Spectrasonics has released Omnisphere 2.5 – a major update to its flagship software synthesizer.
Omnisphere 2.5 introduces Hardware Synth Integration, which transforms over 30 well-known hardware synthesizers into hands-on controllers that are deeply integrated with Omnisphere’s newly expanded synthesis capabilities.
“The biggest limitation of software synthesizers has been the lack of physical interaction,” notes Spectrasonics President Eric Persing. “We are very excited to be able to finally eliminate that problem by utilizing the world’s finest hardware synthesizers to fully control Omnisphere.”
“Our virtual instrument users can now experience the joy of the hardware synth workflow,” he adds, “and hardware synth users can now fully expand their capabilities into the vast sonic world of Omnisphere!”
The free upgrade also features a newly announced high-resolution interface, support for Windows Multi-touch, new Granular Synthesis capabilities and a new sound library of over 1000 new sounds, bringing the total number of included sounds to over 14,000.
Here’s Spectrasonics’ head Eric Persing introducing the update at a recent special event in LA:
Omnisphere v2.5 Features:
- Hardware Synth Integration
- New Hardware Library adds over 1,000 new patches for all users:
- Over 14,000 Sounds total now included
- Vastly Expanded Synthesis:
- Four Layers per patch
- Doubled Mod Matrix
- Over 100 New Wavetables
- New State Variable Filters
- 8 LFOs, 12 Envelopes
- New Hi-res, Resizable Interface
- New Granular Layout
- Improved Live Mode Page
- New Shared Signal Path routing
- New System Tuning/Scale functions
- Windows Multitouch support
Hardware Synths Supported:
- Sequential Prophet X
- Sequential Prophet 6
- Dave Smith Prophet 12
- Dave Smith OB-6
- Dave Smith REV2
- Moog Sub 37
- Moog Subsequent 37
- Moog Voyager
- Moog Sub Phatty
- Moog Little Phatty
- Moog Slim Phatty
- Korg Minilogue
- Korg Monologue
- Korg Prologue
- Roland System-1
- Roland System-1m
- Roland System-8
- Roland SE-02
- Roland SH-01A
- Roland JP-08
- Roland JU-06
- Roland JX-03
- Roland VP-03
- Novation Peak
- Novation Bass Station II
- Novation Circuit Mono Station
- Access Virus A
- Access Virus B
- Clavia Nord Lead 1
- Clavia Nord Lead 2
- Studiologic Sledge
Persing introduced Omnisphere 2.5 at Superbooth 2018, where he showed how it worked with an array of synths:
Here are the details on what’s new in Omnisphere 2.5:
Hardware Synth Integration
The initial release officially supports over 30 popular hardware synthesizers from Moog, Dave Smith Instruments, Roland, Korg, Novation, Nord, Access, Studiologic and Sequential, and Spectrasonics says that more are to come.
Hardware Synth Integration feature in version 2.5 goes beyond the typical “MIDI Learn” approaches that most software synthesizers employ. The Spectrasonics development team has designed unique “Hardware Profiles” for each supported hardware synthesizer, making the special features of that synthesizer work seamlessly with Omnisphere by translating MIDI messages from the hardware into useful sonic results in Omnisphere.
This allows Spectrasonics to enable sophisticated interactions from a single touch of a knob, including the ability for Omnisphere to automatically switch interface pages, recall entire FX racks, assign multiple scaled parameters and even instantly create complex modulation matrix routings on-the-fly.
The new development system also allows Spectrasonics to add new profiles for new hardware synths in the future. Most importantly, it’s easy for musicians to use – simply select the hardware synth from the drop-down HW menu and Omnisphere is now linked to that hardware synth.
Here’s an in-depth look at how Omnisphere 2.5 works with various supported synths:
01:15 – Dave Smith OB-6
03:12 – Dave Smith Prophet 12
04:30 – Dave Smith REV2
05:39 – Moog Sub 37/Subsequent 37
07:04 – Moog Voyager
08:51 – Moog Little Phatty/Slim Phatty
10:10 – Moog Sub Phatty
11:17 – Novation Bass Station II
12:48 – Novation Circuit Mono Station
14:10 – Novation Peak
15:28 – Korg Minilogue/Monologue
16:46 – Korg Prologue
18:11 – Roland System-8
18:57 – Roland System-1/System-1m
20:55 – Roland Boutique JP-08
22:07 – Roland Boutique JU-06
23:22 – Roland Boutique JX-03
24:25 – Roland SE-02
25:42 – Roland SH-01A
26:47 – Roland VP-03
27:41 – Studiologic Sledge
28:57 – Access Virus A/B
29:51 – Clavia Nord Lead 1/2
30:57 – Sequential Prophet 6
32:17 – Sequential Prophet X
Expanded Synthesis Capabilities
The new version 2.5 vastly expands the synthesis capabilities of Omnisphere by doubling its voice architecture to Four Layers per patch. Each patch can now utilize up to 12 envelopes, 8 LFOs and the Modulation Matrix has been doubled to 48 modulation routings.
Newly designed State Variable Filters are included, which were specially created for the OB-6 hardware profile and can seamlessly blend between lowpass, notch and hipass filter modes.
Over 100 New DSP Oscillator Wavetables based on the supported hardware are included and featured in the new hardware profiles.
New Hardware Sound Library
Omnisphere 2.5 also adds the new “Hardware Library”, which offers over 1,000 new patches created by Persing and the Spectrasonics Sound Development team.
Each hardware profile has a corresponding set of sounds in the Hardware Library which were specially designed using that hardware synth as an Omnisphere controller. The new sounds are available for all users, though, whether or not you’re using Hardware Synth Integration.
New High Resolution Interface
Omnisphere 2.5 features a new graphic user interface, which includes Retina / high resolution graphics for 4K monitors. The new interface has been given an aesthetic refresh for a cleaner, more modern look and features larger controls.
The new GUI is now easier to use and scalable to fit comfortably into your workspace. The Live Mode page has also been redesigned to show much more relevant information onstage at a single glance.
New Granular Layout
The Granular page of Omnisphere 2.5 now sports a full waveform display and a clearer view of what each of the grains are doing at any moment.
This new layout makes it more intuitive to understand how Omnisphere’s powerful Granular Synthesis engine is working on the audio source.
Windows Multitouch Support
Version 2.5 of Omnisphere now fully supports Windows X Multitouch computers and tablets. This means that the new Live Mode page can function as a fully functional stage interface when used fullscreen on a Windows computer.
Pricing and Availability
Omnisphere 2.5 is available now as a free update for all registered Omnisphere 2 users. Details are available at the Spectrasonics site.