunch of times, but it just never clicked with me. It probably has the cleanest sound out of any synth. It def sit in almost any mix. It easily has the BEST collection of 3rd party patches.

Frankly I would demo Albino3 and Zebra2 and see which one clicks. Two others I didn't mention are z3ta+ and Toxic Biohazard.

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Out of those 5 IMO Absynth is prob the hardest the wrap your head around,

but at the same time,once you learn it, you can make amazing sounds. it isn't the easiest thing to learn, but its sounds are pretty well into a class of its own.

it's really worth it to put the time into learning how to use any synth well. the more you understand synth architechture, the more you can pick up any synth and make some amazing sounds.

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I'm working my way through building a zebra patch right now, then I think I'm gonna try albino. Thanks for the tips Avaris, they were very helpful.

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