Developer Raphael Radna shared this introduction to Xenos: Xenharmonic Stochastic Synthesizer, a free and open-source virtual synthesizer based on the work of composer Iannis Xenakis.
Xenos is a virtual instrument plug-in that implements and extends the Dynamic Stochastic Synthesis (DSS) algorithm invented by Iannis Xenakis. In the late 1960s, Xenakis (1922-2001) began his research on stochastic synthesis: an approach to microsound synthesis that uses probability distributions to manipulate individual digital samples.
Programmed in C++ with the JUCE framework, Xenos is open-source, cross-platform, and can be built in a number of plug-in formats.
- Authentic DSS engine
- Xenharmonic pitch quantizer
- Custom scale import in the Scala format
- Ten stochastic distributions with up to two parameters each
- First- and second-order random walks
- Variable number of segments per wave cycle
- Variable amplitude envelope
- Polyphonic (64 voices by default)
- MIDI implementation (notes, sustain, pitch bend)
- External MIDI controller assignment
- Parameter automation
- Simple and streamlined interface
- Free and open source
Xenos was first presented to the Meta–Xenakis Global Symposium, and is the subject of a master’s degree from the Media Arts and Technology (MAT) program at UC Santa Barbara.
It’s available for Mac & Windows, along with the source code, via Github.
3 thoughts on “Free Xenos Xenharmonic Stochastic Synthesizer Builds On Ideas Of Composer Iannis Xenakis”
remember when ‘stochastic’ wasn’t just a lazy replacement for the word random?
Xenakis was doing this shit before most of us were even born.
The ability to load scala scales, and it’s features to sort of morph between tones & noise– well, those features combined, make this a pretty fascinating sound design box.