white winter. warm synth

A-800PRO MIDI controller: my new -studio, -on-stage and -home friend. Great design and feel for expressive dynamic performances.

  • Velocity-sensitive responsive reaction 61 keys with channel aftertouch!
  • 45 assignable controls: knobs, sliders, buttons, transport
  • 8 Dynamic Pads for finger drumming and MIDI triggering
  • Great pitch bend/modulation stick
  • Sustain and expression pedals input
  • Windows 7 and and Mac OS X Snow Leopard native drivers
  • ACT software control maps for Ableton Live, Cubase, FL Studio, Garage Band, Logic, Nuendo, Pro Tools and … yes, SONAR!

It takes 2 minutes to plug the USB cable, load an old subtractive synth VST with my favorite filter-response morphing – Pentagon I. That’s not a sound design „attempt“ at David Gilmour’s guitar tone from Pink Floyd’s Sorrow. It’s to explore the continuous MIDI controller possibilities of the new A-800 PRO by Roland/ Cakewalk. After all, it‘s a piano version, not a guitar sound, sent through a ton of Boss sustain, chorus, big muffs and SPC filters.

With just 4 simple oscillators, 2 LFO filters and powerful modulation you get a generic mid 1980s tone, routed through a digital multiband EQ, compressor, delay and convolution reverb. Setting the first filter to HP and the second to LP, with cutoff higher than the HP cutoff, you get a band-pass response with independent ADSR modulation and most importantly the response to velocity, keyboard pitch, aftertouch and mod wheel with independent VCA, each with an AHDSR envelope for real time morphing. You can try the amazing vocoder too. The parameters are tied to the dozen of A-800PRO MIDI controls with the ACT/ MIDI learn function.

Feel the warm phasy, vintage, harmonics/ portamento and formant-rich sound? I still miss a lot of expression for my music, so this month along with the web projects, the always postponed “MIDI controller of my dreams” design project is on the short-to-do-list.  Stay happy and tuned ;-)