iZotope VocalSynth - Future Music - July 2016

iZotope VocalSynth - Future Music - July 2016

VocalSynth is a four-part vocal synthesizer and multi-effect processor which combines a range of corrective and creative tools within a single package.

 
It is built around a quartet of modules each offering a different flavour of vocal synthesis effect: Vocoder, Talkbox, Polyvox – a vocal harmoniser and formant shifter – and Compuvox, which creates digitised speech synthesis sounds.
 
These modules have been built with simplicity in mind. Each offers just three parameter rotaries plus a mode switch and preset drop-down in the case of everything except Polyvox.
 
These four re-synthesis devices are fed by a global pitch/scale section controlled via the top part of the UI. VocalSynth has three operating modes – Auto, MIDI and SideChain – selected and controlled in this section. In the default Auto mode, the synthesis engines will select what notes to play based on an analysis of the main audio input.
 
A Key selector allows users to define a specific set of notes, which comes stocked with a range of preset scale types, a custom mode for selecting user-defined scales, and chromatic mode if you want to make all notes available.
 
MIDI mode, meanwhile, takes its note information from a user-defined MIDI input, which can be switched between mono and poly modes. Finally, SideChain mode mutes the built-in synthesis engines in favour of an external carrier signal routed into a sidechain input, which is then modulated by the main modulator input.
 
This global section also features built-in pitch correction, with range and speed controls for tailoring the effect to suit the incoming audio, along with a strength dial to adjust pitch correction. Generally, these pitch analysis and correction tools did a solid job in our tests – it´s not going to replace something like Melodyne in your plug-in arsenal, but within the context of these kind of vocal effects, it´s reliable and flexible.
 
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We´re impressed with VocalSynth; it is simple, making classic sounds very easy to achieve, but there´s a lot of depth once you start combining its elements, automating parameters and getting creative.
 
We also tried the various modules on drums, synths and other instruments and ended up with plenty of unique, inspiring results. In short, there´s a lot of sonic power here for a reasonable price, all in a well-designed package.