We first saw the RYM2612 back in 2016 when it was first released as a Rack Extension for Propellerhead Reason. Inphonik is now very pleased to be releasing it in VST, AU and AAX formats to hopefully reach a wider audience.
It’s based on the Yamaha YM2612 FM synthesizer chip that formed the sound engine of the 16bit Sega Mega Drive console in Japan and Europe and the Sega Genesis in America (same console, different name). They say that rather than being an emulation this is “cycle-accurate” to the original chip. And they’ve modelled the amp circuitry in order to retain the grain of the original for an undoubtedly authentic console music experience.
Of course, they’ve added a couple of things like a dedicated PCM channel with an 8-bit audio input, effects and sample playback. It also takes it up to 16 voices from the original 6 voices.
The RYM2612 has 4 operators with the main controls for each laid out in the main GUI. It starts off with the envelope followed by a Software Controlled Sound Generator (SSG-EG) which combines another waveform with the initial envelope to do remarkable things. Next, you have a Phase Generator to pit the waves against each other along with detuning. Feedback offers the chance to trigger even more timbres by taking the output of Operator 1 back into itself.
Over on the right you can choose from 1 of 8 different algorithms that dictate how the Operators are arranged and routed. Finally there’s a simple LFO that can be applied to pitch or amplitude.
In FM synthesis the base frequencies of each operator tended to be related. The YM2612 chip had a “Special Mode” where each operator could have its own frequency and the RYM2612 replicates this function. They also have the slightly mysterious CSM mode which gives a very fast repetition effect of a note that gives the impression of a tone rather than a repeating note.
Modelling the original output circuitry brings two features that you can toggle on and off depending on your desired depth of authenticity. These are Output Filtering and Ladder Effect.
The depth they’ve gone to is quite remarkable. There’s even another app called the RYMCast that’s a VGM player for the original Sega music files.
RYM2612 is available now for a discount price of €25.
- Inphonki RYM2612 webpage.