Digidesign First Two Virtual Instruments

NAMM Update: At NAMM, Digidesign debut the first two virtual instruments from Digidesign Advanced Instrument Research: Xpand!, a free multi-synthesis sound factory workstation plug-in, and Hybrid, a high-definition synthesizer plug-in, available soon in RTAS format.

Digidesign announced that the R&D virtual instrument design group that it acquired from Wizoo in 2005 has been renamed the Digidesign Advanced Instrument Research group. The group’s mission is to create powerful virtual instruments for the Pro Tools platform.

“With the introduction of Pro Tools 7 software, we added a slew of enhanced Music/MIDI features including new looping, arranging, and composition tools that are changing the way people perceive Pro Tools as music production platform,” commented Digidesign General Manager Dave Lebolt. “And now with the introduction of our new software instrument product line, we’re delivering tightly integrated VIs in Pro Tools coupled with the extreme high quality and reliability that our customers have come to expect from us. To illustrate this, we’re giving away our first instrument, Xpand! to our users for free so everyone can experience the beginnings of what we have in store.”

Xpand! will soon be included with all Pro Tools|HD and Pro Tools LE systems, Pro Tools M-Powered software, the Music Production Toolkit and DV Toolkit 2, Pro Tools 7.x updates and upgrades, and the Pro Tools 101 Official Courseware.

Xpand! provides a simple and accessible user interface to manipulate thousands of high-quality sounds directly from within Pro Tools. The instrument offers virtual analog, FM, and wavetable synthesis, sample playback, tonewheel organ emulation and effects. With more than 1,000 factory patches and four component sound parts per instance, users can craft anything from pristine-sounding acoustic instruments to complex synthesized soundscapes or loop-driven techno tracks. Xpand! delivers songwriters, film composers, DJs, electronic musicians, music producers, and sound designers an extremely powerful creative palette.

Digidesign is also introducing Hybrid ($249 US MSRP), a forthcoming release from Digidesign’s Advanced Instrument Research group. Hybrid is a premium RTAS software synthesizer for Pro Tools systems that combines the warmth of legendary analog synths from the ’70s with a full range of twenty-first century analog and digital capabilities, and precision control and creativity, yielding the best of both worlds. Explore Hybrid on any of the hands-on Digidesign demo stations.

Xpand! and Hybrid are available for Digidesign-qualified Windows- or Macintosh-based Pro Tools systems running Pro Tools 7 software or higher, including Pro Tools|HD, Pro Tools LE, and Pro Tools M-Powered systems.

More information is available at the Digidesign site.

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