iVCS3 updated – apeSoft’s classic synth emulation gets some tweaks

Download from iTunes App Storeivcs3 logo 2No, I still don’t really understand how to design sounds with it but apeSoft’s remarkable emulation of EMS’s original VSC3 hardware synth from 1969 – iVSC3 – does sound fabulous. That said, there are lots of synth-heads out there who have really taken to the iVCS3 and embraced what it has to offer in more greater detail than I have (or will ever be able to). If you are a fan of classic synths, but don’t have the budget to buy the hardware, software emulations like this are as close as you are likely to get.

Regular users will be glad to see apeSoft keeping up with the development of the app and things progressed further late yesterday when v.2.1 arrived on the App Store. The previous update – v.2.0 – added support for AUv.3….   well, a sort of support in that it was implemented in a rather interesting ‘component level’ fashion. That remains the same in v.2.1 but there have been tweaks applied to some of these friendly components for better performance and to refine the UIs.

iVCS3 – the software emulation captures the somewhat wild ride of the original hardware all in the safety of an app.

Other changes include improved AudioPaste functionality, an update to the Audiobus SDK (to v.2.3.3), MIDI refinements (including when using external remote control and for Bluetooth MIDI) plus new and reworked presets. The latter includes a free IAP bank by Hazel Pascua titled ‘Old Grit’

The app’s store includes some preset options available as free IAPs.

When you consider that an example of the original hardware – as used by the likes of Jean Michel Jarre, Hawkwind, Pink Floyd and The Who  – might cost you both an arm and a leg, the app’s usual price – which is UK£14.99/US$14.99 I think – is quite a bargain. However, unless I’m mistaken, with the currently listed price at UK£9.99/US$9.99 for the base app, iVCS3 is on a bit of a sale at present….  a bit of magical synth madness at a casual purchase price anyone? Sonically, it’s a wild ride but iVCS3 can sound rich and warm…. and make some very big noise.


Download from iTunes App Store

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    1. Eustressor says:

      Fun to tinker with, but they’ve got a hefty collection of free/inexpensive preset packs that really put a smile on my face. Noisemaker, music maker, sometimes a bit of both :)

      Cheers, John!

    2. If there is anyone who wants to learn how to actually use this beast as more than just a random noise maker, I highly recommend you watch the many excellent YouTube tutorials by Hazel Pascua.
      I stumbled upon these just last night and they are exquisite! She has phenomenal knowledge of the app and is able to explain how to create noises AND actual “normal synth” keyboard sounds. You will be amazed and the confident manner she uses to de-mystify this extremely complex piece of kit. She sounds like a college professor!

      After viewing these, you’ll never be able to claim a lack of understanding about this app.

      View them here:


      • Hi Scott…. thanks for this suggestion…. I’m sure others will find it useful…. very best wishes, John

      • I second this recommendation :-) I wouldn’t pretend to have any more than a “vague working” knowledge of how to operate iVCS3, but what I do possess, is pretty much entirely down to Hazel’s brilliant video tutorials. The synth is one weird machine, but she somehow manages to make it make sense!

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