All of the features of the Lead A1 synth are carried over to the A1R, with the exception of the keyboard. The waveform engine generates 47 different waveforms from classic analog to digital harmonic and inharmonic waves. Filters include Low Pass, High Pass and Band Pass, along with the newly modeled Ladder M and Ladder TB filters.
The A1’s effects section offers vintage Chorus and Ensemble models. Delay, Reverb, Drive, Phaser and Flanger, with independent settings for each of the four slots. Nord’s Morph function, via Velocity or the Mod Wheel, is also included, allowing multiple parameters to be morphed in real time.
Other features include an independent arpeggiator for each of the four slots, Master Clock sync of the LFO, delay and Arpeggiator, MIDI over USB, and four independent outputs.
Several updates have been made to the Lead A1/A1R design since it was announced at NAMM:
- ‘Like’ button – ‘Like’ up to 50 versions of a patch as you design it, scroll between them to choose your favorite to save to actual memory, or go back to an earlier version to edit in a different way.
- Mutator – The Lead A1 and A1R also include the Mutator function introduced in the Lead 4, which creates a variation of an existing patch by adjusting certain parameters by set rules, and a full ‘Randomize’ function to create an entirely new patch with all parameters randomized.
- Unison – A newly-designed Unison Mode lets the Lead A1 ‘challenge any vintage analogue instrument.’
Update, Mar 11, 2014: Here’s the short promotional video Nord has released:
Here are audio demos of the Nord Lead A1/A1R:
The Nord Lead is expected to be available in April, while the A1R is expected to be available in June. See the Nord site for details.