Status update

I’ve been working on the first update. Most of the bugs and known issues are fixed while some GUI work remains.

The midi control support turned out to be a bit more work than i had hoped for. The midi action by it self is relatively simple to implement, but storing the assignments is not. There are too many, in the order of 10000, possible controller assignments and using fixed size preset format that can store all of them is just way too impractical. In fact, storing any fixed number of them is, so i had to change the preset format to variable sized.

I hope there won’t be any nasty surprises so that i can get the update ready, tested and released soon!

Feedback update

The user feedback ranging from positive to enthusiastic has exceeded all of my expectations on the KVR Instruments forum. A number of issues has also been brought up, feature requests, unsupported functionality and genuine bugs. So far nothing really catastrophic i’m glad to say.

Many users have been concerned about the CPU usage which is a bit high, and have been encouraging me to optimize further. Many users have requested also for a polyphonic version of the synth. Unfortunately both of these requests are hard to implement, and i can not promise either of these improvements in the near future.

Other issues involve:

  • Standard MIDI program change messages are not supported. Apparently Ableton Live relies on these when a clip is assigned a preset number.
  • The GUI doesn’t work with Wacom pen tablet.
  • Velocity sensitivity needs to be adjustable.
  • The GUI needs to support mousewheel on controls.
  • Better support for MIDI: modwheel, aftertouch, CC etc.
  • Vibra knob behaves bad when turned left.

I will do my best to fix all of the above issues in an update as soon as possible.

There are lots of reserved parameters that unfortunately can not be hidden from the host. They are not visible in the GUI, but most hosts have some display for all parameters. This arrangement has to do with how the VST hosts and plugins communicate and handle presets. Those unnamed parameters are reserved for future use so that if i ever need to add some new parameters to the synth, the old presets and old projects will remain working.

Huge thanks to everybody for the positive feedback and for bringing these issues to my awareness.

Demo track

Just finished a demotrack for the synth. The idea was to present as many sounds in as brief track as possible, yet in a form with enough resemblance to a dance track production.

All instruments and sounds are made with Kairatune, except for the drums and percussion. The Kairatune tracks were mixed very conservatively – no additional processing per track, although some reverb sends were used. The final mastering was performed without restrictions to bring the end result closer to what one might hear on a real production.

Initial user feedback

So far the feedback has been mainly positive and encouraging. Most of the negative comments have been about the user interface, nonstandard or unintuitive parameter naming or layout. Also the documentation for some of the more unusual parameters has been insufficient. These are the kind of shortcomings that are very hard to spot from the designer/developer point of view, which makes the feedback especially valuable. I’ll do my best to fix these issues before the release. Huge thanks to the testers!

I’ve also received a number of ideas and suggestions for improvement. I take that as a good sign, though i don’t have the time to implement much of that stuff on the first release.

A couple weeks ago i received a dozen very creative high quality presets designed by users. They’re quite unlike my own designs and very interesting. Things are moving on just great!

Website up

Set up a website to support the upcoming release of my first synth plugin. I plan to host downloads and publish more detailed info about updates and some tech stuff.

I’m using WordPress, the free open source publishing platform, with the excellent Atahualpa theme by Bytes for All.