French music software maker XILS-lab today announced an updated version of their XILS 3 V2.0, the software emulation of the late-Sixties-vintage EMS VCS3 portable analogue synthesizer. The software also adds an emulation of the 256 Analog Sequencer, inspired by EMS’ trailblazing Synthi Sequencer 256 namesake.
The British-built EMS VCS3 — or Electronic Music Studios Voltage Controlled Studio #3 (also known as “The Putney” and, somewhat confusingly, “The Synthi” — after its later SYNTHI VCS3 II incarnation) was introduced in 1969 as the first commercially portable synthesizer available anywhere in the world. Though it was in production for only a short period of time the VCS3 was put to use by some of the “more experimental” electronic musicians of the day, including the BBC Radiophonic Workshop (think Dr Who), Brian Eno (with Roxy Music), Jean-Michel Jarre, and Pink Floyd, among others.
The updated XILS 3 software emulation for Mac (OS X 10.4 and above) and PC (Windows 7, Vista, and XP) has these new features:
All-new GUI. Users can zoom in on all matrices, while continuous modulation amount is now possible within the pin matrix itself.
Improved polyphonic sequencer workflow. In the SEQUENCER 256 module, inspired by EMS’ trailblazing Synthi Sequencer 256 namesake. XILS-lab has brought the sequencer into its software with three independent layers, slew rates, and recording modes, together with added abilities like sequencer layers acting as modulation sources in a dedicated SEQ MATRIX.
Additional features. Adding a second matrix with two additional envelopes, an LFO, comprehensive SAMPLE AND HOLD module, and VOLTAGE PROCESSOR, plus several new input modules — including GATE, ENVELOPE FOLLOWER, and PITCH TRACKER — make hundreds of additional connections available – over 800 different connections per patch with ‘only’ 583 simultaneous connections to boot. 18dB filter emulation alongside a three-mode analogue chorus, delay, and phaser, as well as 150 new presets and an improved (retagged) factory bank.
Pricing and Availability. XILS 3 V2.0 is available to purchase as an eLicenser or iLok copy-protected virtual instrument and effects plug-in at an introductory discounted price of 120.00 Euro ($165 US). The software will regularly be priced at 149.00 EUR after May 1, 2014 via the XILS-lab web store. Current users of the full version of XILS 3 can upgrade for free; XILS 3 LE users can upgrade for €99 ($136). The introductory-priced offer also includes the XILISTICS sound bank for XILS 3 with 160-plus presets worth €25.00 EUR.
In addition, XILS 3 V2.0 can be directly downloaded as a 32- and 64-bit-compatible virtual instrument and effects plug-in for Mac (AAX, AU, RTAS, VST) and Windows (AAX, RTAS, VST) from XILS-lab.
Additional information is available on the XILS-lab website.