If you’re partial to stroking your gear fondly to while away the hours there is much to relish here, from the generous collection of sturdy knobs to buttons, encoders and a couple of sets of envelope sliders.It’s an interface optimised for quick results, but when you need the extra detail, there’s a well-stocked menu system supported by buttons for direct page access and page navigation.Fortunately, apart from a few noises heard when adjusting effect depths, zipper noise is almost entirely absent.Finally, to prevent potentially disruptive leaps as you begin to tweak a freshly loaded patch, the system settings menu features a ‘pickup’ mode with the display showing both the current and saved values.Novation report that on an oscilloscope, it’s hard to tell the NCOs apart from the DCOs of their Bass Station II.Certainly, and unlike many digital oscillators, there was no need to stack them all up to fatten out the sound.The only omission was a ‘manual’ setting to make the current panel values live, a feature Novation assure me is planned at some point.One issue to be aware of is that the patch selection encoder and buttons are active in all modes, so if you happen to touch any of them during a lengthy editing session, hey presto, your work is gone!
With three envelopes, two LFOs, effects and a modulation matrix this is an ambitious hybrid bidding for its place in history, as well as on your desk or workspace.
Novation’s ambitious new synthesizer brings together the best of analogue and digital.
We’ve been subtractively filtering the same handful of waveforms for so long it’s often worth stepping back to remember the instruments that took a different approach.
The review was conducted using pre-release firmware in which most of the intended functionality was in place.
And even though there were only a few example patches, the synth’s accessibility meant I was more than happy to begin filling it with my own highlights.
For example, you get 255 discrete values of filter cutoff but only 63 of positive filter envelope depth (since it is bipolar).