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Sonic Academy ANA 2.0

Sonic Academy ANA 2.0  ·  Source: Robin Vincent

What Slate Digital like to call “The industry’s most game-changing new synth” ANA 2.0 seemed to get swallowed up by their All Access Pass bundle. But it turns out you don’t have to subscribe to all of Slates plug-ins in order to get your hands on this powerful new synth. You can just buy it from the developers Sonic Academy in the old fashioned one-time payment way. 

ANA 2.0

So, rather than being just one product in a huge bundle of stuff ANA 2.0 can stand on its own and is worth spending some individual time with.

ANA 2.0 is a wavetable software synthesizer for Windows and MacOS. It’s had a complete redesign over the original version with a new black GUI as an alternative to the classic white. It’s HD Retina-ready and looks great on the screen.

The sound source comes from a combination of 3 wavetable oscillators and 3 sample-based oscillators. The wavetables are 3 dimensional and can morph from one to another. It comes with 50 waveforms to choose from and you can import and edit your own. On the sample side you can make use of a wide range of included samples or import your own. You can even drag in samples directly from your DAWs timeline. And then adjust start and end points, loop points, crossfading, pitching and reversing. There are really trying to make this thing as versatile as possible.

The filter section features 46 high-quality filters types covering things we’ve never heard of but a bit of experimentation is always welcome. You have 2 independent filter slots that you can run in series or parallel and combine with a single cutoff knob if you wish.

In terms of modulation there are 3 regular envelopes, one for the filter, the amp and a spare one for modulation. But then there are 3 “G-Env” envelopes which are completely configurable so that you can draw whatever shape you want to use. Add to that 3 multi-shape LFOs and you’ve got movement all over the place.

At the end of the chain is large collection of 24 effects that can be used in up to 5 insert slots and 2 send/return slots. They can be modulated in the same way as everything else and reorder by dragging them about.

For musical input you have a 64-step polyphonic arpeggiator with the sort of features that really make it more like a sequencer. Along with velocity control you can also run two modulation sources. And it’s got a whole load of chord generation and progression possibilities for people with only one musical finger.

ANA 2.0 is a very well featured synthesizer with a huge scope for user content and manipulation. Or you can just play with the 500 presets. It’s available now for the one-time purchase price of £98 for a limited period. So if you don’t want to be paying Slate Digital a subscription for the rest of your life then go straight to Sonic Academy.

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