ROLI Cypher2 Combines Circuit-Modeled Synthesis With MPE

ROLI has introduced Cypher2, the latest software synthesizer from Angus Hewlett and the team at FXpansion, which ROLI acquired in 2016.

Cypher2 is an analog-modeled synthesizer with an emphasis on advanced sound design and expressive performance. It comes with 1,300 included presets, a TransMod modulation system,dynamic oscillators and filters, a step sequencer and 30 effect modules.

“This project has been a true labour of love for the FXpansion team and ROLI’s veteran sound designers”, says Angus Hewlett, founder of FXpansion and now VP Engineering at ROLI. “The expressive power of 5D MPE and the sonic fidelity of circuit modeled synthesizer components is a uniquely powerful combination”.


  • Analog-modeled expressive synth
  • 1300 presets (800 2D, 500 5D)
  • Optimized for both MIDI Polyphonic Expression (MPE) and traditional MIDI controllers
  • 3 analog modlled oscillators, FM and audio-rate modulation
  • Twin analogue modeled filters with 6 circuit models each
  • State-of-the-art 5D step sequencing & arpeggiator
  • 30 modulation-ready effect modules
  • TransMod: intuitive modulation for powerful sound manipulation
  • Scalable vector interface for retina/4K

Sound Demos:

Tutorial: Video:

Pricing and Availability

Cypher2 is available now for US $199 (£159, €179). Existing owners of DCAM Synth Squad, Strobe2, a ROLI Seaboard or BLOCKS can purchase Cypher2 at a discounted price of $79 on until 7th September 2018, or for $99 thereafter.

5 thoughts on “ROLI Cypher2 Combines Circuit-Modeled Synthesis With MPE

  1. Does it do alternative tuning maps (scala maps)? Does it allow for polyphonic AT? Release velocity?

    It does sound really cool, and not another plain old subtractive.

    The envelopes on the GUI look like plain-old vector ADSR. Is there more to them than that? I suppose that vector thing in the middle could do more stuff.

    1. Only tried it briefly but answers to these questions are the same as Strobe2: yes, yes, yes. it supports Scala through .tun files (and there are ways to convert these files). Both polyphonic AT (“Press”) and release velocity (“Lift”) are part of what ROLI calls 5D so those are part of the 500 5D-enhanced patches which come with Cypher2 (well, some of these patches are setup as mono by default, so “Press” only becomes polyphonic if you switch the patch to polyphony).

      The TransMod system allows you to do all sorts of interesting things beyond the envelopes. In Strobe2, at least, you can use Euclidian mod, curves, slewing in diverse ways, performance controls (on top of the “5D”), etc.

      To me, it does sound pretty similar to plain old subtractive. At least, after watching the video and doing some patchsurfing, the difference from Strobe2 didn’t really blow me away.

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