Na­tive In­stru­ments Ef­fects Se­ries Mod Pack

NI un­leash a trio of cre­ative mod­u­la­tion ef­fects. Si Truss gets wavey…

Future Music - - CONTENTS -

NI’s lat­est plugin re­lease, Mod Pack, con­tains a trio of clas­sic mod­u­la­tion ef­fects with easy-to-use in­ter­faces that be­lie their depth and orig­i­nal­ity. Th­ese three ef­fects – Pha­sis, Cho­ral and Flair – each repli­cate tried and tested hard­ware-style ef­fects, but with a few unique tricks up their sleeves.

Pha­sis ini­tially ap­peared to­wards the end of last year as a free down­load for ex­ist­ing NI gear own­ers (and those who grabbed it at the time can claim a £15 dis­count on the full Mod Pack). As you’d ex­pect with a soft­ware phaser, Pha­sis has con­trols for ad­just­ing the amount of notches ap­plied to the fre­quency spec­trum, along with the feed­back (or res­o­nance) of th­ese. There’s a sync-able LFO with rate con­trol to act as a mod­u­la­tion source, and an amount con­trol for ad­just­ing the depth of mod­u­la­tion. Here we also get sep­a­rate con­trols for ad­just­ing the fre­quency Cen­tre and the Spread of the notches, and a slider that ad­justs how the mod­u­la­tion is dis­trib­uted be­tween th­ese. An Ul­tra mode takes things fur­ther still, by ex­tend­ing the Rate and Cen­tre ranges into the au­di­ble fre­quency range, to cre­ate ef­fects more akin to Phase Mod­u­la­tion syn­the­sis.

Cho­ral, mean­while, is a cho­rus ef­fect with four modes: Synth, pro­vid­ing Juno-style ef­fects; En­sem­ble, repli­cat­ing clas­sic string synth tones; Di­men­sion, emu­lat­ing the BBD-style cho­rus of units like Roland’s Di­men­sion D; and Uni­ver­sal, a more gen­eral, plugin-style cho­rus. Width, mod­u­la­tion Rate, De­lay and Feed­back con­trols al­low each mode to be tweaked to taste.

Flair is the most in­ter­est­ing of the trio. Here we get a flanger ef­fect pow­ered by four sep­a­rate comb fil­ters, re­ferred to here as Voices. Th­ese voices can be added at a va­ri­ety of dif­fer­ent pre­set har­monic in­ter­vals, ef­fec­tively al­low­ing the plugin to act as a chord gen­er­a­tor. There are three dif­fer­ent modes dic­tat­ing how th­ese voices in­ter­act: stan­dard, where th­ese stacked voices be­have like a reg­u­lar flanger; Thru Zero, which be­haves more like a pair of clas­sic tape ma­chines; and Scan where Flair cy­cles through the voices cre­at­ing an arpeg­gia­tor-like ef­fect.

While none of the Mod Pack ef­fects feel like they’re short on con­trols, each does keep things fairly sim­ple, gen­er­ally lim­ited to no more than eight or nine pa­ram­e­ters crammed on to the small (but re­siz­able) UI. This is clearly done to op­ti­mise each for use with NI’s Mas­chine or Kom­plete Kon­trol hard­ware, but it also re­sults in mak­ing all three ef­fects ap­proach­able for quick tweak­ing. A healthy crop of pre­sets for each helps too.

NI de­scribe the Mod Pack ef­fects as be­ing an up­grade to your DAWs stock mod­u­la­tion ef­fects, and that sums them up pretty well. Each pro­vides quick, clas­sic ef­fects but with a few unique touches that set them apart from their peers. Priced at £60 for the three, th­ese are a must-buy for Mas­chine/Kom­plete Kon­trol users, but come highly rec­om­mended for any­one af­ter a quick source of cre­ative ef­fects.

Easy-to-use in­ter­faces be­lie their depth and orig­i­nal­ity

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