I am excited to share my first contribution to the Reaktor User Library, Phader.
From a literal perspective, Phader functions as a traditional subtractive synthesizer. What makes Phader special is its user interface. Each control is designed to dramatically change the sound. These changes are performed primarily through the use of crossfaders.
The gui of Phader is designed to encourage the user to treat each oscillator strip as its own synthesizer, and then use the primary crossfader to combine the sounds. Each oscillator strip contains six generator options, each containing two of the most common waveforms (sine, triangle, pulse, sawtooth). Each strip can produce up to 16 waveforms at once. More on that later.
Filter: Each oscillator strip also contains a single-knob filter. When you turn the filter knob to the left, it acts as a low-pass cutoff. When you turn the knob to the right, it acts as a high-pass cutoff. A preset resonance curve is also set to the knob. These preset functions, while theoretically not as customizable as a traditional multi-knob system, exist to speed up the sound creation process.
Phat: Each oscillator strip contains three “Phat” knobs. Each knob brings two slightly detuned duplicates of the crossfaded waveforms. The process is essentially the same as having multiple oscillator strips each with a detune knob which you can layer, but streamlined.
Ring Modulator: Each oscillator strip contains a ring modulator. This ring modulator is fed all the other information on the strip, including duplicate generations from the Phat knobs. The ring modulator was meticulously designed to avoid phase cancellation. This was done by having each generated waveform get individually multiplied by an octave of itself, rather than having the entire output of the oscillator strip get multiplied by itself.
The center section of Phader is really the star of the show. It features your traditional ADSR, as well as an envelope filter which can be turned on and off. The envelope filter affects both oscillator strips. The center section also includes a noise generator with a “color” knob to tweak the frequency spectrum of the noise.
At the bottom of the center section, you will notice a long crossfader. This crossfader is so long to allow the finest tweaks when combing the oscillator strips. The oscillator strips don’t have their own level controls, so if you want one silent, move the fader all the way to the opposite side.
The center section gives you three options on how you want the crossfading to function. The first option is normal fader placement (how you would normally use a crossfader). The second option is an LFO that when selected, bounces between the oscillator strips. When the depth is low, you will always have a bit of each oscillator strip in the mix. When the depth is high, the changes will be more abrupt. The third option is to control the fade based on the ADSR envelope. A long attack on the ADSR will slowly crossfade from left to right, allowing you to start the sound with one synth sound and end on a completely different one.
I have many ideas on how I can expand upon this concept. This version of Phader is designed to be streamlined and quick to use, but future versions may include more controls, especially within the center section.
Thank you for downloading. I hope you enjoy Phader.
Update 1.0.1: Now includes “More Richness” snap bank made by user Paule.
Update 1.0.2: Adds five “SciFi” presets.