Baby Audio BA-1 is the plugin company’s first software instrument, an emulation of Yamaha’s criminally overlooked 1980s mini synth CS01.
Baby Audio BA-1
Plugin developer Baby Audio has built a solid niche for itself, crafting unique and sometimes quirky effects plugins like Crystalline and Smooth Operator. Now the company has released its first instrument, a virtual analogue emulation of a vintage synth, and the choice of instrument is just as left field as you’d expect from Baby Audio: the Yamaha CS01.
You’ll be forgiven if you can’t immediately call the CS01 to mind. The final entry in Yamaha’s lauded CS series, which peaked with the CS-80 in 1978, 1982’s CS01 was a mini analogue monosynth synth that packed quite a punch and found favour with synthpop producers. Think of it as Yamaha’s answer to Roland’s SH-101 but with a lot fewer bells and whistles.
All the Original Parameters
Baby Audio’s version, thankfully, adds plenty of bells and whistles to Yamaha’s original design (and sound) and brings the instrument up to date for the 21st century. BA-1 makes it polyphonic and ups the number of oscillators from one to two, each with the full complement of waveforms from the original: triangle, sawtooth, square, a shorter square, and the massive pulse width modulation, which can be controlled with a dedicated speed slider.
There’s also a filter (with a full range of resonance and not just a few notches as on the original), an envelope, and LFO, with selectable filter and oscillator destinations. It also has the unusual Glissando parameter for generating trills between notes, a holdover from the bigger CS machines.
Unusual Additions in Baby Audio BA-1
Baby Audio being Baby Audio, the company didn’t stop there and added a bunch of additional features, including effects as you’d expect. There’s a Sidechain section, with both internal and external options, frequency modulation (FM), Drive, Delay, Reverb and Chorus.
The original CS01 was housed in a small, plastic enclosure and looked a lot like a Casio. Accordingly, Baby Audio BA-1 has an emulated speaker you can access with a switch. The company has also included a Battery section. Bring down the slider to introduce “weird sonic artifacts” by virtually draining the batteries and starving the circuit.
Multiple skin colours, a random button, and more than 500 presets round out the BA-1.
There’s currently no Breath Controller option, one of the more unusual add-ons for the original CS01, but maybe we’ll see that in a future update.
Pricing and Availability for Baby Audio BA-1
Baby Audio BA-1 is now available from the company in VST, VST3, AU and AAX formats. The regular price is $99 but it’s currently on sale for an introductory price of $49.
More about BA-1
- Baby Audio BA-1: Baby Audio