MATRIXSYNTH: Buchla 259e Twisted Waveform Generator Comes to Software

Dave Smith Instruments
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Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Buchla 259e Twisted Waveform Generator Comes to Software


Published on Sep 27, 2017 Published on Sep 27, 2017

"Get your free 20-day trial license here: http://softu.be/buchla_259e

✮ Buchla 259e is the first ever officially licensed Buchla plug-in. The equally unique and desirable dual oscillator—with a truly twisted circuitry—is available as an expansion to Softube's Modular ✮"


"The Buchla 259e Twisted Waveform Generator plug-in for Modular features all the digital waveshaping, aliasing noise and foldover frequencies of the original hardware. Enjoy the self-modifying, screeching, snarling responses from the original’s downright odd inner workings. The 259e is a unique addition to the Modular ecosystem.

'Coming from a staunch, obsessive analog Buchla tradition I was skeptical about a virtual 259e. But Softube has knocked it out of the park.'

Todd Barton, Buchla Legend

What Is a Twisted Waveform Generator Anyways?
The 259e consists of two separate oscillators—Principal and Modulation—where Modulation can be used either to modulate the Principal oscillator or as a separate generator of audible notes. Furthermore, the sine wave generated by the Principal oscillator is simultaneously applied to two of the eight available waveshape tables. A morph voltage pans between the two tables and a warp voltage varies the amplitude of the sinusoidal (driving) waveform. Both these functions can be modulated by the Modulation oscillator.

'Three years ago I purchased a Buchla Easel and it really changed the way I compose my music. The Softube Buchla 259e makes me not miss my Easel too much while travelling.'

Andreas Tilliander, Producer, DJ, remixer and artist.

Here's Where it Gets Really Twisted
Three of the waveshape tables are actually not tables in the classical sense—they are simply portions of the 259e operating program, full of unpredictable noise and frequent silences. This is the innovative Mem Skew mode, possibly the most unique feature of the Buchla 259e. When these tables are selected, the FM controls are re-assigned to table scanning functions and the FM inputs become table modulators.

To sum it up, while the Buchla 259e can certainly be used for more traditional sounds, it excels at creating otherworldly twisted digital sonic landscapes. Which is why it is one of the most coveted synth modules on the market.

'I've recently recorded some tracks with my Buchla system and when I listen back, I can't remember if it's the Softube Buchla 259e or my Buchla hardware being the sound source. Pure love.'

Andreas Tilliander, Producer, DJ, remixer and artist.

Here you can check out the original hardware module:
buchla.com​/product​/259e-twisted-waveform-generator

In Short

Unique and desirable oscillator
Perfect for screeching, harsh and digital sounds
Can also be tamed to sound quite smooth and organic. Can morph smoothly between these softer sounds and the more in-your-face sounds
The digital parts are ported from the hardware line by line, the wavetables byte by byte, and the analog parts are modeled component by component
The first-ever officially licensed Buchla plug-in
Requires Modular"

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