MATRIXSYNTH: Madrona Labs Introduces Virta Sound Controlled Synthesis and Effects

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Madrona Labs Introduces Virta Sound Controlled Synthesis and Effects

We have a new synth app from Madrona Labs, the maker of the Buchla inspired Aalto. This one uses audio to synthesize new sounds. The synthesis and effect can be subtle or extreme as you can hear in the demos above.

Via the Madrona Labs website:

"Virta is a patchable toolbox for turning your voice or other instrument into wild new synth sounds."

And from the manual:

"Synthesizers and effects. In this crazy mixed-up world, what could be better? On and on, we tweak and twist, searching for something. Smiles creeping across our faces all the while. The roiling sea of knobs and buttons and lights are magnetic. We seek, pure of heart, to merge with the world of sound.

Alas, we sometimes find ourselves stopped short.

It can be a tall order to get the level of expression and immediacy that you crave with traditional synthesizers and processors. is goes double if you’ve got to work quickly, but want to maintain a satisfying amount of complexity and variance in your sound. Perhaps, in the heat of a creative moment, you have wished to simply dive into a synth or effect and command it by thought. There is no shame in that.

This, to a large degree, is why we’ve created Virta - a modular synthesizer and effects processor that responds directly to you.

When you route your voice (or any kind of audio) into Virta, the sound analysis engine precisely extracts information about its pitch, timbre, and dynamics over time. These new signals can control nearly any parameter in Virta, just the same as you can with MIDI or OSC.

Tis makes for an instrument that can easily follow your every twist and turn. Living the dream, really. Then again, Virta is modular, so audio-controlled synthesis is just one road you can travel. You can also make stuff like:

• Expressive vocal processing chains
• 4-voice MIDI-controlled pitch shi ers
• MIDI/OSC-controlled synths (with or without audio control)
• Drones for days
• First-ever faithful emulation of the mating call of the Space Pony

A Quick Overview
Virta’s interface has four main sections, from top to bottom:
• The header section, where you’ll nd the patch menu, along with the version and registration status of your copy of Virta.
• The signals and shapes section, where AUDIO and MIDI/OSC (KEY) signals ow into Virta, and where the oscillators (OSC1 and OSC2) and modulators (LFO, and ENVELOPE) reside.
• The patcher section, where connections between modules are made and unmade.
• The processing and output section, where the sounds you make are massaged and processed to perfection by the FORMANT, GATE, DE- LAY, and OUTPUT modules"

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