Syntronik launched – IK Multimedia port their hybrid virtual instrument to iOS

Download from iTunes App StoreOK, so I know I’m a little late with this but, if you have not seen already, IK Multimedia have launched a new iOS music app called Syntronik. In fact, the app arrived a week or so ago and, if you like the sound of classic analog synths, then even if you are one of the iOS musicians who are a little less enthusiastic about what the more mainstream developers tend to offer, this app is at least worth a look….  and that’s pretty easy to do because the core app is a free download….

In fact, Syntronik is not brand new…..  the iOS versions is actually a port of the desktop version of the same instruments and that’s been available for a few months. I’m actually in the process of reviewing that for Sound On Sound and, while it is a fairly sizeable beast (all in, it’s 50GB on the desktop), I have to say that it is a fairly impressive piece of software and sounds fabulous.

Syntronik – a one-stop shop for all your analog synth sound needs?

IKM describe the sound engine as a ‘hybrid’. It combines advanced sampling with physical modelling and aims to provide an ‘all-in-one’ sound source for classic vintage synths. In total, Syntronik ‘models’ 17 instruments including the Roland Jupiter, Juno-60, JX-series, TB-303, Moog Taurus, Yamaha SY99, PPG Wave 2.3, ARP 2600, Prophet 5 and 10, Oberheim SEM and a few others. It reads a bit like a ‘who’s who?’ list of classic synths.

Each of the modelled/sampled instruments comes with its own dedicated front-end….

Each of these has been heavily sampled but, when you load up a preset from a specific instrument, Syntronik’s UI adapts to give you something that reflects the look and control set of the original….  and it is at this point that the physical modelling kicks in as you can tweak the synth’s controls as per the real instrument and this then acts upon the underlying samples to change the sound. I have to say that, based upon my experience with the desktop version, it’s an approach that produces some fabulous sounds; this is a big, beefy, ‘virtual analog’ instrument that sound sound great either live or in the studio.

Oohhh…. very Juno :-)

On both the desktop, and under iOS, once you have acquired the base application, you get a small selection of patches to try out the engine and, if you like what you hear, can then purchase either the complete sound set as a bundle or opt for individual sound packs based upon specific modelled/sampled instruments.

The base app is free and includes enough sounds to give you a taste…. then you can make your own mind up about how far you dig into the IAP content to expand your sound options.

It’s perhaps here that the main difference between the desktop and iOS versions become obvious. The desktop’s full-size package of around 50GB has, apparently, been squeezed down to a more modest 4.6GB under iOS. That’s still a pretty hefty package in iOS terms though and, while I’ve still to explore the iOS version in full, it does still sound very good.

The effects section is very well specified and offers lots of options.

There are some other cool features to the app. As well as the various synth front-ends, you also get an excellent array of effects with over 30 options that can be placed into a 5 slot effects chain. There is also a very powerful arpeggiator system with a preset system that comes fully stocked. Oh, and you can also load up four individual patches at any one time and blend these together into some massive analog-esq sound monster….  along with a very neat keyboard split system if you want to layer than based upon specific key ranges of simply create keyboard splits for different sounds. The latter would obviously be great in a performance context.

Syntronik includes a well-featured arpeggiator function.

Syntronik requires iOS9.3 or later and an iPad Air, iPad mini 2, or later is required to run it. IAA and Audiobus are support but not, as yet, AU. The latter would be great to see on something that covers such a broad sonic ground as Syntronik….  fingers crossed that will happen.

Up to four sounds can be layered or split using the neat keyboard/note range editor.

Anyway, as the base app is free, there is no harm in given Syntronik a try. The full-fat IAP is then priced at UK£38.99/US$39.99 with IAPs for individual instrument sound packs priced at UK£9.99/US$9.99. Well worth a look for any iOS analog synth fan….


Download from iTunes App Store

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    1. Given the big difference in price between the desktop and iOS versions it would be good to understand the consequences of the 50Gb vs 4.6Gb package size on the scope/versitility and sound quality of the two options (obviously there are some work flow advantages to owning the desktop version). Hopefully you can shed some light on this John.

    2. Simon, the main diference may well reside only in the quality of the samples. Even though there may not have an aparent diference, i think it may be only that. If we convert a 24bit, 48kHz file to a compressed m4a the size will be much smaller, and we won’t find a huge diference (this depends on the audio information/complexity of the piece of audio off course). I think that iPad producers and composers don’t need that kind of heavyness anyway, because we aren’t transporting our big monitors with high quality too. We mainly work with headphones or so.

    3. also, it is only half the sounds, so that makes it smaller too.

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