Synthractive: no-nonsense subtractive virtual synthesizer
When many virtual synths offer untold depths of complex multi-layer hybrid sound design sometimes you need something simple and effective. Synthractive is a stereo subtractive synthesizer that does the job.
This classic example of a synth has 2 oscillators with sine, sawtooth, ramp, triangle, pulse, white noise and pink noise waveforms. It has fine-tuning for some nice detuned action and pulse width modulation. The filter can switch between high, low, band-pass and band-reject modes and comes with resonance and keyboard tracking on the cutoff.
For modulation there are 2 ADSR envelopes, one for the filter, one for the amp and 2 LFOs with the same waveforms as the regular oscillators. In the modulation router you can assign both LFOs, the filter envelope, velocity and aftertouch to either the cutoff, pitch, pulse width or volume.
At the end of the chain is a stereo reverb and a stereo delay effect.
Synthractive comes with 40 presets to get you going but the joy of a classic subtractive synth is that it’s so easy to make your own. It has a bit of a dated look to it but it sounds pretty decent to me. There is a demo video (below) but I think you’re far better off downloading the demo and trying it for yourself.
Synthractive from Syntheway is available now for Windows or MacOS for $43.90.