MATRIXSYNTH: Opal - rhythm machine & drum synthesizer

Monday, December 19, 2022

Opal - rhythm machine & drum synthesizer

video upload by Fors

"Opal is an instrument made for intricate pattern creation. With parameter locks, probability, conditionals, ratcheting, independent track length, time division and traversal, it’s a breeze to program exciting patterns.
Opal comes with four distinct, highly malleable, synthesizers and two sequenceable effects. While the synths are tailored for creating drum sounds, it’s up to you to choose where, or if, the line between percussion and melody is drawn.

As always, every single sound and effect in this video is made with Opal."

via Opal

To sum it up

Step-sequencer with:

Parameter locks
Step logic
Per-track length
Per-track direction
Per-track time division
Five tracks with:

Gem FM Synthesizer
Mass Modal Synthesizer
Dust Pulsar Noise Synthesizer
Slate Granular Sample Player
Void Reverb & Flux Sampler

+ Modulation

Gem is an FM synthesizer capable of a wide variety of sounds, from deep and heavy bassdrums to glistening lead melodies. At its core, Gem consists of 2- Operator sinewave-based phase modulation (commonly referred to as FM) that has been fine-tuned to sound rich and punchy.

With bipolar modulation and feedback, it's possible make a vast range of different waveshapes- including common analog shapes such as square, triangle or sawtooth. It's a highly malleable form of synthesis that has been boiled down to its essentials, with an emphasis on the sheer quality of execution.

Mass is a modal synthesizer, which is a type of physical modeling synthesis that employs a bank of bandpass filter to generate its sound. Typically, physical modeling is used to mimic real-world sounds, but with Mass the essence of the synthesis method is used to make all sorts of wildly synthetic sounds, often with an otherworldly quality due to its physically-inspired origins.

The sounds possible with Mass ranges from semi-realistic percussion, bells, textures, noises, strange phase-y melodic sounds to clean and precise timbres reminiscent of additive synthesis.

Dust is a noise generator that is based around the concept of Pulsar synthesis, which is a method adjacent to Granular synthesis. The sound is composed of very short particles of sounds that creates a texture when played fast and/or dense.

Dust combines concepts from all kinds of different types of synthesis methods to create anything from pure white noise to perfectly soft spectral washes. By layering multiple oscillators Dust can also generate classic electronic metal sounds which is very useful for making hi-hats and cymbals.

Slate is a sample playback engine equipped with a granular mode that can wildly transform any sample. At its core is a high quality sample playback engine with edge smoothing (click-less playback and looping), single cycle waveform support and a flexible loop mode.

The granular mode let’s you go deeper in sound design by playing back small particles in a pattern that essentially reconstructs the original sound, but with the possibility to dramatically change the speed and pitch independently

Void & Flux
The FX (effects) track hosts two different effect engines: Void and Flux.

Void is a reverb that has been fine-tuned to sound great with a wide variety of input sounds, with an emphasis on delivering good transient response. With in-depth EQ:ing of the input and reverb signal, it’s possible to greatly shape the overall tone of the effect.

Flux is an automatic sampler that continuously records the output of all the other tracks and divides it into 16 slices that can be played back by the FX track. Think of it like an always-recording tape loop that you can use to repeat or transform sections of your pattern by playing different snippets as single shot samples.

Each engine has a dedicated modulation page with four different modulation sources that can be routed to any parameter via a modulation matrix. The different sources are Vel - velocity received from the sequencer steps (or a MIDI note), A dedicated LFO and Envelope per track, and a random value (Rand) that is received on each trigger of a step or MIDI note.

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