His latest creation, though, is simply named the Metasonix S-2000 Vacuum Tube Synthesizer. And Barbour calls it “the most exciting instrument in the history of Metasonix”.
Here’s what he has to say about it:
The S-2000 is not merely a new repackaging of old designs. It is a revolution, and a game changer.
The S-2000 was made to be as easy to use as possible. Just plug in power, plug in an amplifier, wait 30 seconds for the real new-old-stock vacuum tubes to warm up, and start playing it. The built-in 400mm ribbon controller is instantly responsive, and needs no special treatment. No trimpots, no fiddling with MIDI interfaces or fighting with fistfuls of cables. The misery has been engineered out.
The simplicity might fool you. The S-2000 has enough controls and enough flexibility to keep the musician busy for years of sonic exploration.
Here’s an unofficial video of the Metasonix S-2000 in action: Continue reading
The Knifonium is a unique 25-tube monophonic synthesizer, with a 4th order ladder filter and a ring modulator. It is currently a working prototype.
The Knifonium was created by Jonte Knif, sho says that the instrument is small and light enough to take to gigs, despite of the amount of electronics, traditional craftsmanship and adequately sized controllers. Continue reading
Hollow Sun has introduced Oscillosine, a new virtual instrument based on the sound of a vintage tube Hewlett Packard sine wave test oscillator, estimated to date back to the 50s or 60s, maybe earlier.
Oscillosine uses Kontakt’s modular synthesis facilities to create a compact sonic laboratory machine. According to Hollow Sun, Oscillosine is capable of producing sci-fi and vintage electronica blips and bleeps and klings and klangs and drones and squeals as well as smooth pads, solid sub-basses, mellow leadlines, etc., suitable for more modern musical genres.
The user interface is modezled on an old Tektronics oscilloscope. Audio demos are available at the Hollow Sun site.
What does it sound like?
Hollow Sun says:
With careful settings, it’s possible to create pseudo-arpeggios and sequences but otherwise, it’s possible to create sounds that could have come from a VCS3 or Buchla or from the soundtrack of the 50′s movie, ‘Forbidden Planet’ … warm, organic and temperental and unpredictable sounds.
There are also ring mod and FM functions to create discordant sounds which can be modulated and mangled by the multi-wave LFO and so on. The possibilities are almost endless.
Audio demos are available at the Hollow Sun site.
Note: Hollow Sun recommends, for safety reasons, that you wear a white lab coat when operating Oscillosine.
Pricing and availability for Oscillosine are to be announced.
Each NAMM Show, Metasonix’ Eric Barbour attempts to top himself with ever-more offensively named and styled vacuum tube audio boxes, and this year was no different.
This video captures a Hertz Donut through the Metasonix iCunt prototype.