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Synth Britannia - 1:30h video

Depeche Mode, OMD, Pet Shop Boys - Synth Pop generation documentary Watch

15 interesting synths

Virtual synths that somehow went under the radar Read article

NI Kontakt instruments

Free and affordable NI Kontakt libraries Read more

Sylenth EDM Soundset

165 modern presets, created by me, for Lennar Digital Sylenth synth. Visit

400 Modern presets for V-Station

Tons of presets that will bring a new life to the Novation V-Station synth Visit

Cakewalk Z3ta+ 2 presets

155 Synth / lead and bass presets inspired by many modern electronica genres. Visit

Free Organ synths / samples

Best, free organ synths / multisamples Read more

Soft Synths released in 2011

Interesting soft synths released in 2011 Read more

Free String Machine vsts

Freeware String Machine plugins Read more

Senntenial Kontakt Instrument - Bowed Guitar

Raspy Cello-like instrument created by Senntenial. Realistic sounding legato powered by SIPS (Solo Instrument Performance Suite). Runs on Kontakt 5, Contains 1 instrument, 63.6 MB Unzipped, Long notes Contain 13 separate samples stretched out to fill 20 keys; 21 separate effects.



Download: Senntenial Kontakt Instruments
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Senntenial Kontakt Instrument - Plucked Piano

Another interesting NI Kontakt freebie - Senntenial Plucked Piano. Over 350 MB of Ethereal samples. Sounds like a clavichord-mandolin. I guess, audio demo speaks for itself :)



Download: Senntenial Kontakt Instruments
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pocketBlakus - free solo Cello for NI Kontakt / Halion

pocketBlakus is a sampled, expressive solo cello virtual instrument for NI Kontakt 4.2.4 and Steinberg HALion (v.1.5). It's probably the best free Cello :)



Download: pocketBlakus - solo cello virtual instrument for Kontakt and HALion
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The Pirate Bay Away From Keyboard Documentary



An interesting, over 80 minutes, documentary about the founders of the Pirate Bay website, about the piracy, about the big companies, about law, about copyright. Well, it's pretty much about our ... life. It doesn't matter if you're a composer or a pirate or just a casual internet user - this is nice documentary.
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Density mkIII Compressor

Somehow, this plugin went off my radar ;) Density mkIII is a versatile stereo bus compressor. The latest (well, it was released during 2012 holiday :) ) mkIII version brings many changes and improvements.

During the last two years or so I’ve received quite a lot of feedback to the Density mkII release – mostly coming from mastering engineers – on how to improve its dynamic response towards todays mastering needs. Some very early efforts did not made it but with the learnings from the ThrillseekerLA compressor design and the emerging stateful saturation approach everything was possible, all of a sudden.

The mkIII version of this compressor introduces quite a lot and deep optimizations of the compressor engine especially but not limited for its use in audio mastering situations. The transient response is spot on now over the entire spectrum and it creates sonic depth and dimension: It renders audio like a three-dimensional image. This feature is very much supported by stateful saturation, which is also included now and appears on the stage as a brand new developed “VCA color” model and can be dialed in to taste.

With Density mkIII not only transients are managed in a musical and mastering grade fashion – it also renders a three-dimensional audio image, which truly supports perceived depth and dimension.

If you're not sure about the quality of this plugin - read comments on official website :)

Download: Density mkIII compressor
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BT (ft. JES) - Every Other Way - Free Acapella Download



If you want to improve your music production skills, when it comes to vocals, then this is something for you :) A free acapella from BT - Every Other Way tune - with nice Jes' vocals (dry).

Download: BT & Jes - Every Other Way
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Hideway Studio - Sustained Pluck & Flux Reversal Blue - NI Kontakt Instruments

About a week or two ago, I mentioned about nice series of experimental NI Kontakt electronic textures, instruments called The Blue Zone, created by Hideaway Studio. While, I don't have any of these, I think that it's a pretty neat source of some unusual sounds. For example some new additions - Sustained Hall Pluck and Flux Reversal (made with a blend of several layers including three warm gently overdriven tube signal generators, a series of reversed glassy digital hybrid bells and three analog waveforms from old signal generators mixed in a super smooth sequence using a pendulum orbiting in a bath of brine water!).

The price is 1.5 UK pounds (around ~ 2.5 $ ?) per each.





More info: Flux Reversal | Sustained Hall Pluck

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Kalimba - African thumb piano for Kontakt

Another (I hope) interesting find, and affordable too :) - the kalimba (also known as an Mbira or Thumb piano). It is an African instrument consisting of metal tines attached to a wooden board which are plucked with the thumbs. This Kontakt instrument features eight non-western scale tines sampled at four velocities to create an authentic sound. The instrument has been recorded dry without effects although some reverb has been added to the demo.

It costs 1.99 UK Pounds.



More info: T.D. Samples - Kalimba (via Sampleism)
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Ableton Live Sound Design - capturing sounds



Interesting (almost 25 minutes) video presentation about capturing the sounds (kitchen stuff) and turning them (by using Ableton Live and it's effects ie. Ableton Corpus - virtual resonator which adds physical modeling characteristics to audio material) into something completely different.
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60 Beats in 60 Minutes



Over 60 beats created live in 60 minutes. It's actually pretty nice. The video actually shows how fast and fun can be creating beats using Native Instruments Machine.
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Sound Design Tutorial : FM8 Growl Bass Sound



It's just some nice sound design tutorial created by Dubspot. The synth is Native Instruments FM8 and the main theme is: growl bass sound.
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Alphaville - Big In Japan Performance


"Big in Japan" is the debut single of the band Alphaville. It is from their 1984 album Forever Young. The title comes from a phrase Big in Japan, which was used to describe Western bands who are popular with Japanese audiences while garnering little attention in their home country.

The single was a great success in many countries, including Switzerland, Germany, Sweden and Turkey. The song also reached #1 on Hot Dance Club Play in December 1984.

The above video is just a nice performance :)
- Low Keyb: Roland JP8000
- Mid: Roland D10
- Top: Roland JX8P
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Yamaha DX7 Sounds


I hope that introducing some interesting performances, synth demos will encourage some younger VST Cafe readers to interest more in synths history. After all it's good to know the sound of some classic synths. Well, I'm not that old too ;) - when Yamaha DX7 was first released, I was only 3 years old and while my favourite toy was a tape recorder, I also lived in a country where having such synth was pretty much impossible (for casual people).

So, here's the nice Yamaha DX7 performance, improvisations etc. :)

Yamaha DX 7 - One of the most popular digital synths ever was the DX7 from Yamaha, released in 1983. It featured a whole new type of synthesis called FM (Frequency Modulation). It certainly is not analog and it is difficult to program but can result in some excellent sounds! It is difficult because it is non-analog and thus, a whole new set of parameters are available for tweaking, many of which seemed counter-intuitive and unfamiliar. And programming had to be accomplished via membrane buttons, one data slider and a small LCD screen.

Still the sounds it shipped with and that many users did manage to create were more complex and unique than anything before it. Percussive and metallic but thick as analog at times, the DX7 was known for generating unique sounds still popular to this day. The DX7 was also a truly affordable programmable synth when it was first released. Almost every keyboardist bought one at the time making the DX7 one of the best selling synths of all time!

The DX7 has been used by the Crystal Method, Kraftwerk, Underworld, Orbital, BT, Talking Heads, Brian Eno, Tony Banks, Mike Lindup of Level 42, Jan Hammer, Roger Hodgson, Teddy Riley, Brian Eno, T Lavitz of the Dregs, Sir George Martin, Supertramp, Phil Collins, Stevie Wonder, Daryl Hall, Steve Winwood, Scritti Politti, Babyface, Peter-John Vettese, Depeche Mode, D:Ream, Les Rhytmes Digital, Front 242, U2, A-Ha, Enya, The Cure, Astral Projection, Fluke, Kitaro, Vangelis, Elton John, James Horner, Toto, Donald Fagen, Michael McDonald, Chick Corea, Level 42, Queen, Yes, Michael Boddicker, Julian Lennon, Jean-Michel Jarre, Sneaker Pimps, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Greg Phillanganes, Jerry Goldsmith, Jimmy Edgar, Beastie Boys, Stabbing Westward and Herbie Hancock. Pretty impressive for just a partial listing! [via Vintage Synth]

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The Bandoneon - NI Kontakt Instrument

The bandoneón is a type of concertina particularly popular in Argentina, Uruguay and Lithuania which is an essential instrument in most tango ensembles from the traditional orquesta típicas of the 1910s onwards and in folk music ensembles of Lithuania.

The bandoneón, so named by the German instrument dealer, Heinrich Band (1821–1860), was originally intended as an instrument for religious music and the popular music of the day, in contrast to its predecessor, the German concertina (or Konzertina), considered to be a folk instrument by some modern authors. German sailors and Italian seasonal workers and emigrants brought the instrument with them to Argentina in the late 19th century, where it was incorporated into the local music, such as tango. [via Wikipedia]

Would you like to have the Bandoneón in your NI Kontakt ? To be honest, I don't know if there are some other Bandoneon kontakt libraries but this one seems great (judging by audio demos, comments etc.).
This particular Bandoneón was recorded in Buenos Aires, Argentina by the renowned composer Guillermo Guareschi. It is a "Premier" Bandoneón with a sweet and expressive sound. One Neumann microphone was in charge of register for the left hand where all the bass notes are generated plus an additional ribbon microphone that handled the very low frequencies with precision. The right hand was captured by a modified SE A5600 II tube microphone and an AKG mic was set to record the natural high roof ambience of the recording studio. All the microphones were connected to vintage Telefunken preamplifiers that delivered the signal directly without any console or black box in the chain.

The library "weights" almost 800 mb, and requires full NI Kontakt 4.2 (and above).



Price ? 13.99 UK Pounds

More info: Sampleism - The bandoneon
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Roland MC-505 - free 114 one-shot WAV samples

Feel free to test the latest free sample pack from Gradient Audio (B1t Crunch3r). The pack contains 114 one shot samples from Roland MC-505's user banks, recorded in 24 bit 44k with a Apogee Duet. All samples are in the key of C with some headroom for processing.



Download: Gradient Audio - Roland MC-505 samples
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Zvenigorod – Toy USSR Piano - Free NI Kontakt instrument

Another interesting freebie - small USSR (Soviet Union) toy piano, from the year 1969, sampled (more than 150 samples) and released as NI Kontakt 5 library.
10 presets (70 mb uncompressed) offer quite unique sound that resembles a xylophone.


All I can say, If you know some more, good, not introduced NI Kontakt freebies then contact me or write comment. After all it's all about bringing and praising the good stuff :)

Download: Zvenigorod - Toy Piano
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2013 NAMM Show

The NAMM Show is one of the two largest music product trade shows in the world, founded in 1901. It is held every January in Anaheim, California, USA, at the Anaheim Convention Center. Its European counterpart is the Musik Messe in Frankfurt, Germany. The 2013 NAMM Show was held from Thursday, January 24 to Sunday, January 27, 2013.
If you're interested in latest products (especially hardware) then Synthopia website covered most of it here. Also, don't forget to read "The Best Of The 2013 NAMM Show" article which introduces the most interesting electronic music gear.

Article: The Best of the 2013 NAMM Show | NAMM Show related blog entries
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