Noise Engineering get in on the MicroFreak action with 3 oscillator algorithms taken from their Virt Iter module and given new life and polyphony in Arturia’s fruity little synth.
In what appears to be an annual update Arturia has released a new firmware for the MicroFreak synthesizer. I’m sure it brings all sorts of fixes and tweaks but the big news is that it has 3 new oscillator algorithms from Eurorack modular makers Noise Engineering. They are called Bass, SawX and Harm and although the algorithms are complex you only get to play with 3 parameters and one of those is noise.
Bass: Something to do with sine waves and cosine waves, modulators, saturation and wavefolding. The result is a solid bass thump that gets nicely folded and torn apart with the Fold knob and then melted with Saturate which acts on the cosine wave. The Noise control phase modulates between the two oscillators in opposite phase and is added between the folds.
SawX: A recognisable sawtooth wave with “Saw Mod” phase modulation and “Shape” chorus. This does exactly what you imagine it will and has a really lively sound. The Noise control sets the amount of phase modulation by sub-sampled white noise.
Harm: A harmonic oscillator that adds harmonics/partials to a fundamental frequency. Spread sets the relation of partials and Rectification adds a sort of half fold to each partial. Noise sets the amount of phase-modulated noise and master clip level.
Here’s my take and a sound demo of the new oscillators:
The other feature in this update is that all oscillators can now be played with 4 voice unison with a spread of up to 12 semitones. It’s interesting playing the Noise Engineering oscillators in Paraphonic mode, it adds a whole new dimension and is something you can’t do on the Virt Iter module.
Arturia has increased the number of preset slots to 384 and stuffed in a bunch of more presets.
The update is free to all MicroFreak users via the MIDI Control Centre and keeps things nicely fresh and interesting.