M-Audio announced the release of Way Out Ware’s TimewARP 2600 virtual emulation of the ARP 2600 analog synthesizer. Produced from 1970 to 1981, the original ARP 2600 was one of the first commercially available synthesizers. Featuring three voltage-controlled oscillators, sample-and-hold, resonant filter, lag processors and much more, it was essentially an extremely flexible modular synthesizer in which “normalled” connections defining a default signal path could be overridden by inserting patch cords. Today, these collector’s items are both rare and extremely hard to maintain.
The TimewARP 2600 is the only ARP 2600 emulation endorsed by the creator of the original instrument, Alan R. Pearlman, who provided input and comments during the product’s design. “The TimewARP 2600 is an important evolutionary step in analog synthesis,” says Pearlman. “Way Out Ware's software package not only makes analog synthesis affordable, but also opens the way toward continuing evolution of functionality.”
In addition to reproducing the original's monophonic operation, the TimewARP 2600 offers polyphony of up to 8 voices.
Users can assign all TimewARP 2600 parameters to any MIDI controllers on an unlimited basis—including multiple parameters per controller. There’s also provision for extensive fine-tuning of the velocity and/or aftertouch parameters of incoming keyboard events, including linear, exponential, or logarithmic response. Options are also provided to invert the keyboard polarity and set custom range limits for any parameter. The TimewARP 2600 also sets a new standard for soft-synth live performance via incredibly smooth sounding sliders and controls that produce no audible artifacts while tweaking.
The TimewARP 2600 ships hundreds of patches spanning leads, basses, sound effects, evolving sonic textures and much more that allow musicians to access the instrument without knowing a thing about synthesis, There is no limit to the number of patches users can create and save. In addition to comprehensive import and export abilities, the TimewARP 2600 includes a sophisticated Patch Manager for sorting presets. The TimewARP 2600 also responds to MIDI bank-select and patch-select commands for total control.
The presence of an audio input on the TimewARP 2600 also makes it a unique signal processing effect. Effects such as a one-of-a-kind vocoder can be realized by routing a track or live mic or instrument input from an audio interface to TimewARP’s audio input for use an oscillator, LFO modulator, control voltage and so forth. (Pete Townsend used this ability to drive the guitar sound in The Who's "Who Are You.")
TimewARP 2600 integrates seamlessly with most popular host applications on Mac and PC via RTAS, VST and Audio Units implementation. It also functions in standalone mode for use with a controller live or in the studio. Under MIDI control, the internal clock can synchronize to MIDI Beat Clock for LFO and triggered effects that match the beat of a session.
Minimum system requirements are Mac OS X 10.3 or greater, 1GHz; Windows XP, 1.5GHz, 256MB RAM, and 1024x768 screen resolution.
“We are honored to be able to offer the definitive emulation of the ARP 2600," says Adam Castillo, marketing director at M-Audio. “The TimewARP 2600 is the last word in ARP emulation and the perfect addition to the line of virtual vintage synthesizers we distribute.”
TimewARP from Way Out Ware is expected to ship in September at an MSRP of $249.95. M-Audio is the exclusive worldwide distributor.
For more information on M-Audio, visit www.m-audio.com.